HAPPY BIRTHDAY SEE Ahead!
22nd May 2021
Wow – I cannot believe it’s 10 years since we incorporated! Back in early 2011, we knew the government was going to pull the plug on funded business support, but we also knew there was a need for what we did. We are passionate about social enterprise & the VCSE sector and knew that the advice and support that they needed had to be given by people who understood the sector. A contract was advertised, and we knew we could deliver it…. so that was it: a Business Plan was written, some strategic planning undertaken, and we were a social enterprise and a registered company before we knew it! And the rest is history, as they say, however we did not get the contract so more thinking and planning was needed.
Being part of SEE Ahead for the three of us has given us so much pleasure, flexibility, pride mixed with some tough times. We have been the masters of our own destiny, but it has not always been easy especially in a difficult landscape where funding has been cut everywhere. We knew that we could not just talk the talk we needed to walk the walk too. If we were advising social enterprises and those who were looking at self-employment then we had to be a social enterprise and we had to have experience of self-employment and undertaken all the legislation, planning and hunting for business that our clients do.
At any one time, only 2 of us have been employed by SEE Ahead whilst the third has been an unpaid non-executive director in line with our ethos. We have worked fulltime, part-time and taken other jobs as business and our personal lives have directed. We know how difficult running your own business or leading a small social enterprise can be – we have been there and are still there, but it is oh so rewarding too! You plan your own diary, you can do the school run, take the afternoon off when the sun is shining and cricket is being played and bask in the knowledge when another contract is won that it is down to you and your reputation and if a piece of work does not match our ethos or values, we can say no, it is not for us.
We may not have won that first contract 10 years ago but when it was advertised 2 years later, we had a good reputation, a track record and contacts to form a partnership. We won the tender and 8 years later we are still delivering on it.
We are all looking forward to the next 10 years and what they will bring for SEE Ahead and those we work with. Our phones are always on, so feel free to give us a call to see if we can help you on your journey too.