"My family just told me to go for it"
11 March 2020
1 What inspired you to start your own business?
To be my own boss and not to be answerable to anyone except myself. Plus I needed a new challenge, but in a subject area I genuinely enjoyed. Lastly, I wanted a job with more of a physical element, as my previous career had become increasingly office based and sedentary.
2 What encouragement/support did you get from family/friends/peers/business networks /educational establishments on your path?
My family just told me just to ‘go for it’, which was just what I needed! I also contacted a few local businesses to ask for advice and they were very generous with their time and advice, which was a big help.
3 Were there any barriers?
Initially, whilst setting the business up, I was still in my full-time construction career, but this became impossible as there just weren’t enough hours in the day to do both. So, I took the plunge and left my job to concentrate on the new business full time.
4 Why did you choose to start a business in Sheffield?
I live here and I also felt there was potentially a good market for my products here.
5 Where do you see yourself in the next three to five years?
Just continuing to increase my customer base locally, but also to increase my sales nationally. I’d also like to expand the wholesale side of the business.
6 Profit aside what do you feel is your greatest achievement since starting your business? What is the most challenging thing and what is the most rewarding?
Getting my name out there – you need to use all the tools at your disposal – social media, incentives to encourage customer referrals, selling your products in other retail outlets which can give you good exposure, etc.
Every time I get a repeat or a new customer.
7 What advice would you give to others thinking about starting their own business?
Know who your potential customers are, where they visit, what they read, what they watch – and make sure they see you there.
8 Having worked with Business Sheffield – do you have a comment about our support?
Business Sheffield have been an invaluable source of advice and information both whilst getting my business up and running and also with our subsequent regular progress meetings. It’s free and is there whenever you need it.
If you would like to start or grow a business we can help, all of our business advice, workshops and networking events are free. Call us on 0114224500 or email us directly on firstname.lastname@example.org