Updated: May 7
As an ex-journalist I should maybe (definitely) have started my blog a little sooner. However, it feels apt that my first post should be about my experience as a guest on Rona Wheeldon’s wonderful new podcast, My Small Business & Me, where I talk about my career story, how I set up House of Dandelions, and run this business around my two small children.
Rona is well known in the flower world as an educator and trainer, and author of the inspirational Flowerona blog. She set up her new podcast to help small business entrepreneurs (not just florists) with practical advice, insight and tips on a massive range of subjects from personal branding and building a social media presence, to the importance of wellness and self-care as a small business owner. When Rona asked me to be a guest I instantly accepted. What a privilege. I listen to a lot of podcasts whilst I’m working, so to be interviewed on one was genuinely exciting.
I’ll admit, I experienced massive imposter syndrome initially, as Rona's other guests are people I aspire to and who all have incredibly inspirational stories. But after working through my own story and talking to friends, I decided I had a lot of useful stuff to share too. It was nostalgic going back over my career journey in preparation for chatting to Rona, and figuring out how this not-so-straightforward path of mine knits together. I used to think my CV was a bit arbitrary, but I can see now that everything I did and all the decisions I made were just little steps that got me to where I am today – namely, a shed surrounded by containers, bottles, ribbon, buckets, scissors and flowers. It’s a happy, creative place.
We talked via Zoom for over an hour (you can watch the video in full on YouTube - link coming soon) about all kinds of things, from my first journalism job at Country Living magazine, to where the name House of Dandelions comes from and what it means to me. I was very nervous to begin with. I spent 12 years interviewing other people, but have very rarely been on the other side. (I had a hot water bottle on my lap to help relax me!) Luckily, the standard technical hitches meant we had to record our intro three times. By then (and after a few more deep breaths) I felt more like a pro and the rest of the conversation flowed naturally.
I also talked about how it took having my two children and an editorship on a floral design magazine before I committed to House of Dandelions full time. I'm working this business around my children, so that I can try to blend my work and home life in a way that makes me feel fulfilled, challenged and happy, and have the flexibility to be there for them as much as possible. It's a constant work-in-progress, and I imagine that will always be the case, but it's one I enjoy.
As a journalist I was obsessed with other people’s career stories, and how they managed to juggle having a family with building a business. Last week I got to tell my story for the first time, and it felt really good. If you have time for a listen, I really hope it inspires you in some way.
If you want to know more about getting into floristry, or have a question about your own career path that I might be able to share a nugget of wisdom on, get in touch. DM me @houseofdandelions or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Do listen to Rona’s My Small Business & Me podcast too. You can listen via any podcast platform, on Spotify or via the website. There is so much information on there for budding or established entrepreneurs. I know I’d have appreciated this kind of content when I was just starting out.
And thank you, Rona, for such a wonderful opportunity. I loved it!