A school drop-out at 16, Jodi Cottle from Koputaroa has built a successful career for herself and she’s now a published author and successful businesswoman who is happy to share her experiences with others.
She said she’s a country girl at heart, but over the years her career has taken her to Wellington, Auckland, London and Sydney, growing her skills and business savvy.
She initially built a career in property sales, property broking, then in leadership roles and now owns a franchise in the beauty industry. She is about to publish her second book: The Pocket MBA: A woman’s playbook for succeeding in business.
She has a few tips for young people leaving school as well as for budding entrepreneurs about values, hiring staff, and looking for a business that is not so volatile as a recipe for success.
Growing up in Koputaroa, attending the local school and then Horowhenua College, at 16 she’d had enough of school. She began in sales, then took on mortgage broking and then leadership roles in various businesses.
“I admit I am a drop-out. I did not want to go to university. I wanted money, so I looked for a job.”
She ended up in a senior leadership position for a global corporate in Sydney, but after a while decided that lifestyle was more important, so she relocated to the Gold Coast and needed two years to figure out her next step and ended up selling an investment property to start a business.
She said she is passionate about the human brain and how it works.
“I studied a bit of neuroscience during that time.”
An earlier book on property investment was self-published (Young & Singles Guide to Property Investment) and aimed to help her clients.
“I got a bit of recognition for it, so this time a big publisher is doing my book.”
She said she spent the last 16 years patiently growing her executive career and she’s proof you do not need a cupboard full of diplomas, certificates and degrees to be successful in life.
She bought a franchise clinic a few years ago.
“It provides me with a good work-life balance as I do not have to be in the clinic every day and I have been able to put into practice what I learnt in the last 15 years.
The great thing about working in your own business is that no-one is there to clip your wings. It is as if there are no more limitations.
“I wondered what led to a happy and sustainable lifestyle. The great thing about working in your own business is that no one is there to clip your wings. It is as if there are no more limitations.”
She’s made franchise of the year twice and her current business model got her through Covid and allowed her to buy a 2.5 acres rural property on the Gold Coast.
“My life and business are stable.”
She said she set a goal last year to get her second book published, which is due for release on June 28. “I am busy developing a keynote presentation about it.”
It has taken her time and grunt to get where she is today and she is by no means complacent. “It is tough being in business now.”
Her own business, part of Laser Clinics Australia, has not been without its problems. The branch is situated in NSW, across the border from where she lives and she and 12 of her staff could not go to work during Covid lockdowns as the borders between Queensland and NSW were closed.
“On top of that, we had serious flooding here, which affected 50 per cent of my customers. Nevertheless, we came out on the other side of all of this.
“I figured the aesthetics and beauty business would be relatively recession-proof. No matter what happens people want to feel and look good.”
When it comes to staff, she said it is vital to pick people who align with your own values. Her own values are: have fun, be authentic, economic stability, and trust.
“My staff definitely have a sense of fun. There are a lot of factors that are out of your control such as interest rates, but you can control who you hire and if someone does not work out, get in quick and fire them.”
For young people starting out, she has some advice: start a job, any job, get good at something.
”I started as a receptionist, then went into sales, then mortgage broking, then leadership roles. It takes time and patience to get ahead.”
She’s won franchisee and clinic manager of the year within Laser Clinics Australia.