The Short Cut:
A quick fire chat about working life with Sydney Samuels
At the heart of the Nurture Network is the power of sharing experiences. From breakthrough career moments, to best ever advice, how to deal with stress and the women that inspire them.
The Short Cut designed to bring you a snapshot of our members’ working lives. Today we’re speaking to Sydney Samuels, Founder & CEO at Loop Not Luck
Tell us about your breakthrough career moment
There are a few milestones in my life/career that have been impactful on my journey. The first of which is participating in Dragon’s Den at age 11 and winning investment from Peter Jones. It was my first real experience with entrepreneurship and helped me to realise that business is simply providing a more effective solution to a need, want or problem. The breakthrough career moment was actually going full-time as an entrepreneur in May 2022. Making that leap, without an income or security really forced me out of my comfort zone and allowed me to focus less on planning and more on action/iteration.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever had?
One of my investors (a former chief) gave me a piece of advice not long ago which was very helpful. I think the timing of advice is just as important as the context.
See below the advice…
“…the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing”
Have you ever felt held back as a women?
There aren’t specific times where I can definitely pinpoint a moment where my gender was the reason I was held back but I believe it does have an impact on the wider ecosystem and how relationships are built.
People naturally like, invest and work with people who are like them. By focusing on the values and human factors that bring me and people who are different to me in almost every way (age, gender, background, socioeconomic status etc) I’ve found to be a great ways of building rapport and in turn business with those who are different.
Importantly, I recognise that gender, race etc do not operate in a vacuum, there are privileges that I benefit from and that give me an advantage in business.
I think it’s important to recognise that their playing isn’t likely to become completely balanced in the immediate future and that honestly, nobody owes you anything.
On the flipside, I also believe that we all (men included) have a responsibility to try to rectify the inequalities women and other diverse groups face.
How do you protect your mental health in moments of pressure?
Remembering that it is not a sprint and that little and often each day will get me further in the long run than burning out.
Of course, there are times when you need to knuckle down and a part of me does enjoy the pressure, rush and getting immersed in something I’m so passionate about.
Implementing daily habits to disconnect from stimulus and engage in recovery helps me to refocus, check in with myself and protect my mental wellbeing.
Do you have any hobbies to keep you busy in your spare time?
I’ve recently started going to the gym consistently which has been fundamental to improving my mental health. As a fully remote company I incorporate travel into my life whenever possible. Earlier this year I spent two months living and working remotely in South Africa, Cape Town which was one of the best experiences of my life!
I feel empowered when…
The world would be a better place when…
…people avoid focusing on what others are doing wrong, and more on what they themselves are doing right.
What is the first thing you do in the mornings…
Stretch and coffee
Morning routines are crucial. It’s more about setting up a routine that works for you, thus ensuring the rest of your day runs as smoothly as possible.
What is your favourite book?
… of all time, it has to be 1984, by George Orwell.
I feel it’s important to read for pleasure as well as self-help or business-related books. It’s also important to read, learn and implement rather than just read for reading sake.
Where is your favourite place in the world?
My bed! It’s about taking the time to decompress – relax, rest, and reprioritize and it is so important for me right now.