Enterprisingly Me

Things are hotting up in my journey towards becoming my own boss. I’ve been to view the office space that is part of an incubation centre near to where we live. It’s ‘cosy’ but I don’t really need that much space as I’ll only be using it to prepare my training packs and make my calls. I must ask them about being able to gain access at weekends as I’m hoping to be out training during the week. I’m still wondering if I’m doing the right thing by paying for premises but I think it will help me to separate my business from my chaotic home life and anyway the first 6 months are at a reduced rate which includes everything I need to get started. They have also introduced me to a business mentor who will help me through the first stages of getting going – I asked if I could use Bill as my mentor but they said as he’s advising me then it would be best to have one of their mentors based in the incubation centre. What’s the difference between an adviser and a mentor? I thought they were one and the same… I’ll have a look on the internet and see if I can find out for myself and impress Bill when I next see him.

The kids are really excited but I probably need to find a way of managing their expectations as they flick through holiday brochures choosing their first exotic holiday and browse the laminated book of dreams (otherwise known as the Argos Catalogue) choosing their very expensive christmas presents and it’s not even the beginning of September. I wish I shared their faith in me but I’m also conscious of how optimistic they have become which has put more pressure on me to succeed. I have come to realise that this drive to start my own business is not all about money – it’s about doing something I love and being rewarded by seeing people learn and develop with my help… although that all inclusive holiday in the Bahamas does look very attractive, maybe something to aim for in the future but for now it’s a caravan in Scarborough.

I’ve done it! I’ve handed in my notice and I’m starting my business next month. So I only have a few weeks to get everything in order – there seems so much to do. It’s a bit like when you learn to drive and there seems to be so many things to think about when you’re approaching a junction and you’re scared that you run out of time and overshoot the end of the road. Did you feel like that – or is it only me? I need a list – I always work well with a list. It’s so satisfying when I can tick things off and sometimes, just for the hell of it, I also put a line through each item as I complete it and then a tick. Livin the dream! Note to self: You must get out more!

Things to do:

Speak to an accountant (recommended by friend and confidante Beryl) to see what I have to do to register the business

Make an appointment at the bank to arrange a 2K overdraft – this is what I’ll need to set up my office and to give me some money to live on until my first invoice is paid. Bill has helped me to develop my financial forecasts so I’ll be able to present these when I go to meet the bank manager

Get some quotes from printers so that I have some business cards and letterhead

Let the incubation centre know I want the office

Buy lots of sparkly wine, crisps and nuts – well I’ll be celebrating my launch won’t I!

I must tell you this, I went to the bank for my meeting and I was all ready for them. I had my plan along with all of my financials and Beryl had given me a dummy run by asking me all of the questions she thought the bank manager would ask. So I was well surprised when a young man, who looked like he should still be in sixth form college, met me and invited me to join him in his office. So where was the proper bank manager, I wanted to ask him? He proceeded to ask me questions to which I had all of the answers and he began to look a bit hot and bothered as he was running out of ways to catch me out. He asked to be excused while he checked with someone and came back to inform me that they could provide me with up to 3K as an overdraft facility (Beryl had suggested I ask for more than I needed just in case). Whoopee – I’m on my way.

I can’t wait to tell Bill… What would I do without him? I go from being really excited to be eventually taking the first step into owning and running my own business and waking up in the middle of the night in a blind panic wondering if I’m doing the right thing. Well there’s no turning back now and I just have to make it work, not just to prove to myself that I am capable of making my own way in the world doing something I love but also to satisfy my childrens’ need to order the most expensive items from the dreaded laminated book of dreams!

Bad news – Bill seems to have disappeared off the face of the earth and I now have a new adviser called Tracey. Oh dear, she’s definitely not Bill! In fact after she put me through the third degree proving she knows nothing about either me or my business, I’m starting to question both my desire and my ability to do this. She has agreed to meet me but what with her holidays and her other appointments it is going to be 4 weeks before I can see her. I could probably get an earlier appointment to see the Queen and the Queen would probably have taken the time to find out more about me before speaking to me… looks like I’m on my own again. That reminds me, I haven’t heard anything from my mentor – I will  make a note to ring them tomorrow for a chat. Oh well, onwards and upwards!

Me x