One year in!!

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So, it’s been a year since Front Door opened its doors – and it’s been amazing!

Admittedly there have been some ups and downs and some of those downs can be attributed to navigating the world of HMRC – corporation tax (what a stinker!) - and IT issues.

But, here we are at the start(ish) of 2018 with a fresh cup of coffee and twelve months of experience. We may not be on Alan Sugar’s radar just yet but we did pretty well for our first year in business – but here are some of the lasting thoughts / lessons / feelings from 2017:

- To pitch or not to pitch: Last year, we won a lot of new business through networking, old contacts and word of mouth recommendations, but we also took part in some big old pitches – some successfully and some unsuccessfully. This got us thinking, we’ve written before about how to find the right agency and the importance of getting it right - which we still stand by – but is the pitch format still the best way to do this?

Our biggest pitches last year took me and my business partner out of the day-to-day running of the company for a decent amount of time and away from our existing clients. As a start-up business ourselves, this is time we don’t really have and can’t justify when you walk away empty handed. So where does this leave us? As a new business, should we or shouldn’t we pitch? The jury is still out…

- Recruit, recruit, recruit!!! One of the biggest things we did last year was take on our third member of staff. A huge step for two newbies in business but if there’s one lesson we learnt, it’s that if you’re thinking of hiring, you probably should have done it last month. Getting the right person on board to take our partnership to a threesome was one of the best decisions we made this year. Beth gave us the space we needed to think about the business and not just fire fight. Now we are four with the addition of Jess and we are already feeling the benefits of number four.

- Remember why you started the business: It has been a big year for us as directors. We’ve had peaks and troughs of business, times when there aren’t enough hours in the day and times when the days just drag on (damn you August) but it is VERY easy to lose track of why we started this business in the first place. We are both working mothers, we have both worked with PR and digital agencies from a client and journalist side, and we wanted to make things different and work differently. We have had to remind ourselves on a weekly basis about that – when the kids are ill, that parents evening comes at the wrong time or that press release you love didn’t fly. We did this for us, we did it for our great clients and we want to enjoy it. Flexible working is part of Front Door’s DNA - which has helped us recruit a great team who we hope we can keep forever! (Sorry I got a bit soppy there.)

So there it is, for what it’s worth – Front Door Communication’s first year in business in brief. It’s been a ball – sometimes a medicine ball, sometimes a bouncy ball – but it’s certainly been a learning curve that we have come out of unscathed, enthused and ready for year two. BRIING IT ON!!!

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