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Sombrilla Business Blog – Lets Meet Paul English

Sombrilla Business Blog - Lets Meet Paul English

We were lucky enough to interview Paul English from My Business, My Story. Paul has had a wonderful and interesting life with many a tale to tell, and he has also created stories for many ‘other’ people with his engaging videos. Lets see what Paul has been up to, where he came from and where he is going. Read on….


Name: Paul English

Business Name: My Business My Story

Industry: Videography

Years In Business: 30

What Country were you born in?

I was born in Australia, in Manly on Sydney’s Northern Beaches

What was childhood like for you there?

Wonderful as where we lived was as the last house on a dead-end street and there was only bush almost all around us with a pristine waterfall and creek below us in which we would swim, fish, build rafts and play games

What did you do after leaving school?

I went to Teacher’s College

What were you doing before you started your business?

Many things. I worked as a teacher in high schools; as an outdoor education specialist and consultant also in schools; as a singer guitarist in wine bars and pubs (and busking); in America as a camp counsellor for two summers; as a radio breakfast show host, then afternoon drive then evening talkshow then commercial copywriter and production / operations manager then station manager (phew – yes all that); as a senior manager for the International Red Cross in Geneva in charge of multimedia production, marketing and distribution; as my own boss in my communication and marketing agency; as being unemployable back here in Australia; as being an unpaid farm hand (cattle and sheep) on the Darling Downs; as a freelance print journalist; and finally, as a director/producer for my current business making short film profiles

Why did you start your current business?

MY mother was turning 90 years old and being unemployed I had time to make a documentary of her life. It was a great success. I started doing other people’s stories and saw the value in using storytelling techniques to help capture the gems (if not the whole story) of someone’s life. My mother passed away suddenly four months after turning 90. It was a painful but epiphanic moment where I saw the clear benefits of documenting someone’s life to pass on to future generations. We still do life stories but have modified the business to also offer small film snapshots for business people to use on their website and social media. My wife, a psychologist, and I use a mixture of psychology, marketing and old fashioned storytelling techniques to draw out and record their ‘gems’ including but not limited to their passion, values, authenticity, vision, sense of self. At heart, it is helping people tell their story for everyone, we believe, has a story to tell. It is also important in today’s environment as people want to do business with a person not a business and our profiles give the business person a face, a personality and a voice

Who do you look up to in business or who do you strive to be like?
( can be friend, famous or foe)

My father: a clever, articulate man of passion, ideas and ideals. My son, who has achieved already at 29 what I could only dream about.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?

Still working hard and enjoying every minute.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs starting out in your Industry?

Just Be true to yourself and your client. Have integrity. Have faith that you have the talent and skills to succeed. When you stumble (and you will), remember that our greatest triumph is not in never stumbling but rather, in rising each time we fall (someone famous said something like that but I can’t remember who).

What is the best thing about owning your own business?

The freedom to make choices and not be afraid of making mistakes. To grow.

What is the worst thing about owning your own business?

The freedom to make choices and not be afraid of making mistakes. To grow. lol

What is your greatest achievement to date? (business related)

It would be in working for the International Red Cross and redesigning the corporate design strategy and helping to give a voice to the voiceless innocent victims of war through my films and graphic portrayals.

What is your greatest achievement to date?  ( non-business related)

My son, my only child, of whom I am incredibly proud

If you weren’t doing what you’re doing now, what would you do?

This is fun, I love what I am doing. Why wouldn’t I be doing this?  Well, okay, maybe travelling or sailing…

How do you plan to grow your business?

Do well, remain passionate and like the saying goes: “If you build it, they will come…”

What platforms are you currently using to achieve success?

Social media and word of mouth

What other marketing activities do you do, to advertise your business?

Networking with a great bunch of like minded people at BNI Southern Business @ Cronulla

Are there any platforms you want to start using to achieve success (but don’t have the time to)?

I am happy to go steadily to build for I believe to rise too quickly risks missing something along the way. More networking opportunities are good.

What is one skill you would love to learn?

Wood Turning.

When you were younger, did you ever think you would become an entrepreneur? If yes, why?

Yes, I did as I wanted to follow in my father’s footsteps

What does a typical day of yours consist of?

Morning swim and walks on the beach with my dogs, cup of coffee, discuss the day ahead with my wife and business partner, get into the office in our back garden and get down to editing film or going out to film a new client, a glass of scotch at the end and a nice dinner – perfect

What is the best business idea you’ve had, that you’ll never use? (I promise I won’t steal it)…

I’ve had lots and I can’t risk telling you as that’s where my father had his downfall – told too many people about his wonderful ideas and they stole them. He died bankrupt at 54

What did you want to be ‘when you grow up’?

Like my father (before he was bankrupt and before he died)

What is your goal in life?

Well I have completed one of them, the others I am always working on. Mostly it consists of just always enjoying what I do.

Do you prefer working Solo or as part of a Team?

I love working with my wife

What is your goal in life?

It’s a cliche but to be happy and look forward to sitting down after a heard day’s work

What are your 3 best traits?

Being truly amiable, thoroughly energetic and delightfully passionate about what I do

Who is your number #1 idol?

My Son

What meal or food is your number one weakness?

Ice Cream

What is your favourite colour and why?

Teal – it melds green and blue and reminds me of the ocean shallows and depths

What is the best book you’ve ever read?

To Kill a Mockingbird.

What activities, sports or hobbies do you enjoy doing outside of work?

Golf, sailing and swimming

If you were granted one super power, what would it be?

To fly – my father was a pilot during the war and described once how he felt flying. I have flown a few times and I can only imagine what it would be like to be able to do it without a plane.

What advice would you give your 10 year old YOU?

Work hard but work smart and never forget to say thank you

Connect with Paul on Social Media

Facebook Link –

Website Link –

Personal LinkedIn Profile –


Thanks to Paul English from My Business My Story,  for sharing some of his thoughts and passions with us.

Stay tuned for our next month’s business blog and learn about Wayne from Promo More.



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