Louise Lugg, Goddess Day Spa owner, has an inspiring tale of perseverance that proves lifting up your community is the way through tough times.
It will be hard to forget the tumultuous times of 2020. But for many Australian businesses, the tough times started well before the global pandemic with the bushfires, then floods, that wreaked havoc in the late months of 2019 and early into 2020.
Like any great Aussie tale, there were plenty of people and businesses who stood up for their community during the hard times. One of which was Louise Lugg, owner of Goddess Day Spa in Burrill Lake, NSW.
We covered Louise’s inspiring story and the amazing support she offered her community last year, so thought it was time to catch up with her and report on her success through perseverance in the tough months since.
Firstly, can you give us a quick update on your community? Do you still see the volunteers you supported with wellness offerings throughout the bushfires?
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 Pandemic put the bushfire destruction into the background. All of a sudden people were now focusing on the new scary situation.
We see many of the victims of the bushfires regularly with many of them still very emotionally suffering. Some have just sold off their land as it’s too hard to start again. Some are still going through the slow process of building again but tied up with many legal and financial problems to see closure.
The money that was raised throughout Australia only really trickled through with many people still struggling. They are not loud about it as it’s only when you ask how they are going that you really find out. We must never stop caring and forget what happened to NSW during that terrible Christmas.
Goddess Day Spa has been celebrated with so many awards recently. Can you tell us what this recognition means for your small business?
With the past year starting with devastating bushfires around our community and followed by the pandemic, we used the lockdown time to give Goddess Day Spa a makeover. Having the luxury of three months to refresh and renew and focus on our business inside and out.
It also presented us with time to go through the entry processes in quite a few awards. I understand winning awards is rewarding on a personal level for myself and our therapists. But what it also does is give our business credibility locally, nationally and internationally. It puts us on the map helping us to stand out from the crowd.
The recognition is the fruit of many years of educating myself to run a healthy vital business.
How did you get involved in the Back Yourself book project? What was the contribution experience like?
In September 2019 I joined the Ausmumpreneaur National Conference and Awards in Melbourne which has had a huge impact on my personal and business life. I met over 400 mums in business through the inspirational sharing and caring conference.
So, I was asked if I would like to write a chapter in the book Back Yourself to share my journey over the past 30 years in the spa and beauty industry. I was thrilled but also feeling ‘am I good enough?’ I’ve never been an author so I didn’t know if I had anything special to say.
The power of the book is not just in how many awards we have won or the success but, in the hardships, and difficult decisions and mistakes that we made during the journey in business. This book is so powerful as it has experiences from 26 mums from different types of business. And, money raised from the profit of the book goes into a scholarship pool to give underprivileged women. They get a six-month start up or accelerator mentoring program to give them the tools to shine.
What’s been the most important factors in getting through the difficulties of 2020 and coming out strong in 2021? How did you and your team at Goddess Day Spa stay motivated?
Definitely staying positive and proactive. Having compassion for other people who are not doing ok and finding ways to help others. Using the time given during the lockdown to refurbish and renew our day spa. And spending grant money back into the business so we opened with a fresh, updated and vibrant feel.
I stayed connected to my staff and to our customers through social media to keep them up to date and excited about our renovations. Giving tips for daily routines for wellness and self-care boosting immunity during these turbulent times.
What advice do you have for other small business owners facing tough times?
Use the time to have a good look at your business inside and out. Have a look from the customers’ point of view as they are so savvy and highly demanding of a quality experience. Take a look at the details that are easily missed and do your research on what others are doing in your industry. Why do some thrive while others dive? Are you keeping up with the latest trends?
Also, join associations and network even if it has to be zoom or via internet. Educate yourself and be empowered by people not just in Australia but across the globe. You should never let your business get tired.
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