Q1. Your name and what you do?
I’m Shaheen Schleifer, owner of theDigital which I’ve run since 2014.
Q2 Why did you start a business and your biggest business challenge when you started?
I started my business to take control of my future and help people. The hardest thing to deal with was the ‘advice’ of people who had never run a business. Although well-meaning, it was not helpful.
Q3 Who do you help / serve in your business?
We help small businesses, start-ups and sole traders who need online digital services (websites, social media content) but have a limited cash-flow. We train all our clients so that they can update their website and social content. They benefit from the development and enhancement of staff skills, and reduce future costs for updates.
Q4 How did you know they were the people you’re meant to help?
As a website designer for previous clients, I noticed how small businesses struggled to pay for essential items such as websites. I also noticed the frustration with continuous payments for updates. I decided to help by changing the business model for website design.
Q5 What do you think of business networking?
There is no business without networking. It provides a relaxed environment in which people can discuss the problems they are having with their business. Sometimes I can help, sometimes I can recommend other people who can help. I love being part of this skill connection.
Q6 What do you think of women-only business networking?
It’s essential to business. They are many experiences women share and we can help each other through these problem, or in general business.
Q7 Who is your female in business idol / role model / business celebrity
Jane Fonda. She has successfully created and led many different types of business, and has shown entrepreneurship at many different ages of her life. She is not afraid of succeeding or failing in public, and she talks about her success and failures candidly. She defines the ‘always be learning’ mantra and she never gives up.
Q8 Your Favourite book by a female author (business or pleasure)
Either Jane Fonda’s autobiography or Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch
Q9 What’s your favourite restaurant for a business networking lunch?
Heddon Street Kitchen
Q10 Tell us your best business “win” so we can celebrate your success with you. And finally, please add anything you think is relevant to your business story here, our audience is business women.
I’ve currently helping an existing client to expand her business. This client has been in business a long time; she was looking to spend less time serving clients at her business place and more time sharing her knowledge, but she was having concerns about the effect on her income.
We decided to use her love of sharing knowledge to build an extra income, which in time could become her main income. We are doing this by creating a library of online content which can be monetized. We are currently developing videos and a course to publish online and which will feature a professional body of which she is a member.
Jackie Groundsell is known as the queen of women's business networking lunches - the Connector. She supports thousands of small business owners through her events and lunch-time meetings