The support Drive members give each other has always been awesome and since the pandemic struck they’ve all stepped up to get and give each other extra support, information and inspiration – with a little bit of crazy in the mix! Here’s what they say …

Martin Smallridge When life is madder than a box of frogs it helps to have a bunch of friends to help spawn ideas…

Illustration by Anne-Marie Miller

Berenice Smith When the UK was thrown into lockdown, I struggled to know what to do. Does anyone want a designer in this difficult days and could I offer any value? The 10am Drive coffee calls have been a space to share more than business worries, we’ve tackled how we’re coping in a safe, friendly environment with honesty and a few giggles too. I’ve chatted to more lovely Drive people during lockdown than before and I’m so grateful to those who come along and to Ann for setting them up. I always feel better after a chat.

Heather McDougall My cat thinks I’ve lost the plot because I keep talking to the screen in the mornings. Actually, some of the crazy conversations we have on the calls have stopped me going a bit bonkers. Thank you so much Ann for your tireless enthusiasm, humour and support over the two months. You’ve brought together a wonderful group of intelligent, compassionate people who are always happy to help each other out.

Kathy Salaman Becoming a Drive member has long been the best business decision I’ve ever made, and that was before the world went mad. Now the support, encouragement and reassurance I see flying around the network on a daily basis is nothing short of magic! From daily coffee meetings, to twice-weekly opportunities to update on Facebook, to the Wednesday Ask the Expert sessions … and the reassurance of knowing that there are any number of tribe members just one email, phone call or video chat away who understand and can support me as I reach each Covid-19 obstacle … The world is crazy right now, but would be a lot more crazy for me without the Drive Tribe.

Rachel Extance I love the virtual coffee mornings. It’s good to know there are friends to talk to who understand the challenges of running a business while juggling other roles at this time.

Dan Ince Being able to check in with other small business owners sharing the highs, the lows and supporting each other throughout lockdown has been invaluable.

Helen Lindop When the lockdown was announced I had no idea where to go with my business – would anyone even want my services now? How the hell was I going to do anything around home schooling anyway? The 10am daily Drive call has been an oasis of calm and business sense in a world that has gone a bit nuts. The support of Ann and the Drive tribe has been fantastic – open, honest and very supportive. And now we’re supporting each other to build businesses that work even better than before, rather than just trying to return to the old normal.

Prue Butterworth The morning coffee meetings are a great way to start the day. During this time it has armed me with tips, tools, practices, processes, podcasts, blogs, networks etc not only for business but also well-being.

Anne-Marie Miller Joining the virtual coffee mornings helps keep me sane! Just to see a screen full of friendly faces is a great start to the day. Everyone is helpful and supportive, and it’s a bullshit free zone! A place I can be open about the struggles of the moment but also celebrate the positives.

Karen Arnott I’m a member of a couple of networking groups, and Drive has stood out for me in terms of support at this time. The daily coffee chats that I can join as and when I need to have been the biggest boost for my morale. We have a laugh, compare notes, commiserate, brainstorm ideas, give advice, and get to know each other better. We also check in on Facebook on Mondays and Fridays, which creates a nice momentum to the week. On top of this, the members Slack group for more private conversations has been invaluable.

Susie Tobias  The morning calls are half an hour of calm where you realise that all the crazy emotions you are feeling are being mirrored by fellow business owners.

Adam Brooks Ann and the Drive tribe have helped me move my charity project from a years-long dream to a rapid reality

Emma James The support from others has been invaluable. Those who are struggling are being given advice and support, and those who are doing well are being celebrated. I haven’t been able to join many of the calls, but thanks to the Slack group and Facebook I can still benefit from them. Seeing how people are changing their businesses, and the thought processes behind those changes, has been really encouraging.

Dennis Harhalakis The Drive calls have always been a great mix of sharing and supporting and this has been invaluable in the last couple of months. Along with the other events, I can’t imagine anything more important to keeping me and my business going.

Angie Moyes I’m not a paid member but have always felt welcomed.

Lynda Jeannot For once in my life I feel I belong.  Each morning is different and so genuine that I cherish them so much. It makes me happy to see that everybody in the tribe is healthy. I am starting to think about my business in a different way since we started self isolation. Already been 9 weeks for us.  I had so many decisions to make, some harder than others  and the moral support and advice I get from Ann and all the Drive members had helped me in so many ways.

So anyhoo…proud that the business has not only kept going but seems to be progressing in a positive direction. Amazed that I’ve been a lot more resilient than I thought I was. Excited to be putting all the learnings from this fab tribe into action: With help from Ann to make and stick to a plan ➡️ to getting the confidence from David‘s workshop ➡️ to approach people I need to ask questions of, ➡️ and knowing what to ask thanks to Prue and J Laurence and then write the right words ➡️ to make the website updates that Karen recommended, and will also ➡️ feed into my social media strategy which is clearer thanks to Rachel and Emilie. Plus help from Helen with email marketing questions and Louise for getting organised, and much more advice besides from others! This group has been invaluable. Anne-Marie Miller