Cat Metcalfe, Founding Director of Brand Anthem
A strategic brand and culture consultancy that helps businesses to excel in growth
After 13 years of working for successful entrepreneurs – gaining a wealth of experience in communications, brand management and marketing – I seized an opportunity and went into business for myself several months ago.
The first time I got really excited about helping businesses to understand their purpose was when I was working as part of a team on a hugely ambitious project for a FTSE 250 company. Based at their global HQ, the company bought 16 businesses in almost as many years and wanted to create cohesion through brand alignment. Working to establish a shared purpose and identity between organisations that were very different was a challenge. The buzz was infectious though and I knew I’d found my motivation.
I was employed there for four years and during that time I became a first-time mum. My lifestyle up until that point included long commutes and lots of time away from home, with my husband travelling regularly across Europe for work. After our second child, we needed a new structure in place as working parents. I was happy to be flexible – taking the self-employment route so I could be based at home for our young children and sustain a strong family life. It’s not without its challenges, but I view the significant adjustments I’ve had to make as a mumpreneur to be positive. I’ve learned so much since making the leap – both personally and professionally – and the variety of working with multiple businesses is really rewarding.
Working alongside Fiona Phelps – a highly qualified business psychologist and fellow mum who’s fascinated by culture – has been powerful for us. Combined with my expertise in brand awareness and marketing, we’re enabling companies to find their purpose and build loyalty with their employees and customers in the process. Fiona and I are completely unified in our vision and I see it as a fantastic win that I’ve found someone who’s like-minded to share my business journey with.
I’ve realised that having lots of patience is fundamental to achieving success, so my advice is to take the time to understand what you can offer by distilling your experience down to what’s most valuable and unique, and then do something you truly love.