One year in business - what I've learned

Posted by Renata Lardelli on

I never, ever, ever wanted to own a business but I did want to work in a cute shop. Jeremy (my husband) on the other hand has always wanted to be a business owner so here we are satisfying us both - I work in a cute shop & he gets to own a business. Before this Jeremy had dabbled in many things but they never ever took off & I'd had trouble supporting him in his ideas. One day we sat down & decided that we should do something together because after all we were a team & Little Mash almost fell out of the sky. We've owned Little Mash a year now & here's three things I've learned;

  1. It's so much more than wrapping parcels - I'm not so naive that that's all I thought I would do but I did deeply underestimate the amount of work running a small business is. It never, ever, stops. What I'm most proud of is what we've learned in 12 months. I think back to our very first day, there was a glitch with the switch over so we had no power & no internet, we were open but there were a few hours where we couldn't even trade. We didn't know how to manage the website, manage stock levels, analyse reports & so much more. 12 months in & we're still learning new things, we're still not peaking, we still feel behind the eight ball but that excites us because it means there is opportunity for growth & we're dreaming big here & working hard for the future of our boys.
  2. Opposites attract - Jeremy & I are very different & I think that's why we work well together. I'm quite literal, I like to get in the nitty gritty & Jeremy is a big picture thinker, he dreams big too. He's the ideas man, the visionary & I'm the executor. It wouldn't work if we were too alike. You've gotta bring different things to the table. Your core values should align but your skills & talents should be different striking a nice balance. The dream is that someday (hopefully sooner rather than later) we'll be working together everyday, we dream about the potential when can both be all in but for now Jeremy works for Fonterra & is the Bishop of our Church, I run Little Mash & work a small number of midwifery hours & on top of all that there is life & we do the best we can at juggling it all. 
  3. People who love you want to help you, let them! In our first days & weeks at Little Mash friends helped with the website, hung new stock, swept floors, popped in to say hello & brought me lunch & much, much more. The people in your life that show up to do these things do it because they love you & they support you. Nobody sweeps floors if they don't want to. In the past I would have graciously thanked people for their sweet offers but politely declined however, I’ve got a new rule now - I don’t deny anybody’s effort to do good. Why?! Because I know how good it feels to give & oftentimes there’s a reason behind the impression you had to do it in the first place. Sometimes the act will bless your life as much as it’s blessing the person you’re doing it for. Kindness makes the world go round, you get back more than you gave - always! 

On our 1 year anniversary Jeremy left me these notes - these are his thoughts;

"It's been 12 months & its been a crazy but awesome time. This wasn't in our plan but we decided to give it a go anyway & I'm glad we did. Although it's been really, really challenging what we've learned about each other & the new skills we've grown has been enormous & worth it. I love to work with you, we've learned to ride the highs & the lows together. You know I'm full of optimism, the future looks awesome. Happy 1 year".⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

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