• Starling Start

One Year Later

Always seeking inspiration from other people and always interested in better ways of doing things, right now I’m reflecting on a year of independence: running my own business.

My first inspiration is from The Edible Flower. Each year they share their business inside and out and I love reading. It’s a lovely blend of business and creativity and family. It is value driven. Their most recent post includes 2 gorgeous quotes. The first is Patti Smith quoting William S Burroughs. So here I quote The Edible Flower quoting Patti Smith quoting William S Burroughs:

“Build a good name. Keep your name clean. Don’t make compromises, don’t worry about making a bunch of money or being successful. Be concerned about doing good work. Protect your work and if you build a good name, eventually that name will be its own currency.”

The second quote is at the very end of their blog post, so I’m encouraging you to read.

Last year I was introduced to a business mentor. My second inspiration, Dorothy McKee. Dorothy is a very successful business consultant and lecturer and her first advice to me was to stick to your own set of values. I have my Always Valued and Never Valued lists on the wall in my studio, and I revert to them frequently. They help ground me. Dorothy has since invited me to be at her monthly ‘Making sense of the Madness’ party (on zoom obvs.) whereby a small group of academics, social activists and creatives have been engineering a new idea, based on published market research, personal learning and a lot of good energy. We’ve never worked together before. It might be a wreck. It might be very special. Watch this space.

My father ran his own business, but I was never encouraged to follow entrepreneurship. I’m not sure why. I’m imagining if my father had to map his personal values, they’d be pretty similar to mine. So my third inspiration, Hugo. I’m channeling Hugo’s curiosity, his quiet observations, his ability to analyse and always find solutions. And better ways of doing things.

Credit to all who have made Year One so great, including but not limited to:

Adam at Daisy Chain Inc.

Aisling and Katie at Studio Idir

Ali and Mimi at The Strand Arts Centre

Betsy at Betsy Bailie

Brona and Mary at Arts & Business

Cara at Tate Exchange

Chris at Linen Quarter BID

Ciarán at RSUA

Dorothy at Dorothy McKee Consultancy

Esther at Haller Clarke

Jane at Jane Morrow

Karishma at Belfast Design Week

Sara, Hugh and Jenni at Film Hub

Tracy at Now Group

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