As I'm sat writing this, it's hard to believe that the end of this month will mark one year since I left my full-time employed job and became self-employed.
If someone had told me at the time that I would still be working as a self-employed consultant and would have built up a substantial client list within a year, I'm not sure I would have believed them.
I always knew branching out on my own would be tough, the decision alone was a difficult one to make but ultimately I knew it was what I wanted to do.
Now, one year on, I can honestly say it's the best decision I ever made. Don't get me wrong, my previous employer was a joy to work for which of course, made it harder to leave. However, I knew I'd wanted to work for myself for over 10 years but the timing never felt right.
Many people struggle with big career decisions such as whether to go for a promotion, change employer, change their entire career path or even to retire. None of these decisions are easy to make because ultimately, you're stepping into the unknown.
I've learnt some valuable lessons along the way, not only about business but also about people. I've had the pleasure to work with clients across different sectors which has given me a glimpse into a variety of working cultures.
Reflecting on the past year, I'm struck by the diverse nature of the clients and work I have undertaken. Due to my skills set being both learning and development (and HR) and also systems implementation, I do get a good mix of work which keeps me on my toes.
I've had the great pleasure of working with clients in the higher education sector which has been very rewarding in supporting them with their development goals and career aspirations. These people give so much to support students with their education and it has been wonderful to see their passion for this.
I've also been lucky enough to work with a number of charitable organisations including a wildlife trust, a hospice and a community federation (to name just a few). What I have noticed in each of these organisations is the passion that people dedicate to the work they do. Whether it be to maintaining public wildlife sanctuaries and parks, nursing people through what can be the toughest time of their lives or bringing communities together to create relationships and support groups, it has truly been my pleasure to work with each of these clients.
So, it's been a fantastic year and I wouldn't change a thing, so what's next?
Well, over the next couple of weeks I will be launching my online Microsoft Excel course which will cover all levels from basic to advanced. I will also be doing more work on our online 360 degree feedback tool and will be posting out a special offer for the first clients to sign up.
I am also looking to expand my client base so will be getting out and about, meeting new faces and building new relationships which I can't wait for.
I'd like to say a huge thank you to all of those that have supported me over the past year, it's been amazing and I can't wait to see what the next year brings.
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