In The Spotlight - Shell Williams
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There I was, happily building Mum Academy, after taking a year out after my divorce. So much has shifted and changed in the last three years and I thought Mum Academy was ‘it’. I had found my perfect business and vehicle which could deliver so much value to Mums working from home.
Mum Academy was set up in 2017 out of my own needs. I fell into business quite by accident, after my son, who is registered blind, turned to me aged 14 and said, “Mum I want to be a Millionaire, can you research how I do that?” For some reason, I said yes!
I am a mum of six gorgeous kids, the youngest is 19, and two of my sons have disabilities. There I was, an unexpected carer from the age of 21 and a mother from the age of 19. Life sometimes gives you lemons - thankfully I have learnt to make Lemon Curd; it is much sweeter than Lemonade!
Being a mum of six brings many challenges, and when I first became a Mum, I was so meek and mild. However, I have since turned into a chatterbox and love to share truth, values, moral lessons and much more with people. I have loved adding value to people’s lives for an exceptionally long time. Little did I know how these would align, and form the basis of a business.
After many years of being a carer, and despite having few qualifications, I dabbled in business, learning the ropes along the way. I learnt from my mistakes, I listened, made notes, and found solutions. I researched millionaires and billionaires, what they were doing, how their systems work, I followed links, watched coaching styles, learned about branding, launching online, tested a few ideas and decided there was a need for wellbeing classes around craft in my local community.
I set up Shelbyart and very quickly a community of crafters came together. The most incredible thing to come out of it, was that people came together, shared their stories, helped each other, grew in confidence, shared crafting skills with one another, and to this day still message each other as friends.
The Butterfly Effect from those days has been incredible. No chart shows it, no analytics were taken, no reams of paperwork, and the only outcome was to have fun. People have gone on to teach art classes, set up their own community, and get togethers. They have made dresses for children in Africa. They talk fondly of how the community changed their lives. Then just as suddenly as it started, it finished.
Have you ever noticed how the Universe does that? Some things are just for a season, let them be for a season. It ended because I became bed ridden for the next year.
Pain is a terrible thing, whether it is physical, mental, or emotional. Here I was, a carer with two severely autistic boys and four other children, stuck in bed for most of the year, with terrible fibroids and anaemia. I had no idea how sick I was. Those were dark days and I think mostly my memory has blocked them out.
That same year I decided on my ‘good days’ to try network marketing. I joined the wonderful company Pampered Chef and I thought it was my perfect business. Cooking in people’s homes, helping families, with quick and healthy meals and helping Mums save time. I built a team of three in my first month and learned lots about selling. I LOVED IT!
Three months in and the company decided to pull out of the UK! Nooooooooo! I could not believe it. Ok, so what to do next?
My coach suggested I start a new business that she was about to join (Norwex). I soon followed suit. I love this company so much and built a team of over 70 in six months, winning 2nd place for Recruiter of the Year. I had built a business from my bed and was doing better than some of the other girls in the company. This was when things started to change, and a bit of self-belief started to grow.
One day, while I was recuperating from a much-needed operation, I saw that a friend of mine was going to walk the Great Wall of China for charity.
This was something on my bucketlist! I put myself forward and thought it may help with my recovery. Nine months later, I took part in a life changing adventure, helping to raise £3,000 for Ty Hafan, a hospice for life limited children. I am now an ambassador for them. That trip made me re-evaluate my life. I loved to coach people, but who was I, where was I aiming and who did I want to support? And that is how Mum Academy was born.
The Mum Academy group grew quickly, but I found that I had a lot of competition in the business coaching arena. I published my first book on Amazon, and made progress helping and supporting others. I was named in the Top 100 Businesswomen in Wales list 2018 for outstanding business achievement.
Then, personal circumstances started to get in the way as I went through a messy divorce. I lost my home, children and marriage overnight. Every day was a struggle to survive, but during this time, I also realised I was bisexual and came out publicly. This was a huge decision, as most of my family are Christians, but the support I received from everyone was phenomenal. Fear had been keeping me from living my best life and now I could truly be who I am. My kids and parents were so supportive, as were many dear friends. A little more self-belief grew.
You know how one door closes, and another stays closed?! I was supposed to be moving to Cardiff and went for a week to check it out. Every metaphorical door I pushed did not budge. Nothing happened. Nada. Zilch.
I sat in a miserable flat in Cardiff with no home to call my own, and in that moment I thought I could choose to go down and get depressed, or I could choose to muddle through and keep struggling, or I could choose to make the best of a situation I never ever wanted to be in. It was probably my greatest challenge I never wanted to be in.
Had I somehow manifested my biggest fear? Most certainly. So now I had to overcome it. Where on earth would I want to live? Tunisia! Yes, Tunisia. My favourite holiday destination. I went online looking for deals, and asked the family what they thought. There was a resounding ‘Go for it!’ Ten days later I boarded the plane for an adventure of a lifetime.
Many people have said I was brave moving abroad, I just did what made me happy. There were massive ups and downs in my new journey on the African continent; far too many stories for here, and I will be covering them in my latest book! However, there is so much to explore, find out, understand, and consider when moving abroad. It teaches you tolerance, love, kindness, and so much more.
You become your own worst critic and your biggest champion. Layers of conditioning are peeled away until you find your true core. It took a physical attack by a local guy, lots of fun, rest and maybe the odd wine, whilst crying on friends’ shoulders, to find the true me. Forgiveness, confidence and love have been two of the biggest keys in moving on. Anyway, I was just about healed when I said to God ‘send me people that want to work from home’.
Somehow, during my year off, I was named again in the top 100 Businesswomen in Wales, for having a year off and living my best life.
I was just about healed when a week later Covid19 hit Tunisia and we went into lockdown on the 16th March 2020. I had recently applied to become an online tutor of English as a Second Language a couple of weeks before, just to tide me over. On the 18th March I started work as an online tutor teaching Asian people. I quickly realised that I had an immediate solution to many people’s problems. Having a huge network of followers online and personal contacts, I started seeing many of them struggling and looking for a consistent way to earn online. God had literally dropped the solution for many professionals in my lap!
I’ve currently personally achieved 350 five-star tutoring reviews in the past few weeks. My confidence grew a little more. I decided to test the system and create a funnel from scratch using reverse engineering. We have had our group for one month and are 54 professional tutors strong.
Daily our numbers are being added to and, as it takes up to eight weeks to be earning, we have got seven people jobs, five people going through the interview process, and many more interested.
We are aiming to help our tutors get five-star reviews, so are providing additional training and support. Bizarrely, everything that I hoped Mum Academy would be, Super Tutors Online has now become.
We are seeing people make huge achievements in a noticeably short space of time. Women are growing in confidence, everything is online, pay is simply being delivered, we are having fun and competitions. We are helping people achieve work/life balance and families’ lives are changing forever. We have single parents, professional teachers, home schoolers, university students, internationally experienced tutors, dads, people who want to change careers, previous network marketers, small business owners, and a few lonely people who want to talk to people in Japan.
The feedback has been incredible, and this is month one in. I can honestly say the group is an incredibly talented bunch of people and they are taking ownership of the group and their lives. It is an absolute honour to work with them and they humble me every day. facebook.com/groups/supertutorsonline/
Not only that, but being an Entrepreneur is always fun, and since starting teaching people tutoring, I have also started two additional businesses. One is an online conferencing business, hosting weddings, clubs, award ceremonies, business meetings and much more. The demand has been very high due to the rule changes, about how many people can attend a wedding in the UK. https://lnkd.in/gazbRtC And the other is top secret!
My passion is to change generations to come for the better, especially within families and I am beginning to see this happen before my eyes. It just goes to show, things may change, seasons come and go but ultimately the compound effect and a simple business model, can completely change people and the world.
So, whatever you are going through right now, there is always a solution. Live your authentic life and work out what is making you happy and how you can help other people maximise their lives.
You are the answer to your own problems and to many other people’s. On average it takes 18 attempts in business, before a Millionaire hits Millionaire status. Keep going, you’ve got this.
Walk in forgiveness, confidence and love.
Photos by: Anis Jaouadi
Tags: In The Spotlight