Sunday 26th August 2018
By Michelle Hammond
Q1 - How did your childhood influence your work ethic and attitude towards business?
I had a most fortunate childhood filled with love and supportive guidance. The values instilled in me from an early age of honesty, integrity, determination and kindness have always touched my life both professionally and personally.
Q2 - What do you believe the principles of a successful business are today?
I believe to be to be truly successful in today’s fast moving, challenging and competitive world, authenticity, openness and tenacity are essential, along with a constant willingness to learn, collaboration with others and taking action.
Q3 - Looking back, what was your best business decision?
My best decision without doubt was to set up my own business. This has allowed me to diversify in the projects, clients and experts that I work with, providing me with constant personal growth, endless satisfaction and opportunities to collaborate with passionate individuals. Some days it can be a challenge doing everything
from sales and negotiation, accounting, administrating and being your own cheerleader, however I wouldn’t change a thing, as it is so incredibly rewarding.
Q4 - Who has influenced you the most through your career?
Throughout my life, my sister, who is a decade older than myself has always been my mentor and rock. She achieved such greatness in over 40 years of the NHS starting as a Nurse and Midwife and ending with Chief Executive of one of the largest trusts in the UK. She continually demonstrated courageous leadership and strategic vision however always with compassion and support. Although selfcare was not her focus as others have always come first, that has also been a powerful lesson.
Q5 - What was your most difficult / worst business decision?
The most difficult decision for me, was leaving the employment of ESPA who I passionately worked for, for 18 years. Susan and Mike Harmsworth always gave me my “why” and the team were some of the most talented within the industry. I had an incredible time and experienced the most amazing professional opportunities
worldwide however sometimes you realise to grow further you have to let go of what is safe and comfortable and move into the unsure and unknown. The road to success is never a straight line and failure of some outcomes are often the biggest tools for growth.
Q6 - What would you say was the single most advantageous character trait for success?
To have an “air for curiosity” as the more you challenge the norm, the more the “extraordinary” can be created and Courage as its not the absence of fear, rather the commitment to overcome it.
Q7 - What happens when you’re stressed or overwhelmed?
When I get stressed or overwhelmed I find my sleep is the first thing to be affected, which is why I have adopted a great sleep ritual into my routine. Although I find that my most creative and problem-solving thoughts and solutions can come to me at 2am, I now know if I write them down in a journal I can then usually ease back into
a state of slumber.
Q8 - How do you invest in your own wellbeing. How do you look after yourself?
I believe It is essential to practice what you preach so I “retreat” at least twice a year for a complete detox, have a PT session weekly combined with sessions of Yoga and a daily practice of meditation and gratitude’s. When at home, my partner and I enjoy cooking with fresh ingredients “ in a ready steady cook” kind of way ie choose an ingredient and then find the most tasty and nutritionally dense way of using it. Its fun, creative and a great stress reducer for us.
Q9 - If you could change one thing about the spa and wellness industry what would it be and why?
The change would be how it can be incorporated more easily into the work of the NHS and other health organizations as this would have a major impact on the health and wellbeing throughout the world. Spa and Wellness can come at a price and more needs to be done to make its services and support more available to the elderly, less fortunate and those that are still unaware of its incredible benefits.
Q10 - Finally, What’s your favourite quote or the best advice you’ve ever been given?
My favourite quote is “Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can and the Wisdom to know the difference by Reinhold Niebuh. I have recited this to myself on many occasions and it has always allowed me to gain a clearer perspective on any situation and the best way to
FLASH FACTS - FOR FUN SECTION
1. What’s your favourite book?
The Alchemist by Paolo Coelbo – a simple storey about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts and following our dreams and goals.
2. What’s your favourite film of all time?
Shawshank Redemption – A film about courage, determination and hope for a better future. I could watch it over and over (and have).
3. If you could have dinner with anyone, past or present, who would it be and why?
My choice would have to be David Attenborough as he has been an influence in my life from as young as I can remember. He has always showcased the beauty, diversity, strength and incredible resilience of the natural world and he instilled my passion and respect for nature in my formative years. I have total admiration and respect for his upfaulting dedication and impact throughout his career, but particularly more recently, with the feature on plastics on Blue Planet and how we are destroying our beautiful planet. To have dinner with him would be an honour and a delight.
4. You get taken to your favourite place to be, where are you taken?
That’s so easy, it would have to be Bermuda. I worked there for 3 years and it continues to hold a special place in my heart. I have never seen such a beautiful turquoise ocean, edged with pale pink sand anywhere else on my travels.
5. Your perfect dinner is?
Simple, natural and fresh ingredients, lovingly prepared and shared with cherished friends and family.
6. Your go to drink is?
Apart from water which I adore it would be a glass of chilled viognier or blush rose from Provence
7. Your favourite sweet treat is?
Dark chocolate with a hint of sea salt
8. What’s your favourite essential oil / scent?
Wild orange, I always keep a bottle by my desk – its divine fragrance is uplifting, gives clarity of thought and a great immune system booster.
9. You go for a treatment - what do you have and why?
It depends on my mood or what my body craves for, however it would be a choice between either Shiatsu or a combination of deep tissue and soothing face, scalp and body massage using a pure aromatherapy blend of oils - blissful.
10. What’s your favourite flower?
White Peonies - simply elegant
11. You want to sleep deeply, what do you do?
A regular sleep ritual is important however if I really want to ensure I sleep soundly, I take an Epsom salt bath with ESPA soothing oil, a cup of chamomile tea and listen to “Fade” from the Buddhify meditation app – always works a treat!
12. You want to energise fast, what do you do?
Sun salutations followed by jumping jacks -they get you ready for action.
13. The theme tune to your life is?
“Always look on the brightside of life” as I am the eternal optimist.
14.What makes you laugh to your belly?
My partner – although some of the jokes maybe cringey, its how he laughs at himself whilst he’s delivering the punch line that cracks me up and laugh out loud with pure joy.
15.What’s your favourite season?
Spring – the season of new beginnings.
16. What’s your favourite colour?
Blue in all its beautiful shades but particular the sky and sea.
17. Your favourite time of day is?
Morning- the start of another beautiful day, so make it count from the beginning.
18. If you could have been anyone or anything else, what / who would you be?
A professional dancer- I studied contemporary dance at school and in more later years learned Salsa however as a teenager that was always my dream.
19. What’s your current TV guilty secret?
Currently heavily into “Homeland” on Net flicks – Claire Danes is a superb actress and the whole series is just gripping.
20. Magic dust - you can learn one new skill instantly, what is it?
To be fluent in languages particularly Italian and French.
A Spa, Wellness and Hospitality consultant with 28 years of global experience in the 5-star luxury hotel, wellness and spa sector.
Paula Perkins Spa Consultancy provides support and development to owners and operators of hotels, spas and wellness retreats. Through our detailed approach we offer a business strategy that is tailored to optimize and position your product and brand. We tailor solutions to meet the needs of our clients and each project we work with, whether small or large, is carefully nurtured to its full potential through
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Paula Perkins Spa Consultancy have managed many award-winning projects through concept creation and detailed design development, the comprehensive phases of pre-opening, recruitment, sales & marketing and treatment development, all to ensure a successful and profitable business centre offering an exceptional customer experience.
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