Today we are introducing you to small business owner, Cheann whose business has changed her life for the better.
Cheann joined a women’s group to learn some new skills, but she quickly found a passion for arts and crafts. She decided to turn this into a business and open Cheann Wickham Creations but she didn’t expect that it would turn her life around. With business coach Gordon’s support, Cheann has gained confidence in her ability to be a small business owner and has big plans to grow her product range in the near future.
Read what she has to say about her business journey so far.
My business name is Cheann Wickham Creations, and I sell candles and soaps at the moment but I would like to expand to also sell jewellery and resin. I have been doing this since May.
I was a stay-at-home mum. I had some challenges with my mental health. I was part of a women’s group where they teach you all sorts of arts and crafts. This became a hobby for me, and it was something for me to do and to focus on. Gordon came to the women’s groups to tell us about Many Rivers and my counselor suggested that I turn this passion into a business.
I ordered some materials online. My first product was facial scrubs and then I moved to candles. Now I am making designs with my soap such as animals and flowers. It is good because it gives me something to feel motivated to do. I feel better within myself.
In the beginning, it was a bit nerve-racking because I thought I was not good enough to be a small business owner. Gordon really helped me work through this and not be discouraged by this. He reminded me that with time comes experience. Having my own business has been so good for my mental health.
Working With Many Rivers
Gordon helped me get my business ABN and learn the financial side of my business. He is also helping with my marketing and sales, showing me how to talk to customers and get connections. It was really helpful when he showed me how to do the Many Rivers Cashbook and Record-Keeping Kit. He gives little tips on pricing between different products to make sure that I am not ripping myself off or my customers. One problem I had was thinking no one would pay for one $10 candle and then $10 for postage. Gordon suggested that I put it all into a bundle with other products such as body wash and body lotion.
I often don’t like meeting new people because I feel intimidated. Meeting Gordon made me feel confident and comfortable. He is so bubbly and easy to chat with. Any questions that I have he is right there to help me. I can give him a call if I was stuck, and he will give me his opinion. His knowledge is the most useful support I have received from Many Rivers.
I got a loan from Many Rivers and I used it for stock. For example, jars and wax so that I can make the candles.
The initial meeting with Gordon was a big challenge for me because I have a hard time meeting new people. I am used to being at home so getting out and meeting new people is out of my comfort zone.
Making sales and lots of them! With Gordon’s guidance, I knew I was going to be able to do it but I didn’t think it was going to pick up so quickly.
Biggest Change Since Becoming a Small Business Owner
I really cannot believe how much my mental health has improved in two months! I am so much more confident now. Right up until Gordon had the documents for the loan I was just waiting for him to tell me no, and that he cannot help me. But that never happened, I got the loan and now I am in business.
I am still learning to make products out of resin. There are so many different things that I can make to sell, such as bracelets. I look forward to learning how to make different types of products, selling them, and seeing the smiles on people’s faces. Creating something that someone is going to wear or use to make them happy makes me feel happy too.
Thank you Cheann for sharing your business journey with us. We look forward to working with you as your business journey continues. Stay tuned to Cheann’s business journey by following her on Facebook.
We love to encourage people to take the first step towards kick-starting their small business ideas. If you have a business idea, please take the Small Business Self Assessment and see if we are right for you.