She is brilliant, she is beautiful and she is an inspiring young woman with so much to offer her world.
Ronke Lawal is a passionate business woman running RSL Management Services, a business development, marketing and PR company, she is also one of the six women who founded the brilliant initiative called You’re Beautiful Woman.
Apart from business her passions including food, travel, music, literature and most importantly living a life she loves.
With an infectious positive energy she tells Femme Lounge about her journey into business and entrepreneurship.
1.Tell us a bit about yourself and your background
I studied BSc International Business at Lancaster University in northern England, with a year at the University of Richmond, Virginia – clearly I wanted a break from London for a few years! I then returned to work for the government before starting a management position with a health & fitness company – I dealt with finance and personnel and can recall how excited I was to have my very own office; despite the fact it had no windows!
2. So, what is RSL Management Services all about?
It is a marketing, business development and PR company that facilitates ongoing growth and strategic development. I am passionate about my clients achieving the goals that they set during the course of my contract/tenure with them and ensure RSL Management Services provides the very best possible service it can.
3. What inspired it?
I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit but followed the academic route to appease my family. However when my soul felt unfilled I decided to work on what my dreams were. I started on a small contract for a beauty consultant whilst I was still working who really need to improve her marketing and the over managerial structure of her business; whilst developing my business plan and model. I quit my job when I believed in myself enough and knew I was ready.
4. At what point did you know you wanted to be an entrepreneur & what sacrifices have you made?
I’ve always known but when I felt that I could do more I had to take the leap. I sacrificed a regular pay cheque, job security and the usually things associated with having a job. But I wanted to create my own path and despite not having the luxuries that I would have loved; having a life I loved was far more important to me.
5. Did you have to get a relevant training to equip you for this line of business?
Work experience helps – I had been working for at least 3 years before taking the leap. But any entrepreneur will tell you that self-belief is by far the best “training” you need – continuous prayer and confidence. Aside from this you need to research the market and understand the best ways of providing the service.
6. Apart from RSL manager, you seem to be involved in other things. Tell us about them
I’m partner in the Simone Williams label which is successful Ladieswear brand- www.simonewilliams.co.uk ; this label has been going for about 5 years and is still going strong. I take care of the marketing and overall business representation of the label.
I am the marketing manager of the “you’re beautiful, woman!” annual event in London –www.yourebeautifulwoman.com – It is an exceptionally exciting and popular event aimed at motivating black British women in all aspects of their beauty.
7. Sounds like a lot of work, how do you juggle all
I crave a challenge! I hate being bored so being part of all of this is perfect for me.
8. The hardest part of your job?
I don’t really find anything too difficult; perhaps when all my clients need me at the same time; usually I can plan my time effectively though.
9. The best part of your job?
Achieving results for my clients – be that through seeing them profile in national press – I have 2 in Pride Magazine this month or simply implementing the small parts of our marketing plan such as e-newsletters and social media coverage.
10. What challenges have you faced in actualizing this dream?
Financial challenges, running a business full time is never easy but forward thinking and cash flow forecasting helps and sometimes personal challenges in staying confident is a big challenge.
11. Your most fulfilling moment on this journey.
Getting positive feedback without even asking for it from a client! I just love knowing I’m accomplishing great things for my clients and thus my business 12. People’s response to it so far. Positive, enthusiastic and supportive.
13. What significant life lessons have you learnt on this journey?
To stay focused, its important to not judge yourself based on the experiences of others. Its so easy to look around and think people are moving forward faster than you when in reality everything happens in good planned, as it is destined to.
14. This must be costing you lots of money, where has the funding been coming from.
Self funding through savings- I have always been self reliant; however this may not work for everyone and I would advise anyone starting their own business to review all the funding options including Angel Investment, loans and government grants.
15. Most successful women have had to climb on the shoulders of others to have a clearer view of the road ahead them, who are your own mentors?
I admire Lord Alan Sugar and Oprah Winfrey.
16. Your greatest strengths and skills that has been particularly been of help in achieving this.
My Passion for business has certainly helped me along the way. My integrity is key; if there is something I know I cannot do for a client I will let them in good time rather than letting them down. I am very organised and manage myself well; aside from business though I have a very healthy spiritual and social life. One cannot survive on money alone, even the richest people in the world know that.probably why they give so much of it away! 😉
17. What’s the future beckoning you to?
Great things, I am humble and with every step I take I know that I am getting closer to my destiny. I will run highly successful businesses and be called upon to turn companies around; perhaps even have my own version of “The Apprentice”
18. What do you think are the success essentials for today’s young women?
Young Women need to be confident, smart and educated. Be true to yourself and your true skills; never follow a path purely because it will please others – it may bring temporary success but eventually the cracks begin to show so you need to LOVE what you do. The money will come, it always does.
19. Tell us One thing you know for sure
I know that life is great no matter how bad things may get.
20. Where and how can we know more about your work? Google me! Or more conventionally visit www.rslmanagementservices.co.uk Ronke Lawal 07984 141 169 Kemp House 152-160, City Road, London EC1V 2NX Business management & marketing services and Career management services