Rachel Reflects on a Decade in Business
It feels like yesterday that I decided to take the plunge and set up my own business to help people succeed through effective use of the online space, though when I reflect on the last decade and the blood, sweat and tears it has entailed, it seems like a lifetime ago. Reaching this milestone has caused me to reflect on business relationships, failures and resilience through the stages and changes of my journey.
Since starting Dubzz in 2011 my life has changed and evolved in many ways, and it is fair to say I am not the same person I was when I faxed off (yes, on a fax machine) my new company registration documents.
Since starting Dubzz I have become an aunty, gained new qualifications, got engaged, got married, served on boards, served the community through Rotary both in NZ and on two international missions, became a landlord, lost my Dad, won awards, battled a serious health condition, became a Justice of the Peace, and became a Mum (not once but twice) – phew! I have changed emotionally, spiritually, intellectually, and physically (there were no grey hairs back then), and have matured a heck of a lot from a fresh faced 25-year-old.
Through all these changes Dubzz has been there to occupy my thoughts, present new challenges to sink my teeth into, and provide opportunities for me to learn and grow on a daily basis.
Relationships are key
When thinking about the evolution of the business, our clients, our team, suppliers and supporters, the key to it all is strong, positive relationships. This is evident on occasions when a clients business changes hands, and we are achieving significant results for that business, the new owner or management team may stop using Dubzz due to no relationship. It has been interesting to learn that even with evidence of our successful work that has benefitted the business they have bought, relationships remain key for our clients.
Other times a client may sell their business or change roles to another company, and to see how our relationship has carried through to future endeavors is incredible. We have some individuals we have worked with in 3 or more businesses, as their work changes, they take us with them on their journey which we absolutely love being part of.
Failure is only really failure if you don’t learn from it. Sometimes in business new ideas, processes, products, methods or team members don’t work out, and you simply can’t get it right every time. Instead of beating yourself up and being afraid to try in case you fail, if you step back and say what can we learn from this, then it was worthwhile. Failure (and learning from it) allows you to build a better, stronger business every time.
Resilience comes from the ability to adapt to an ever-changing landscape.
Over 10 years there have been ups and downs, including recession, policy changes, changes in unemployment rates and legislation, and a global pandemic. Through both Dubzz and all the businesses we work with, I can see that resilience comes from a business’ ability to adapt. This can be through research, changing markets, new product offerings, marketing and technology. The only constant in life is change, and so our ability to adapt is key to our success.
People really can make or break a business. I have learnt to surround yourself with amazing people, in your team, your advisors, and your support network. Building a strong, capable, autonomous team is not easy but it is so incredibly worthwhile. If you invest your time, energy and education into your people, they will invest their time, energy and passion into your business and your customers. I am incredibly proud of the people that I have had the privilege of working alongside over the last 10 years.
All in all, it has been an absolute pleasure being able to do what I love for the last 10 years. Yes, there have been hard times, times when I have wanted to give up or sell up, but every time I have pushed through it has made that success even sweeter. Being in business is not easy, the tides keep changing, people and businesses come and go, and the environment you are working in is fluid.
Seeing my team, and the clients we work with grow, develop and succeed gives me immense satisfaction of a job well done.
If you have played a part in our journey, can I say THANK YOU. Thank you for what you have taught me, for your support, guidance, trust, wisdom, or hard truths.
Cheers to 10 years, it has been a pleasure.