Why did you become self-employed?
Becoming self-employed enabled me to work with flexibility and freedom so that I could explore and develop my craft in the directions I wanted to go.
What main challenges have you faced whilst being self-employed?
Being self-employed has enabled me to drive my career forward and take control of my decisions, however, there have been many challenges along the way. In the early years reaching a large client base was difficult, until I started working with some fantastic galleries. The nature of cabinetmaking has also meant that cash flow has been tricky at times.
I am incredibly lucky to be doing a job I love and have a huge passion for, nevertheless one of the biggest daily challenges I have is been able to pull myself away from the workshop and the job I love to get the work-life balance just right.
How do you make it work? (Are you full-time self-employed, or part-time?)
I am a full-time self-employed; however, I do a little part-time teaching which is a fantastic job, passing on my craft knowledge to the next generation. This also helps even- out cash flow.
Do you have one piece of advice you would like to share about being self-employed?
Get in front of potential clients as soon as you can, speak to them face to face and let them see the quality of your work and how passionate you are for your craft. It may be a day in a local gallery or a 5-day show in central London, each time you speak to a potential client is invaluable when building sales, future commissions and client relationships which may go on for many years.
Photo Credits: Darren Hull, Phill Mayne and Mathew Lacy