It’s rare in Scotland to find someone who thinks like me, comes from a similar background to me, shares a different culture like me, yet shares the same passion and vision like me. Someone who doesn’t fit into a standard box and equally seeks no box to fit into.
But best of all, someone who knows all about marketing, unlike me. That’s when I met Paula.
I’d been searching for the perfect partner to help me take Diversity+ to the next level. Though I was scared to admit it, I needed help to keep pace with the growth of the business and help to consolidate my ideas (of which there are often too many) into really concepts that other organisations can and want to embrace.
I didn’t need a faceless company who was going to tell me my self-designed website needed improving, that my algorithm was lifeless and with their magic it could be number 1 on Google.
I needed someone like me. A critical friend and ally. A supporter of my vision and aims. Someone who simply got me and where I wanted to be. Someone I wasn’t scared to use the wrong terminology with and ask any number of silly questions of.
That someone was Paula.
From the first meeting I could tell we were a good fit. She makes me feel in control without feeling overwhelmed. I give her ideas. She turns them into reality. I share a thought. She makes it exist. I reveal my fears. She tells me to dream bigger.
And so, our collaboration began. From conception to implementation. New branding. New website. New services. With all the same vision and passion: to make Scotland’s legal and financial sector truly representative of the diverse community it seeks to serve.
We have a relationship built on mutual trust and respect: two important principles that Diversity+ is built around. We know that we can’t make the bold changes we are seeking to make on our own. That’s not our aim.
Our aim is to invite others to join our journey. Share our vision. Experience the bumps on the road together. Find solutions to remove those bumps and prepare for the long-haul. The long-haul of changing workplace cultures for the better.
It’s so important for me to contribute to something bigger through marketing. So when I met Naeema, and saw the work she was doing, I was immediately hooked. I knew she was someone I would always want to support; a likeminded soul who simply wants to make the world better and isn’t afraid of the fight.
There’s no shying away from it. Marketing has made its contribution to some of the big issues we currently face in the world, such as climate change. An apparent lack of moral compass amongst our number has contributed to an ironic reputation problem. I look at things I’ve been asked to do in the past, and shudder. Now, I am enjoying the freedom to work with business owners who are solving real problems, and contributing to something bigger, more positive, more socially and morally led and climate aware.
Naeema is a fantastic example of that. Diversity+ is leading a welcome change in the legal and financial sectors – and spreading its expertise to other sectors. Our common goal is to leave the world better than we found it, and with that there’s plenty to do.
So how are we doing it? By reflecting our values in everything we do, by allowing each other the space to be ourselves without judgement, and by supporting each other. I feel as supported by Naeema as she does by me. It’s a virtuous circle, and a blueprint for successful working styles.
As much as that sounds like a ‘positive vibes’ Instagram post, it’s the truth. It is possible to move forward from the old ways of working, and do things differently, allow yourself to be led a little more by your heart, and still get the job done.
Our top tips on making a business partnership work
D = Dive deep and share your ideas
I = Increase your knowledge by asking lots of questions
V = Value each other’s contributions
E = Energise each other to drive momentum
R = Reassure each to maintain understanding
S = Sustain the relationship with respect
I = Imprint your vision in your message
T = Talk about the future
Y = Yield the rewards
and why the +? To give more. So much more that you bring about change by leaving no one behind.
With diversity of thought, skills and experience you create inclusive ideas, outcomes, and cultures..
That’s why team Naeema and Paula work.
Paula is a freelance marketing consultant. Her deep understanding of marketing, developed across varied sectors, means she can challenge thinking, inspire ambition, and deliver meaningful change across organisations. In a world that is always changing, content rich and visually crowded, she helps clients communicate their difference and stay ahead.
Paula can be reached on:
Phone 07733 081795