Laura Platts is the founder and author of The Workher, a careers advice blog helping young women in the workplace. Laura also works in Public Relations, drawing a lot of inspiration for the blog from her day job.
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
Years ago when I started out in the workforce as a young woman, I found it really overwhelming. I had so many questions and challenges along the way. I decided to launch a platform to help other women combat the same feelings and to bring women together.
Tell us about your business.
The Workher is a survival guide for young professional women. We cover career advice and inspiration to help millennials navigate the workplace. We’ve recently launched Workher Events too, bringing female business leaders together with our audience.
The biggest accomplishment would be helping other people. I love it when women get in touch with their career questions and get advice from The Workher. One lady changed careers and wrote to me saying how helpful The Workher was during this process and how she’s so happy with her decision.
Where is your business based?
Auckland, New Zealand.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
I dived into it pretty quickly. I think I was worried if I sat on it for too long I might talk myself out of it. The key things I focused on were Content – I made sure I had over 100 topics I could write about and share on The Workher; and the Design – I had a distinct look and feel in mind for it. In hindsight I should have also focused on the Technology side of things more. I tried to do it myself and months later it ended up causing more work than necessary, so eventually I got someone on board to help with this side of things.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
Social media for sure. Facebook is still our biggest driver. Word of mouth is also huge, particularly since I moved back to New Zealand. I find the Workher events are helping to spread the word a lot.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
Juggling everything. Sometimes it’s tricky with a full time job, producing content, keeping the social media channels up to date, running the events, plus I’m building a house at the moment and last year I had my wedding too. So it can get pretty full on!
How did you overcome these challenges?
I’ve learnt sometimes you simply need to take a break, have a breather and then dive back into it all. Also, enlisting the help of others. With our events, I’ve asked friends to get on board and assist, which people are more than happy to do. One person can’t do everything!
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
Mixing things up all the time. I have a lot of variation in what I do – from writing content to organizing an event or interviewing an inspiring business women, it’s good to keep things different.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
I try and focus on what I’m doing and not worry about anyone else. There’s only one of me in the whole world and no one can change that.
In saying that, you can’t have your blinkers on and need to keep evolving all the time.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
Be happy with you what you’re doing. I recently held a Workher event with top Kiwi fashion designer Juliette Hogan, and she talked about how she tracked her happiness by recording either a smiley face or a sad face at the end of each day. Every six months she would then tally them up and she could see how much the good days were outweighing the down days.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
Back yourself. You have to believe in yourself. There will be moments of doubt, but trust your gut.
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
Google Drive. I can access all our content calendars and information from anywhere. Super handy.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
I’m a big fan of Sophia Amoruso’s “Girlboss”. Her book and the TV show. I know there’s been a lot of controversy about it, but I think her story is so inspiring.
I also love reading the Collective Hub magazine. It’s filled with so many great entrepreneurial stories.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
Taking things to the next level and developing our Instagram account more.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
- Helping people. I really want to change people’s lives. I’m achieving this by knuckling down, not waiting and simply getting things done.
- I also find talking out-loud to others about goals helps bring them to life – friends and family can hold us accountable and verbalizing a goal helps make it much more real.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
Facebook Group Workhers Auckland
Hashtags #Workher #CareerInspo #WorkherCareerChat