How to make money from home while you sleep!

The last two years have been turbulent to say the least. So many careers have been affected by the pandemic. For some of us, jobs as we knew them have changed for the better and some for the worse. I , for one, know that having my husband have the flexibility to work from home has been hugely rewarding and has boosted our family. But for many, the changes have been hugely unsettling and life changing. Sometimes, in life, we need to make an adjustment and although it might seem and feel impossible, it could lead to something wonderful and bring us closer to financial freedom.

Lucy Griffiths was as a TV journalist for over 20 years, with an incredibly fascinating career working with some of the world’s biggest television stations as a TV reporter and producer, interviewing; Barack Obama, Tony Blair, Hillary Clinton, and celebrities like; Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman and Victoria Beckham. Lucy’s career took her from flying on Air Force One with the President of the United States to being in the middle of a refugee camp in a war zone. 

Seeking a new passion

When Lucy’s son was born in 2015, she experienced a traumatic birth, which left her suffering both anal and urinary incontinence and she knew her life wouldn’t be the same again…  after much soul-searching, support and coaching, she set out to find a new passion and purpose for her life. 

Lucy turned to the online space and created a course, which tapped into both her coaching expertise and her experience of being on camera, to help other women, particularly, to find their confidence to spread their message. She created a training course, but soon realised due to demand that she could turn it into a digital course and sell it on repeat (literally making money whilst she slept or spent quality time with her son – all through passive income). She has now sold this course 50,000 times over and has generated over 1million in revenue. This $19 course paid the family’s mortgage and bills throughout the pandemic where her other income streams dried up. 

She’s helped coaches and consultants, pet-preneurs and horse whisperers, ballet instructors and beauty therapists, to turn their expertise into digital products that sell on repeat and she hopes with the book she can reach even more people. Here, she offers us her top five tips.

1. Brainstorm ideas

How to make money from home

Allow yourself the space to brainstorm your ideas. Free flow and don’t restrict yourself or negate those little ideas that could become something truly remarkable. Give yourself the space with a big piece of paper and just start writing. Allow your creativity to unfurl and see what ideas come forward. 

2. Talk to your audience and then niche down

Talk to your people and find out what they want to buy from you. Test and validate your idea to know that people really want and desire it. Are people being polite: “Oh, that sounds interesting”, or do they really want it: “OMG, where can I get it?”. If they are your target audience and they get excited by your idea, then you know you’re on to something.

3. Niche down 

Be selective with who you are creating a course for. You’re not making a course for everyone; you’re making a course for a select slice of the online world that needs your knowledge and experience. They will identify with you because they are a reflection of you. There’s a saying in the online world, “there are niches in the riches.” It’s true. 

4. Create your course

How to make money from home

This is the big one! Use the audience research as the starting point for the course, and create what your people want and need from you. This will help you to structure and map out your course.  Put your passion and soul into the course and share your experience with your audience. Done is better than perfect, so take action and avoid procrastination. There may be times you want to throw your laptop out of the window, but the promise of making money while you sleep will carry you through the challenging times. 

5. Create a sales machine to sell it

When you’ve gone to the effort of creating a course, you want an audience to sell it to. And it’s no point selling it once; you want to sell it again and again. This means creating an online sales system to sell on automatic while you get on with the business of life. It means you can live more and work less because you have an automated process to make money while you sleep!

Lucy’s book, ‘Make Money Whilst You Sleep’, is her latest avenue through which to create more of a ripple effect empowering others to move away from the hustle mentality that can lead to burnout and mental health struggles, instead encouraging readers to reclaim living their lives the way they want to, using their expertise to bring passive income. 

Have you every thought of a career change or have you been forced into a situation where you’ve had to dramatically change the way you work? Keep the conversation going by commenting below or follow us on Instagram.

Thinking of leaving the corporate world? Top 5 tips for making the leap

Our 40s seem like the optimum time to take stock and really think about how happy we really are in all aspects of our lives. Career wise we might be stuck in a rut. Imagine you have a power house job in the corporate world but decide to find your own focus and create a business around yourself? This is exactly what Claire Antill did. She advocates that we are all ‘more than what we do for a living’. Here, she shares her experience leaving the corporate world.

‘At 40 I left a ‘stable’ corporate job in a company I’d worked in for over a decade. I stepped away from security to set up my own creative business venture during a global pandemic, because there is never the perfect time, right?!

Why did I do this? I’m someone who has always measured their value through what I do for a living and what others think of me. Since school, I’ve always been a study, and a grafter.  If I want to do something, I learn everything there is to know about it and then strive to make it work. 

However, despite working in high profile roles, companies and institutions, I felt that there was an invisible barrier stopping me achieving my potential, whatever that was. I felt like I was always waiting to be found out. 

Then the identity change of motherhood hit (I’m a mum of three very close in age). Suddenly, I could no longer be all things and work all the hours. If you’ve experienced it you’ll know, it’s like walking a tightrope, with people just waiting for you to fall. 

Leaving the corporate world

You spend your whole time apologising for not doing or being enough. Stepping through the minefield of daily office politics erodes your confidence and self worth. You can also feel like an easy target.

I had never thought of myself as creative, these are skills that are not encouraged. Working in male-dominated industries (politics & energy) in the corporate world, I tried to mould myself on those around me and downplayed my ‘soft skills’ of being a mentor, communicator and builder of successful teams. 

The breaking point came for me when my twins started school, which is a whole new milestone to contend with. School hours and work hours simply don’t match up. You then try to condense more into less time and have to make sacrifices right, left and centre. 

No more. I decided to take my experience and my skills to go it alone and create something new. 

I had retrained in social media marketing and then advertising while on my second maternity leave. So I created a business helping e-commerce businesses to grow and thrive, built around a life they want. It’s about building meaningful connections and creating stories to resonate with people. 

Leaving the corporate world

I love what I do.  It’s very rewarding to tap into creativity and work with others to achieve their goals while shaping the life that I want for my family.  i

I’m most proud of the fact that I have re-defined my self-worth on who I am as a whole person and not just through my work. 

To inspire others to take action I have written a chapter for a best -selling book called Step Aside and Rise where 21 women share their stories of how they have got out of their own way and overcome challenges to succeed.’ 

We talked to Jo Swann, a hugely successful director at Chocolate PR and asked her for her top five tips for taking the plunge.

1. Remember why you left in the first place

We move on because we are moving away from something that didn’t make us happy, fulfill us or align with us. Remember your move will give you the chance to be who you REALLY are and take the control back.

2. Be brave

Leaving the corporate world

It’s not easy ‘starting from scratch’ – leaving a highly successful corporate career – but remember you are NOT starting from scratch. The career you have built up – whether you loved or hated it – is still ‘collateral’ – it is still proof of your knowledge, experience, and provides credibility. Don’t sweep this under the carpet as many do, make it work for you by highlight elements that showcase your level of expertise.

3. Be prepared to be you

When you have a blank slate this is an exciting place to be as it means you can really show up as you – but yet many of us don’t when we become business owners initially! This is because we feel we have to fit into a certain box, or feel we still need be ‘corporate us’ to be seen as professional. This can waste years of not really attracting your ideal clients so please dive head first in and let people see the real you!

4. Try not to compare yourself to others in your space

This is HARD – but it’s not helpful. If you follow people who are further along their journey than you, you are not comparing like for like and so not being fair to yourself if you then see them reaching goals you haven’t yet. Also watching others too closely takes your eye off your own path and you’ll become confused, distracted and misaligned which makes for marketing that wanders off track.

5. Get yourself some recognition early doors

Be it media exposure, a startup award, endorsement from an industry body. Our minds are not always kind to us and you may well suffer bouts of imposter syndrome feeling that you are not good enough and have made a terrible mistake leaving your ‘safe’ job! Third party recognition helps you build up your self belief as when others trust you it’s easier to trust yourself, and it builds up trust with your audience too.

Are you thinking of making the leap? Let us know about it by commenting below or follow us on Instagram.

How becoming a non-executive director can reinvent your career

Could you imagine yourself in the boardroom? It’s never too late to start thinking about how to reinvent your career. So read on ladies. We’ve got the low down from Fiona Hathorn, co-founder and CEO of Women on Boards UK to find out more.

Here’s a sobering thought: at the age of 40, you’re almost two decades into your career. Whether you love, hate or are indifferent about your job, hitting the big four-oh is one of those moments that makes us all take stock, reflect, and ask, “is this it?”

If you’ve always worked in the same field, then the likelihood is that you’ve gained a great deal of experience (and a good salary and perks, too). Perhaps you’re happy with this path and excited to accelerate your way to the C-suite. Or perhaps, you’re seeking more control over your own hours, but still with the intellectual challenge you are used to.

Or maybe, turning 40 has made you realise you don’t like your job at all, you feel stuck in a dead end and are thinking of a complete career overhaul. Maybe you’ve emotionally checked out, working on autopilot without feeling any real satisfaction. 

Whatever situation you find yourself in, career reinvention is good for us at any life stage and particularly when we hit important age milestones. It’s also critical to staying relevant in today’s work environment. So, what can be done?

Becoming a non-executive director (NED), Trustee or Governor is a highly attractive proposition for lots of people. Women on Boards UK is on a mission to educate more women about what a NED role is, why it can help you with career acceleration or creating a portfolio career where you are firmly in the driving seat, and to share top tips for landing your first NED role. 

What is a NED?

reinvent your career

NEDs sit on the board of many public, private and not-for-profit organisations, working as a ‘critical friend’ scrutinising the organisation’s performance and offering strategic input and advice to the executive team. In a nutshell, your role is to provide the board with independent oversight and constructive challenge. How often they meet and what duties they are required to perform varies between organisations.

Taking on a NED role can be the perfect career move for those of us seeking an intellectual challenge without the intensity or pressure of an in-house executive role. Levels of remuneration vary from pro bono to quite high, but many combine a few paid NED roles with coaching or consultancy to create a ‘portfolio career’. Becoming a NED provides you with access to the boardroom and high-level strategic conversations about how a business is run. We place, on average, seven women every week into UK boardrooms and the experience they gain has proven to help accelerate career growth in their day jobs. 

When is the right time to start exploring a NED role?

We always say start early! There is a misconception among a lot of women that you need to be in your 50s, 60s or an executive at a big global firm to become a NED and that’s just not true. Yes, some of the listed global companies are looking for this kind of experience but there are thousands of other companies and organisations looking for NEDs at every level. We advertise hundreds of roles at any one time ranging from charities and universities to start-ups and FTSE-listed companies. Don’t get hung up by the ‘story’ we tell ourselves of what a NED looks like (stale, pale and grey). The experience you have gained by the time you’re in your forties is going to be invaluable to many organisations, you just have to find the right one. 

For Rebecca Ganz, becoming a NED coincided with a huge life transition. At the age of 48 she moved back to the UK from New Zealand to look after ageing parents. She urgently needed to reinvent her career back in the UK, having to rebuild her networks and reputation from scratch. Applying her wealth of experience to different organisations would provide the stimulus and challenge she craved, while the idea of a portfolio career of NED roles afforded her the flexibility she required. With five NED roles across the public and private sector, Becks is thoroughly enjoying her new career. 

Meanwhile, Alison Green came to Women on Boards when she wanted to build on her trustee experience and secure her first NED role. After a very successful career in advertising and marketing, Alison had transitioned to a career as an Executive Coach and wanted a portfolio of NED roles that would align with her new career path but also her values. The pandemic had highlighted deep societal inequalities and Alison wanted to find a role that would help her address diversity and inclusion issues. Women on Boards provided her with interview practice, helped to demystify some of the terminology of the boardroom and refreshed her financial literacy skills via our tailored courses. Alison now sits on several boards including the Skinners’ Academy, a secondary school in Hackney, and she is the first female NED for Cake Box PLC. 

Women on Boards member, Neelu Agarwal, started to think about a NED role when she was in her early 30s. Whilst on maternity leave, she began to re-evaluate her current job, which was leaving her feeling dissatisfied. She wanted to step up her skills and do something meaningful but had never thought of a NED role. She felt her lack of experience and broad Indian accent would be barriers. However, the network she met through Women on Boards and the access to training and useful tools such as CV templates gave her the boost she needed, and she landed her first NED role at a mental health charity called Second Step. 

How to find your first NED role and reinvent your career

reinvent your career

Breaking through into the non-executive world and achieving your first role can be tricky. Here are my top three tips to help improve your chances:

  1. Network, network, network. The best networking activities are ones where you will meet members of boards, especially Chair people. If real world or virtual events are tricky to fit into your busy life, take inspiration from Neelu above who used LinkedIn to connect with new people whilst on maternity leave. A good place to start is to identify the organisations you would love to be a part of and connect with people who sit on their board. 
  1. Know the basics. While you will get appointed to a board based on your specific experience, be that digital, marketing or HR, it’s important that every NED has a grasp of the fundamentals such as financial literacy and corporate governance. It’s not rocket science and you will find lots of online resources to help you. Women on Boards has an online Resource Centre packed with links and advice, and we also have specific webinars on key topics such as finance and cyber.
  1. Present yourself as a board-level candidate. There is a difference between a CV and a Board-ready CV. Understanding how to frame your achievements and potential in a way that appeals to boards is a skill that needs to be honed. You also need to articulate what it is that you can uniquely bring, in terms of your personal style as well as expertise. It can be challenging, but Women on Boards has lots of advice and different levels of support to help you do just this.  

Whether you’re looking for an intellectual challenge or to simply pursue your passions, there is a generation of 40-something women who are staring at the second half of their life excited about the journey and the chance to reinvent their careers. Remove any obstacles you have in your mind (too old, too busy, too scared) and, quite literally, jump on Board! As they say, “the bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.” 

If you would like help getting started with your Board career or taking it to the next level, please get in touch here

About Women on Boards UK 

Women on Boards UK exists to encourage, inspire and actively support women – from all sectors – to find their own pathway to the boardroom. Its network of 35,000 women (and some men) gain access to information, support and connections to help them take on a board role as a non-executive director, trustee or governor, or to get to the top within their own company. What we do works – seven of our members gain a new board role every week (on average). 

Do you feel inspired to reinvent your career? Let us know by dropping a comment below or reaching out to us on Instagram.