Karina Rook and Sam Rintoul
Hi Karina and Sam,
Tell us about your business and the type of products you sell?
Hey there! We’re Sam and Karina from Ventures Green Ltd and we empower people, organisations; and societies to thrive. We take a different approach to developing people: focusing on what enables a person to thrive – and not just survive at work, rest and play.
Our clients are individuals and organisations who are looking to elevate their performance. We empower them to achieve their goals by providing coaching; or creating and delivering bespoke programmes.
We are venturing into uncharted territory (this is a principle we champion!) through our holistic approach to development. We use a lens of neuroscience, physiology, behaviour science, psychology, lifestyle medicine and anthropology to empower our clients’ performance. For our corporate clients, we support them to design and develop a culture first company that gives a competitive and sustainable advantage to the organisation whilst truly empowering their people and society as a whole. We envisage a world in which people are happier, healthier and humanity is more sustainable.
How did you come up with the idea and what motivated you to go for it?
Following years of working in the people space, it became ever more clear that organisations and their leadership were missing a vital link when it came to understanding their impact on people and the reciprocal impact of the people on the organisation. Sure, organisations had their policies, their structures, their OD teams and development programmes – but so what?
At the heart of everything – there was this massive misalignment with the people, the culture and ultimately, the performance. And this is against the backdrop of a global increase in mental ill-health; social dis-connectivity, reducing productivity and a climate emergency.
In a soul-searching conversation one day in June 2019, we asked each other how do you create meaning in our own work? We had worked together for seven years in two organisations and this seismic conversation was a eureka moment that sparked a revolution. Sam dreamt of being able to home retired horses and provide a retreat for people to restore themselves; Karina wanted to empower people by disrupting the conventional distinctions between personal and organisational development. Identifying the commonalities; Ventures Green Ltd is our way of making a difference on the greatest scale we can envisage. The world had forgotten what it is to be human and especially, a human in the workplace.
There has been a recent surge on the focus on wellbeing and lifestyle medicine – no doubt to address the maladies we have already identified, but it struck us that no-one was talking about actually breaking down the barriers between what it means to shine at work; rest and play; and understand, appreciate and respect the whole-being.
What do you love about running your own business and what do you find hard?
We love creating a business that is uniquely ours; which makes a difference. The chance to live and work by our values (focusing on the whole; freedom to be human and adventure) is fundamentally important to us and has crafted our business from the start. In fact, the opportunity to actually start the day together over breakfast discussing the day ahead and feeding off each other’s ideas is the best power shot for any working environment.
The hardest part, for us as a start-up, is making our voice loud enough to be heard. We have a seismic message to share and accepting things take time is something we are learning.
What kind of BossMum are you and how do you manage the juggle?
Between us, we have three little ones aged between two and six years. In both our households there is always fun and surprises (including the two Mr VGs!). Karina bosses it out in an organised yet flexible approach – you never know when there could be a meltdown over the lost play mobile knight helmet! And Sam rolls with it getting stuck in wherever possible with a six-year-old tweenager asking for a real pony or fairy to join the family.
What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?
Sam was astounded Karina doesn’t like raw onion and Karina was bemused that Sam’s ‘last supper’ would be mashed potato (don’t get me wrong Sam is quite a connoisseur and successfully experiments with taste sensations).
Do you have a favourite app or work tool you think everyone should know about?
Moving away from the usual techie view – the one thing we believe everyone should know about is how every cell in our bodies has a natural rhythm (circadian rhythm) which we often don’t pay attention to – but if we did – we would immediately function and perform at a higher level; with the impact being felt in all parts of our health, wellbeing and lives.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Don’t focus on the negatives!
What advice would you give someone who was thinking about setting up their own business?
Go for it! Do what makes you happy. You have to start somewhere. And don’t compare yourself with other people.
What is your favourite Social Media platform and how has it helped in your success?
Instagram is our absolute go-to platform. It’s enabled us to speak our message and connect to other like-minded people. Connectivity is vital for all of us; and whilst IRL is definitely the best form – technology has given us the opportunity to connect with awesome people we wouldn’t normally get to chat with.
Who inspires you?
Prof Felice Jacka; Dr Tara Swart; Dr Gabor Mate; The Happy Pear – a selection of people who have inspired us through the way they live their lives and/ or the contribution they have made to society’s understanding on what makes us human.
What do you enjoy most about being a part of Mama Tribe?
Being part of a like-minded community of awesome mamas, making a difference to our world.
Thanks for giving us an insight into life behind Ventures Green Ltd Karina and Sam, we love having you as a Member of the Tribe.