Sarah on Running Her Own Business

Sarah Prime
Jaitmathang Land (Tawonga, Victoria)
Hobby farming, being part of community organisations and reading.

Business owner, hobby farmer, community member

What do you do?

I currently run my own business, BANG On Co, which focuses on getting small and medium businesses online. My day can include work such as building new websites, resurrecting old websites, writing web content or blogs, or untangling business problems – there’s no real boundaries on what I will and won’t attempt!
My husband and I also run a small herd of commercial beef cattle, and we are working towards a ‘direct to consumer’ model for our product.

From a community perspective, I am the secretary of the Mirboo North Kindergarten Parents Committee and Assistant Treasurer of the Country Women’s Association (Traralgon Evening Branch).

What did you do after year 12?

I finished school not really understanding or believing I was good enough to go to University; as the eldest child in my family I didn’t have anyone to follow and it just felt too hard! After working away at every part-time job I could find for 12 months, I was fortunate to secure a traineeship at Albury City Council as an Economic Development Officer. This position was absolutely life changing. Not only did it teach me how to work hard, think critically and not be afraid to take on any challenge that came my way, but the role also covered all costs for a Bachelor of Business degree at Charles Sturt University (though I’m not sure working full time and studying part time is something I would tackle again!).

The skills I learnt in the first few years after leaving school are what put me on the path I am today and gave me the courage to work for myself.

How did growing up rural help you get to where you are today?

I’ll never not be a country girl. Growing up on a dairy farm has taught me so many things – working hard until the job is done, thinking on your feet and not being afraid to step outside of your comfort zone. Country kids don’t realise how much of an advantage they have when they enter the workforce – there’s an inbuilt resilience that has been instilled in us from day one.

What do you love about your job?

I absolutely love the variety of clients that come across my desk, and that I often finish the day thinking, gee, I think I really helped that person. You can definitely get the same satisfaction when you work for someone, but there is something really cool about knowing you were responsible for the positive client outcome.

I also love the flexibility – I can spend the morning chasing cows and then kick back in front of the fire of an evening tapping away at my computer. Being able to dictate how and when I work has been an enormous positive of self-employment (though I still need to work on my boundaries, so I don’t spend my whole life working!)

What would you like to achieve in the next few years?

I’d love to see clients that I worked with in the early days of their business really taking off; knowing that I have been part of their story is really rewarding.
On a farming note, I’d love to have a regular clientele eagerly waiting our next beef release; feeding people with ethically raised and slaughtered cattle is our pushback against an increasingly industrialised food industry.

What advice do you have for rural young Australians?

Don’t underestimate the values a country upbringing instils in you. It can be easy to look at kids growing up in the city as being smarter or cooler, but growing up in a regional or rural area has its own silver lining – we value community, know how to work hard and understand if you want something you have to make it happen. Be proud of growing up in the country!

More Inspiring Rural Stories