Yesterday I took the first step on my way to becoming a fully fledged business! In amongst all the books and magazine articles I’ve been reading over the last twelve months and taking redundancy from my permanent employment, I was given the opportunity to attend a half-day business start up workshop run by Blue Orchid, based in central Manchester.
What an interesting morning! As you can imagine there was an awful lot of information to get through and in only three hours, it was something of a whistle stop overview of starting up, but wow! So much enthusiasm in the room for all kinds of business ideas.
We were given a huge amount to think about – from our skills and doing SWOT analysis, to financing, pricing, profit & loss accounts and the model buiness set up. The advisor running the workshop was very realistic about going into business as he has had his own business and now helps others set up. He’s a real numbers guy and tried (sometimes in vain) to explain tax and national insurance payments to a mostly bewildered audience! However, I took lots from the day and not just the fifteen pages of notes I made!
It was good to see that the work I’ve done so far on promotion and cash flow is work going in the right direction. I now need to spend time on the business side of things, registration, business plan and a stock take of all my equipment and materials! There’s a lot to do, but I know I have support from my family and I can utilise the business support at Blue Orchid to refresh my knowledge of book-keeping for cash-flow, profit & loss and balance sheets. Phew!
It wasn’t all just business speak (although there was a lot of jargon), I met a couple of other Mums that craft; one who decorates cakes and another who hand stitches leather handbags. More crafty contacts! And I got some great feedback on an order I was delivering. It’s great to meet like minded people with passion and drive for what they do, but who, like me, are a little terrified of venturing into the cut-throat world of business.
I have a very long to-do-list now, which I hope to make a start on over the Easter break, after I’ve completed my order list!
I guess I’d better get making.