How five years has flown by.
When we switched on our laptops to start Agent Public Relations back in 2013, little did we know how quickly half a decade would fly past.
Research shows that four in ten small companies don’t make it five years.
Small business survival rates are as high as 91 per cent after one year of trading, but after five years, just four in ten small businesses will still be trading.
Looking at the stats, information and communication-based businesses and retailers have the highest new business survival rates after one year, with businesses in the health and education sectors faring the best longer-term with more than half launched still trading after five years.
Our client spread has featured many of these sectors since we started. We now have retailers, education and health experts, property developers and professional services – but what we really have is a great group of contacts and friends who really like and respect what we do.
Clients who have become friends, media connections that we can rely on and creative thoughts that helps to bring column inches in print, online headlines and messages across the airwaves meaning we can continue to make sure that they are our priority every day.
Did I ever see myself as an entrepreneur? I suppose I’d seen flourishes in my past. Now working for ourselves and launching a small business has become a rewarding career option.
We direct the culture of our company and by being in the driver's seat, we make the decisions on how best to steer our company - whether that means the type of clients we want, how best to operate day-to-day and when and where we work. We are lucky to sit next to our pets while we work most days!
There's no question that owning your own business is a risky proposition. But, with risk comes reward. You learn quickly about the different challenges, but the benefits are many.
We have learnt to recognise good opportunities from bad ones, how to create exit strategies for bad situations and how to maximize the good ones. The most fun is to work on an idea with a client and watch the media snap it up and see the client revel in the response.
We do try to be creative and learn something new. The great thing about owning a small business is that we rarely experience the same day twice. Whether it’s something about finance and accounting, new communication methods and platforms, client requirements and even new words in the English language.
The most important factor is that we really love our work and have fun in what we're doing. We move quickly and get things done, are proactive and our USP of having two senior staff means we don’t delegate work to junior staff which means the high standards are maintained.
We thrive on dealing one-on-one with our best clients and we have a real sense of pride in what we have established and built over time with our ability, ideas and effort.
Our clients are interested in us and our story, but our message to them is - it’s about you, not us!