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Vhari Russell

Female Founder Spotlight: Vhari Russell

5 March 2021|Latest Posts, Meet the Successful Founder

IWD Inspirational Female Founders Spotlight: Vhari Russell
IWD Inspirational Female Founders Spotlight: Vhari Russell

Can you tell us a little about your background and journey?

After years of working with the leading importers and distributors, working on branded and own-brand products for many leading retailers. I started my own agency which is celebrating it’s 10th birthday this year. The Agency was started while my children were 9 months, 3 and 6 years old, it was tough especially when my husband was deployed to Afganistan.  I am now the founder of The Food Marketing Experts, Grub Club Events and Charity Creating Nature Corridors. 

I have worked in the food and drink industry for the last 20 plus years and has judged for Great Taste Awards and the Quality Awards. I am hugely passionate about the food and drink industry and championing great products and helping businesses grow and thrive. This is something that both my full-service agency and networking group encompass. 

As a mum of three daughters, she is hugely passionate about encouraging young women to do anything they can and believe in themselves. She has mentored at a local secondary school helping students and has just finished a six-week mentoring programme with Uber helping start-up business grow and flourish. 

I am hugely passionate about supporting other women in business, running a business is tough, but hugely rewarding. I think this year more then ever it is harder with homeschooling etc. What I have enjoyed the most in the last 12-months is seeing new business evolve, from having to pivot or having the headspace to create new ideas. I have really enjoyed chatting to business owners and encouraging them to take the next step, sharing my learnings and tips to avoid them making mistakes I have made. 2. 1 paragraph on what they’d love to share to encourage other women to start their own company
I would say just do it, sitting on the fence is not a nice place to sit. If you are going to start a business make sure you have a clear vision, What are you doing to do or sell that’s better or different? What is your purpose? What is the reason to believe? These are vital questions in a busy market place. It is hard work, but so hugely rewarding. You need to believe in yourself because you can’t expect your customers to if you don’t. 

What are your 5 top tips for entrepreneurial success?

  1. Tenacity – you keep going and there will be knocks and bumps along the way, just keep getting up. 
  2. Belief – believe in yourself 
  3. Don’t ask don’t get – If you don’t ask another brand or a leading industry expert to comment or collaborate they will always be a no, so ask they might say yes. 
  4. You are wonder woman – You are awesome and you can multi-task, on the tough days remember this and channel your inner wonder woman. 
  5. Cash is key – don’t be afraid to chase debt. If you have delivered a service or product you need payment. If you don’t get paid on time chase it. Put in a process and use a solicitors debt recovery service to take the emotion out of it, they offer great value and service. 

Who are the 5 women who inspire you the most?

  1. My Mum (Janny Bernays) – She is amazingly strong, despite losing my dad to cancer 16 years ago and my 37-year-old brother to Sudden Adult Death syndrome two years ago. She is still busy, living life to the full. 
  2. Tammy King – She is running three businesses all of which have been affected by COVID. She is also a huge part of her community volunteering at the local vaccine station, creating events within the village she works and a trained Dementor supporter. 
  3. Viv Groskop – I find her podcast and book so truly inspiring. 
  4. Anita Rani – I love the work she does, she is so inspiring with the work and the causes she supports. 
  5. Stacey Dooley – I love the fact she is so determined and not afraid to ask any questions. She has really inspired my daughters too. 

What is your favourite saying/inspirational quote?

Business always comes from where you least expect it to.

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