I was asked last week if our small business is ready for expansion..Good question! How do you know? The only way I can answer is from pure instinct.. and the answer is yes we are! We have spent the last 6 months sorting out systems, and our back office, working through a very complicated re-branding process and preparing a new marketing strategy so now we are ready to be noticed.
More importantly I think it’s not so much that the company is ready – it’s more to do with.. do we have the right team in place to move the company forward? And that got me thinking .. do we???
We are a very small team but a very good one – with different characteristics and quirks but for some reason we all just gel. I have always disliked company politics and vowed that when I had my own company, I would have a team that had fun working together without ego and without titles (what do they mean anyway?)
So let me introduce you to our number 35 team..
Firstly there’s me.. I am probably the biggest nightmare to work with! As Niv puts it, I have 2 very very different brains. One is the blue sky thinker – always working on the big picture, seeing the company’s vision and having the tenacity of never giving up. I open doors which often seem firmly shut. The downside to that part of me is that I sometimes go off on a tangent and expect the others to know where I am and wonder why they don’t catch up quicker!
The other side of me is the terrier that picks up on every little morsel to do with the business.. I unfortunately know every bill, every client and every price that comes in and out of the company.. very dull but I think imperative. As you can imagine these 2 sides are diametrically opposite, which means I can come sometimes come across as quite mad!
Next we have Niv.. she is the brains of the company BA, MA.. nothing’s out of her capability! Heaven knows why she loves working at number 35.. Niv is one of the key organisers.. nothing is too big or small for her brain. She sorts our production, sampling, trimmings.. etc. Bigger companies would have 3-4 people doing that job – we don’t! We have Niv.
Our second major organiser is Nicci. OMG is she organised!! She’s another little terrier (she is little!) Give her EON, BT, DHL you name it, no organisation is too big for Nicci to infiltrate – explain the problem to her clearly and she will find you a solution. She organises me, our production timeline, our Chelsea showroom.. the clients, the made to measure.. she’s quite unbelievable. I know when a job needs to be done.. Nicci will do it.
Then we have the mad one of the team.. Kristina. She is our in-house model, pinterest junkie and our marketing and web ideas creator.. (wait and see what happens when our re-branding comes into effect) Kristina is one of the youngest of our team, but quite frankly she’s also the oldest, baking us cakes, cookies and cheesecake.. Think we may have our roles reversed.. But we like it like that!
Finally we have Liza, probably the calmest of the lot. Nothing flusters Liza.. from going to our tailors and taking the flack from Paul because we nicked all their suit carriers and we forget to take them back, to running from Shoreditch to Kings Cross to Highgate and back to Kings Cross to pick up a pattern, which wasn’t there or I couldn’t find it.. (I know, that’s totally inefficient, and stupid) but she didn’t utter a word of complaint. The perfect antithesis to the all the rest of our madness.
So all in all, I think as far as the team goes, we have a good balance 2 organisers, 2 creators and 1 calm quiet deep thinker. But I have to say what actually makes things work within number 35 is that we have fun along the way! We try not to sweat the small stuff and we just laugh our way through the bad times and enjoy the good and more than anything that for me constitutes the perfect team for the perfect company!