Spotlight on Spouses – Samantha Brooks
SPOTLIGHT ON SPOUSES
Name: Sam Brooks
Business: Right Path Coaching
Designed by The Gin Fox – www.theginfox.com
After 17 years in the Army as an Education and Training Officer, gaining her greatest satisfaction from motivating and empowering individuals to achieve success, Sam Brooks decided against a move into the corporate world and now delivers a range of coaching services under her own banner. “Reflecting on my time in the military, my greatest enjoyment was working with people; motivating them to develop and achieve success,” she says. It didn’t happen overnight but Sam’s portfolio of work now includes:
- Executive and business coaching – recognising the role of individuals as key to the achievement of business goals.
- Team and group coaching.
- Personal development and life coaching.
- Supporting businesses with in-house training, or advising on how to establish a coaching network alongside other organisational strategies.
“During my resettlement, I completed a business start-up course, but spent the whole time thinking ‘there is no way I could do this’,” she continues. “I had a short career break to look after two pre-school children and to go back to Uni to gain my Executive Coaching and Mentoring qualification. After speaking with a few ex-colleagues who had set up their own coaching companies, I attended the Support the Unsung Hero business start-up course, and gained a completely different focus.
“In September this year, we moved to Bristol, my eldest started school and my youngest pre-school, so I launched the business: my website www.rightpathcoaching.co.uk went live a couple of weeks ago. It is very early days, but LinkedIn has been amazing, and I already have a diary full of appointments; my first formal networking event gave me a few leads and I have more coming up.
Spreading the word
“I am about to post flyers to advertise locally for what I view as the personal development/life coaching market, and I have plans to run a range of pop-up workshops out of which I hope to get some work,” adds Sam. “I have also begun doing some volunteer work for the local council and will hopefully start with a military charity in the next few months. I haven’t even had time to set up my Facebook page yet!
”As a family, we made the decision when I left the military that I would be providing continuity for the children, and we had strong views on how much child care we wanted to outsource. My husband is still serving and we will continue to move as a family, so working for myself is the best option – fortunately, I understand the demands of his job and that I cannot rely on him for any commitments with the children. However, after living here for only a few weeks, I have already built up a network of spouses on the Patch and we are always willing to assist each other: the military community is amazing if you are prepared to invest in it.”
Pride in her work
Sam understands it sometimes takes a leap of faith to strike out and achieve your goals in life. “I felt a lot of pressure to stay serving,” she explains. “On leaving I felt that there was an expectation about what job I should be doing: having the self-actualisation that you have found the right job, and that you are happy with life, is a special moment, and I fully appreciate that I am privileged to be in this position. My aim now is to help others achieve this goal, too. My work gives me a purpose and a function beyond the family, and it is hugely rewarding knowing that you are investing in people’s lives and having such a positive impact on them.”
Having taken the leap, Sam is in a good position to inspire other military spouses seeking to start their own business. “Go on the Support the Unsung Hero business start-up course now! Before funding runs out,” she warns. “If you are passionate about what you want to do and enjoy it, then go for it. Network, network, network, and tell everybody what you are doing; never be afraid to ask others for help, as help often comes from surprising places. There is an amazing community of military spouses out there who want to support you and help you succeed. If you are still stuck, I can recommend an excellent business and personal development coach!” Can you guess who?