Inspirational Woman: Katrina Douglas | Founder, The Launch Strategist

Meet Katrina Douglas

Founder, The Launch Strategist

Katrina Douglas is the founder of The Launch Strategist®, a business that is passionate about helping business leaders launch projects that are purposeful and profitable, that lead to greater personal satisfaction and sustainable wealth.

In this piece, Katrina talks to us about setting up her own company, her hopes for the future and how her marriage was the training ground for running a successful business.

Tell us a bit about yourself, background and your current role

I founded The Launch Strategist® in 2019 and have built the business with a focus on helping CEOs and Directors achieve greater financial success and structure in their business, by launching mission-led commercial projects using my proprietary 6P Launch Strategy Framework™. Delivering additional income streams, increased business profitability and simplifying the launch process. Whether a CEO is launching to start a business, launching to grow a business or launching to exit a business, I have created a robust framework and set of processes that guide them to the goal.

I worked my way up the corporate ladder for a decade to Head of UK Marketing for a global brand and supported numerous Directors and CEOs in a consultative capacity before starting The Launch Strategist®. This helped me to intricately understand the foundations that needs to be laid for a CEO to launch and exit a business successfully which led to the birth of The Launch Strategist® built on over 16 years of knowledge and experience.

At The Launch Strategist® we’re passionate about helping business leaders launch projects that are purposeful and profitable, that lead to greater personal satisfaction and sustainable wealth.

Did you ever sit down and plan your career?

Yes, by the age of 21 I was a mum and a wife, that level of responsibility at such a young age helped to give me flint like focus. I planned every step of my journey, of course nothing goes exactly as planned but for the most part my life today is pretty much what I decided it would be at 20. I knew straight out of university that I would spend 10 years building a corporate career and then use the experience to launch my business and that’s exactly what happened. The entrepreneurial journey was a lot harder than I thought it would be, especially at the beginning, which lead to me pivoting quite a few times before The Launch Strategist® was born.

I’ve lived my whole life with a plan, there are pros and cons to that, and at this point in my journey I’m becoming more fluid in my decision-making and giving myself licence to live more freely. Not everything has to be a plan, sometimes we need to trust our inner compass without a plan and just go with it 😊

Have you faced any challenges along the way?

Yes, I speak about this in my book ‘Momentum: 90 Days of Marketing and Motivation to Kick-Start my business’. Because I had planned to start a business when I did, I didn’t expect the journey to be as tumultuous as it was. I expected my corporate skills to be transferrable, they were not. Building your own business is a completely different animal to climbing the corporate ladder. It felt like after reaching the pinnacle of my corporate career and leaving on a high, I was unexpectedly thrown back down to ground zero. The other thing I didn’t expect was the emotional rollercoaster that comes with starting a business, not only was it hard but I felt an unexpected sense of bereavement when I left the corporate world. I missed the routine, structure and predictability of corporate life.

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Don’t miss our Level Up Summit on 06 December, where we’re tackling the barriers for women in tech head on. Join us for keynotes, panels, Q&A’s & breakout sessions on finance, people management, negotiation, influencing skills, confidence building, building internal networks, maximising the power of mentorship, and much more. 

What has been your biggest achievement to date?

Being happily married after 20 years to someone I still like. I expected that my corporate career would be the training ground for running a successful business, it turns out it was actually my marriage. In the same way that a successful marriage has ups and downs, ebbs and flows, requires relentless commitment and belief and still has a high chance of failure, the entrepreneurial journey is very much the same. In both cases if you can make it through the valley to the mountain top, there are few things on earth more satisfying and euphoric.

What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in you achieving success?

The support of my husband through every step of my journey.

How do you feel about mentoring? Have you mentored anyone or are you someone’s mentee?

I think it’s invaluable, yes, I have mentored others. Mentorship is a role I adopt when bringing a new strategist into the business, as well as mentoring others who may want to run their own business.

I also have mentors and have invested in business coaches since 2019, for me it’s essential especially being a solo founder, which increases my chances of business failure. Having a business mentor/coach that has been where I want to go, who can help guide me and avoid pitfalls is invaluable.

If you could change one thing to accelerate the pace of change for Gender Equality, what would it be?

I would make it mandatory for companies to publish what they pay in salaries by gender

If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self what would it be?

Hire a business coach sooner, build a team sooner. Flying solo is overrated.

What is your next challenge and what are you hoping to achieve in the future?

My next challenge is to scale my business effectively so that I can cross the 7-figure mark within the next 3 years.

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