With businesses such as Peacocks and Jaeger going into administration, it’s no doubt that smaller businesses will have taken a big hit this year. We have always been advocates of kindness, and we appreciate now more than ever, the importance of supporting each other. As market research hounds, we have connected with many small businesses over the years, and given that 88% of UK businesses are family-run according to IFB, we thought what better place to start then there. After some light interrogation, here are some of the success secrets that we’ve learned from family businesses:

Something to Look Forward to: First up we met with Francesca Louise Arbery, from registered charity, Something To Look Forward To. Founded in 2015 by mum Fiona and stepdad Andy Coldron, following Fiona’s diagnosis of incurable breast cancer in 2013, the charity provides gifts and experiences to support those affected by cancer. With an emphasis on passion for the cause, they believe honesty, trust and love are all key ingredients to running a successful family organisation. To make a donation or find a gift for a loved one battling with cancer please click here.

Sports Runs in the Family: Established in 1976, it began as a small racket restringing shop in the back of a squash club. Fast forward to 1990 and the doors to Cliff Roe Sports open on Ascot High street, now specialising in running and tennis. Founded by a then British and County squash player, Cliff Roe, the business is now managed by his son Tom and has four working family members including mum Ed Roe and sister Nicky Leader. They pride themselves on providing the highest-level of customer service, whilst adapting to any challenges that arise as a team. As they say, team work makes dream work.

Reach for the Lasers: And let us introduce you to Annie Taylor Laxa, founder of Raising Ravers, a fun, festival-influenced clothing brand. Inspired by a love of music, art and family, RR was launched in July 2019. Designer, maker and mum Annie, is responsible for creating each beautiful piece, and tech wiz dad Rich brings together the vision on a digital level, whilst mini-raver Seren runs riot. Raising Ravers enjoy the freedom that running a family business brings. Their motto is ‘Work hard, play hard’ which we love, and we love their garms even more.

New ventures: Lucie and Olivia is an online jewellery business launched in 2020, by sisters Claire Chapman and Jo Cowan. Having run a successful bridal business together for many years, the sisters were forced to shut up shop this year as a result of the pandemic. But when one door closes, another door opens and so saw the birth of their next venture, Lucie and Olivia. Named after their two daughters, Jo and Claire we’re able to utilise their wealth of contacts and knowledge to curate a jewellery business with accessible pieces for everyone. They believe that trust, honesty, hardwork and friendship are all vital for running a family business.

Living the Dream: Having dreamt of moving to France for quite some time, Gemma and James Stokes finally took the plunge in 2019 and moved their family of four to the tranquil French countryside, to set up the beautiful events and glamping site, known as Reve Retreat. Whilst finding a work/family life balance can be tricky at times, the lifestyle and flexibility it provides has enabled them to create a business doing what they love; taking care of people and entertaining. After browsing through their website, we’re now dreaming up our next holibobs.

Leaders of the Tech Revolution: Digital Awareness UK, is a digital wellbeing organisation founded by award-winning sisters, Emma and Charlotte Robertson. Born from a desire to help people and strike up a business of their own, the digital sisters were able to utilize their corporate backgrounds and shared passion for tech, to create DAUK. On a mission to empower young people across the globe, they can be found campaigning in the media, in parliament, in schools and organizations, tackling topics such as addiction, sexting, and online abuse. As sisters, communication has always been key, supporting and respecting each other in a professional manner has enabled them to establish the leading family business, that is Digital Awareness UK. Talking to them gave us great insight into how we can feel positive about using tech and we love that they are educating the leaders of tomorrow on how they can to!

So, what’s the verdict? Communication, adaptation, trust and teamwork all play an important role in managing the everyday challenges. And if you can maintain some level of moderation, you’ll be able to enjoy the freedom and flexibility of a family business. Do you work with your tribe? We’d love to hear your secrets to success in the box below.

Podengo is not affiliated in any way with the above businesses. Nor, do we receive any affiliated fees if you decide to book or use the services of the above businesses. We are simply providing a spotlight for fellow small businesses. If you would like us to feature your business on our blog, please contact hayley@gopodengo.com.

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