Its April and that means I have been running Limewood Flowers for a year already. Where did the time go? I am sure Mr Smith is asking the same question too, as I seem to have been so busy that I didn’t organise us a holiday last year! This is one of the big lessons I have learnt; when you run a business there is never enough time. You have to make time to avoid overworking yourself and give back to all the people that have helped you so far.
That is another lesson; you can’t run a business alone. I might be doing what I consider all the work of Limewood Flowers but without the unwavering support of Mr Smith I don’t think it would have got off the ground. Then there are all my lovely friends and family who have talked to their friends about what I am doing, followed me on social media and just been there when I have too much in my head and need to get it out!
There is so much good advice out there on how to start a business, where I am Business Lincolnshire has been really helpful. I was even eligible for free training that gave me lots of tools for how to manage all the money and admin side. And, yes, there is a lot of admin! As a creative business I consider everything that is not actually working with flowers as part of the admin. I do find it difficult sometimes to focus on doing the research to improve my marketing and then being diligent in doing it. I continually have to remind myself that without the admin and marketing it would not be a business that supports me; it would be an expensive hobby.
Talking to other small business owners these lessons seem to be pretty universal. The hardest thing for me is what I am now calling ‘playing chicken with time’! At the back of my mind are all the statistics about how many small businesses fail and that you shouldn’t invest too much. But how do you know how much is too much and how long do you wait to work out if the business is going to go where you want? There don’t seem to be any answers so I just have to keep holding my nerve and recalculating my budget!
Is it worth it?
Reading this back, it all seems like a lot of hard work. Yet the nicest thing about this that it doesn’t feel like work. I am happier (which means Mr Smith is happier…) and seeing the joy on peoples faces when they get a fabulous flowers makes it all totally worth it.