Friday, 3 January 2014

Well Hello 2014!

I’m willing to acknowledge that there’s nothing original about reflecting on the year that’s passed and thinking about the year ahead. But I’m going to do it anyway. And I’m doing this not least because 2014 marks a significant milestone for Park Lane Research.

It was twenty years ago this month that I decided the time was right to start my own business and twenty years ago this month that I set up shop at 352a Park Lane. In that time we’ve gone from renting an adjoining ‘shack of dreams’ (see below) to owning the whole building, and in that time we’ve worked with an array of amazing clients, some of whom have supported me from the start to now.
It seems strange to consider that the time at which I set up in business was potentially quite precarious from a family point of view. There was I the main ‘breadwinner’ selling the idea to Claire that of course everything would be fine with the new business. I’d worked out a ‘survival budget’ and once we’d passed that, it would be plain sailing…

And there was Claire, coming to terms with cutting back her working hours in order to cope with our first baby. That was baby Sophie of course, who has recently joined me as a Marketing Executive in the business. That was baby Sophie who we forgot we had one night and nearly ended up going out for a meal forgetting she was upstairs asleep.

It’s easy to say now but from my first day in business, there has never really been any looking back to a time when I might not be working for myself. I remember the first groups I ran in Norwich in my first week – driving home and rather than bemoaning my misfortune at another late night, thinking this was my choice and this was how I wanted things to be, this was for me, this was for my family.

So it’s not always been plain sailing and starting a new year has always felt daunting. Will anyone ever want to work with me again? Will this year be as good as the last? These are questions that continue to haunt my January days.

And so far the phone has continued to ring; the jobs have continued to come in. But that doesn’t stop you wondering, and doesn’t stop you being grateful to those who do still recognise you’re committed to what you do – and appreciate you’re pretty good at what you do too.

So here’s to the special year for us which is 2014, and you’ll be hearing more about our anniversary celebrations in the coming year.

In the meantime, I genuinely hope this can be a successful year for whoever chooses to read this blog too.
Cheers! Barrie