In order to better get-to-know our members, we thought it was best we shared who we are are and how we came to Entrepreneurs Geelong.
Find out a little bit more about one of our board members Tammy Walters below.
What was your first experience with Entrepreneurs Geelong?
I was involved in Entrepreneurs Geelong back when it was operating under its former name, Geelong Entrepreneurs, and in its infancy. My first experience after the rebrand was attending the breakfast with David Chaffey of KBB Digital, which made me realise that I didn’t know anything about the entrepreneurs in our backyard! It kickstarted my interest in homegrown entrepreneurial stories.
And how did you hear about it?
I was working with coworking space, StartupCloud, and exploring the entrepreneurial space when I was invited to attend a meeting with Aamir Qutub about his vision for the networking group. I immediately jumped on board to bring his vision to life. When Aamir decided to take a step aside, Matthew Fletcher contacted me to be involved in revitalising and growing the Entrepreneurs Geelong community.
What’s been your favourite memory of an EG event?
Every breakfast that we have been host to has been an opportunity to learn, discover and grow, but my favourite memory is when I was the showcase local entrepreneur for the In Conversation Breakfast with Jake Munday. Not because I was able to talk about my business and myself, but because I felt valued as a member. I have never been asked as a business owner, “What can we help you with?” without the sales agenda attached. It was the moment that I realised I was part of a community that actually cared for the success of all of their members and they were there to help me, support me, and celebrate with me!
Why did you decide to join the board?
The vision and mission for Entrepreneurs Geelong spoke to me as a business owner and event manager. I have attended way too many networking events where you are bombarded with elevator pitches as soon as you enter the room. Entrepreneurs Geelong aligned with my values of building relationships, giving as opposed to taking, and offering education through high quality speakers. I joined the board to contribute to building the success of the organisation and further highlight entrepreneurship in our fantastic city.
Tell us a little bit about your business.
I established Mirrors PR and Events at only 21 years of age with a vision to promote Geelong business and music to the world. Mirrors PR and Events specialises in public relations, marketing and event management for start-ups, established businesses, musicians, fashion labels and lifestyle brands. In operation for three years, we have gained local, national and international coverage for our clients in credible publications and media outlets, launched businesses, brands and musicians to award-winning, major success in their markets, and worked with big names, including Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival, Apprenticeships Employment Network and the Australian Breastfeeding Project.
What’s your mantra as an entrepreneur?
Passion produces the prize.
When you truly love something and believe in what you’re doing, that’s when you have the most success. When your effort doesn’t feel like work, that’s when you’re working in the right space. When you’re passionate about your work, you will never give up!
What’s your biggest piece of advice for new entrepreneurs?
Surround yourself with people that believe in your purpose! They will lift you in spirit and in business growth.
When was the moment you felt most challenged as a small business and how did you overcome it?
In the initial stages of my businesses, I felt like my age made business owners and potential clients question my knowledge, skills and ability. I had a moment of being overwhelmed and questioned why I went into business in the first place. I quickly learnt that I would let my work speak for itself and that I didn’t want to work with anyone that didn’t value me for my ability and discriminated against me because of my age.
Who are three fellow Geelong small businesses you’d like to shout out?
A big one to watch for 2018 is Courthouse Youth Arts. They are doing some great things for arts, music and youth in Geelong so check them out! A & B Music have been around for 32 years and are doing incredible things for our local music scene. Owners, Bill and Anne van Parreren are so passionate about music and it shows through the services they offer, the staff they hire and the culture they create. Geelong Fashion Runway have big things coming in 2018. This is a socially conscious organisation that raises money and awareness for many different health foundations and social issues through runway shows.
Read about our other board members here.