A YOU-Shaped Business:
for women entrepreneurs, business owners,
and makers and sellers of marvelous things
A unique retreat on the
Island of Martha’s Vineyard
November 3-6, 2017
Friday through Monday
You are a unique and creative person with special talents.
You run your own business.
You made your dream happen.
That takes courage and big ideas.
And an instinct to go your own way.
You have moments when you feel your Best Self – full of ideas, ready to take on the world.
Those moments you just know that You’ve Got This.
Until you push off from shore in your little boat, feeling dwarfed by all the big boats around you. They all look so sure, sailing in the same direction, following the same map. It would be so easy to just follow along.
But that’s never been your style.
What if instead you built your work practices from that Best Self place, reflecting the special qualities and style that make you YOU?
If you focused on your strengths and found new solutions for your weaker areas?
If you worked from your own way of seeing the world, making decisions, solving problems, connecting with people and using the talents you naturally have at hand?
And what if that actually set your business apart so that people remembered you, wanted to work with you and bought your products?
You would change the world.
Or your corner of it.
A YOU-Shaped Business
Let’s retreat to an island for a few days and together:
- Get clear on what makes you (and your business) special
- Listen to that voice within that has the answers
- Create a business that works the way you do
- Share ideas with other smart, creative women asking the same questions
- Be your Best Self
The world was made with a you-shaped hole in it.
Taking time with your business.
An island is a beautiful place to think, create and explore without the distractions of day-to-day work, interruptions or even planning meals. You already know the feeling of being your Best Self, and now just need the space and time to nurture that feeling more.
Whether that means an afternoon nap, sitting on the porch with a journal or watching the sunset with your toes in the sand, that’s what we’ll be doing.
Every day will be a bit different, as you spend time with your business. You’ll be working alone… sharing with kindred spirits… consulting with me… walking beside the sea… trying some new tools for brainstorming and planning… finding your own rhythm… having fun.
Are you ready to join us? Give yourself (and your business) permission to take this time.
This retreat is a bit different.
Since I know that you already contain all of the unique answers for your special business inside of YOU, it is a mixture of questions, prompts and then time for you to listen.
Some talking, hopefully some fresh perspectives. But no forced intense group discussions. Nothing is an awkward must-do. See what you can do with time, focus, creative tools, Island Magic and the energy of a small group of like-minded women surrounding you.
You’ll be part of a cozy gathering of eight women who understand and share both the challenges and joys that make up your days running a business and launching something you care about into the world.
And you will be nourished by healthy and delicious meals catered by a local chef (that magically appear without your thinking about it).
We will support and inspire each other as we delve into how we shape a business that reflects our beliefs, style, personality and what we offer to the world.
We gather together in November, but we’ll get started before then.
One of the joys of a small group is that I can customize it for you. I have a questionnaire when you sign up, so that I get a feel for who is coming and what each person needs. I might get in touch with you to understand your business better and what you are looking for.
Then I’ll be sending you a personalized notebook (presents!) about a month before the retreat, with some prompts to start you thinking.
During the retreat, I’ll have time set aside to meet with each of you individually to discuss your own, Best-Self, YOU-Shaped business.
Where will we be staying?
We will have a charming restored Victorian inn all to ourselves, overlooking the sea right across the street (the beach that is in the first big photo on the site). Rocking chairs on the porch offer a first-row seat to the moon rising over the gently lapping waves. The gathering room has a fireplace. We’ll have a room set up with art supplies to try out and magazines and books to leaf through if that is helpful.
Oak Bluffs is very special, with beaches, the harbor, gingerbread cottages, Ocean Park and more places where you can work or explore – all within a five-minute walk. (Even a choice of ice cream parlors!)
An important part of doing this creative work is to walk away at points, allowing your mind to catch up and think through what you’ve been doing. This spot provides you with that space and freedom.
And since time alone is as necessary as time spent together, you will each have your own private room equipped with a bath, small refrigerator and TV (should you choose to indulge), along with complimentary Wi-Fi.
You can select your room when you sign up. All rooms are first come, first served. As you can see, they are all cozy and inviting.
Room 1: Town Beach: BOOKED
Ocean-view room with a queen-sized bed, on the second floor
Room 3: South Beach
Ocean-view room with a balcony and twin beds (one to work on), on the second floor
Room 5: Norton Beach
Sunny and bright room with a queen-sized bed, on the second floor
Room 7: Squibnocket Beach BOOKED
Original wood paneling in this ocean-view room with a queen-sized bed on the third floor
Room 2: Eastville Beach
Spectacular view (not ocean) and a queen-sized bed, on the second floor
Room 4: Lobsterville Beach
King-sized bed in a bright room on the second floor
Room 6: Menemsha Beach
Ocean-view room with a king-sized bed, on the third floor
Room 8: Lucy Vincent Beach BOOKED
Original wood paneling in this room with a queen-sized bed, on the third floor
Room 9: Philbin Beach
A queen-sized bed under the window, on the third floor
Martha’s Vineyard is an island seven miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. It is approximately 100 square miles and has six distinct small towns, each with its own personality.
You’ll find that your retreat begins on the ferry ride, as you see the land slip away and look forward to a new horizon. (Really, you’ll feel yourself breathe more deeply and slowly as soon as you start up the gangplank.)
If you are driving, you can park your car at the Steamship Authority in Falmouth. There are signs to direct you to the parking lot and then they run shuttle buses down to the ferry terminal at Woods Hole. You will need a ferry ticket for yourself, which you purchase at the Woods Hole terminal. The Steamship Authority website has all the details on parking costs and sailing schedules.
You can find more details on travelling here in the Questions section.
Or send me an email and I’ll help you with the specifics.
“We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams”
(and Willy Wonka)
Women who create their own businesses are a special sort. We dream things up and then make them real.
We figure things out as we build for the future.
We envision possibilities. Almost every day, we face down uncertainty.
And we each do it in our unique style.
Every decision we make reveals what is most important to us and what we deep down truly believe.
I came from years in the fast-paced corporate world of high tech. I started new groups in user interface design, usability testing, website creation, online information, product design, internationalization and global marketing.
I loved creating and growing new possibilities. But it was sometimes difficult to play by someone else’s rules as the companies grew more established.
To an island…
Moving to Martha’s Vineyard with my family to work as an artist changed all that and it felt like truly coming home.
Except that I missed the daily decisions and strategy of consulting.
And a business of my own
So a dozen years ago I started Roundabout, to work with online business owners across the country to:
- Help them connect with their best clients/customers
- Become visible on the internet
- Clearly share the uniqueness of their business
And it all came together when I started holding retreats — offering other women the time, space and creative opportunity to think clearly about their own businesses and projects.
This is my Best Self at work.
What’s the weather and what should I bring?
The weather on the Vineyard in early November is soft and variable. The average highs are low- to mid-50s during the day, dipping into the 40s at night (flannel jammies!). Layers are your best friend.
Keep in mind that you’re coming here to figure out how to bring more of your own unique style to your business…. to listen to your intuition… to brainstorm…. to recharge…. to create….to have conversations…. to think, imagine and dream and work.
So you need to set up the environment that best supports the uniqueness of you. YOU know what that is. Make sure you have it. Don’t feel like you can’t bring it. It’s perfect to wear it. We’re all in the same boat together.
For example, I rarely go anywhere without my laptop, a notebook or three and a variety of my favorite pens. I will be wearing comfy clothes, flannel PJs, colorful scarves and warm socks!
And I am terrible at just sitting and talking without doing something with my hands. So I will certainly have knitting with me for while we are talking around the fire in the gathering room or out on the porch chatting. But that’s just me. Please be YOU.
What’s the deal with lunches?
I think it’s important to include some exploring in your day, so lunches are on your own (or even better – with new friends). Just a 5-minute stroll down the road and around the corner is the main little street of town, lined with stores, galleries, eateries and a market. Enjoy a restaurant, get take out to eat in the park/on the beach/by the harbor or stock up the fridge in your room.
Do I need a car on the island?
If you are coming just for the retreat, you won’t need one. We are happy to pick you up at the ferry terminals or from the airport. If you want to stay longer and explore, you might want one, or you can rent one for while you’re here. There is also a great public bus service that connects most of the Island.
If you do decide to bring your car over to the Island, you will need to make a reservation for your car on the ferry as soon as possible with the Steamship Authority. The Steamship Authority operates the only vehicle ferry service to the Island from Woods Hole on Cape Cod (a short 45-minute crossing).
To arrange auto reservations, contact the Steamship Authority by either calling them directly at (508) 477-8600 or booking on-line via their website. Reservations for passengers with a car are unnecessary.
Note: When you book your reservation, if you can’t get your first request, put your name on the Waiting List. It usually works out very well and, more often than not, you’ll get the reservation time you want.
Can I come early or stay later?
That’s a lovely idea. Every town has its own character and you will see just a bit of Martha’s Vineyard during your stay in Oak Bluffs. Sadly, the inn is fully booked just before and after us, but there are many wonderful places to stay. I can help you with ideas on what part of the Island you might like to visit and where you could stay. Rates are lower during this shoulder-season time.
When is check-in time and check-out?
You can check in to the inn at 3:00 Friday afternoon, Nov. 3rd. Warm cookies and beverages will be awaiting you. 🙂 We’ll be having dinner together at 6:00, so please plan to join us.
Our closing circle on Monday will end around noon.
I have some questions about flying to the Island.
November is the off-season, so there are few direct flights. If you are coming some distance, you will most likely have to fly into Logan Airport in Boston and change to Cape Air, which has several flights a day.
You can also take the Peter Pan bus from Logan Airport, which will goes to Woods Hole and the ferry. It is a 2-hour bus ride.
For more detailed information, you can contact me or check out the information from the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce website.
We’ll pick you up at the airport or ferry terminal — no worries.
Is wine allowed?
That’s a good question. I won’t be providing wine, but you are welcome to bring it yourself. If you are more comfortable if wine is not out in the common areas, let me know ahead of time and I’ll set the general policy of keeping it in private rooms.
I’m not sure whether this retreat is right for me.
Let’s talk! Odds are, if you are feeling the call to come, it holds something for you. Whether that is actually coming to the retreat or just talking with me about where you are with your business – it sounds like something is up. Pay attention to those whispers of intuition and follow where they lead.
Send me an email and we’ll figure it out.
I have a different question?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org! I’ll get right back to you. If you’d prefer to chat, that’s fine also — let me know.
I believe that every act of business is a creative and spiritual act.
Although you might not think of yourself as particularly creative or spiritual.
But you have created work that you love and you make decisions every day that affect the lives of the people who interact with it.
Through those daily decisions you live out your beliefs in an incredibly concrete way.
Think about that for a moment — it makes you very special.
I can’t wait to see you here!
© Roundabout LLC. All Rights Reserved 2018
photo credit :: Vineyard Colors (so many thanks to Vineyard Colors for allowing us to display their marvelous Island photographs)
artwork :: kellybarton (only a talented artist and friend like Kelly could have captured the mood of this retreat so exquisitely)