We’ve known about Station Court for a while – offices and meeting rooms over Porters Coffee Shop in Colwyn Bay. The building was gutted and redesigned a few years back and now houses a very successful social enterprise working with many local folk.
What we didn’t know was that Communities First and CAIS run a project called ‘Just the Business’ out of Station Court and 22 Station Road. They deliver free training courses and networking events for new businesses and people thinking of self employment in Conwy. This includes networking and information events; 1-1 business advice; free workshops and training; practical support and retail opportunities.
Last night we met Jen Dutton, the Communities First Officer for the Conwy Communities First in Colwyn Bay for an Info & Networking evening “Working from Home”. It was 5-7pm which is ideal for dropping in after work and a very nice buffet was set out before the meeting. The workshop was primarily aimed at the army of business owners in Conwy county working from home and around 30 attended.
First we heard from Jayne Bellis from PennySmart, a community interest company based in Chester but working across North Wales. They provide money advice, education and training services with a special focus helping people starting up in business get to grips with their finances.
As someone who was employed in an office for 25 years, and has only worked from home for the last 3 years, I am very happy to take whatever advice is going on how to be a more effective homeworker.
Homeworking really isn’t for everyone. It can often be difficult to stay motivated on the days when you don’t see any other humans. Sometimes you can go through an entire day and you’ve only spoken to the dog. But no one is an island; we were designed to live in community and help each other get through life.
Sandra Donoghue, founder of the Business Network Mingle for Business, was the main speaker – giving her background of running a successful recruitment company across North Wales. Sandra employed a good number of staff and was used to being surrounding by buzz and activity all day. When Sandra sold the company she then faced being self employed on her own wishing the phone would ring and really struggling with isolation. It was great to hear Sandra’s story and her honest account of what it really can be like to step out on your own in business.
Of course there are lots of benefits too – apart from the obvious cost-saving, we all agreed that self employed homeworking can be a great pleasure. It allows us great flexibility in time management and responding to our customers, that a fixed office environment would make more difficult.
If you want to know more about the courses run by ‘Just the Business’ head over to their facebook page ‘Just the Business Support and Networking Group’ or email them on communities.first@Conwy.gov.uk
I enjoyed it so much I’ve signed up for another course ‘Online Business Tools’ on Friday morning 10-1pm which I’m thoroughly looking forward to.
If you’re free on Friday 15 July, then make sure you sign yourself up for Just the Business’ free ‘Working from Home’ workshop, the first event hosted by Mingle Enterprise, a new branch of Sandra’s successful Mingle for Business Network. More details will be published very soon if you keep an eye on the Just the Business facebook page or Mingle for Business Events page
Oh, and by the way – the cupcakes went down a storm at the meeting and the leftovers carried joyfully away in goody-bags.
I’m Judith. I’ve been caking since 2012. I also love to write, photograph, travel, drink coffee and read books. This is my cake blog where you’ll find recipes, and baking tips and all my latest cake projects.
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