2inspire Network blog is one of the mediums the Network uses to empower and inspire individuals. It is used to share knowledge and messages that will make a positive impact in people's lives and is also used as a platform to promote the products, services and events of the Network and external organisations.
Friday, 3 May 2013
2Inspire Business Profile: Wolfestone Translation Ltd
In this fascinating
interview we meet Anna Bastek, Co-Founder of Wolfestone Translation Ltd, a multi-award winning UK Language company.
Please tell us what is a typical business
day for you?
I clear my emails in the morning before work, so when I get to the
office I can be more productive and spend more time talking to staff.A lot of my time is taken up by meetings, reviews,
interviews, setting up and reviewing action plans to drive the business forward.
What made you start the business and how did you
I was tired of working for someone else and not having the flexibility
and time to travel and visit my family in Poland. Setting up a business seemed
the ideal option.I started off by
working in the evening and weekends and initially didn't have any spare time
but I gradually built up the business so it can run itself without me being
there every day. It was very hard work initially and I had to make sure I
covered all aspects of the business as the resources were very limited and
outsourcing wasn't an option. I really focused on sales and marketing to drive
the business forward and all profits were reinvested to grow the business.
What would you say has been your greatest
accomplishment in the business world to date?
After winning several titles of Woman of the Year I was also recognised
nationally as IoD Director of the Year in 2012 which is dominated by male
directors. It crowned off the previous six years of my hard work. It
represented a big milestone of achievement for me especially as a young woman
from another country.I've also been
recruited by the government to be an entrepreneurial role model in schools and
now encourage young people to consider starting their own businesses as a
I'm also very proud of winning clients such as Coca Cola, RBS and AXA,
this means that even though we are a young business we are competing with the
well established multinationals. We are also the youngest translation company
ever to be on the council of our trade body (Association of Translation
Companies) and now we also chair it.
What has been your biggest
challenge in business so far?
The biggest challenge has been the stress
of knowing so many staff are dependent on your decision making for their livelihood.Luckily, Wolfestone has been really
successful and grown every year, and I have created a lot of jobs.
What are your future plans for the
We plan to expand into new countries, and
increase our UK market share.We are
developing a network of sales agents globally.We have recently launched a new service transcreation which is designed
for adapting marketing messages to other cultures.
We are also developing our own technology
which is unique in our industry and will significantly increase our capacity. We
will be launching it shortly.
If you had to do it all over
again, what would you do differently?
I would be a bit more careful with
recruiting the right people and testing their attitude better. Some people come
across very well in interviews but their attitude doesn't match their skills
when they actually start the job. I'm a positive person and I can only work
with people who have a can-do attitude. Now I have a really good recruitment
process which ensures we only recruit the right staff.
Why is it so important to inspire
young women in particular to follow their dreams?
I think it’s important because a lot of
young women often think entrepreneurship is a man’s game. It's quite evident
when I go to schools and talk to young people about starting a business. But it
isn’t just for men, and I believe the opportunity is there for anyone who wants
to take it and women have the drive and focus that needs to be utilised.
What advice would you give to
somebody who wants to start a business in your industry?
Start small, don't spend money on fancy
offices, understand your customer and manically focus on marketing and sales. And
the most important thing, be positive and don't give up.
What or who inspires you in business
I find Richard Branson really
inspirational.He is not afraid of
failure and is a very positive and inspirational leader who sees opportunities
not problems. His attitude really appeals to me, and it’s an ethos I try to
follow every day.