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Thank you, Andy Black. Love your feedback.

To answer your question regarding Google. My stats show that most of my visitors come from direct links. They are looking for me.

But I do have a presence on the first page of Google for my best search terms for ironing board covers. And have been there for many years.

People do search for premium ironing board covers online. Because retailers no longer stock them. Institutional customers like members of the military. Corrective services. Nurses. All have to iron their own uniforms. And search for me either directly. Or by keying in ironing board covers Australia. Or variations on that.

I ring online customers on a regular basis. To introduce myself. Thank them for their purchase. And to ask them why they purchased my cover, when it's one of the most expensive covers online. And to discover what search terms they used.

Their feedback is phenomenal. I don't get this information when they place an order. And. They are always shocked. And delighted. That I cared enough to ring them.

I use that feedback to keep my website up to date. And relevant to visitors.

Thank you for caring enough to make a comment. And I hope that we get to know each other better. If I can help you further, please ask away. ~Carol❤
Can a Introduction thread become GOLD?

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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Welcome to the forum Carol!

Thank you for the amazing vibes and inspiring words.

As Almantas said, you really do get pump up just by reading them.




Can we nominate a post to be featured?





Made me smile, thank you.


PS: I love your profile picture.
Thank you OmarLopez. Love your feedback! Very much appreciated.

I'm thrilled you love my profile picture. Photography is my hobby. This photo was taken on my remote rural property.

I go out every morning at sunrise. With my camera. And walk my 54 hectare property. I shoot whatever I see. Come back. Download the photos. Often 300 at a time. And post the best each morning to my social media accounts. Facebook. Instagram. LinkedIn. Twitter. I love sharing my rural lifestyle with my friends around the world. ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Rep+. Do you teach your disabled employees how to sew or do send them to a local instructor?
Thank you, Greg Rutkowsi. That's an excellent question.

We are a very small family business. And when we realised that our ironing board cover was becoming too big a venture to stay on our dining room table, we looked for a company to sew for us.

Several threw us out because we were too fussy.

All we wanted was for our product to be made with love and care.

We rang the Industrial Supplies Office in NSW. The state we live in. And asked them if they knew a company in our rural region. Who employed men and women with a disability. Who could sew for us.

They said they would be back in touch within two hours.

True to their word they did. And introduced us to our sewing company. Who we have been in partnership with for 23 years.

People with a disability need special training. Including medical care on site. Counselling when they have meltdowns. And the infrastructure to care for them. Which is beyond our means.

We know each of the men and women who sew for us personally. We visit each person when we visit our sewing company. And thank them for what they do for us.

These are very special people who love to work. And we tell our customers. And visitors to our website. That our products are made with love and care in rural Australia by men and women who have a disability.

The care they put into the making of our products shows. Over the years, they have made millions of items for us. To date, we have only had one product returned because of a manufacturing fault. They truly love what they do. And make sure they put their heart and soul into every product they make. And of course. It shows.

Our sewers have epilepsy. Are autistic. Have mild brain damage. Some self harm. But they love to work. When we visit, they wave to us. And if they have a break, they tell us what they've been doing since the last time we saw them. We absolutely adore them.

Because it takes so long to train someone who has mild brain damage. We are unable to change the design of our product. Without it causing mayhem at our sewing company.

So before we turn a product over to them, we make the first 500 ourselves. So we're sure about the design. And know that it's as perfect as it will ever be.

Some consider this a downside. We consider it an advantage. By the time we've handed over a product for making to them, we know we've considered all the options. We consult with them about what their sewers are capable of doing. And adjust the design accordingly. ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Hi Carol,

Great story to read, both the story itself and how you tell it.
You seem to me the entrepreneur who could inspire college students on deciding which directing they will head to.
Maybe some rural Australian schools would be happy to have you as a guest speaker? ;-)

Good luck with your product too.
We stopped ironing some years ago (except for the shirts and so) but still have a moving cover :-(
Haven't noticed your brand out here in Belgium yet but will keep my eyes open.

Michael
Thank you, Michael. That's lovely feedback.

We have no retail representation anywhere in the world. International customers find us online. And we despatch parcels overseas every week. And we do have customers in Belgium! I just checked. ~Carol❤
 

Laughingman21

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Carol - this is an incredible thread. It shows the true highs and lows of running a business, but doesn't sugar coat the hard work. There are so many great take-away's for anyone readying it, but a few of my favourites are:
  • Work through failures
  • Have a great product
  • Stick to your values
  • Deliver awesome customer service
  • Hard work is key to success
Thanks for sharing such an inspiring story and so many lessons.
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Carol - this is an incredible thread. It shows the true highs and lows of running a business, but doesn't sugar coat the hard work. There are so many great take-away's for anyone readying it, but a few of my favourites are:
  • Work through failures
  • Have a great product
  • Stick to your values
  • Deliver awesome customer service
  • Hard work is key to success
Thanks for sharing such an inspiring story and so many lessons.
Thank you so much Laughingman21! Those are fabulous points that you brought to my attention.

Working through failures is a key ingredient. Most people give up too quickly. As soon as the going gets tough, they pick up their marbles and go elsewhere.

When Bernadette Jiwa interviewed me for her new book 'Hunch', she asked me why we persevered. I said it was a no brainer. We were broke. We didn't have two pennies to rub together. My partner designed the ironing board cover for his mother purely as a gift. Never as a product. We were amazed that all her friends wanted one. Having no $$$ in our pockets, we made 20 and sold them to her friends. 20 became 40. And before we knew it, we had made and sold 500 ironing board covers. Even we had to admit that this was now a business.

I remember the first Easter after we launched the cover two months previously. We were still very broke. Victor and I were standing in an aisle in the supermarket, trying to decide how many rolls of toilet paper we could afford to buy after we bought dog and cat food. Not far from us were two sisters buying expensive chocolate Easter eggs for their family. I did a mental calculation that those eggs cost them about $200. And here we were trying to divvy up $30 between pet food and toilet paper. I had to leave the supermarket because I was almost in tears.

Those gut wrenching low moments are when people cave in and get a job. We didn't want a job. So we had no other option other than to go forward.

I still pinch myself at where we are today. All the sacrifices and low moments were worth it. And we live a lifestyle on our beautiful remote rural property that is the envy of our friends. And customers.

Everything comes at a price. To succeed, you have to want to pay the price.

Love your feedback. I learned something about myself from your observations. I hope we stay in touch. ~Carol❤
 

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@Carol Jones -- thank you for the incredible introduction and your story. You truly are the definition of an Unscripted Entrepreneur. Not only are you providing immense value on the consumer side, but you are doing a great service in offering employment to those who might otherwise struggle in that area.

Simply put, you're living life on your terms and as such, you're in a position to change the world.

I'm honored to have you here. And thanks for giving my little chat with Peter a listen.
 

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This place is different from most of the Internet.
The book talks about the Fastlane Forum. I looked it up on Google this morning. And signed up instantly. And I've been gobsmacked at the number of members I've already met.
Yes, very different.

One of our members has enjoyed your posts so much (as have I) he's gifted you a full year INSIDER subscription.

Forum News - Anonymous Donor Comes Forward, Gives Insider Sub

In other words, the community here is saying "Welcome home" :blush:
 

G-Man

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@Carol Jones You're a rockstar. Love hearing about people who create products that solve those obnoxious problems in everyday life.

Rep++
 

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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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@Carol Jones You're a rockstar. Love hearing about people who create products that solve those obnoxious problems in everyday life.

Rep++
Good morning G-Man from rural Australia.

Thank you so much! Rockstar is not a word I would ever apply to myself. But you've certainly put some razzle dazzle into my early Saturday morning. Very appreciative! If I can ever help you, please let me know. It's been a pleasure to meet you. And I hope we stay in touch. ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Yes, very different.

One of our members has enjoyed your posts so much (as have I) he's gifted you a full year INSIDER subscription.

Forum News - Anonymous Donor Comes Forward, Gives Insider Sub

In other words, the community here is saying "Welcome home" :blush:
Good morning @MJ DeMarco from rural Australia,

The tortuous road we all travel to get from A to B is not only full of potholes. But is often full of unexpected surprises.

I purchased both your books on the recommendation of Peter Voogd of the Game Changers Academy. After the Academy's call with you on Wednesday morning Australian time. I read The Millionaire Fastlane in two days. It was such an eye opener for me, that I had to join your forum.

The members that I've met since posting my story yesterday have not ceased to delight me. And enlighten me.

You've created something wonderful here, MJ. That you're obviously very proud of. Full kudos to you for being different. Making it work not just for you. But for all the members here. And adding value to so many lives.

You. And your members. Have made me feel very welcome. And yes, I do feel like this is home.

Now I must go and thank @Raoul Duke for his extraordinary generosity! ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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All of a sudden, I feel like ironing!
Good morning @Greg Rutkowski from rural Australia,

Thank you. That does make me smile!

I so LOVE the way the heat of an iron transforms a wrinkled, crinkled mass of fabric into something crisp and luxurious to wear. Or use.

Nothing beats the feel of a crisply ironed linen napkin sitting in your lap at mealtime. It's like being in the best restaurant. At home!

Thank you, Greg, for starting my early morning with a laugh and a smile! Tis no better way to start a day. ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Can a Introduction thread become GOLD?

@MJ DeMarco
Good morning @Raoul Duke from rural Australia,

Thank you so much!

Your extraordinary generosity in gifting me a year's Insider subscription overwhelms me. And delights me.

It's early morning in Oz. The sun is just rising now. The birds are chirping their good mornings on my remote rural property. And your wonderful news has certainly added a liberal dash of sparkle to my day.

I'll use your unexpected gift to accelerate my trip down the millionaire fastlane.

If ever I can help you. Or someone you know. Please let me know. Seriously! ~Carol❤
 

MarekvBeek

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Hey Carol,

Nice to hear your story. Thank you for sharing.

Are you still working full time now? Or are there other projects you're focussing on now?

What made you decide to share your story, and to help other entrepreneurs through this forum?
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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@Carol Jones -- thank you for the incredible introduction and your story. You truly are the definition of an Unscripted Entrepreneur. Not only are you providing immense value on the consumer side, but you are doing a great service in offering employment to those who might otherwise struggle in that area.

Simply put, you're living life on your terms and as such, you're in a position to change the world.

I'm honored to have you here. And thanks for giving my little chat with Peter a listen.
Good morning @MJ DeMarco from rural Australia,

Thank you for your kind words. The pleasure is all mine. And for me, it's an honour to be here.

For me and my partner, success came in very small steps. It seems we spent a long time in the wilderness before we saw a beam of sunlight.

It wasn't until we took our noses away from the coalface to reflect on where we were that we realised we had hundreds of thousands of customers. In 30 countries! That our story and our products had been written about in every major publication in Australia. That we had very high profile customers who were appreciative of our efforts. And that the best business decision we made was to have our products made with love and care in rural Australia by men and women who have a disability.

The second best business decision we made was to listen to our customers instead of the gurus. Our customers gave us incredible feedback. And every bit of constructive criticism was used to change our business. And because customers cared enough to give us advice, we have a better business - and website - because of the changes we made to please them.

All of the above happened one. at. a. time. Over several years. There was no big burst of success. And I think this is where most of us get derailed. We're so busy trying to get from A to B. That we don't reflect often enough along the journey.

I do pinch myself when I realise how far we've come. We purchased the run-down 54 hectare rural sheep property we were renting. And turned it into a wildlife sanctuary. We removed the sheep and let the native trees and grasses regenerate. Which attracted birds. 120 species so far. And still counting.

We converted the barren hectare of paddock that surrounds the farmhouse into a stunning garden. We planted 110 trees to give us shade from the hot Australian sun. Planted thousands of fragrant shrubs as understory and habitat for small birds. Planted over 200 fragrant roses to ramble along the fences. And smothered the farmhouse with honeysuckle that scrambles along the roofline that not only shades the verandas. But permeates the air with its intense fragrance in summer.

We started this garden 20 years ago. Only planting tubestock and cuttings from friends and neighbours. Which was all we could afford. We could barely see the plants 20 years ago. They were the size of toothpicks when we planted them.

We've lost half the garden twice to severe drought. And when we replanted, we used only those plants that survived the extreme and harsh weather conditions we have here.

Today, we have a mature garden that is the envy of our friends. And customers.

Again, all of this is done one thing at a time. And it's been traumatic losing plantings to severe weather conditions. But we wanted a big country garden. So kept replanting until we have the showpiece garden of today.

And it's only on reflection that we become aware of how far we've travelled. The journey has been exceptional. And worth making.

And I'm looking forward to the next phase. As a member of The Fastlane Forum.

Again, MJ, thank you for your very kind words. They are truly appreciated. ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Hey Carol,

Nice to hear your story. Thank you for sharing.

Are you still working full time now? Or are there other projects you're focussing on now?

What made you decide to share your story, and to help other entrepreneurs through this forum?
Good morning @MarekvBeek from rural Australia,

Thank you for your comments.

Yes! I'm very much working full time.

Other projects? Definitely. I want to use the credibility and goodwill I've built up with my customer base over 23 years to transition to other things. I'm not sure what that will be. I have an open mind. But whatever it is, it has to be something that is beneficial to the environment. And which helps other people. Although $$$$ is important. It won't be about making money. But more a case of the $$$$ following the cause.

I'm here because I'm looking for options. And want to meet like minded men and women.

Why share my story?

Because every entrepreneur has been where we've been. Perhaps not flat broke. But close to it.

And many give up before they give themselves a chance. And don't have the courage when they're really struggling to stand up to the flak they get from family and friends because they haven't reached 'success' in the time frame determined by other people.

We've been there.

Victor's parents are a good example. "How come my son, the architect, is now a purveyor of ironing board covers"? They couldn't understand that the 'recession we had to have' decimated the building industry. There was no work for architects for 10 years in Australia. And. They were embarrassed at telling their friends that their son made ironing board covers. Instead of designing tall buildings.

They also couldn't resign themselves to the fact that before the recession we were a very wealthy business couple. With a high profile in the Sydney Australia business community. I was on 3 boards of directors. And Victor was the developers' dream architect.

And afterwards. We were flat broke. With no real prospects for earning an income. I'm sure it caused them a great deal of personal pain.

Friends. Perhaps mean well. But were insistent that we get a job. Rather than fiddle around with something so trivial as an ironing board cover. "Who irons anyway? Doesn't everyone hate it?"

Our accountant. "You're not making enough money. You can't start a business in the depths of the worst recession Australia's ever had. Why don't you both just knuckle under and get a real job?"

And then the strangers we meet. "You really make a living out of selling ironing board covers"? Well not yet. But we will!

Then there's the disapproval from people because the product isn't sexy. Glamourous. High tech. The fact that people who are serious about ironing think it's the best thing since sliced bread doesn't matter.

The banks. "We can't lend you money. Nobody irons. Who are you going to sell to"? How about the 400,000 men and women in 30 countries? Just as starters.

The disapproval. And flak. Comes from all directions. And entrepreneurs starting out need to know they have to have a spine of steel to withstand the assault. And once you get over the hump, and realise your dream is possible, life doesn't get easy. But your faith and confidence in yourself increases. You become more focused on where you want to be. And more determined to get there.

Once you reach that stage, you start to stand up to your dissenters. And put them in their place. Including family.

That's why I want to share my story. To let entrepreneurs know that anything is possible. You just have to find a way to make it happen. Against all odds.

Appreciate your questions, Marek. They made me think - why?

If I can ever help you, please let me know. ~Carol❤
 
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TheSmokey1

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I'm thrilled you love my profile picture. Photography is my hobby. This photo was taken on my remote rural property.

I go out every morning at sunrise. With my camera. And walk my 54 hectare property. I shoot whatever I see. Come back. Download the photos. Often 300 at a time. And post the best each morning to my social media accounts. Facebook. Instagram. LinkedIn. Twitter. I love sharing my rural lifestyle with my friends around the world. ~Carol❤
Welcome to the forum, Carol. Your story is so inspiring, and just what we need here.
I don't mean to derail your intro thread, but when I saw your words above I just wanted to say I am a bit jealous. I have only been to Australia once, and what a great and beautiful country. I can't wait to visit again sometime. Your picture reminds me of a day when we were driving around sunset in a rural area north of Sydney, and we saw a whole herd (not sure if that is the right term) of roos in a field. It was kind of mind-bending for me when they all started bouncing away, given I had never seen a kangaroo before. Seeing your picture and hearing you talk about rural Australia really brought that great memory back to me.

Thanks for sharing your story and take care.
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

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Welcome to the forum, Carol. Your story is so inspiring, and just what we need here.
I don't mean to derail your intro thread, but when I saw your words above I just wanted to say I am a bit jealous. I have only been to Australia once, and what a great and beautiful country. I can't wait to visit again sometime. Your picture reminds me of a day when we were driving around sunset in a rural area north of Sydney, and we saw a whole herd (not sure if that is the right term) of roos in a field. It was kind of mind-bending for me when they all started bouncing away, given I had never seen a kangaroo before. Seeing your picture and hearing you talk about rural Australia really brought that great memory back to me.

Thanks for sharing your story and take care.
Good morning @TheSmokey1. Thank you! LOVE your comment.

I'm an ex-pat American. Born and raised in New York City. I came to Australia on a lark. A few years after uni. I loved Australia so much, I stayed.

I lived in Sydney for many years. In a terrace house in the inner city suburb of Balmain. To date, I had never even seen a rabbit.

I was like you when I saw my first mob of kangaroos on the property. Completely awestruck.

Nothing has changed in the 25 years we've lived here. I'm completely smitten by them. And I swear I have the most handsome and photogenic Eastern Grey Kangaroos in all of Australia.

I post photos of my rural property on Instagram. They're all taken at sunrise. Which is the perfect light for someone who doesn't photoshop their photos. Also. The sunrises can be very dramatic in the BIG sky that's overhead. My account is caroljones.ironingdiva. They might evoke even more memories of your trip Down Under. Drop in to say G'day. ~Carol❤
 

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Carol, welcome. Love the story. Always interesting to read the stories of people who followed MJs advice - before hearing it. It so strongly supports the underlying message of his books. Congratulations on building something amazing from the ashes of your previous businesses. You've found a great resource, with really great people - as you've already seen.
 

Laughingman21

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Good morning @MarekvBeek from rural Australia,

Thank you for your comments.

Yes! I'm very much working full time.

Other projects? Definitely. I want to use the credibility and goodwill I've built up with my customer base over 23 years to transition to other things. I'm not sure what that will be. I have an open mind. But whatever it is, it has to be something that is beneficial to the environment. And which helps other people. Although $$$$ is important. It won't be about making money. But more a case of the $$$$ following the cause.

I'm here because I'm looking for options. And want to meet like minded men and women.

Why share my story?

Because every entrepreneur has been where we've been. Perhaps not flat broke. But close to it.

And many give up before they give themselves a chance. And don't have the courage when they're really struggling to stand up to the flak they get from family and friends because they haven't reached 'success' in the time frame determined by other people.

We've been there.

Victor's parents are a good example. "How come my son, the architect, is now a purveyor of ironing board covers"? They couldn't understand that the 'recession we had to have' decimated the building industry. There was no work for architects for 10 years in Australia. And. They were embarrassed at telling their friends that their son made ironing board covers. Instead of designing tall buildings.

They also couldn't resign themselves to the fact that before the recession we were a very wealthy business couple. With a high profile in the Sydney Australia business community. I was on 3 boards of directors. And Victor was the developers' dream architect.

And afterwards. We were flat broke. With no real prospects for earning an income. I'm sure it caused them a great deal of personal pain.

Friends. Perhaps mean well. But were insistent that we get a job. Rather than fiddle around with something so trivial as an ironing board cover. "Who irons anyway? Doesn't everyone hate it?"

Our accountant. "You're not making enough money. You can't start a business in the depths of the worst recession Australia's ever had. Why don't you both just knuckle under and get a real job?"

And then the strangers we meet. "You really make a living out of selling ironing board covers"? Well not yet. But we will!

Then there's the disapproval from people because the product isn't sexy. Glamourous. High tech. The fact that people who are serious about ironing think it's the best thing since sliced bread doesn't matter.

The banks. "We can't lend you money. Nobody irons. Who are you going to sell to"? How about the 400,000 men and women in 30 countries? Just as starters.

The disapproval. And flak. Comes from all directions. And entrepreneurs starting out need to know they have to have a spine of steel to withstand the assault. And once you get over the hump, and realise your dream is possible, life doesn't get easy. But your faith and confidence in yourself increases. You become more focused on where you want to be. And more determined to get there.

Once you reach that stage, you start to stand up to your dissenters. And put them in their place. Including family.

That's why I want to share my story. To let entrepreneurs know that anything is possible. You just have to find a way to make it happen. Against all odds.

Appreciate your questions, Marek. They made me think - why?

If I can ever help you, please let me know. ~Carol❤
Carol - every one of your posts offers up such a huge amount of value. If you do business anything like you post on a forum, I can see why you and your products are so successful.

How did you get through this constant advice towards the slowlane? How did you keep motivating yourself not tolisten to those around you and quit going for your dreams, despite the obvious risks and your (at the time) very recent experiences of failure?
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
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Oct 5, 2017
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Rural Australia
Carol - every one of your posts offers up such a huge amount of value. If you do business anything like you post on a forum, I can see why you and your products are so successful.

How did you get through this constant advice towards the slowlane? How did you keep motivating yourself not tolisten to those around you and quit going for your dreams, despite the obvious risks and your (at the time) very recent experiences of failure?
G'day @Laughingman21 ,

Thank you! That's fabulous feedback.

What you read is me. I talk to everyone like this. When my customers ring - which they don't do as often as I'd like : online shopping is so seductive - we have very long conversations about what's happening in their world. We trade stories. Their experiences. My experiences. I look at situations not as problems. But as opportunities to offer solutions.

A customer who always ordered online rang recently to place an order. I asked her how she was. She blurted out that her husband had died not so long ago. We chatted for an hour. About how confronting it is to lose someone suddenly. Who she depended on. And the problems she had to overcome. Especially as she also lived on a rural property. We discussed all the things that can go wrong. Water pumps stop working. Blocked gutters need to be kept clean because they're the source of water that goes into the tanks.

Because of all the people I talk to, I'm able to put myself in their shoes. And discuss their problems in a way that they know I understand what they're talking about.

When she hung up she paid me the best compliment ever. She said she rang to order a cover. And ended the call discovering she found a friend who she could talk to.

That's all most people want. Someone who will listen to them. And who can feel their pain.

To your question about the constant advice to stay in the slow lane.

How did we get through it?

With difficulty.

Our decision to leave Sydney and move to the bush was two pronged. First. It truly was the only place we could afford to live.

Second. Victor needed to get away from the fear his parents wanted to envelop him with.

As a business couple, Victor and I had a very high profile in the Sydney business community. I was on 3 boards of directors. Victor was the dream architect all developers loved. We had a gorgeous terrace house in the trendy inner city suburb of Balmain. Before the building industry came crashing down on top of us, life was good.

Victor's parents personal pain at our loss was palpable.

Especially as his father was Australia's leading coal mining engineer in coal preparation plants. He was an industry giant at the time. Extremely well respected for his knowledge and skills. Not only in Australia. But overseas as well.

His parents were very wealthy. And they intuitively knew how big and devastating our loss was. As parents, they wanted to wrap us in cotton wool. To protect us from any further hurt.

They had a house in the country which they offered to us to live in. Free. But I instinctively knew this would be a bad decision.

We relocated to a totally different area. In the opposite direction. A four hour drive between them and us was enough of a barrier for them to not constantly be on our doorstep.

But then there's the telephone. The nightly calls from his worried mother became a nuisance that we just had to live with. She so wanted Victor to find a job.

Fortunately, Victor wasn't influenced by his parents. He knew our vision. Which wasn't much of a vision. Reinvent ourselves so that we could earn an income. And start getting out of debt. Without succumbing to getting a job. That was about as detailed as the vision was.

To be truthful, if Victor had been swayed by his parents, we wouldn't be together now. It would have been a wedge driven between us.

But the opposite happened. This catastrophe joined us at the hip. And although we disagreed on many things. We never disagreed about how united we were. And that's how we resolved all our problems. Compromise comes in many guises.

25 years later we are still united at the hip. And still disagree about many things. We live and work together 24 hours a day! But what unites us is far deeper than what we disagree about. And we have a shared history of experiences that few other couples possess.

The constant flak and disapproval about our low brow product amongst people in general - who irons? all covers are rubbish! - did affect us. And surprised us.

Whenever the flak became too intense, I always told Victor that the people we should be listening to are our customers. The people who put their money on the table. Not the people who would never use our product. And who had no idea of what it was like to start a business from scratch.

This was the era of the dot com boom. Sexy and high tech was in. Functional and low tech was not.

And guess who's still in business when they're not!

You do need to have a spine of steel when enduring such criticism. And disparagement. And an enormous, unshakeable, belief that this is what you want to do. And that your product choice is spot on.

Every time we were tempted to throw in the towel, we'd say. OK. Now what do we do next? Nothing materialised. And as time went on. It became more difficult to toss away all the hard work we were putting into our customer service. And the friendships we were developing with our customers. And the six other products we were developing because customers wanted more of our quality and Victor's intuitive designs.

When the Sydney Morning Herald wrote an article about us in 2002 in their lifestyle magazine, Domain. When we sold $25K worth of product as a result of that article that lasted 24 hours. But was kept by people for months. It was our breakthrough moment.

All our friends saw it. Victor's family and their friends saw it. And suddenly we weren't so low brow, down market. We had butlers from big houses order. A few Sirs and Dames. Australia's richest woman at the time placed an order. A smattering of celebrities. Solicitors and barristers. Throw in a 5 star hotel. This magazine was high brow. And these people all lived in salubrious suburbs.

The journalist who wrote the article was one of the few journalists we came across who ironed. He agreed to receive a cover from us to test drive. Which he did. He also gave it to a few friends to test drive.

What did the article say? It was a full page. Complete with photos of the product. But the killer words were: "This is beyond a doubt the Rolls Royce of ironing board covers".

8 years after we started wandering in the wilderness, we were an overnight success!

How many journalists turned us down when we asked them to write a story about our cover? Over a hundred. We were like JK Rowling getting turned down by every book publisher. Except the last one.

Tenacity. Persistence. Self belief. A united front between you and your significant other. They go a long way towards overcoming the obstacles. Not everyone has those traits. But those of us who do are the fortunate ones who get to travel in the fast lane.

Thank you for asking! ~Carol❤
 
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Carol Jones

Carol Jones

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 5, 2017
317
2,577
644
Rural Australia
Carol, welcome. Love the story. Always interesting to read the stories of people who followed MJs advice - before hearing it. It so strongly supports the underlying message of his books. Congratulations on building something amazing from the ashes of your previous businesses. You've found a great resource, with really great people - as you've already seen.
Thank you @Nigel B. I agree. This is an amazing forum! It's a pleasure to meet you. I hope we get to connect often. ~Carol❤
 
OP
OP
Carol Jones

Carol Jones

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Oct 5, 2017
317
2,577
644
Rural Australia
Thank you for sharing your experience.

My key takeaway is that one small step at a time that accumulated into thousands of little milestones is what creates substantial results.
G'day @eTox from rural Australia,

Absolutely!

Make no mistake. This is for everything.

As a gal who loves to bake, I can assure you, that if you tip all the ingredients into the bowl at once, you won't have the same delicious cake that adding one ingredient at a time produces.

All of life is about the small steps.

High school graduation is the culmination of 12 years of study. Healthy babies are born after 9 months gestation. Cakes are only edible after baking for 'x' amount of time. Bread needs to rise first before it can be baked. Puppies need to be trained before they become the perfect pet.

There is nothing in life that doesn't require small steps. That become milestones. That create substantial results.

You've nailed it, eTox! Thank you for your insight. Now go conquer the world. And come back and tell us all about it. We all love good news stories. ~Carol❤
 

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