I am so excited to bring you this interview with one of my closest friends and mentors. It’s not often that you find someone who you admire in so many factors of their life. She is an incredible mum to three beautiful boys, the wife of Port Adelaide premiership star Kane Cornes and she is also a successful entrepreneur.
Lucy’s achievements have been nothing but admirable. She is the South Australian ambassador for Heart Kids and has been instrumental in not only donating her time but raising tens of thousands of dollars for the charity.
She started her first business She Shopped in 2012, a lifestyle and media brand bringing the best of online shopping to women around Australia. She has just launched her new business Club She Shopped in which VIP members are given access to exclusive offers and incredible prizes each month.
Lucy Cornes is a mother, wife and successful business woman. Incredibly inspiring and down to earth, Right as Rayne has the exclusive insight into how this amazing woman keeps focused and balanced through all factors of her life.
I worked at a local café for well below the minimum wage.
INSPIRATION BEHIND SHE SHOPPED
Three years ago, a mum of three boys under 5, I was working as a freelance newspaper columnist and radio broadcaster. Exciting opportunities were beginning to present on the radio front and been on the airwaves was fun for me, but it also provided me with a distinct defining moment.
I was given an opportunity to fill in for the breakfast team on a leading Adelaide radio station. Instead of rising when my alarm went off at 4:30am, I had to text the producer and let him know I wasn’t going to make it on air that day. Career suicide for any aspiring broadcaster.
My eldest son, Ed, who was born with serious health issues in 2006, had fallen ill overnight. When Ed becomes unwell things can go very pear shaped, very quickly and things were looking decidedly pear. Even though I’d always suspected it, it was then I truly knew that I would never be able to keep a “normal” job. The type where your boss expects you to turn up consistently.
At 4:35am, lying next to Ed, I knew if I was to work, I’d need to create something for myself. Something that was flexible enough to withstand hospital stays, cardiac clinics and phone calls from the school office to say “You’ll have to come and pick up Ed”.
Actually more than I had to. I wanted to for all three of my boys.
And so I got to thinking, what could I build from the ground up? What was I good at? I asked my husband. “You’re good at finding shit online” was the reply. True story I thought and so my entrepreneurial creativity launched into overdrive.
I recognised that lots of women wanted to shop online but they lacked confidence in doing so. When handing over gifts at parties, I would have countless women say to me “Oh! Where did you get that?!” I would reply with the name of the online store and their response would always be the same “Oh I want to shop online but I don’t know where to start” or “Is it safe to buy online?”
Understanding this, combined with my exceptional skill of “finding (good) shit online” and financed with a redraw on our mortgage, I set about creating She Shopped, an online platform connecting reputable online stores with Australian women.
After a 12 month development time, on June 28th 2012, She Shopped launched.
EVOLUTION OF CLUB SHE SHOPPED
Spending so much time online in the past two years has proven to be the best market research I could have conducted for Club She Shopped.
I’ve been able to identify that many women love to shop online and some find the incredible choice confusing. I’ve also noticed that when women win prizes it makes them really happy. I love that!
Club She Shopped simply combines a VIP online shopping experience, by providing her members 8 exclusive offers from leading brands across fashion, travel, beauty and lifestyle and the chance to win amazing prizes each month.
Club She Shopped takes the guesswork out of shopping online, saves her members time and money and rewards them with brilliant prizes.
I am still very much involved in the everyday operations of the business. In order to focus on “bigger picture” tasks I hope to relinquish some of my current day to day tasks in my third year in business. But currently I manage existing client relationships, respond to emails and advertising enquiries, mange the content across my two websites (www.clubsheshopped.com.au and www.sheshopped.com.au) and social media channels. I also invoice, implement marketing strategies I have formulated and spend time on other websites to keep abreast of online trends. I have outsourced my book keeping and graphic design work.
INSPIRATION COMES FROM
People in business inspire me daily. I love learning about entrepreneur’s experiences. Just yesterday I watched an interview with Lorna Jane. She had to show great resiliency in the start-up phase of her business. At one point she had to borrow money from her mum to meet the payroll and at another stage she moved into the Lorna Jane factory. I love seeing people who have sacrificed a lot succeed.
THREE THINGS WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU
- I consider coffee a food group.
- I’m a big believer in manifesting
- I have a crush on Dr Charlie Teo
WHERE DO YOU FIND BALANCE?
With regular Bikram Yoga sessions.
TOP TIPS FOR WOMEN WANTING TO START THEIR OWN BUSINESS
- Be realistic about the numbers and know them well. Understand how much it is going to cost you to start your business and be clear on how you plan on making that money back. I think recouping your start-up costs in revenue is a great milestone. When I started She Shopped, I knew exactly how much I’d invested, how I was going to recoup that investment and in what time frame. I think I was about 6 weeks out on my forecast.
- Listen more than you speak when floating your idea with a trusted few. No one sees your idea like you see your idea and sometimes they interpret it better! The idea I had in my head of what She Shopped looked like changed considerably in the development stage, thanks to the brilliant ideas of others.
- Don’t wait for everything to be “absolutely perfect” to start. You’ll be surprised how much your business will evolve when it is active. We could all stay in the development phase forever perfecting our offering. Get your skin in the game as soon as you can and get set for one hell of a roller coaster ride.
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