International Women’s Day is all about shining a spotlight on women who are making an impact in their community. MarketFinance is fortunate to have several women on our team who are doing just that, so this is a great time to showcase our talent.

Meet Brid, a Data Scientist, who’s drawing from personal experiences to build a business that positively impacts women’s lives. Brid has recently launched an online course to help women overcome eating disorders. She reflects on her own struggles which she has now overcome, saying “If I could help someone fast forward their recovery and reach their best life again, it’d be monumentally rewarding.”

Another employee that has turned their passion into purpose is Diana, a Senior Operations Analyst, who recently published a children’s picture book. She’s always been passionate about reading and drawing so she came up with the idea to combine the two things she loves the most into something beneficial and impactful.

Diana’s book, Easy as ABC, is designed to teach children the alphabet in an entertaining way. “I don’t expect to get rich or famous,” says Diana. “I did it because I liked doing it and also wanted to try something new.”

Work hustle balance

Work life balance is a hot topic in today’s world but for Brid and Diana, balancing work with a side hustle and a social life hasn’t always come easy. They’ve both found that their side hustles and day job take up the majority of their time, especially as their businesses are both in the early stages.

“At the start of any business, especially when it’s a side hustle, you have to sacrifice a bit to get it off the ground. But it’ll be worth it,” says Brid.

Planning ahead and being organised has helped Brid find the balance, although she does know that true balance is difficult to attain. To-do lists and goals keep her focused, but she also makes sure she has non-negotiable time to hang out with loved ones and have fun.

Diana suggests that the key to finding balance with your day job and your side hustle is to enjoy what you’re doing: “If your side hustle is your hobby, then you don’t feel like you’re doing extra work.” Deciding to start a business takes courage but remembering your why – the reason you started the business – makes the hard days easier.

Building future entrepreneurs

MarketFinance is somewhat of a training ground for entrepreneurs where we’ve seen alumni go on to launch very successful businesses of their own. Our culture promotes and develops qualities to build future leaders and future founders through our core values: #MakeItHappen, #AlwaysBeLearning and #1Team1Dream.

“Being pushed out of my comfort zone quite often at MarketFinance has definitely supported me in growing my side hustle,” says Brid. Being encouraged to host Townhall tech features allowed her to overcome her fears of being seen which she needed to overcome to successfully grow and promote her business.

For Diana, MarketFinance has given her a lot of opportunities to develop herself and her career, which she continues to work hard at. Flexible work arrangements gives her the opportunity to work from home which she finds valuable as the few hours saved on her commute means she can spend more time working on what she’s passionate about. For now, her side hustle is just a hobby but she has plans to publish more books in the future.

Just start

With only 1 in 3 UK entrepreneurs being women, Brid encourages any woman thinking about a side hustle or business to just start!

“Don’t wait until you’re ready or good enough to do it because that time won’t come. You need to just jump in the deep end and start learning. Don’t get sucked into the details either. Focus on getting a minimum viable product out and test it on your audience. Make sure the business model is solid and then go from there”.

Diana offers the practical tip of checking in with others working in your area of interest to get as much insight as possible before you start. Brid found that podcasts on female entrepreneurship helped inspire her business concept. Inspiration can be found anywhere so take advantage of all resources available to you.

As women, we have to play to our strengths in the world of business and entrepreneurship. Brid notes that the innate empathy in women is a core strength which is an amazing way to connect with customers, understand their feelings and needs and therefore learn how to serve them better.

If you’re not yet convinced to start your side hustle today here are some final words of encouragement:

“I think it’s time for women to get into entrepreneurship! There’s SO much community among us – everyone wants everyone to win. And there’s space for it,” says Brid.

With gender stereotypes changing, Diana notes that “women are more empowered and they support each other”. Through strong communities we can do great things!