Reflections after 19 years


This month Partners With You enters its 20th year of trading. I can’t quite get my head around that and nor can I believe that 19 years ago I left full time and fully paid employment.

So, what have I learnt since December 2000?

If I wrote an article a week for the next year, I don’t think I could finish the list … however here are my top three.

1. “It’s easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission”.

Apparently, this was said by Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper but it was something first said to me in my mid-twenties by my then boss, the late Shelagh Regester.

It really wasn’t until I set up Partners With You that I understood the importance of this advice. What I have learnt is that it’s not enough to make a decision; whatever your decision, you must be confident to stand by it and willing to explain your thinking. So long as you have made the best decision you felt you could, based on the facts in front of you at the time (in my opinion) you won’t regret it. And don’t let hindsight throw you … we can all get everything 100% right when we know what the answer should have been!

2. Don’t waste time doing things more than once.

My mentor, Peter Thomson, tells a story of when a carpet fitter told him he never made a mistake. Peter asked him how come and the fitter said “I measure twice before cutting once, so that I don’t have to cut twice because I only measured once”.

Great advice whether you are a carpet fitter or not!

3. ALWAYS pay your bills on time.

End of!

No excuses!

Particularly if the supplier is a small business or individual. Always assume they don’t have a financial buffer – if you don’t pay … they don’t eat! 

It has been a tumultuous couple of decades and I’m sure you have learnt a thing or two too! So, what are your top learnings? Make a note in the comments below … I’d be interested to know.

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