“Do what you love, keep on learning, get all the support you need.”
A counselling psychologist and adult educator by training, Jacki Short of Sydney Centre for Creative Change has always been captivated by art, music, drama and all forms of creativity.
Painting the back fence with a bucket of water, making cubby houses for ants and concocting secret potions for her dolls were parts of Jacki’s happy Sydney childhood. Appreciating the decisions Jacki’s parents made for her at 14 to take the commerce and French electives, helped set her up for running her own business and appreciating cultural complexities.
Jacki has enjoyed wonderful opportunities in her working life to support children and young people with committed and dynamic teams of people over the last 30 years in drug and alcohol agencies, high schools and primary schools and in private psychology practice.
Teaching at a private counselling college in Sydney for 17 years built Jacki’s interest in and capacity for running her own training business in creative therapies. Twenty years ago, Sydney Centre for Creative Change was set up to teach psychologists, social workers, counsellors and others working in mental health a range of ways to engage with and help clients using creative therapies.
Passionate about supporting others to find creative ways to express, explore and resolve difficulties, Jacki loves sharing opportunities for connection and creativity.
Who’s your favourite entrepreneur and why?
My Uncle who took a small local building company and grew it into a multinational organisation.
Why did you start your business and what gave you the idea?
I started Sydney Centre for Creative Change to be able to do what I love in the way that I love it. I was inspired to start training other mental health professionals in creative therapies years ago when a pitch I made to my training manager (in a college I worked in at the time) was rejected. I must have looked just a little bit devastated because just as I was leaving his office, he suggested I run this course privately. YAY THANK YOU FOR THIS REJECTION! It launched my business.
What do you enjoy most about running your own business?
Finding new skilled and fabulous presenters and inspiring new courses to offer to psychologists, social workers and counsellors to help them work more creatively and confidently. AND, the buzz in a training group when real and raw insights bubble up from the creativity well.
What three pieces of advice do you wish you’d been given when you started?
- Keep at least half a day a week to work on the business
- Schedule holidays, exercise and social activities so work doesn’t consume all your time and energy
- What you measure grows.
What advice would YOU give someone thinking about starting a business?
Do what you love, keep on learning, get all the support you need.
What skills and knowledge areas would you recommend those starting out in business get acquainted with quickly?
What is a monthly profit and loss statement,
What are marketing basics,
Where the best local massage place is.
How to find and get the most from your business support group,
How to set goals and strategic actions for growth and ways to measure it,
How to say, “yes” and how to say, “no”.
What does your IDEAL business look like? Even if you’re not there yet, what would it look like if your business was ideal?
Still a work in progress but more ways to creatively change the world for good.
What problem does being a Member of the HerBusiness Network solve for you and your business? And, how?
Social and professional connection and support. Goals group, monthly round ups and round tables, FB lives and webinars all offer inspiration, practical tips and strategies, encouragement and growth opportunities.