Textile designer Olive Rankin established LoveOlli in 2012 with the simple desire to create inspiring and unique candles and accessories with a vintage twist. 

Four years on, the business was experiencing relative success supplying 200 businesses across the UK. Olive knew there was significant demand for her well-known LoveOllie brand outside the UK, but she was at a crossroads: whether to keep the business small or take the plunge to grow it big. 

As a sole trader playing the role of designer, marketer, customer sales, and administrator, she needed to take time out of day-to-day running of business to plan for the future. As a designer, Olive has no business education or qualifications and to date had never attended leadership training. She said: “I have never taken time to think about my leadership approach or style and how it impacts upon the business“. Since completing the programme and mentoring, she has seen real impact upon the business starting with employing her first member of staff to help with administration and paperwork. 

She also took part in Lara Morgan’s sales leadership master class. Olive now has a strategic plan for business growth and has appointed a new agent in Sweden and distributors in Republic of Ireland, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland and Netherlands. This has already brought bigger orders for the business; critical for Olive and her new stock management strategy to get rid of old products and make way for new product development. 

Olive’s passion from the outset was to create products that bring joy and make people smile. She is also the one smiling as she has experienced more sales in the last two months than the whole of last year! By taking time to improve her skills ability to lead, she is lighting up a brighter and bigger future for the business!