As a Voiceover Artist and mum to two young children, Faye Dicker is used to working and networking remotely, so setting up her own networking platform for mums in business was a natural path to follow. Read about Faye's two very different professional lives and how she's continued to progress despite Covid restrictions.
How did you end up sitting where you are today?
Today I work as a voiceover artist and run Freelance Mum. I've worked in the media since I was a child, so you could say it's second nature!
Freelance Mum was slightly different and is more of a calling. It was born of my own need, of being a freelance voiceover artist, juggling work around children. There wasn't anywhere parents in business could connect AND bring their children, so I started child-friendly networking events for mums in business. That was 6 years ago now - the measure of which is my own daughter Suki.
What kind of work does your role involve?
Voiceover work typically involves recording corporate scripts from my studio – I love bringing scripts to life! They can be directed down the line or self-produced. It's a great job and has brilliant flexibility.
Freelance Mum fits in really nicely around VO. Every day I check and interact with our online community, The Mothership. Plus, I host a weekly coffee morning every Wednesday, which is fab. I'm always events planning and looking for new guest speakers – we meet for netwalks twice a month, so it's good to stay connected. I'm always looking at new ways to keep things interesting and come up with socially distanced ice breakers!
What gets you excited about your industry?
I love being a voiceover artist –it's second nature to me. It's often one of the final parts in the process when it comes to a piece of work being edited. It's great to hear a clients brief and instinctively know the tone they need to hit the right spot. It's a real joy bringing scripts to life.
Freelance Mum is just fab! It's great to help connect people and see their business flourish, especially at a time that is often so challenging. There's a real strength at honesty in The Mothership; it's one of the most supportive places I know.
What's the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Keep it simple – this is specifically applied to my work with Freelance Mum. Especially in the early days, when I was trying to launch a new business around having two very young children. I don't really know how I did it – but I felt compelled to. I couldn't not, do it! A business coach took me under her wing and was really supportive in those early days; she just kept coming back to 'Keep it simple'. It doesn't have to be complicated. You can still make a massive impact with some of the most simple ideas.
What, or who inspires you?
Nature inspires me. Being outside and connecting with other people. I love talking and being with people, chatting ideas through and coming up with new ones. Being outside and talking is one of my most favourite things (not just a lockdown thing!). I'm a member of the Lido, and I love meeting up with friends for the 'Lido download', it's where new ideas are formed, and problems are put to bed. During lockdown, swims were replaced with walks or chilly dips in Clevedon Marine Lake. There's something about being outside and having that social element that gives me inspiration.
How do you keep up to speed with what's happening in your industry?
As a voiceover artist, I've always worked remotely – I've always stayed connected by industry-specific Facebook Groups. There's a fantastic core of professional VOs, who have worked in the industry and know the score.
As for Freelance Mum, it's very easy to 'get the vibe in the FM camp' as I'm in touch with it every day. By chatting to members and asking questions, it's easy to evolve and keep meeting their needs. People like a mix of an online and offline community, and it's great to give that.
What was the most challenging project or situation you've overcome?
Hosting National Freelancers Day in 2018 was a huge achievement. I put on a whole day event at Windmill Hill City Farm, with guest speakers, stallholders and a huge network for mums and their children. It was a fantastic celebration and a real honour to host it. The icing on the cake was being invited to the Freelancers of the Year awards ceremony in London after. Looking back, I don't know how I did it – hosting my own event, that hot-footing it off to London! I won Freelance Ambassador of the Year award, a proud achievement I will never forget.
You finish work today and step outside the office to find a lottery ticket that ends up winning $10 million. What would you do?
I'm not sure! That sounds like more of an ethical question to me! If you found the winning lottery ticket – does that really make the money yours? Let's just say it did; I'd keep on going – doing the things that I love, which are voiceover and Freelance Mum. It would be great to invest the money into elements of the business that most need it (and outsource the bits I don't like!). Plus buy some land, build a swimming pool and a house by the sea. Make sure my parents were secure and my children – you know, the boring but important stuff!
How do you switch off after a day at work?
My favourite way to switch off is with either a walk or a swim outside with a friend. I just love chatting, unwinding and being outside - putting the day to bed. The reality is that with two young children, that doesn't happen every day, and it's slightly more bonkers than that! Usually, I spend some time catching up with social media, reading a few pages of a book and then watching something with a glass of wine. I love a good daydream!
If you had one wish for the future of your industry, what would it be?
I'd love for Freelance Mum to be there for the next generation and generations to come. For it be a national network and the place to go, as a mother juggling work around family. For fellow FMs to meet and network together and be the automatic place that you come, as a 'Freelance Mum', to have hubs across the country.
What book or podcast should everyone know about?
The Natural Health Service by Isabel Hardmen. It's brilliant, a complete game-changer when it came to me looking at the framework and future of Freelance Mum. She writes with such passion and conviction of the importance of being outside and connecting with nature. It made me realise the networks at Freelance Mum are here to stay - not only that, we want more of them! Digital connections are only so good, but nothing beats a face to face meet-up and conversation outside. Well worth a read - ideally in the garden!
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