Starting a Business as Women in 2020

2020 might have been a risky year to start a business, however, we found ourselves in positions that didn’t really leave us a choice. Having worked full time for most of the last (combined) 20 years, we were as shocked as everyone at the effects of the pandemic.

As the Executive Assistant at the time I, Kailie, was at the coal face of HR, actioning two rounds of redundancies and reducing staff hours of the people closest to me (outside of my family of course). Effectively I had to reduce my own hours from 38 to just 15. I had never expected this. While we were used to working Remotely already, we sent staff home and learnt to knock off at lunch time. Our days were spent rediscovering our local area (without sitting down or stopping even for a moment) and wondering how on earth we would survive.

We went through all of the emotions. We were scared of living without the income that we were used to (having kids and a fly in fly out lifestyle). We had everything we needed until Covid hit and we realised that we hadn’t dealt with money in the most responsible way in the preceding years. We were sad at the sheer amount of work we had completed just to see the company we worked for reduced to bare minimum staff and an unknown future. What struck us was that we had no control.

Numb at the thought of the unknown, we were really annoyed at the force to change (a blessing now). We were so happy to spend time with the kids most of all and swim or take a beach walk each day. We started to feel incredibly lucky that we weren’t stuck in a high-rise apartment in the city with closed beaches like some of our colleagues and our mental health spiraled into too many ‘what if’s’.

Until we decided that we had to take a chance and back ourselves either now or never. After working in the corporate world for so long, together we decided that we had the skills, the knowledge, the experience, the network, the means and all of the time in the world to sink our teeth into this. Our internal motto has always been “This has to work, failure is not an option” and we stick by that every day. It’s not easy but we wouldn’t give this up for anything.

Starting Remotely has been a rollercoaster ride of emotions both good and bad including tireless late nights and compromise, however, there is no better feeling than knowing that you are succeeding in this everchanging world. Best of all is knowing that we are at home with our families everyday, we have flexibility and control over our futures.

Our company values are:

  • Our people come first, no matter what
  • To provide the highest level of customer service
  • To be responsive and reliable
  • To be creative and innovative
  • To love what we do and pass our passion on to others

Our advice to other women in business is this:

  • Back yourself 100% every day, both in and outside of your business, you rock girl!
  • Surround yourself with successful business people (both men and women)
  • Network as much as you can but don’t forget to attend or create events specifically for women because we haven’t been owning and running businesses for as long as men and we have our own unique struggles in the business world
  • Outsource what you don’t know, don’t love or simply don’t want to do. You don’t have to juggle it all!
  • Always be strategic, make decisions based on the long term, plan for your future and be proactive not reactive. This doesn’t mean that you can’t bring your emotions and feelings into your business, this is your business and you can do it your way.

As women we are often criticised for being too much, not enough, too emotional, too loud, too quiet and we just can’t keep up. The mental load to act a certain way and keep ourselves in check is exhausting. From one woman to another I’d like to say that we are responsible for writing the rules from here on out and I look forward to sharing our journey with you as we navigate beyond our first year of business and being part of the generation of women that teach our kids that we are wise, resilient and resourceful businesswomen. We can do anything in a Post-Covid world!

Kailie & Nikita

Kailie and Nikita Blog image Remotely where it all started