Prue Saxby, founder of Indigo Gold, is a Grant Master, helping community organisations and business owners get their grant applications into the ‘yes’ pile.
For eight years Prue offered a range of business writing services, predominantly for regional, rural and remote organisations and businesses. After great success helping clients secure grants, she found her niche and commenced the Grant Writing Academy in October 2020.
Through Prue’s grant writing courses, supportive Grant Writing Academy communities and membership program, she has delivered grant workshops and training almost 3,000 people and helped clients gain nearly $50 million in successful grants – all in the last five years.
We caught up with Prue to find out more about Indigo Gold and her journey being a Queensland #FemaleFounder.
What inspired you to start your business?
Long stints in remote parts of Australia early in my career awakened my entrepreneurial spirit and I started a couple of businesses. To adapt to personal circumstances 10 years ago, the drive to ‘do my own thing’ became more important than the security of working for others. I pulled on a range of work experiences – registered nursing, mining, local and state government, print media – plus a business degree majoring in marketing, and took the leap!
What milestones have you reached?
The most gratifying milestone was achieving a turnover where I could invest money back into the business to help me scale. For the past 16 months a Virtual Assistant has taken on all repetitive tasks which doesn’t require my grant knowledge or experience. I’m also travelling to Hawaii later in the year to participate in a ‘Reach Retreat’ to plan and develop my business for the next few years.
I was also a semi-finalist in the 2019 Queensland Community Achievement Awards – Queensland Government Small Business Achievement Award.
What business achievements are you most proud of to date?
I’m proud of being part of the success of others and seeing the impact. For example, when I helped the Qantas Founders Museum Trust to secure $14.3 million in grants for Luminescent Longreach (airpark roof and light show). I saw the difference it made to the Longreach community, which was really special.
One of my other business achievements is having younger women ask me to mentor them, which I see as an opportunity to pass on my knowledge.
Have you participated in any Advance Queensland programs, or received any support from Advance Queensland to date?
I’m part of the Advancing Champion Enterprises (ACE) Network and attend as many of their online events as I can. I was also mentored in 2019 by Pushpa Vaghela as part of the Female Founders Mentoring Program.
What’s your advice for other female entrepreneurs and businesses starting out on their entrepreneurship journey?
While you may think your business is like a lot of others, what you bring to it is unique. So, embrace your strengths, work them to your favour, and put imposter syndrome in the bin. Work on closing whatever gaps you see, rather than taking advantage of them. Encourage the patterns of behaviour you like and call out the ones that make you uncomfortable.
Business success will likely take longer than you think and there will be stumbles on the way, so surround yourself with business support (those who really understand what you’re going through, not friends and family) to help you through the more difficult times.