In French Beauty Expert we love celebrating the great success and magnificent personalities of Women in Business across many industries! Through our conversations with them we hope to learn more about what makes them powerful and keeps them growing personally and professionally and be inspired by their spirit.
Today we are speaking to Helen Danks, the owner of the newly-opened and very successful Hideaway Cafe which provides a wide variety of homemade food, sweet treats and award winning tea and coffees.
Tell us a little about your business
I am the owner of a cafe which was set to open just before the pandemic hit. This put our dreams in jeopardy but through the different restrictions we have managed to survive and grow a loyal client base by doing takeaway and delivery.
What do you think makes women excel in business?
I think women are more focused on establishing relationships with key audiences, customers, influencers and competitors. When it comes to accomplishing goals or building solid workplace relationships the feminine touch and skills like empathy, intuition and optimism of women work towards the benefit of a company, our emotional intelligence, passion and helpful nature helps to create a healthy workplace relationship and well rounded workforce.
What do you consider your biggest success in your career?
My answer to that is simple setting up my own business and not being afraid to fail. Failure is looked at by many as being weak in business; I look at failure as not someone who has failed but someone that has taken that extra step in bettering themselves. Not everyone will make it work but at least they can say they took that risk and gave it their all.
What are the biggest challenges you had to face in a male dominated world?
I have not really faced many challenges in a male dominated world as I have always made my presence be known. In my world it does not matter if you are male or female. If you are strong willed and know what you want, no male dominated world can stop you from achieving your goals.
Share with us your biggest lesson in business.
My biggest lesson in business is creating a team to work with you who have the same ambition as I have because without a good workforce your goals will take longer to be achieved.
What women have inspired you in your life and career?
My mother has inspired me through most of my life and in my career. She has always taught me no matter what I put my mind to or what I want to do, if my passion is there I will do it. Something I now pass on to my children. “You can be whatever you want to be if put your heart and soul into it”.
What actions did you have to take to help your business survive the Covid 19 crisis?
We abided by the government guidelines and ensured the business was safe and secure by using safety measures and risk assessments to create a safer working environment. We adapted the business to stay open for takeaways and created themed afternoon teas for the vulnerable who were isolating.
What do you hope the world of business to be like for women in the future?
I believe that at this day and age women are being treated more fairly but still not to the level they should. Both males and females should have equal rights in and out of the workplace. A male in many forms might be stronger physically but women are 100% stronger within.
How do you envision your business to grow going forwards?
I have a strategy in place to nurture existing customers whilst keep looking for new opportunities by networking and using social media. Measuring what works and refining my approach as I go. I believe we will be very successful as we have opened the business during this pandemic and have survived so far. We can only get better!
Describe some characteristics about yourself that you believe led to your success in business.
Smiling, understanding, confident, enthusiastic, sociable, smart.
What’s a daily or weekly ritual you have that contributes to your ongoing success?
Sticking to a routine that works for me and my staff is very important and we work towards this every day.
What’s something interesting you’re currently working on? Personal or professional.
I am concentrating on so many ways to keep my business unique making it stand out from my competitors. As a team we are always trying to think of ideas to be different. I strive in being successful and to hopefully be able to open another business in the future.
In my spare time I try hard to live a healthy lifestyle keeping fit and eating healthy so that I don’t look 41 years old I just feel it 😊