Many of you know Jayne Tancred as our wonderful Forum Concierge. But what you might not know is a rich and varied business background sits behind her deft management of, and engagement with, the Flying Solo community.
Jayne Tancred is a qualified naturopath, herbalist, nutritionist and energetic healer, and has been selling and marketing natural health products and services for more than 20 years. She left her corporate career at one of Australia’s leading vitamin companies in 2008 to establish a specialist natural health marketing and copywriting business where she’s worked with everyone from large multinationals through to solo practitioners.
Two and a half years ago, after several years of R&D, she and her friend Scott Harris launched their own range of natural health products. Jayne says the whole experience felt spiritually guided and from that experience emerged a new service offering: marketing coaching for soul-centred business owners who are keen to grow their businesses, but want to do so in a way that feels aligned with their spirituality and personal values.
So what does a day in the life of our spiritually-guided, multi-talented Forum Concierge look like? Here’s Jayne Tancred to tell us more …
I usually get up pretty early in the morning, and my first conscious action is to put the kettle on for a cup of tea, which I drink while looking out the window at some of my favourite trees and asking myself (in a slightly groggy, not-quite-awake fashion), ‘What do I want today?’
That cuppa is quickly followed by a second cup while I get dressed and prepare my breakfast and a third while I eat it. The kettle will go on again multiple times throughout the day, but these three are likely to be the only ones that I actually remember to drink.
Once I’ve fuelled up, I head to my meditation chair, and spend anything from 10 minutes to an hour in meditation and visualisation, depending on how busy my brain is feeling and how easily I get into the zone. (If I’m busy or stressed, I’m sometimes tempted to skip my meditation in favour of getting on with the ‘doing’ aspect of my day, but it’s rarely smart, because my meditation makes me happy, gives me access to some amazing ideas and insights for myself, my clients and the Tribe, and sets me up to be calm and effective for the rest of the day).
Assuming it’s one of the three days of the week that I work from home (rather than heading out to see clients or attend meetings for the Tribe), I move straight from my meditation to my desk, where my first move is to either record any insights from my meditation in my journal or write a blog post, a meditation for a Tribe workshop or a few pages of the book I’m writing.
Often, the next step is a coaching session with a client, where we’ll chat about whatever’s going on for them, the progress they’ve made with their marketing projects and whatever needs to happen to help them bring their vision for their business to life.
By late morning I’m usually moving into copywriting mode. I spend the next four to five hours writing for my clients. I tend to get so deeply into the zone that the world around me vanishes for a while, but I usually need to emerge intermittently to reply to emails, take orders for the Tribe and manage whatever admin or promotional activity I’ve got on my plate.
If all’s going well, I’ll eat lunch at my desk in the middle of all that and then sneak out for a quick bushwalk in the nearby national park… but if I’m honest, my much loved nature fix only happens 40-50% of the time.
When late afternoon hits I’m more than ready to get out of the writing bubble and have some human contact and a cup of tea. That’s when I try to schedule phone calls with my clients and suppliers – ideally conducted standing up to give my body a break from my chair. Three days a week I then head into the Flying Solo forums to welcome any newbies and take the pulse of our community.
Ideally, that’s when my workday would wrap up. On Wednesdays it does because I head out to my meditation circle for the evening where I get to hang out with some of my dearest girlfriends, but other evenings do sometimes find me back at my desk for an hour or two, or having a late night teleconference with my business partner after his kids have gone to sleep.
My evening ends with a quick whip around the apartment to sort out anything that could interfere with my flow the next morning or delay me getting to my meditation chair without any sense of time pressure. When I’m being virtuous I then do a set of stretches and exercises designed to offset the effects of spending so much time sitting at my desk before I head to bed. They hurt like crazy, but they’re doing me the world of good, and I’m always grateful that I did them when I wake up in the morning.
The biggest challenge I face in the average working week?
Like most soloists I speak to, my biggest challenge is balancing the amount of time I spend working for my clients and the amount I spend working on my own businesses and keeping both those workloads to a manageable level. It’s the never-ending juggle between prioritising what needs to be done now and what I’m excited about creating in the future – so I can definitely relate to what my coaching clients are dealing with.
As an extrovert, I find the isolation challenging too. However, I’ve learned over the years that if I spend too much time going out to lunch or chatting on social media, I pay for it by needing to work during my evenings and weekends. Instead, I now build time for connecting with people into my days, where possible scheduling it outside the times of day when I do my best client writing.
The reality of being a soloist?
When I tell people I work for myself from home, the response I hear most frequently is, “I’d never be disciplined enough to do that!” – and the truth is, it really does take a huge amount of discipline and self-reliance, even when you’re surrounded by an amazing support crew (like I am).
One of my biggest learnings has been that if I want to get the big things done, I need structures and support in place to handle as many of the little things as possible, otherwise they’ll eat up my whole day, and then my whole week, and before I know it my whole career. Putting those support structures in place is a work in progress, but was a really important mindset shift for me.
What keeps me going?
I’m constantly inspired by the insights and ideas that have been coming my way since I started integrating my spiritual practice into my business instead of treating them as two separate parts of my life. It makes my work with the Tribe and my coaching clients particularly joyful.
Hearing how much difference our products and teaching make in people’s lives is even more energising – and extremely humbling at the same time.
Want to learn more from Jayne Tancred? She’s presenting a webinar with Robert Gerrish next Wednesday on 10 ways to win clients. You can register for free here!