Latest posts by Joanna Martin (see all)
- Selfish or selfless? How personal development helps you contribute - July 23, 2019
- One of many Voices: Felicity Wingrove - July 18, 2019
- If you feel disconnected… - July 16, 2019
With three businesses, a busy household and a passion for living life on her own terms, Felicity Wingrove is a force to be reckoned with. In her words “I get shit done better than almost anyone else I know”
A self-confessed linguistics geek, she’s also a One of many Certified Trainer and powerful advocate for women’s empowerment at work and home. We asked Felicity to give us a candid look at what life’s really like behind the scenes, and her secrets to finding balance.
What do you do?
I run my own PR and content creation agency; speak, train and coach C-suite executives to discover their own personal power and to take control of how they’re perceived in all areas of their lives; I’m mum to two delicious little ones (Arabella is 15 months and Alexander is four); and I act as an Associate in my partner’s business, coaching SME business owners and running a Mastermind group.
Give us a daily routine (or a normal day in the life of you)…
I genuinely co-parent with my partner so I’m up by 6am all week (and usually weekends too). Half the week I’m straight off to work and at my desk by 7am, the other half I’m corralling a toddler and a pre-schooler into clothes, feeding brekkie and trying to blank out the strains of Peppa Pig.
Four days a week I work from my agency. A working day usually lasts until 6pm, and I can be anywhere in the country – taking briefings, crafting strategy, or working with my team.
Friday (or ‘mummy day’ as clients, team and everyone else knows it) I’m with my little ones, and usually covered in mud, paint or water. We have a *lot* of fun and I’m careful to be really present with them. And weekends are sacred family time. Walks, adventures, trips out, meals together, snuggles on the sofa, that sort of thing.
How do you feel about women’s “lot” these days?
I feel frustrated by this. I ‘get’ that many women have to carry the emotional load of the family. One of my team, for example, has a husband who will do whatever she wants. Need the kids taking to school? He’ll do it with a smile. But she’s the one who has to remember that it’s dress-up day, or that they need £2 for a charity something, or whatever it might be. I’m not doing that down, as I know that lots of women have the same experience, but I chose not to and that required some really honest conversations with my partner before we had kids.
After all, I’m really good at what I do, and I’ve worked really hard to get really good. But I also desperately wanted kids and didn’t want to miss out on that side of life too. To ‘have it all’ I needed someone who would be happy to pick up the other side for me. And my other half did (and does).
On a Friday when I’m mummy, he’s running his business and doing what he needs to do, but mid-week mornings when I need to be suited and booted and off kicking arse somewhere, he’s on the nursery run. And I don’t pack the kids’ bags for him – he’s an intelligent guy and perfectly capable of working out that it’s sunny so they may need sunglasses…
My – controversial I know – opinion, is that we as women have created our own significance from being so essential to the running of our homes and families. ‘I go away for a day and the whole thing falls apart’ is a martyr-esque cry in my mind, and a badge of honour.
Maybe it’s because I’m from a business background (I’m ex-corporate) but a business that can’t run without me is a sign of abject failure on my part. Hell, my entire goal with my own business is to make myself completely dispensable and for my team to be empowered to thrive without me. And while I’m not advocating that for women at home, I love the fact that my home works without me, albeit that it can still bring out vulnerability sometimes.
Let’s face it, it’s tough to be ‘managed without’ but I look to the example that I’m setting my son and my daughter and it’s worth the odd wobble, the odd tears en route to a meeting, or the odd tummy lurch when my daughter reaches for Daddy first. Tomorrow it’s just as likely to be me first and isn’t it great that he’s so important in her life too. And when it all gets a bit much, well then we have the PowerType Release Process 😉
How does femininity and Soft Power feature in your business/ career? What does it look like?
I used to be tough, and hard and even a bit brittle. I was the ex cage fighter that Jo talks about at conference… Soft was weak, and yielding made me feel a bit sick. Discovering One of many changed all that. I stopped pushing so hard at everything and chilled the **** out!
Soft power has allowed me to be softer but still unapologetic. Not aggressive by any stretch but I know my worth, my value and also my boundaries, and they’re non-negotiable. I lead from soft power and while I’ll always enjoy my Warrioress yang energy, I also see the real benefit of bringing yin to the boardroom. I work almost exclusively with men, and in masculine sectors such as manufacturing, engineering and tech. Tapping into my genuine femininity allows me to communicate authentically with them. I’m more compelling and inspiring as a result.
What is the most common emotion you feel as a woman on a day-to day basis?
Excitement. We have never had so much opportunity – to see, feel, hear, taste, touch and experience. To lead and to be led into new adventures. To inspire. To shape the world exactly as we wish and need. To bring up the next generation and to learn from those before us. We’re connected like never before.
What’s the soundtrack of inspiration for you?
Oh my gosh, I *love* music. This Is Me reminds me of the Trainers’ Certification and the gorgeous ladies I shared that journey with. Thunder by Imagine Dragons makes me want to conquer the world. Havana by Camila Cabello makes me want to get up and dance. My theme tune though would probably be something like Best Day of My Life, or Reach by S Club 7!
Psycholinguist | Corporate survivor | Ex-cage fighter
Felicity Wingrove is a coach, speaker and trainer as well as the founder of Zen Communications. Her work centers around giving others a voice, whether that’s helping professionals who are struggling to find theirs; working with awesome businesses who need to authentically position and market themselves; or supporting business owners who have a dream and just need the marketing (and sales) know-how to deliver it to those that matter.
She previously worked in a variety of senior communications positions, applying her language skills on behalf of some of the nation’s leading brands, organisations and associations. After time as Senior Communications Adviser for FTSE100 BAE Systems’ Air Systems, and Account Director at national PR agency Golley Slater, she launched her own consultancy in 2007. Now, she helps clients take positive control of how they’re perceived, truly own their space, and powerfully and ethically influence the people who matter the most to them.
Connect with her at the following links: