Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Banishing the business blues with a little help from The White Company

Chrissie Rucker, founder of The White Company

Work... more precisely the business I run with my husband is always on my mind, but just lately it's been pre-occupying me... a lot.

Naturally when Mummy was ill, I stepped away from the day to day running for a few months, only doing what I absolutely needed to do, leaving Mr LMLD to keep things ticking over. But, if I'm honest I'm struggling to get back into the swing of things. That coupled with a very stressful few months due to the nature of the business we're in, have led to many conversations over the best way forward in order for the business to continue to flourish and for us both enjoy what we are doing. After all if you don't enjoy what you're doing you aren't going to put your heart and soul into it are you?

We have a great mentor, my father, who over 25 years built up his own very successful company and we are very lucky to always have him on hand for the advice and guidance we need, but I am always on the look out for other role models to draw inspiration from. Cue an evening hosted by Red Magazine with Chrissie Rucker, founder of The White Company, talking about "How To Be Your Own Boss" which I was delighted to be able to attend earlier this month.

As soon as I read about the event, I knew it would be the perfect tonic to my business blues and Chrissie was, as I expected, truly inspirational. I drew comfort from a shared empathy of starting a business during a recession; building a brand with little or no budget; juggling work whilst raising a family and dealing with and getting through unexpected events.

It's the savvy lessons that Chrissie shared, however, that really motivated me and gave me a much needed boost to my belief in being able to run a business. Know your strengths and weaknesses; delegate; live, breathe, sleep your business as your customer; grow strong and safe. But for me the single, most important thing that Chrissie said was "Focus on what will make the biggest difference and do it well, rather than try to do everything". This belief is at the heart of The White Company and is the brilliance behind its success. It jolted me into remembering that three and a half years ago this was exactly the reason why we set up our business, this was our niche in our marketplace.  I realised that somehow (perhaps not surprisingly) this focus has got lost this last year and we need to put it back at the top of our agenda.  As Chrissie said, the beauty of running your own business is that you have a choice and I think we have both forgotten this along the way, hence my lack of enthusiasm. Recognising this has been liberating and exciting, suddenly tasks that have been daunting me seem achievable and the path to a successful and happy future for our business clearer. 

So thank you Chrissie and Red Magazine for giving this business owner back her vision! 

Chrissie  also spoke about her recent launch of The White Heart Foundation, giving money and support to three  charities: The Prince's Trust, Kids Company and Refuge. You can read more about it here.

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