Guest Blogs, highlighton other fab ladies, Life of a Mum, Other fabulous ladies

Nicky Masson – A global force to be reckoned with (guest blog)

Interview and words by @chameleoninhighheels

When you speak to Nicky Masson, a friendly smile and inviting enthusiasm in her voice make you feel at ease immediately.  But there is also an air of calm collectednessabout her, a sense of empowering confidence that is infectious and inspiring. Nicky Masson is a business coach and mentor at Nicky Masson Global, helping individuals and businessesachieve their goals, get results and focus on a positive mindset.

I first met Nicky over four years ago at a local baby massage group where my little one had chosen to scream for the entirety of the course. We bonded over a shared determination to breast feed our babies and Nicky was giving supportive advice as a mum of two which I, as a first time mother was incredibly grateful for. 

We recently reconnected as part of Nicky’s exclusive Make It Happen membership program, which offers advice and coaching to new and existing entrepreneurs. I met her for coffee and flapjack to chat about her journey over the last 4 years, her business and life as a full time entrepreneur and mother.

When I ask Nicky how and why she embarked on her career as a business coach, I am taken aback by her candid honesty.  Nicky describes 2016 a key transitional stage in her life.  She got made redundant from a job role she had known for many years.  In response to this, she set up her own network marketing business but failed to make significant progress.  “My fear and anxiety stopped me”, she smiles shyly. “I had so many ideas but I just couldn’t apply myself.” A chance meeting at a webinar introduced her to her mentor and has been working with him ever since.  “It was a catalyst toacknowledge that I had to work on myself and change.  Theway we act and behave is a mirror to what’s happening on the inside. I realised that, if I can achieve it, then I can help others to do the same.

Does she think being made redundant has shaped the way she approaches her own business?  Nicky is thoughtful with her response and I can tell this delves into some difficult memories.  “I left a good job to be a mother and returned to find it had been taken from me.  Instead I had to do menial tasks that gave me the feeling of being neither wanted nor skilled enough, all because I’d had two babies and worked part-time.”  Recalling my own experiences of returning to work after maternity leave, I can empathise with Nicky’s recollection. She also sums up the emotional side of employment as a new mum perfectly: “As a mother you are vulnerable and dealing with so many emotions.  Being given the feeling you are not good enough anymore makes you question everything.  In the end I just felt numb and went through the motions.” She laughs, but it doesn’t come from the heart. “Ironically, by treating me this way, my employer didn’t get the best out of me anymore either.” Nicky suffered from postnatal depression and anxiety, something she struggled to comprehend and combat.  “I didn’t understand what it was, why I felt the way I did.  It wasn’t a good time.”

Has this insight into darkness helped her in her own development and that of her clients?  Nicky nods passionately.  “Through my mentor and the coaching process I got answers to who I was.  I believe that personal development is incredibly important in any business, yet most people don’t get trained and furthered that way. Most companies only focus on knowledge and skills.  However, 85% of how you work is about your attitude. If you focus on the positives and embrace change, you will thrive.”

I am interested in how Nicky combines running her own successful and growing business with being a mother to two young children.  I mention that a recent study conducted by the universities of Manchester and Exeter showed that full-time working mothers with two children experiences significant stress levels that could, in the long term, be harmful to their health (Barr, 2019, The Independent). Does she have any tips for other mums? “The biggest thing is managing and separating your time.  It’s all about focus: If you focus on your work you will get things done and, in return, you will spend less time doing it.  Likewise, once you are with your family, that’s where your focus should be.”  
Does she ever experience mum guilt, I ask.  “Yes, of course.  It happens to all of us.  When we work we think of our kidsand during family time we may want to check emails.” Her words resonate as I recall my own guilt since the day I dropped my babies at nursery.  How does she cope with her own mum guilt these days?  “I am getting better”, Nicky smiles serenely.  “I have created a better environment for myself with my business and I can help others achieve the same”. 

I feel it’s time for my million-dollar question: Does she believe that women can have it all? Nicky’s response is immediate, firm and delivered with such conviction I want to close my notebook and sign up for whatever course she wants me to sign up in the future.  “Yes, without a doubt”, followed by a pause, and I am not quite sure if I need her to elaborate.  However, she has an explanation up her sleeve.  “Women in general deserve so much more credit in modern society.  We are the ones who do all the juggling and wear the different hats. We do it all.  The important thing, however, is that we have to believe that we can have it all – if you don’t believe it, it won’t happen.” I wonder if Nicky still has moments of doubt or if she has figured it all out.  She laughs. “I constantly work on myself.  There are still things that hold me back and,as with everyone’s road to success, it’s work in progress.”  

We leave the café over an hour after our official interview has finished, reminiscing and ponder over where we are now. Nicky’s achievements and proven strategies have intrigued me to interview and write about her, something our past selves would probably not have predicted. What I can predict, however, is that there is a lot I have already learnt from Nicky, and can’t wait to implement her strategies.

Nickys Facebook

Nickys Insta

Guest Blogs, highlighton other fab ladies, Other fabulous ladies

Mumprenuer Seema from Demi & co.

We are husband and wife team Anish and Sim (mum and dad to two handsome boys) from Nottingham and we started DEMI+CO™ an online jewellery brand for men and womenafter having our second child. Before we had our boys, we used to run a creative agency together which then became a challenge with a small family to look after. That’s when we decided to launch an online business allowing us a better work and life balance.

Initially it felt like we are doing things backwards and that wasn’t our intention but when young children come into the mix, they become the priority. We both have had experience In launching brands with our combined design, branding, PRand marketing skills and this time the launch was for us. My career started in Fashion PR and I have always had an interest in fashion, jewellery and beauty and that’s when the idea started. We also realised that although there were a few places for men’s jewellery there was a gap for high quality bracelets for men that were affordable.

Coming across copper and magnetic bracelets was accidental and after realising that how helpful they were for Anish in aiding a twinge he had in his wrist we knew that it was a great place to start. We were both surprised that there was such a lack of choice in style when it came to online and in store, so we thought why not bridge the gap and the rest as they say is history.

The DEMI part of our brand name originated from our baby name list, well a backup if we’d had a girl, it didn’t take us long to decide. I am aware that our boys will ask us when they are older why we didn’t name it after them, but we will cross that bridge when we get to it! To get to where we have right now has involved a great deal of work from web design, branding, marketing, SEO and social media and to juggle it around a family is a challenge. However, we do enjoy what we do and seeing how happy our customers are with their jewellery and getting positive feedback and reviews makes it all worthwhile.

Our 5 most asked questions about running a family business

1. How do you fit your workload around children? Having a good support network is ideal, but its not always the case for most people. We worked around nap times, bedtimes and school/nursery times. This does mean either waking up that extra early or working till late at night. You do have to be flexible and you do have use your time as effectively as possible.

2. What do you do when work is extra busy?We do have busy times like Christmas and Valentines, and we end up working much later into the night and on weekends. It’s not ideal but we try and break up the weekend so that there is a balance.

3. How do you cope with school holidays and sick days? We do have a reliable activity club and after school club which is reasonable, and it helps us out a lot during school holidays. Sick days are tricky, they are unpredictable and as we all know children come first, luckily, they bounce back quick and we just work harder to catch up.

4. What about having time off and a holiday? This one is rare and limited for us at this moment, but UK breaks and small weekends away work perfectly. Hopefully in the future we can take some longer time off as we expand the business and the team.

5. Would you recommend starting a business once you become a parent? This is a two-part answer, I would say yes and no as it totally depends on the idea, your time, your finances, drive and your skills. However if you have the drive and the passion then yes go for it, as long as you have budgeted, calculated the risks and are able to see where your idea or business would fit in the industry you want to be in then you will find a way to make it work.

DEMI+CO™ specialise in womens luxury jewellery at affordable prices. Our focus is elegant, intricate and fashion led jewellery for women consisting of heirloom inspired gold necklaces, power hoops, detailed studs and 9ct solid gold earrings, pendants and bracelets. ALPHA™ mens is DEMI+CO’s™ mens jewellery brand specialising in mens designer bracelets made from copper, magnets and leather.

To find out more go to

Demi & co. website

Demi & co. On Insta