We absolutely looove Wingman! What gave you the inspiration to launch?
Like many singles out there, I was thrown into the world of online dating after a long-term relationship ended. Whilst I had been coupled up, the entire dating game had changed and everyone was online. I reluctantly tried out many of the dating sites and was appalled by some of the behaviours. Navigating through self-promotional bios, 10 year out-of-date-photos, incorrect descriptions and downright lying – I was compelled to do something. I wanted a more impactful and collaborative way to connect, that was more in line with real life behaviour. My friends had always been my champions in any social settings and could talk about me much better than I could myself and actually spot what was good for me. That’s when the idea for Wingman was born and I set out to create something that would help myself and millions of singles out there.
What makes wingman different form other dating apps?
Wingman is unlike anything else out there. Wingman allows a single person to pass the power of their dating life to their friends and family. Those that know them best will take control, creating their profile and introducing them to who they deem appropriate. Whilst traditional dating platforms appeal to singles only, Wingman brings a completely new audience to the party. We are a community of friends, family and colleagues all sharing the passion and goal of finding love for a single friend. 40% of our wingman users are married or in a relationship but are keen at the opportunity to get matchmaking.
How did your career lead to Wingman?
I was working in interior design and project management when I came up with the concept for Wingman. My background was not in technology and I had no idea how to code an app. I created the Wingman experience from a real-life consumer perspective, I called myself ‘street-smart’ not tech-smart. I researched for months and months, surrounded myself with great knowledge and what I couldn’t learn, I could find someone to do it.
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
I’ve got an amazing team around me, but that sadly didn’t happen overnight. It took a long time to separate the salesy talkers from the do-ers and onboard the right team that shared my vision and work ethic.
Do you have any tips for anyone embarking on a new career journey? What first steps do you recommend?
Don’t be afraid to try. You’re not going to lose any skillset you’ve already gained; you can only gain more. I would say, try and participate in something related to what you would like to move into. Whether it’s a class, a talk or a meet-up, having real world experiences of what your new career could look like, will help you decide whether you’ve made the right choice.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t sweat the small stuff. It may seem like a big deal at the time but when you remind yourself of the bigger picture, it will refocus your perspective.
What is an average day like for you?
No day is ever the same for me, but I always have a few lists going at the same time. I spend my time between London and New York and I travel a lot, as we get invited to lots of places in USA to talk through Wingman. Last summer I did a full on media tour in the USA and hit a different town every day for three weeks, it was really fun and although it can be tiring I never tire of hearing people share their stories and Wingman experiences.
No matter where I am, as soon as I open my eyes in the morning, I quickly read my emails and texts, and deal with anything urgent. We have offices in the USA so if I’m awake, I’m always online. I like to walk to the office or as many meetings as I can. The beautiful thing about technology is that we can be connected all over the world without physically being there.
I’ve always been very organised and a slight control freak, but with Wingman growing I’ve become much better at handing things over to my team. I deal with development, marketing, events, branding and PR on a daily basis, but if I have a spare moment, you will find me reading banterous profiles on Wingman. I was once told that people are too selfish to do something good for another. Yet every day, when I see the many testimonials written for people, it gives me a little hooray for humanity knowing that people are kind and giving.
Do you have any tips for balancing such a busy schedule?
Time management is key, so don’t rely on mental notes, as even the strongest of minds can let things slip. I love a list and have a few going at any one time. Plus, I set myself alarms to remind me of key tasks for the day. If I can deal with a task immediately, great, but if it’s a longer task, I will schedule time to ensure I get it done.
I hate being late, so I always leave extra travel time for any meetings. With time management throughout the day it’s easy to get distracted when urgent things crop up, so checking in at the beginning and the end of the day can keep you on track. In fact, ticking off a list still gives me pleasure – it must be the Virgo in me!
What do you do in your down time?
Does it sound cheesy that Wingman doesn’t feel like work for me? With a ‘phone never far from me, I am always Wingman minded. My team have grown used to my Saturday evening think tank emails coming through. Because Wingman is something that is so widely understood, there are constant references to it.
Hydration is key for any part of the body, so although I use the balm and tint on my lips, I also like to put them on my cheeks and cheekbones throughout the day to add a bit of colour, moisture and shine. I also put any residue on my cuticles to give a little extra moisture.
My friends, family, and boyfriend all know that Wingman is at the front of my mind, so are never offended if I go Wingman centric on them. Down time would be food, gym, and watching numerous dog or animal videos on Instagram.
Which beauty products can you not live without?
I love so many and believe we should always keep pushing for better – so I am always trying new things, so I am a total product and treatment junkie!!! I had bad skin as a teenager and learned from a young age to look after my skin. I’ve tried everything from diamond dust serums, organic snail creams, placenta gel and mushroom fungus foam. If I was on a desert island, I couldn’t live without Crème de la Mer soft cream, my microneedling roller and Thameen cora perfume.
Can you tell us your best beauty tips?
I drink a minimum of three litres of water a day, loads of green tea, a good moisturiser is key and always wear SPF. I discovered these excellent powder SPF brushes by Peter Roth in USA. I buy them in bulk as all my girlfriends request them when I’m in the USA. Daily massage along the jawline, ears and eyes is key to depuff.
What is next for Wingman?
Growth and support for our unique Wingman audience. We’re now in a position where we’ve proved our concept works, we discovered unique trends and behaviours within the app, so it’s now about growth and expansion. It’s about encouraging people to do something they would naturally do offline, bringing it online and making it super easy for people to be connected no matter how far they live apart and no matter what the distance life has brought them to, bringing them together for a good cause.