The Tasmanians [Jen Murnaghan]

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Next up for The Tasmanians project is Jen Murnaghan of Digital Dandy, which is a successful social media marketing consultancy.
She is a great communicator and works hard to rally a loyal community around her brand. Jen inspires me to continue to build and nurture mine. Let her inspire you too…

N A M E
Jen Murnaghan

W O R K
Jen is a social media marketing consultant and workshop facilitator.

F I N D   J E N   H E R E
Website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

A B O U T   T H E   T A S M A N I A N S
The Tasmanians is a personal project I’m working on throughout 2016. It’s an opportunity to celebrate Tasmanians who work independently on innovative ideas. Each Tasmanian is featured in a series of chronologically captured behind-the-scenes images and an insightful interview.

See all of the Tasmanians in this project, here.

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A B O V E
Jen’s tools of the trade.

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…it’s ok to ask for help and be comfortable enough to say no.

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The pace of life here in Tasmania has taught me to be a lot more present.

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T H A N K   Y O U
Thanks so much Jen, for allowing me to bring my camera in to your work day! It was a great privilege to share the inaugural lighting of your fire. May your space be warm, productive and inspiring for you and your workshopees far into the future.

Five insights from Jen…

1 :   T H E   B E G I N I N G
It all began with a blog about boys. While I was on maternity leave we moved to Hobart from Sydney with our two toddlers. To keep me sane I created The Brothers Trim(m) – a blog that played on our family surname and the famous European storytellers, The Brothers Grimm. It was here that I discovered a whole new (digital) world where I could research, write, find great gear and chat with people from all over the world about cute stuff for little boys. My dream gig!

This was my schooling and I took this learning into my little tea towel business – Dish Pig where I really got to roll up my sleeves and figure out what this digital marketing thing was all about. I quickly discovered a passion for liaising online and after creating a successful local brand, had friends asking me to help them primarily with their social media. It wasn’t long that I realised my true calling, I shifted gear and decided to develop a consulting business and step away from the wholesale/retail market.

2 :   I N S P I R A T I O N

After 25 years working in a variety of roles, here in Hobart, in Sydney and back in Ireland, I have finally come to realise that variety IS the spice of life! Opportunities inspire me as do the people I connect with. The pace of life here in Tasmania has taught me to be a lot more present. My husband’s tenacity and our boys sense of humour and unadulterated love have shaped my approach to how I conduct my business. Friendships developed over our seven years here have shown me the true meaning of the word and how it’s ok to ask for help and be comfortable enough to say no.

3 :   P R O C E S S
What I love about my work process is the variety, no two days are the same. I can be teaching, developing marketing strategies, facilitating workshops, speaking at events or writing content for clients. I try to spend at least two full days in the office where I can write, analyse data, research the latest social media trends and do some ‘big picture’ work for my clients as well as for my own business. I work within school hours but some days the boys come to the office after school, ride their bikes or have a sneaky Minecraft session when I have lots on. There can be quite a few nights where I am online, managing client’s campaigns or catching up with colleagues interstate or overseas.

4 :   B A L A N C E
Ahhh balance. I have a lot of people say to me – Jen, how do you do it? Well, lots of trial and error and super friends who I can lean on. We have no family here and Vinnie’s working schedule is often off the radar so I do juggle work, after-school activities and general life. For starters, I work hard at putting the right stuff into my body to keep my immune system in check. I have an autoimmune disease that had me crippled with acute bronchitis every winter for four years. With a keen interest in meditation and yoga, plus a new found love of boxing, keeping on top of my health really helps to keep my balance, especially over winter.

I have had to let go of a few work projects that I loved but couldn’t sustain. It was important for me to learn how to do that and feel totally comfortable. No fear of failure, just an understanding and acceptance that it was time to move on. My family in Dublin are always there for me and we regularly FaceTime while I’m cooking dinner! Friends here have been a lifeline and we all keep a close eye on each other, helping each other over school holidays, when we’re sick or need a rant on the phone. I honestly couldn’t survive without my girlfriends.

5 :   W O R K S P A C E
My workspace is situated in an old apple cool store in Moonah, I share an office with my friend Chris Toselli, also a digital consultant, and there is a large open plan area where we hold meetings and workshops. There are a few other industrious people in our little enclave, an artist and furniture designers next door who share a sense of privilege around this little haven in Hobart. We have just installed a wood fired heater and have the cutest selection of 1970’s lecture chairs. Who knew I would actually have a fireplace in my office. It’s the best! My pride and joy though is my desk, made by Laura McCusker and her trusty sidekick Pete Howard. It’s blond timber, goes for miles and makes me look tidy even when I am scattered everywhere.

Having a dedicated workspace that has no affiliation to home has been a huge advantage. I feel like efficiency and productivity is increasing. No laundry distractions or quick trips to the snack cupboard! The kids enjoy coming ‘to the office’ and I keep some special toys there for them to enjoy when I need to drag them along. So far, so good.