10 (+1) Things I’ve Learned About Business & Wanted to Share With You

Friday 21 June is Expat Nest’s 11th birthday! We’re over a decade old! In that time, Expat Nest has gone from the inspired idea of a solo entrepreneur to a global business with a team of counsellors serving internationals all over the world.

On milestones like this, I love to reflect on all that has been. It feels right to share the lessons I’ve learned on this business journey, in case they’re helpful to you too.

So, here are 10 (+1) things I’ve learned about business:

  1. It’s either “next” or “not yet”… when it comes to a business opportunity, a project or a collaboration. It’s not always easy to distinguish between a “next” and a “not yet”, but this does come with experience and time. And what I love most about this idea: “not yet” is different to “no”. “Not yet” keeps the door open to opportunities, and to right timing for you and your business.
  2. Budgeting is crucial: Creating and sticking to a budget helps you manage expenses, prioritize spending, and achieve financial goals. This is the foundation of a steady business, providing for my team and offering them stability in a world that is changing so fast.
  3. Adaptability is crucial too: Being responsive to change enables businesses and organizations to innovate in dynamic, evolving environments. For example, during the pandemic we had to triple our team over a period of two months. It felt like a wave coming my way, but I decided to surrender and expand the team, knowing I would overextend myself. I had a clear timeline though – two months – and I put self-care as a top priority. I knew we had to find a way to be there for all these people who were asking for support; it was our duty.
  4. Together we grow! I love our Expat Nest family and each colleague has a special place in my heart. None of this could have happened without their support.
  5. Never underestimate the importance of self-discipline: the rewards of showing up, of taking steps towards your goals, are significant – and will keep you motivated.
  6. Have a “why” that is bigger than yourself. Have this “why” clear in your mind on both good and bad days.
  7. Create a safety net around you. Find your people and nurture these relationships. I am also so grateful to our strategic partners, those who support the business and refer clients to us.
  8. Creativity fuels innovation: Embracing creativity and thinking outside the box is essential for generating new ideas and solutions. When I started Expat Nest, which was such an innovative concept back in 2013, people doubted me – but I could see it coming and I believed it. I was simply ahead of my time.
  9. Treat clients as you would treat someone you love deeply… with the same standards of love, integrity, compassion and of course, your professionalism. Oh, I love my clients so much!
  10. Persistence is necessary: perseverance and resilience are essential qualities for overcoming challenges and obstacles encountered during the business process. These skills are available to you and they can be grown and practised.
  11. And keep learning! Both for the love of what you do and because there is always room to deepen your skills set. Grow with your business.


Thank you for being part of the Expat Nest community. Your presence, whether as a client, colleague or reader of the blog, warms my heart and fuels my inspiration to keep offering support to the international community. Thank you for being here.

With love

PHOTO: Iriser/Pexels

What have YOU learned on your business journey? We’d love to hear from you!