Q and A with Kell for International Women's Day
Our Founder and Creative Director Kell Rigney was asked by Stockland to take part in a Q and A for International Women’s Day. We thought we’d share it with you.
- Is there a female figure that inspires you? It’s hard to choose just one. I work with more than 70 women, all with their own stories and supporting their families and each other in lots of different ways. There are single mums and mums of sick kids. A lot of these women carry the full load. That’s pretty inspiring.
- If you could have dinner with one inspirational woman dead or alive, who would it be? My maternal grandmother. She was a great lady. Incredibly strong and kind, and extremely hard working. She raised her 4 daughters and her sister’s 2 children on her own! I’d love to be able to ask her more questions about that.
- What do you think is the biggest challenge facing female leaders today? Where to start? I do think women are typically held to a higher standard than men. The social expectations to “do it all” at home and at work automatically place us on an uneven playing field. I’ve seen women have to choose one or the other when it all gets too much. I’m lucky that in my home we really do share the load.
- What has been your biggest challenge in business? There have been lots of challenges, Covid of course being the obvious one. Navigating lengthy lockdown periods and pivoting to an online only environment for several months whilst remaining positive and motivated was a lot! I still can’t believe we managed to do that.
- What has been your proudest business achievement so far? I think creating a place where women feel motivated, supported and happy. Most of the time it’s just girls around here. Moving 220 cartons at a total of 3900kg in a day is no big deal for Monica our warehouse manager. I’m surrounded by women who are as passionate about our brand as I am. We are a women for women brand. I personally love coming to work every day and I’m really proud to be able to say that.
- How do you strike a work/life balance when running your own business? It’s really difficult. I work with my family, so it can be hard to switch off. Family dinners and date nights can easily become business meetings. Zjoosh is a shared passion in our family. It’s like our 5th child, so the lines can become blurry.
- Do you feel that women can be further supported in the business world? And if so, how? Feeling respected and listened too is incredibly important. Flexibility in the workplace is key. At Zjoosh we work different hours and on different days. We make it work because we have a common goal.
- Can you recommend any books, podcasts or websites for fellow female entrepreneurs? I’m podcast addict. Everything Mama Mia. The Lady Startups podcasts are great. So real and reassuring. Glennon Doyle for “Life Stuff” in general. She’s incredible. I’ve also really enjoyed “So I Quit My Day Job” with Cathrine Mahony. I saw her speak at an event last year. Super funny and again very real.
- What’s one piece of advice you would give to a woman considering the leap to start her own business? Surround yourself with strong, intelligent, hardworking and solution driven people both in your business and personal life - people who actively support you in achieving your goals. Lean into others who can help you do the things which are outside your skillset. Ask for help. You can’t do it all on your own. Oh, and people will criticise. Keep going anyway.
- Rebecca Taylor