Balancing the Grind with Megan Robinson, Founder of Cooper Robinson

Megan Robinson is the founder of Cooper Robinson, Melbourne’s premier property styling company.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I started my career in interior design as part of a family business that specialises in custom furnishing in Malvern. Our business evolved over many years and while we have continued to service our clients with specialised customer furnishing, we also broadened our business to encompass styling and property styling in the real estate sector, mainly working in blue-chip suburbs and surroundings.

We have honed our skills over many years and are very excited to bring to the market, our own range of furniture and home furnishings in the e-commerce space. My role as CEO is very multifaceted, and I take a hands-on approach to all areas of our business, managing a fantastic team of fun-loving creatives.

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

A day in my life always starts with a soy latte! My mornings are usually filled with appointments in client’s homes. I like to spend my mornings with our clients and then make my way to our office where I continue my day with staff where I am briefed on the status of our various projects.

My afternoon could look something like this; 12:30pm-1:30pm – briefing by Danielle, who heads our administration team for our styling business. I will also spend some time here providing details to the team for quotations for our clients. 1:30-2:30 pm – meeting with Ryan, our Operations Manager and Samara, who heads our Marketing Team, to discuss further developments and plan for the launch of our new eCommerce brand, Cachet by Cooper Robinson.

2:30pm-3:30pm – Working alongside Stephanie, who heads our Interior Design team, to review all current projects and specify/make selections for upcoming work. 3:30pm onwards – the last part of my day is spent working with our amazing stylists to finalise details and styling selections for installation that are due to be installed over the coming days. I like to spend the final part of the day in the office, often when it quietens down, working through emails and messages to prepare myself for the day to come.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

Yes, my work does allow me to work remotely when necessary, however, my many years of experience in this role have taught me one thing about myself and that is; that I work best when surrounded by a team as I feel my most energised when surrounded by my team.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Truthfully; the work-life balance hasn’t always been easy for me. Like many of us out there working on and building our businesses, there have been times when it has been a challenge to separate life from work as there is always something to do! The reality is, when running a business, there are times when the hours just need to be spent.

A key to working on this for me has been building up a great, and very supportive team with similarly shared goals. It is also important to recognise your strengths and weaknesses and find the people who are able to do the things you are not necessarily the best at yourself.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life? 

Funny you should ask; I do belong to a book club of which I have been the worst participant in (no lie!). Last year the book club took a break, for obvious reasons, and has just started up again and I have made the commitment to continue to read the prescribed book from beginning to end which I can say, I did! Safe to say I’m pretty proud of myself. In all seriousness, something as simple as stopping and taking the time to read a book is so important and satisfying for so many reasons.

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

I will be honest, making the recommendations is not necessarily my strong point, however; I am always open to suggestions! Listening to podcasts may well be up there with my book-reading goals this year!

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

At home, I just can’t live without a decent scented candle. So much so that we created our very own to be included in our new product line for Cachet. We rolled my obsessive love of handmade ceramics and candles into one! At work, I love the productivity app Slack. We use this extensively within our team and love to recommend this to anyone running a team, it has been a game-changer for us!

8) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

In all honesty, if you love what you do and you’re passionate about it, it shouldn’t feel too much like work. In saying that; it’s really important to not take yourself too seriously. While work is important to me, and a lot of us, it is always the most important to make time for your family and friends!

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.