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Being my own boss… five months on!
01 Jan 2014
by Kirsty Smallman

Nearly five months ago I left full time employment behind for the first time since leaving university. Was I excited? No. I was petrified!
Yes in the middle of a recession I gave away a full time salary, company car, mobile, laptop, paid sick leave and 20 days paid holiday a year. Not forgetting my much loved colleagues who had become good friends over the past seven years – an invaluable security blanket for anyone in the work place!
As I revealed my plans to people, “congratulations” was replaced with “brave”! I knew what they were really thinking “she must be mad, she’s got two young children.”
And my two young sons were the reason and my drive behind the big decision. It really would not have been worth going to work while paying full time nursery fees for two children under three years old – not even for my own sanity!
I was offered a chance to escape full time employment and become a partner in an established, successful business and I took it with both hands. Any regrets? No way. I work three days a week and have two days of fun, play and cuddles with my boys.

Yes I do work some evenings and weekends but that is my choice and more importantly I do it because I love my work.

In 12 months time I will have the privilege of walking my eldest son to school and be there waiting at the school gates at the end of the day. I say a ‘privilege’ because I know so many parents can’t do this and have to rely on family, breakfast and after school clubs.

The most asked question is “do you get lonely at home?” My answer: “I don’t have time.” With the fantastic networking opportunities in Shropshire sometimes I barely have time to be at home at all – Shropshire Chamber breakfast meetings, The Best Of… evening meetings, The Cookie Club, co-working clubs such as Shropshire Jelly and then meetings with potential clients.

The world of self-employment has moved at a much faster pace than I could have ever imagined but it has been a fantastic five months of being my own boss and also enjoying being a mummy to my two boys.

And what is it like to become a business partner of a very good friend? Not bad at all!

My advice to anyone who has got the drive and passion to run their own business – do it! You won’t regret it.

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