Laura Wright is the Marketing & Incentive Experience Manager at EVT Incentive Marketing, and Founder of Sand Society, a company which designs and produces sand free towels.
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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
My career background is in Marketing, Communications and Events. Beginning my career in Experiential Marketing working with large FMCG companies on their product marketing campaigns and strategies. My next move was into more of a Communication and Marketing role marketing Reward and Recognition Programs and Sales Incentives within corporate organisations.
This role has also opened up many opportunities to manage events across the globe and has been the perfect fit to combine my passion for communication, creativity and travel.
More recently, my business Sand Society was founded. Months in the making, my partner and I have produced and designed new Sand Free towels to the market.
As a beach and travel loving couple wanting to challenge ourselves in the start-up world, we identified a gap in design and style in the newly formed towel market.
2) What does a typical day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
A typical day for me begins at 5.30am, for me morning exercise is key. It has not always been the case however due to my busy lifestyle and love for exercise and fear of missing out on a workout I identified that the only way I could assure I could squeeze it into my day was to get it out of the way first thing in the morning.
Getting your body moving and releasing endorphins in the morning is amazing. I can absolutely feel it on the days (rare occasion) I don’t make it to the gym before work.
I arrive into the office at roughly 8.00am and review my task list and calendar. I religiously enter all required tasks, reminders and project deadlines into my calendar whilst eating breakfast.
I find that to set a productive tone for the day my first 3-5 tasks for the days I make the smaller and ‘easier’ tasks so I can tick them off the list. This is absolutely mind over matter however ticking those initial things off your list in the AM calls for the remainder of the day to be super productive as well of course!
I’ll never skip lunch – it’s my afternoon fuel and most days will step out more a mid-afternoon pick me up walk. My daily goal is to hit 10,000 steps – being in an office job this is quite hard to achieve unless you make a conscious effort however it’s amazing how fantastic a couple of steps and fresh air in the afternoon can make you feel.
My day doesn’t end there, after traveling 1 hour to get home and fuelling up on a healthy home cooked dinner, I open the laptop again to continue working on Sand Society.
This includes building and maintaining the website, fulfilling orders, feeding back to designers/photographers and continuing to work on our overarching marketing strategies and business plan and strategic rollout for the coming months. I try to wrap this up by 10.00pm however that depends on how carried away we get. It’s an exciting time!
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
I am a firm believer that if you empower your employees within their role and responsibilities and they are passionate about what they do, achieving their objectives and delivering at a high standard with clear communication work can be produced anywhere! I am often travelling abroad and managing the same workload as when I am in the office – organisation is key!
4) Do you have any tips, tricks or shortcuts to help you manage your workload and schedule?
- Schedule your time in blocks for the day based on tasks/clients/projects.
- Always allow contingency.
- Write your to do list for the following day at the end of the day (I often write mine on my commute home, this empowers me to feel organised for the following day and to be present when I arrive home).
5) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
Firstly, determine what your core personal values are and create a business or work within a business that aligns and supports your core values.
Work-life balance for me is the ability to remain in control of how you feel and the synergy of your core values is key in this.
If you are able to carry out simple daily things for you, and are passionate about your job or business you will find it easier to develop the mindset towards balance and know where/when it is appropriate and needed for your happiness as everyone is different as has different expectations, limits, lives to lead and goals to achieve.
To put it simply, for me the key to a work-life balance is organisation. Plan your day so that is begins with something for you, your role drives your passion as soon as you walk in the office door and ends with something for you before bedtime – aim to fulfil your core values every day!
6) What do you think are some of the best habits you’ve developed over the years to help you strive for success and balance?
Emotional intelligence – important in every role and business. Learn how to manage and adjust emotions to adapt to the environment to help achieve your goals and others goals by reading and navigating your way through each individual you work with and what makes them tick.
7) Are there any books that have helped you improve over the years?
You Can Negotiate Anything by Herb Cohen – It was not until I read this book that I realised negotiation is used in aspects of day to day life. ‘Be patient, be personal and be informed, and you can bargain successfully for anything!’
Dare to Lead by Brene Brown – a fantastic outlining key skill sets required in leaders that are teachable regardless of what you may hear at the Christmas BBQ. It’s about the willingness to step up and truly put yourself out there as a brave leader.
Barefoot Investor by Scott Pape – whilst it’s a popular one and I wasn’t too far off track, it resonated with my OCD tendency to be organized and actually allow myself to spend guilty free money when deserved!
8) What is the number one thing you do to make sure you get the most out of your day?
Always keep your goals insight and your eyes on the horizon. Find your circle of cheerleaders and ensure you are a cheerleader for others.
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
Busy is not an emotion, if there’s a will there’s a way. Find what works for you and do what you need to do so you can feel like your best self – this is where your best work will happen.
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