From page 46 of Spring 2021, RAF Families Federation Envoy Magazine

Bloom Where You’re Planted

Jess Sands is the founder of the Milspo Business Network, a grassroots support community for all Armed Forces spouses, partners and other-halves – she’s also an RAF wife who has run her own company through many detachments, postings and everything else that military life has thrown at her! This second article focuses on the importance of collaboration whilst building your business.

A year ago, as Europe started to head into lockdown, something remarkable happened in my married quarter garden. That ugly lawn suddenly sprung into life! Tulips and daffodils, long forgotten over the winter months, now brought the promise of hope to those dark spring days of uncertainty.

The most wonderful part is they had been put there by someone else – a previous tenant who took the time to plant some bulbs one autumn day. As the world seemed to close down, seeing these beautiful flowers reminded me that everything would be ok in the end.

This is just only one example that you find throughout our community, of someone investing their time to do something that doesn’t just benefit them. The same thing applies when you think about the military partner small-business network.

We do this in the Milspo Network by investing our time and support into each other and our network of businesses. Just like those tulips, we might not see the results straight away, but we know the difference that really supporting each other makes to the whole community. Because when one member succeeds in business it paves the ways for others to do precisely the same, and in turn helps our businesses flourish.

Here are my best tips to grow your own business by helping others…

Promote their businesses, and they’ll promote yours

I have found that the more support I give to other people’s businesses, the more I get back in return. I don’t do it for this reason, that’s just a happy bonus.


Any recommendation or referral should be a two-way street if possible. Be clear about which businesses you would like to support and promote them accordingly. Doing this often takes a conscious effort, but after a while, it becomes second nature.

Be an accountability buddy.

Help other business owners achieve their goals by holding them accountable. Partner up and help them with their objectives – you will always find that they’ll want to do the same for you.

Become a Business BFF

It’s a lonely life as a solopreneur and military partner. So why not get yourself a business BFF. More than an accountability partner, a Business BFF help you with business, support you when you want to give it all up, and celebrate your wins when you succeed! Perfect for when you work alone and miss the company of an office.

Want to build that posting proof-business you deserve? The Milspo Network gives you the skills you need, and the support to do it. With monthly networking, group calls and the best online network for Mispo’s you’ll be in great company – head to