One idea, 17 members of staff and three locations later...
As Travelshoot was founded by a strong, entrepreneurial woman, we often like to listen to other independent women who also have a keen business sense. We were lucky enough to chat to Sue Elle Watts, Founder and CEO of a passionate HR and Recruitment called Watts Next, to find out how she came up with the idea for her business and what keeps her a passionate entrepreneur.
How long have you been working in HR for?
When did you realise you wanted to start your own HR company?
I have always wanted to creat something and grow a business that inspires many. HR was my platform because that was the area I worked in. I am not sure that I have always been an entrepreneur but I certainly knew that I wanted to do something different and great!
How long has Watts Next been going?
9 years in August
Where did you get the idea for Watts Next from?
I was working for a small company of 100 staff. I was employed as their first HR Manager to support the 5 Department Heads. In this role I realised that these Department Heads were just like 5 small business owners. They were excellent at their craft but did not have skills and expertise in managing their people. Luckily for these managers, the business had my role to assist them, however I wondered how the small business owners managed. From there I decided that I could create a business that would provide a full HR department to small to medium business owners so they could have HR support as and when they needed to suit the size and growth plans of their business.
How many members of staff do you have?
How many office locations do you have?
2, soon to be 3.
What’s your favourite thing about your job?
Meeting amazing entrepreneurs that are growing really exciting businesses.
Tell us about the bigger picture. Where do you see Watts Next in 5 years time? Or where would you like it to be?
My dream from my spare bedroom when I started was to grow a national business that would have offices in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. I am executing this plan by 2017 and my dream is to one day take the business to New York.
What keeps you passionate about working in the HR industry?
I believe that if someone works for a great workplace that they will have a better life and the ripple affect of that is a better world. The more great workplaces Wattsnext can create, the more impact we can have on the world. That keeps me inspired everyday.
Do you have any advice for people who are considering starting their own HR company?
The most important part to starting any business is having a clear vision of what you are wanting to create, a clear mission of why you do what you do and values that will align your team. Everything else flows from here.
We know you love to travel. What’s your favourite city in the world and why?
New York. It is the only place in the world where I feel completely calm and settled. For some reason it just feels like home.
What’s your dream travel destination?
Name your must have travel accessory.
Shishedo Face Mask – perfect for hydration on a long flight. And chargers – must keep connected!
What’s your favourite leisure activity whilst your travelling/on holiday? It could be something mellow like lying on the beach, or something more active like rock climbing.
I love a summer holiday that has anything to do with being near, on or in the water!
What’s your favourite travel app?