Good news from Doing Good Business!

Good news from Doing Good Business!

Tash Bright No Comment

Charlotte’s Story

After Charlotte had her two boys, as all new parents are she was run off her feet without a minute to spare in the day but at the back of her mind she wanted to stage a return to paid employment.

Like all new parents, the challenge of balancing earning an income and caring for her children meant Charlotte needed a role which would fit around her care responsibilities. ‘I’d always had an interest in beauty treatments and having done work successfully on the nails of friends and family, I decided it might be a good idea to set up my own business doing that.’ She says.

‘I was really nervous about losing the stability of my benefits though but really wanted to earn my own living.’ She continues.

Charlotte was introduced to Paul Davies from the Doing Good Business programme by the Jobcentre who worked with her on producing a viable business plan which was also used to apply for the New Enterprise Allowance which helped bridge the gap whilst she was setting up in business. Doing Good Business also paid for Charlotte to go on a High Definition Brows course to expand her range of services and she completed a Social Media workshop which has helped enormously with the promotion of her business.

Lottie’s Designer Nails is up and running in Chesterfield, redesigning customers’ nails and producing beautiful brows and lashes. ‘I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone at Doing Good Business. Paul was immensely helpful in preparing me for what I needed to do in order to apply for the New Enterprise Allowance scheme, which I genuinely wouldn’t have been able to do on my own. He is very encouraging, supportive and informative with nothing being too much trouble.’ She says.

You can find Lottie’s Designer Nails at www.lottiesdesignernails.co.uk and on her Facebook page @lottiedesignernails 


Stuart’s Story

Stuart had not worked for over five years due to illness. Hampered by physical limitations which meant that he would struggle to fit in with a 9-to-5 work pattern but very much focussed on a return to work, Stuart felt unsure about where to turn next.

‘I had developed good woodworking skills and wondered whether it would be possible to turn my skills into a small business as this would give me the flexibility I needed.’ Stuart says.

Stuart was referred to Doing Good Business by the Jobcentre. With his coach Paul Davies, he soon drew up a development plan. Paul and Stuart met regularly at Stuart’s home as he had no transport at the time, and worked on producing a business plan and cash flow forecast developing his sales and marketing skills, and understanding the legal issues around running a business.

‘It was so much more straightforward than I had imagined,’ says Stuart. ‘The support from Paul in helping me secure premises as well as understand and set up some of the business processes has been invaluable. I’m now making and selling items of furniture, as well as small gift items. I’ve even taken on some contract work fitting out a shop for a friend of a friend.’

The process of meeting regularly, setting goals and reviewing progress and dealing with specific training needs enabled Stuart to keep focussed on what he wanted to achieve, and helped to build his confidence. ‘I honestly do not know what I would have done If I hadn’t contacted the Doing Good Business programme. A massive thank you for your past and on-going support.’ He says.

You can find Stuart’s business at www.rusticfurnitureuk.co.uk or via his Facebook page, @SJ-Upcycling.


Yvonne’s Story

After a need to relocate to Chesterfield left Yvonne Genas frustrated with an unsuccessful job hunt, she turned to her great passion, Jamaican food. ‘I’ve always loved Jamaican food and am passionate about cooking.’ Says Yvonne. ‘I dreamed about opening a restaurant or take –away but knew this may be too much as a first step.’ She continues.

Yvonne decided to set up a Jamaican food delivery service based from her home and approached Paul Davies of the Doing Good Business programme for help as she knew that there was a lot that she needed to learn about running a business, but wasn’t sure what.

Over the next few months Yvonne produced menus, a cashflow forecast, spoke to the council and had her kitchen inspected and began looking at how to market the business. Paul introduced her to a local community hub where she ran a pop-up restaurant, and Yvonne began running a stall at a local food market. She also attended a social media workshop organised by the programme which helped with her promotion.

The business is now up and running with a growing, loyal customer base. Yvonne takes and cooks the orders and her partner Tony delivers them. She has also run two restaurant events at a local pub, both of which were sold out.

‘When I first decided to start up my business, I had no idea about all it would entail. When I started meeting with Paul I didn’t feel that confident about the things I needed to think about, certain things that needed to be done.’ She says.

‘I don’t know what I would have done without his advice, and continued support.’

You can find Yvonne’s Paradise Kitchen on her Facebook page:
 @Yvonnes-Paradise-Kitchen


Joe’s Story

Joe had always dreamed of being able to develop a new food business that offered fast take away food with healthy options at affordable prices delivered with a smile! So he set up Gothic Bites.

After securing a regular pitch on Shirebrook Market Square, I tapped into my local network to gain invites to other sites and special events including dog shows, charity days, bike rallies and fishing competitions.’ Says Joe. ‘Although I had my van and business underway I realised it was time to get some help on the business side of things.’

That’s when Joe decided to look for help from Doing Good Business programme. The Doing Good Business programme has helped Joe by giving his the knowledge and skills to promote the business as well as a listening and friendly ear to talk through what needs to be done. ‘Getting help from Doing Good Business really helped me with the running of the business and made sure I was doing my books right.’ He says. ‘Knowing I had this side of things in order, made it so much easier for me to get on with getting my business going and delivering excellent customer service.’ He continues.

Having this support and being able to focus on delivering his product to his customers has meant Joe has already gained a 5-star hygiene certificate from Bolsover District Council.

‘I’d recommend Doing Good Business to anyone who has a business idea but isn’t sure about whether it’s viable or isn’t sure about how to take it forward and needs some advice.’ He says.


Lee’s Story

Lee had been made redundant and decided that he wanted to turn his hobby as a drone pilot into a business. Lee already had his equipment, was licensed and insured, and was also approved by the Civil Aviation Authority with the Permission for Commercial Operations (PFCO) permit to fly commercially both indoors and outdoors in the UK.

Lee’s license and insurance was certainly a head start, but he needed assistance to fully set up his business. Lee received help from Doing Good Business to deal with his biggest worry, making sure his taxes were correct. ‘When you’re in work that all gets done for you. You need to get this right, there are no grey areas,’ he says.

Lee says ‘Starting up a business can be a roller coaster of emotions; great when things are flying but worrying when business slows down.’

Doing Good Business were able to provide one-to-one support to Lee to make sure that his business stayed on track. One of Lee’s tips when starting out is to make sure you have a bit of money behind you. Unless you are very lucky a business is slow to start and you have to spend at least a bit of money when you begin for things like business cards.

Lee’s drone business is going from strength to strength and you can see some of the great drone photographs and videos on his website.

Viewing the world from a different angle has lots of uses, including promotional, event and wedding videos and photographs. Drones can also save businesses a lot of money on technical work such as inspecting buildings, roofing and guttering – it’s far cheaper then sending someone up in a cherry picker and you have a permanent record of the inspection you can share. Lee has done a lot of work for estate agents, developers and recently carried out an inspection of a derelict church in Hull!


Doing Good Business is funded by Big Lottery and the European Social Fund.

How you can help

Our charity is dedicated to helping Sheffield's young people to reach their full potential and achieve the best out of life, whatever their starting point. To help us to do more to support young people and communities we need your help. Just remember, every penny you donate will make a difference.