Taryn (Taz) Lyford

An inspiring businesswoman and mother

taryn (taz) lyford

taryn (taz) lyford

As a mother of three and a successful businesswoman, Taz (Taryn) Lyford’s personal and professional life is accelerating with the help of coach and mentor Tracey Hancock.

Taz juggles many balls as the founder and director of graphic design company Black Fox Creative, as well as the creator and organiser of Bloom Collective Markets and Alfresco Bites gourmet food night markets in Cambridge, New Zealand.

With a vivacious personality and creativity running through her veins, Taz has been doing graphic design work for around 12 years. As a teenager, she would “hang out” at a sign writing studio, which is where she fell in love with signage and design. She knew straight away that this was a passion she wanted to pursue.

She secured a digital print processes and design apprenticeship in Tauranga and was briefly transferred to Whangamata before returning to Tauranga for surgery.

Eventually, she was well enough to return to work and found a new job at another printing firm in Tauranga. This job proved to be a successful learning experience for Taz, but in the midst of finishing her last assignment due for her apprenticeship, she discovered she was at the beginning stages of a miscarriage. Taz was able to stay at work for the few hours it took, to complete her final assignment, otherwise, she would’ve had to wait another full year to resubmit. She’s most proud that even with all this going on she walked away with the runner-up ‘apprentice of the year’ award.

“Since my miscarriage, I’ve been empowered to live a purposeful life. I know how it affects you when you lose someone, and it made me realise how short life is, but I hadn’t really understood what that actually meant to me until Tracey from REALiving Coaching came in to the picture.” Taz said.

Taz first met Tracey Hancock through the Te Awamutu Chamber of Commerce mentoring programme, Nexus Youth. Tracey was assigned as Taz’s mentor to help her establish Alfresco Bites in Cambridge. During this time Taz also established Bloom Creative markets.

The idea for the markets came about when Taz had a family Christmas in Matakana 10 years ago and she was blown away by the farmers markets there. “It was just like a little village, a village within a village”.

It left a lasting impression on her and three years ago she went back there again for Christmas and thought to herself ‘you know what – if they can do it, so can I’. So, she started putting one foot in front of the other to make this dream real.

Taz’s ventures have proven to be a great success since their inception and they’ve been involved in some triumphant events such as the Great New Zealand Food Show and The World Masters Games Finale in Cambridge.

As a mentor, Tracey has vast knowledge within a corporate and local government background, so she was able to put Taz in touch with the right people to get the job done and helped with documentation. “She’s been a campaigner for me and I have absolutely adored that aspect.”

She says Tracey empowered her and kept her accountable to her dreams. Tracey would remind her to celebrate each little moment, rather than waiting for the big one.

“It’s taught me to have a great attitude toward the little lessons that you learn and to appreciate the journey.”

The mentoring became quite transformational for Taz as she never realised the value of putting herself first and wouldn’t take time out for herself to do things she enjoyed.

“Tracey has taught me that without me functioning as a human being, nothing else will function”.

It helped her work out what her values are and what she values about herself.

“There are times that I question myself and ask am I doing the right thing, but you have to lift yourself up sometimes, brush yourself off and keep going forward, while still remaining connected to yourself.”

With a holistic approach, Tracey taught her that what you put in to your body whether its thoughts, food, spirituality or actions they will impact your life. So, it depends on what you feed in to it, as to what you’ll also get out of it. Your energy is everything!