Creating a business is an adventure. I began mine to crack the impossible conundrum that is a working mother’s life. At 45 my son will be 8, an age more suited to me being self employed, but if I wait til then or work for someone else technology could leave me high and dry. I need to steal a march on my competitors. Crack on with it. I may not have a website yet but I’m proud of my achievements. I will get there – eventually.
A curiosity to learn and try new things is what drives business forward. I embrace change and new developments even though at first they terrify me. There is comfort in repetition and familiarity and I use this theme when decorating my home all the time. But when it comes to daily life I know the last thing I want is to be working for the same firm doing the same job with the same people. I like a challenge. Even when it’s forced upon me.
How different my life is from a year ago. I was whippet thin had every dress and bag going. Had no job, no man, no career. And yet none of that really bothered me. I’d let all those things go because I wanted an identity. None of the identities on offer seemed to fit, so little by little I started to create my own.
This wasn’t as easy or as obvious as it sounds. I saw myself as Carrie without BIG. Lauren Conrad without the cuteness. Natalie Massenet without the fashion pack. Victoria Beckham without Becks (or the Spice Girls for that matter). I didn’t wannabe, I was. And I knew there were thousands of women like me. I was starting to question the impossibility of modern family life.
For a while I did what my mother did and just got on with it. But things have changed. Our homes are larger, our kids are more demanding, we can’t move for people judging us or reminding us we’re failing.
When people ask me “what’s your business model? How are you going to make money?” I disregard their negativity. I studied Maths and Economics. You don’t work in Financial Services for as long as I did without learning a thing or two about ripping people off. That model doesn’t work for me. I want to see my family, have them join in and understand what I’m doing. I want to work with friends and other creative people whose only interest isn’t material success.
I plan to keep things small and manage every aspect of my venture. I grew up thinking small is beautiful. Greed gives me indigestion and makes me hungrier each time I give into it. Earning money using traditional models meant I never earned enough.
I like painting antlers, sourcing products, creating flower arrangements. I don’t want a business model that interferes with that. When I was a financial services writer I wrote about intangible products that sucked. I like this model better.