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Kirsty Maxey

Female Founder Spotlight: Kirsty Maxey

5 March 2021|Latest Posts, Meet the Successful Founder

IWD Inspirational Female Founders Spotlight: Kirsty Maxey
IWD Inspirational Female Founders Spotlight: Kirsty Maxey

Kirsty Maxey is an award-winning communications expert with over 30 years’ experience in marketing strategy, brand and communications, used to working at a senior level and with Exec Boards. As CEO of Teamspirit, she focuses her time championing our mission to transform the world of finance for the better. We believe it’s critical to ask how the existing financial system can change for a person or community – not to try and change them to fit the system. That’s why we work across the financial spectrum with high street names as well as being an advocate for those seeking to challenge the industry. Previously, she helped launch Pet Plan, the first pet insurance in the UK, before moving to the Board of The Scotsman Publications (part of Thomson Regional Newspapers), launching the first-ever Scottish Sunday broadsheet newspaper with Scotland on Sunday. In 1995, she set up her own consultancy advising a diverse mix of clients on all aspects of marketing & communications. 

What would you love to share with other women to encourage them to start their own business?

If I could wave a magic wand, I would give every woman the confidence to give it a go. It’s the biggest barrier to doing anything in life. And having talked to lots of women about this, it is the main reason why they don’t do it. What you realise very quickly is that most people are just “giving it a go”, so if you do your research, understand what your clients really want and deliver it, even on a small scale, that can lead to much bigger opportunities. Often that means breaking the rules of what’s gone before, and I’m a big fan of that – it’s where you get the biggest breakthroughs. It’s also very exciting and empowering to build your own income. Remember, it’s never too late to reinvent yourself. 

What are your top 5 tips for entrepreneurial success?

Most importantly, as Caitlin Moran said inHow to Build a Girl, “You have to fake it, to make it!”. I used to be a very quiet, shy person, but we moved house and school every few years and I learnt a great life lesson: by imitating the confidence, competence, and optimistic mindset, a person can realise those qualities in their real life and achieve a lot more.

Find yourself a mentor, to talk to someone who’s already done it. Find out what worked for them and what didn’t. Then do it your way!
Prepare properly, do your research, find out what your clients or customers really want.

Don’t be afraid of the finances, work out your P&L, what costs will you have and when you think you might have income coming in. It takes time to build, so factor that in.

Be bold. Women don’t like to sing about their successes, so get someone else to write your bio or narrative for you and then practice it. 

Who are the top 5 women who inspire you the most?

Vivienne Westwood – for me, she optimises my generation. She tore up the rule book and did it her way.

Anita Roddick – an inspirational entrepreneur, who focused on her passion as an environmental campaigner, and used that to help change the way the world thinks through cosmetics.

Joan Armatrading – the sound of the 70s for me, and, again, a woman who broke the rules, and the first UK female artist to be nominated for a Grammy.

Michelle Obama – an inspiration to young girls everywhere, she encourages you to ‘spread your wings and soar’.

Jane Austen – author of the first books that I read, where women seemed to have a real voice. 

What is your favourite saying/Inspirational quote?

Either Caitlin Moran (above) or Anita Roddick: “If you think you are too small to make an impact, go to bed with a mosquito!” 

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