Over the last few months, I have gained many new connections in my business world and so I thought it would be useful to give you all a quick synopsis of my career journey.
Several years ago I was visiting my Mum in hospital and I noticed a poster that said,
“My name is not “deary” “ducky” or “lovely”, my name is Dr Brown” – so meaning that everyone was someone in their life and their journey has a story that makes them who they are today. I believe your story is so important in painting a picture of your journey and helping others to gain an insight into your values and ethos and most importantly your WHY.
Here is my story………
So, I left school aged 18 having gained 2 A levels in Mathematics and Geography and had a place at Swansea University to read Geography. At the very last moment, my Dad convinced me to accept the place I also had been offered at Lloyds Bank as a Management Trainee. Both my brother and sister had not gone to university so he didn’t encourage me to go, so into Banking, I went.
I quickly climbed the ranks on this programme and one day I had a review and my Manager (who had been in the bank for 20+years) told me to look further afield into International Banking (I guess he recognised something in me then) The stars were aligned that evening as I spotted an advert for a Back Office Assistant in a London Foreign Exchange Dealing Room. I applied and got the job, but not only did I get the job they offered me the Front Office Assistant role. For those of you who are wondering what the difference is, the back office dealt with post-trade reconciliation and the front office dealt with live trades and queries.
I spent 7years in the Dealing Room of Chemical Bank (now JP Morgan Chase) and quickly adapted to the very fast-paced and often frenetic environment, with very early starts ( getting the milk train to work ) in a variety of roles from Foreign Exchange, Money Markets, Options, Bonds and Corporate Account Management. I progressed to trading on the Money Markets putting together deals in £ and $ and then Corporate Sales where I managed key Clients and their FX exposures, giving daily updates and insights into when rates had hit levels that they needed to trade and then executing them for the Client.
Despite films like Wall Street, The Big Short, Rogue trader, and more recently the Netflix series Industry, my experience was very different but also similar in that it was fast-paced but we had fun and I am still friends with many people I worked with then and we are planning a reunion this summer. None of us are still working in that world but we are all successful businesswomen in areas of Insurance, Interior Design, Consulting, IT, & Property Management, so our experience gave us the backbone to build a business, grow and thrive.
Following my time in the Dealing Room, I moved across to Reuters (now Thomson Reuters) as a Sales Executive selling software and hardware into the Dealing Rooms of International Banks in London. A relatively easy transition as I was able to sell Foreign Exchange, Money Markets, Equities, and Metals software to the markets that I had traded in myself. I was also asked to be on the team that managed Beta Software where I sat in Dealing rooms next to traders and watched how they used the software and recorded what they needed to ensure the software created was fit for purpose.
Having worked in these markets at this point for 16 years, I was beginning to burn out with 2 small Daughters and my ailing parents to look after. The stars were aligned again as an offer of Voluntary Redundancy was sent to everyone as the company was taken over. I seized the opportunity to change career and so left with no idea what I was going to do for the first time in my life.
Having two small children, I had joined many groups and in effect had started networking without knowing (although we have all been doing this most of our lives when we started school we built up friendships and joined clubs) and was talking to an Ante Natal friend one day when she had an ‘aha’ moment. She put me in touch with her friend’s husband who was looking for someone to support them with some ‘admin’ in their business.
Now you know where I am heading with this story.
The two owners were desperate for someone to join them asap and in true ‘Alex style’ I jumped at the chance having only had 2 months off. I joined a bespoke furniture manufacturer locally and started my administration journey building a huge excel spreadsheet that was later imported to a bespoke CRM system that is still used today (I say today as I stayed for 17 years having initially thought I would be there for 2-3 years)
My role evolved over these years to encompass what would be deemed as an Operations Manager title. My role covered sales, marketing, finance, HR. health and safety, procurement, CRM systems, tenders, accreditations and so the list goes on and you name it and that’s the hat I wore. I even finally went to university whilst I worked for them as it was a box I needed to tick. However, having completed this degree using my experience to apply theory and not the other way round, I could clearly see the need for businesses to have clear and defined procedures and processes to be efficient & effective.
Can you see the weave of my journey?
In the last 5 years or so of my time with this company they were starting to embrace technology to work efficiently in teams and build a server tree library of documents for everyone to access. As I got heavily involved in this, I swiftly realised that other small business owners needed to be set up in a similar way and completed in virtual ways. This was a time before VAs were really considered by a business as an effective way of managing your business and saving time and money, hence Auxilium Admin was born.
I started off supporting friends and family as I set up my business and then word of mouth and referrals through my networking, I built momentum and went full time with the business in September 2017. Back then I supported clients with sales calls, spreadsheets, event support, Invoice chasing ( I am very good at that ! always had this less than 30 days due ) CRM updates, manuals, holiday cover and research and the list went on……..
As my business grew, I swiftly realised that my skills lay in more of a Consultancy role. I was working with business owners as their second brain and my Audits helped them unravel their spaghetti brain (see previous blog) and are very popular. In January 2021 Auxilium Admin became Auxilium Business Consulting. At last, I had dropped the word “admin”that was holding me back as this was not showcasing or utilising my expertise and knowledge in the most effective way.
The types of businesses that I have supported over the years has varied but here are just a few;
Bookkeepers, Accountants, Software Developers, Website Developers, Care Industry, Copywriters, Speakers, Coaches, Childcare agencies, Housing Sector, and Charities.
Many #coaches #hrspecialists and other #ceos refer clients to me because they can only take their client so far, see business owners in a muddle, or have used my services themselves. They can see that the next step for their client is to work with me to provide support with actioning what they need to grow. Some Clients already know what they need and have been pondering working with someone but have not found the person that understands business, their business or worked in their Industry.
Finding the right person to support you is vital and I pride myself on understanding and having knowledge of various sectors and I ensure I get to know you and your business and find the best solutions and effect changes to help you achieve growth and your vision. I have many testimonials on my website to read about how I have helped others and case studios too.
So, that is a whistle-stop tour of my business journey and why and how I can do what I say on the tin. If you are a business owner who has reached overwhelm and has a growing business that needs a 2nd brain or a 2nd pair of eyes to review where you are now and where you want to be with a clear plan ahead then do give me a call.