Bitesize Biz: Ayse Çağlayan
Knock, knock! I hope you’re in because it’s time for another bitesize biz babe!
This time I’m talking to ex-mega-corporate superstar turned electric marketing mogul, Ayse! Snuggled just over the Hampshire border in Farnham, Ayse runs an international marketing agency for female entrepreneurs.
I caught up with her about the journey so far, how she got here and what’s next for team Surge Social.
Starting her career in a huge tech firm with over 300,000 people, Ayse went on to work at a tech startup with 6 people, to a one-woman band running her own business from home.
Before setting up on her own, Ayse was living the bougie lifestyle of a global jet-setter in Dubai.
She explained that although she had an incredible salary, an apartment with a pool and ocean views, and she’d been selected for the leadership development programme… but, she was unfulfilled and passionless.
Having it all on paper doesn’t always equate to fulfilment
“What finally inspired me was the fact that I was ticking off all these boxes that sounded great on paper, yet I still felt so unfulfilled.
I came to realise that climbing somebody else’s corporate ladder and having to work the crazy hours, put up with internal politics and nod and smile to get there did not suit me at all.
I wanted to create something that I loved, where I could be 10000% myself, and where I could attract in clients and build a team of people around me who could all be 10000% themselves too”
Pretty noble! I love that. Ayse tapped into her love of entrepreneurship (and her obsession with programmes and books such as The Apprentice, Dragon’s Den and autobiographies of the likes of Richard Branson) and got cracking creating Surge Social.
The Biggest Lesson
“THE most important lesson I’ve learned is never to underestimate the importance of those you surround yourself with. You really are the average of the people you surround yourself with.
Entrepreneurship is no easy journey mentally so having people around you who understand that – who support you but also who challenge you to step into the greatest version of yourself is vital.
Yes, that might mean struggling with relationship breakups in the short term, but in the long term, making those hard decisions and being uber selective with who you choose to spend time with is going to massively benefit you in the long run!”
I saw a recurring theme here! Forget ‘behind every strong man is a strong woman…’ sounds like our boss babes are giving credit to their colleagues, besties and partners for being the strength behind them!
So… has it ever gone wrong, I wondered. Just one regret from our girl, Ayse… not getting her face and brand out there sooner!
“I wouldn’t show my face on the company’s social media accounts, I wouldn’t film stories or video content.
For a service-based business, it is really about the people and their skills and their expertise, so it’s SO important to not just be “yet another faceless brand”.
Show up, share value, stay true to your brand values and don’t give a chicken poop about what your ex-boyfriend’s cousin Karen thinks when she stalks you on your stories!”
Cousin Karen sounds like a right kill-joy. But all that aside, I had to ask Ayse what she now attributes her 6-figure business success to.
Ayse’s Key To Success
Without hesitation… “hiring support” was her number one!
“There’s an abundance of free resources out there where you can pretty much learn anything if you wanted to. But I don’t want to spend my life Googling when I can hire experts to support me with it and/or do it for me!
Over the last few years, I’ve spent around £25,000 in coaching and mentorship alone, and I spend thousands every month on having wonderful expert team members to support me with the tasks that I don’t love to do or don’t want to do myself!
This grants me the gift of time to focus on doing the things I love to do and operating in my zone of genius!”
So that’s how she selected such a boss team – no Googling to be had! Ayse also explained how becoming like the person you want to be is incredibly powerful.
Look to your future self… the hyper-successful version of you and ask, what does she read? How does she dress? What would she do in this situation? It’s pretty easy to slowly become who you need to be in order to reach the level of success you desire.
Finally, as with all boss babes, I knew Ayse must have a cheeky quote tile somewhere in the house…
For this marketing maven… she’s giving credit to the great Hazza Potter.
“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?”
In pride of place in Ayse’s living room, this quote represents many things to her.
“Mainly that just because things can’t be perceived or fathomed or understood by others, doesn’t mean it can’t be real.
I have also always loved visualisation and seeing things that aren’t *yet* in my “reality” so clearly in my mind that I know they’re about to transcend from my own mind to my physical reality.”
Mystical, magical and marketing that’s right up our Diagon Alley – thanks for your insights, Ayse!
If you want to catch up with Team Surge and their incredible work with female entrepreneurs all over the world, check them out on Instagram – @surgesocialuk
See more of Stephanie’s musings, here.
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