Our "March of Inspiring Mums" interview series celebrates women who are doing some amazing things, whether through business, a campaign or just being fabulous!
Today's interview is with Louise Brogan. She describes herself as an online business coach helping women entrepreneurs to raise their visibility online. As well as being a Facebook and Instagram accredited trainer, she runs an online membership, the Social Bee Academy, which teaches women how to create their first online course and demystify how to build your business online.
She has 3 children and lives just outside Belfast, Northern Ireland
Today Louise shares her story and how she went from graduating with a Geography degree, being a software engineer, having a craft shop to now running her own business helping other entrepreneurs with social media.
Tell me a little about yourself and how you got into the job you’re now doing?
I graduated with a degree in Geography, and after a few years of travelling, earned my MSc in computing and Information Systems. I worked as a software engineer for BT for almost three years before deciding to have a career shift into public sector. I worked for 11 years as an IT Project Manager within the NHS - I was responsible for big software programmes being rolled out. The job combined my love of software with the ability to teach people how to use IT who were not comfortable using computers.
I left the health service as I wanted a business that allowed me to be more flexible around my three children. I originally had a craft shop, but this didn’t make me any money and a local business mentor suggested I would be better putting my social media skills to good use, and help other small businesses with their social media. Social Bee was born! This was around 2013 and I have been helping entrepreneurs with their online marketing ever since.
Tell me one interesting fact about you?
I have my own podcast! I launched in 2018 which was funny because in 2016 I had never heard of podcasting. Now I have a weekly show where I share stories from other women who have left corporate to start a business, solo episodes on online business and on air coaching calls. It is called the Social Bee Podcast.
Please can you share your tips for managing the juggle of motherhood, life and business?
I get up 20 minutes before anyone else in the house to do 10 minutes of yoga/pilates and checking emails to kick start my day. To fit in exercise, quite often my husband gets home from work and I dash out the door to the gym or with the dog - its great to get some time in the day where you are not working, and not in the thick of things in the house. I do try to fit my work in while the kids are at school - it doesn’t always pan out that way but that is the aim.
What’s the best piece of advice you could give a new mum?
Don’t beat yourself up if you are moving more slowly than you want when your kids are small - you don’t get this time back and you can always find another client tomorrow! A tired mum is no good to either the family or the business. So take a break and make time for yourself.
Colour can make a real difference to our mood - what’s your favourite colour? And how does it make you feel when you wear it?
I like bright colours - oranges and bright blues. I wear a lot of stripey tops and they make me happy.
(although my weakness is Emma Bridgewater mugs - I am always happy when I make my coffee in one of them! So sad!!)
What’s your favourite activity to do with your children?
Getting out for a big walk in a forest with the whole family and the dog at the weekends. During the week, we love to bake or else get to the library. The kids would probably say they love putting a movie on and eating popcorn though!
What do you like to do for some me-time?
READ! I love reading - I have just finished Michelle Obama’s book "Becoming", and I always have a stack of books lined up by the bed. Quite often I am reading more than one book at a time… next up is the new Liane Moriarty book.
Thanks Louise for sharing your inspiring story. It's been great to read your journey and how you ended up doing what you are now after a few diverse steps on the way!
Your advice and reminder to us all that "a tired mum is no good to either the family or the business" is great and I resonate with this a lot. You can't pour from an empty cup so I totally agree that it's important to take a break and make time for yourself.
Louise also has a great podcast for tips and advice
If you've enjoyed this interview, you can read our other blogs and "March of Inspiring Mums" series here
And if you like bright colours like Louise, check out our range of jewellery to add a pop of colour to any outfit