Angie Coates, 57, is the CEO and founder of Monkey Music
Angie Coates talks about her career as a musician and franchisor and the importance of family.
My first job was teaching the piano to the kids on my street. I was musical even as a child!
I won a scholarship to the Guild Hall when I was 12 where I studied the oboe, and I stayed right the way through until I was 22.
I had my first child at 26 and I was touring the world at the time. I was working with some of the most prestigious orchestras in the world, but having a baby was not conducive to that lifestyle. I realised after having my daughter that I wanted to change my career, stay in music, but do something that was more relevant to being a mum as well.
I took the idea of teaching the piano to teaching babies and toddlers near where I lived, and I realised how important music was for development.
My brother suggested I franchise my business, though I had no clue what franchising was at the time! I think franchising is much easier now. People embrace the idea of franchising now more than ever. We’ve still got a way to go to put franchising on the map, but I think it’s less challenging now.
Only do what you can do. I surround myself with people who can do other parts of the business whilst I focus on what I’m good at. It’s important to prioritise my time as the business has grown.
I’m still very involved in the beating heart of the business, although I absolutely give the autonomy to my team to be the people that they need to be.
The thing I love the most about my job is the people. We’re seeing more and more women changing their careers and coming into the franchising industry. Empowering people, identifying their talent and making a difference in people’s lives is so rewarding.
From her morning routine to winding down in the evening, we take a sneak peek behind Angie’s schedule.
Every day is different for me. If I’m writing a new programme, or a presentation or training materials, I won’t sleep and I’ll be up at six in the morning.
I’m much more creative in the mornings, and I feel creatively alive when I work from somewhere like the Barbican or the Royal Festival Hall.
When I work on accounts or recruitment I’ll go into the office and work with my team, maybe get up a bit later and take my dog for a walk.
I have one daughter at home, so I still do a school run in the mornings!
I try to work around nine or 10 hours every day, but it depends on the day. I go into the office three or four times a week to see my team face-to-face.
When I walk my cockapoo I listen to podcasts, and when I’m in the car in the morning I tend to listen to classical music.
I love cooking in the evenings. My husband works away so when he’s back we all spend the evening together.
If I can’t sleep, it’s because I need to get something down on paper so I get up and work.
Get to know…
From Angie’s guilty pleasure to her meaning of happiness, we get to know the woman running Monkey Music.
I absolutely love art. Buying art and treasures is my guilty pleasure.
I joined a gym with my youngest daughter. She was a bit mortified at the beginning to be there with me! But we go three or four times a week together.
My greatest extravagance is dining out. I love going out, to the theatre, to concerts, ballets, galleries, I love it all.
I’m happiest now than I’ve ever been. I’m embracing being an older woman. Being there to support my daughters and women who made the same choices as me is a powerful feeling.
When I was 18, I set off travelling for a year with just £30 in my pocket. I can’t imagine that now!
Notting Hill was a big film in my 30s, I was a bit of a Hugh Grant fan. That film is a bit of a comfort blanket.
My proudest achievement is my family of five daughters, and growing a business that has helped other people to grow their business.
When I was younger, I wanted to marry a musical farmer and be a ballet dancer. Not sure how I was going to accomplish that!
My cousin is a costume designer, so she designed my engagement ring. It means so much to me.
If I won the lottery, the first thing I would buy would be a Renault Alpine GTA Turbo, an 80’s classic. I saw it once and I still dream of it. I love cars.
The last gift I received was when my daughters bought me an ABBA dancing queen cap, which was a nice surprise.
Happiness is being true to yourself. Surrounding myself with people who I want to be with. My family is so important.
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