No two weeks are the same for me, which I very much like, but this week was a particular mix of business, politics and family.
I try to achieve some consistency in my week whatever else is happening, by going to the gym every morning at 6am. A quick blast of espresso and I’m on the treadmill, letting the issues of the day swirl round my subconscious, whilst my legs do the walking.
By 8am I’m in the office, prioritizing tasks for the day. This last Monday I worked on various things to do with my interiors brand in the morning – licensing discussions and product choices – and then hot footed it to BBC Radio LONDON for my regular interiors slot with Jo Good. This Monday we were talking about the history of chairs.
After that I walked from Broadcasting House through the West End to Parliament, for a meeting with an MP about policy ideas for entrepreneurs. There are many issues we could be addressing around how best to promote and encourage entrepreneurship in the UK, and whilst trying to drive through a new piece of policy is quite difficult, it is something I very much want to do – and working alongside MPs is the way to achieve it.
From that meeting I walked back to Mayfair and the headquarters of KPMG, where I sat on a panel of female entrepreneurs for a discussion on behalf of the Microloan Foundation. It was a wonderful evening with a large and engaged audience, which I hugely enjoyed.
I normally handle calls as I walk, which is a good way to combine exercise with business efficiency!
Whenever I have an evening event I try to stick to two rules – go easy on the alcohol and try to get back for some family time. I spent the last few hours of the day at home talking to my kids and finding out how their day had gone. With their combined interests of fencing, jazz music, acting and impending A levels, there is always much to talk about.
So that was Monday. Tuesday was office based. Wednesday was a combination of office, preparing for the upcoming TSV broadcast at QVC and having a PR meeting to see how we can achieve higher visibility for my not for profit foundation Make It Your Business, helping women to start their own business. Thursday I focused on designing some new products for a new licensing agreement and on Friday i finished the week in Kent, at an MIYB session led by our Local Champion who also happens to be the Small Business Minister Kelly Tolhurst.
Being an entrepreneur is all about creating your own opportunities and driving forward your destiny – taking responsibility really. Over the years I have come to embrace this as a way of life, and whilst it requires a lot of energy, the rewards of independence, financial freedom and self determination are priceless. I wouldn’t have it any other way.