Small start-up companies are often so low on time and resources they need to cut corners for the short term, to give some time for income to be made and ends to be met.
When I began a small independent theatre company straight out of uni I relied on all of my friends and family for their time, energy and skills. I found myself using the graphic design services of an uncle, the computer programmes of a friend and the van of my grandads, all on a weekly basis. Even the photo software of my graphic designer! I now realised there are free photo edit programs available online. All in all, I felt like a complete drop kick, always asking for favours and feeling like it would be so long until I would be able to repay them.
Within six months I had the show on the road, touring the country with a fifteen person team. Within two years I was managing a venue and using it to promote my independent shows.
Now, I am in the position where I have repaid all of these favours in some way or another. I have more time to devote to nourishing relationships with them and have offered my time and knowledge many times in support. I actually feel that through relying on them, I have been able to create an even closer bond. By asking them those few hard favours, I have given in to my own pride and shown that I really need them. Everyone wants to be needed right?
I speak to people every week who are wanting to start their own idea which will progress into a business. I always say ‘just do it’ and they look at me like I am an alien asking them to jump into my spaceship. I know that with basically nothing behind me except a whole lot of courage, I started my own business and did my own thing. Without this I would have been just another management graduate, specialising in the arts, waiting for someone to call me to offer a junior position.
Just do it. And no matter how far you get, never stop cherishing the friendships and the family bonds which have helped to get you there.
For a short while I let it all go to my head. I was lucky to make the right decisions and move into another challenging stage in my life. This has brought me closer to everyone once again. Through taking your own ideas on and creating something which exemplifies them, nothing will ever be difficult again. So buy a notepad and start scribbling.