Tuesday 11 June 2013

2Inspire Business Profile: Aji Michael founder of Head Affairs

In this 2Inspire profile we feature Aji Michael, whose business, Head Affairs is about inspiring and motivating people on a daily basis.  Her coaching business has grown from strength to strength over the past few years and we are so pleased that she has been able to share her story with us.

Please tell us what is a typical business day for you?
I do not have a typical day. I have different tasks for different days; for instance Mondays are my admin days. Aside from doing school runs in the morning; a great deal of my time is spent on speaking to clients and attending meetings.

what made you start the business and how did you get started?
I have always been in business, as far back as my college days. My Coaching and Consulting business was borne as a result of my passion for helping and adding value to people. I got started when I resigned from my job managing projects and decided to follow my passion. I started off as Career - Clinic; helping people transition into a new career/job. The business evolved gradually when people approached me to help them develop business plans, prepared business cases for funding, facilitate their meetings etc. as a result Head Affairs Coaching was borne.

What would you say has been your greatest accomplishment in the business world to date?
I have a lot of success stories with my clients. I would say that my recent one was helping a Care Trust transition to Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and the organisation was seen as the strongest CCG on the patch.

What has been your biggest challenge in business so far?

I am really working towards setting boundaries with clients and helping them abide by them. Some clients call very early in the mornings, some late at nights even weekends, and some simply because they still want you to do tasks meant for solicitors or Accountants. It’s been really difficult especially when they see you as a solution provider.

What are your future plans for the business?

My future plans are to outsource some tasks while I focus on developing a business model that works better for entrepreneurs.

If you had to do it all over again, what would you do differently?

I will always follow my intuition. In the time past, I have always operated like a perfectionist; I tend to wait until everything seems right before I do things. I have learnt from the software companies that, launch out the trial version, get feedback and do a ‘beta’ version. That’s doing business through innovation.

Why is it so important to inspire young women in particular to follow their dreams?

I believe we all have dreams and visions in life. We are here to fulfil a purpose. It is important for a young woman to follow her dream because there lays her self esteem, confidence and fulfilment. If that is the only one thing she achieves in life. I ask people, what will be said of you when you pass away?  Remove all the self imposed limits, rules set by the society and follow your dream NOW!

What advice would you give to somebody who wants to start a business in your industry?
Geese flying in formation can fly 70% farther and at a much faster speed than they ever could alone. Do not do your business in isolation, have a mentor and peer group who you can always bounce your ideas with.

What or who inspires you in business and why?

My inspiration comes from successful people around me that I know how they started and seeing where they are today. Following their dreams and believing in it are one of the things they have in common. That is why I know it’s important for someone to believe in oneself even though nobody does. Just believe in yourself.

What is your favourite inspirational quote?
“Life will not give you what you deserve but what you demand, because life is a just employer”

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