Keeping it in the Family

“Mummy, can I say hello?”

Uttered by a persistent three year old almost a year ago as I was talking to a new client about the intricacies of WordPress. I jumped out of my seat so that the phone was out of reach and flapped my hand around in a manner I hoped he’d understand meant “not now!!”. Instead he interpreted my ‘mummy means business’ eyes as ‘please pull on my skirt and repeat your question over and over at increasing decibel levels’.

Eventually I gave up and admitted that right at that instance I was in fact working at the kitchen table surrounded by tractors only for an admission from the lady I was speaking to, that she was not actually sitting in an office as I’d presumed but taking the call in the garden as her husband and partner in business was noisily trying his hand at DIY.

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Working in an organisation to running your own business

I have over the course of the past 15 years or so had the pleasure of working for both large businesses, being self-employed, working for a small web design company helping it grow to be a large(ish) web design business and back to being self-employed again, running a small web design business alongside my partner (in life and business) from our home in Kendal. Each of these experiences come with their highs and lows but without wanting to or willing to write ‘war and peace’ I’ll start by taking a step back to Autumn 2014 when we first discussed working together.

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Eating, Sleeping and Working Together

It seems working with your other half comes with a whole bunch of health warnings. Supportive comments were received in abundance from friends and family when we told them that we planned to go into partnership. There was of course the genuinely supportive who wished us the best and shared our excitement. There were those who cared and would laugh with me at what going into business with the man you’re with might actually mean. There were the sarcastic ones. The ones who cracked up about who would be working for who, who would be making the tea, who would be whose secretary… You get the gist and as mostly well-intentioned I will leave my feminism gable in the kitchen drawer for now. Particularly as my own father was the main culprit.

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