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Wibu to close down my business and go to work for somebody else?

(32 Posts)
Fmaro Mon 15-Aug-16 23:44:17

OK, so I'm probably not a "conventional" poster in MN because, being a bloke, I'm not a Mum! 😉I stumbled across aibu months ago when searching for something online, and soon turned into a lurker as I love the honesty, and admittedly some of the really odd questions.

Posting this here as I know I'll get an honest answer, regardless of whether it's what I want to hear...whatever that may be, as I haven't a clue myself.

So, I'm almost 30 and after various career and personal twists and turns I currently run a struggling business consisting of a couple of shops. I've sunk everything I own into this business, plus more besides,and I do really enjoy what I do but when I'm struggling to pay myself anything at all really feel that my time and my efforts aren't worth anything anymore. Busting a gut for 10 hours and then spending the rest of the day worrying about all of the bills whilst eating a value ready meal isn't a great lifestyle.

Without going into detail and boring everybody to death, I had a rough start in life but eventually built myself quite a successful career within a big company. I then got myself into some bother, ended up with a criminal conviction and had to leave my career behind. I've always maintained my innocence, but had to accept the decision of the Court and get on with my life. I returned to study for a while, then invested everything into establishing my business which gets by but isn't successful really.

I never thought I would be able to work in the "professional" setting again, however frustrated with the business and the brick walls I keep hitting I polished my CV and fired it off. I've been contacted by a company and even being aware of my past they have offered me an interview tomorrow. It's for a much more junior position than I last worked in, but I've started from the bottom and worked my way up before so I'm confident I could do it again. And this time I know what I stand to lose, so I know I wouldn't put in that sort of position again where I could be accused of anything.

Income wise, even as a junior position it makes sense, I couldn't possibly earn less than I am doing right now! However winding up a business I've invested years of my life into, and so much money that I can't begin to imagine, is a tough call. Financially I'll lose a small fortune, and there are complications with leases and things that will hang over me for a long time no doubt, but then again I've already lost that money really as short of a miracle I could be working till I'm 90 to try to earn it back. Or it could go really Pete tong and is be left with no business, no assets and no income.

So, would I be unreasonable, if offered a job, to grab it with both hands and put myself back into the rat race? Sacrifice the business for my own sanity and self respect in what my time is worth?

PlanIsNoPlan Tue 16-Aug-16 00:14:41

YANBU. Grab this opportunity for now and whilst it might or might not lead to new opportunities it will work for you for now. You can go back to your business at another time but for now work for someone else, seeing as they have asked you. Make sure you work well for them and don't let your own 'ideas' get in the way; you can go back to your own business. Good Luck.

TendonQueen Tue 16-Aug-16 00:20:24

I'd certainly take the job. Is your business the kind of thing you could maintain on a smaller scale? Or is that simply not viable/ even more costly?

HereIAm20 Tue 16-Aug-16 00:20:47

Go for it! If the business is suckibg all life from you and not making enough profit to make it worth it to you perhaps the chsnge is what yiu need. However, do you think after being your own boss you can cope with not being your own boss and haing to answer to others? Is it also a role that you can switch off from? How will you cope with dojng a more junior position and how might you feel if someone more 'senior' to you is in reality more junior? The grass isn't always greener. I am sure you have already thought of sll this so I am playing devil's advocate. It can only be your decision in the end.

On a personal note I left a highly stressful job because as a family unit we were financially able to sllow this to happen. It was very liberating to have a part time job where I could go home and not think about it until next time I was in.

HereIAm20 Tue 16-Aug-16 00:22:20

Wow - all my typos!! Stubby fingers on iphone in the darkgringrin

Beware of the sunk costs fallacy - just because you have spent time and money on something doesn't mean you have to stick with something if it isn't working out. If the job looks like a better option - go for it.

dominogally Tue 16-Aug-16 00:30:51

What are the overheads in keeping the business alive at least until you know the new job is a long term prospect?

dominogally Tue 16-Aug-16 00:34:24

Also is the new company an established one?

dominogally Tue 16-Aug-16 00:35:17

I should say new job opportunity, not company to avoid confusion!

Fmaro Tue 16-Aug-16 10:02:27

Thank you everybody for helping my head to overrule my heart on this one.

I think I know myself that, at least in the short term, it has to be the right decision for me - it's an opportunity I never expected to have, a chance to get back on my feet and whilst I may have lost a lot of money I stand a much better chance of making it back with a regular income than without one.

The new job opportunity is with one of the largest employers in the UK, so think they're a fairly safe bet. And whilst I'd never use an employer solely for that, getting back into the industry does provide me with a stepping stone into other roles in the longer term, if this one doesn't pan out as I would hope.

With the business being retail shops, it would be difficult to keep them running whilst I was working full time, but I'm not ruling the idea out. I guess it depends on the work hours on offer, and whether I can make it work. There's also potentially scope to keep the business ticking over online only, cutting out 95% of the overheads, something for me to investigate. I'd really need to be able to liquidate the stock I think though, as I'm going to be left with a massive lease liability if going down that route.

That's all something to worry about later though, for now I've got this interview at 10.30am and I'm determined to nail it. smile First time on that side of the interview table for a very long time, but I hope my experience of interviewing candidates will stand me in good stead.

Will let you all know how I get on, thanks again for your reassurances. x

DesignedForLife Tue 16-Aug-16 11:31:42


Could you sell the business off? Then you could possibly recoup some of the losses.

PrimalLass Tue 16-Aug-16 11:36:41

Go for it.

pluck Tue 16-Aug-16 12:54:27

I'm really impressed you can be so clear-eyed about such a stressful and unpleasant situation. I'm glad you're going for the interview.

Don't lose that ability to analyse life, either. Whatever your next step, you will need to keep moving on, as you move through life, and a "second chance" is never a permanent solution, as you know. smile

MrsMargoLeadbetter Tue 16-Aug-16 13:01:08

I think the job sounds like a good option.

I have lots of admiration for you. Starting a business is brave. You have also moved past a conviction. Even if you close down, you tried. It has probably made you a more attractive employee.

Good luck on Friday.

SirChenjin Tue 16-Aug-16 13:03:06

Unless your offer is from Sports Direct I'd say go for it - and good luck smile

MoonStar07 Tue 16-Aug-16 13:31:42

You sound like a strong brave person with a lot of determination. The fact you've continued with the business is testimony to that (is that the right word)?! I think now is the time to look after yourself and your mental and physical well being. I think jumping back on the PAYE bandwagon is definitely your best bet. You've not failed. You've carried on through adversity. All the best with your interview. If it's retail sorry an afterthought can you get a manager ?

Fmaro Wed 17-Aug-16 13:24:57

Sorry for the delay in updating folks, the interview didn't actually take place yesterday due to a mistake with the interviewers diary, but it's re-booked for tomorrow afternoon now. smile

Whilst a little frustrating, it did give me chance to chat to their recruitment team in a bit more detail, and it sounds like there may be some flexibility to the role and working hours, so I may be able to keep the business ticking over with some help. Still not sure how that would pan out, but it gives me some more options at least.

No, don't worry, not Sports Direct! It's a very large scale service delivery company.

Thanks again for all of your kind words and support - a bit of motivation without judgement is exactly what I needed.

Fmaro Wed 17-Aug-16 13:25:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SirChenjin Wed 17-Aug-16 13:32:13

Sounds like the perfect way forward. Hope it all goes well tomorrow smile

MrsMozart Wed 17-Aug-16 21:41:47

Everything crossed for you lad.

pluck Wed 17-Aug-16 23:25:02

Good luck!

fizzingmum Thu 18-Aug-16 04:13:12

OP, I have been in this same situation. I invested all of my savings and divorce settlement in a retail business that struggled to make money. For over 2 years I dipped into my savings to support a business that just wasn't making money. high rents, long leases etc contributed. I never slept with worry. Every customer that came through the door would be silently willed to please buy something. I had to take my kids in with me at a weekend and school holidays, working 6 days a week plus all of the admin and buying stock etc out of hours. Eventually I had to give up and go back into professional work. Whilst I felt like a failure at the time, it was the best decision I could have made. I accepted that the money was gone and I was never going to earn it back. My only regret was not doing it earlier. The lease was an issue but I found another tenant willing to take over it, maybe you could do the same? Sometimes you just need to know when to quit. I am now self employed and work my own hours as a consultant. No overheads and a secure, regular income. If you are going PAYE, I'm pretty sure you can claim a tax rebate on your self employed losses, meaning you can get at least some of your investment back in some way?! Best of luck with the interview. In a years time you will look back at this and realise it has all worked out for the best. X

Fmaro Thu 18-Aug-16 15:04:35

Thank you again everybody for your lovely comments. smile

I'm pleased to be able to report that today's interview went well, and that I've been invited to a second/final interview on Monday. Despite them being aware of my conviction, there is a slight concern that it will cause issues with their background checks, but having been totally open and honest about it they're confident that any issues can be overcome.

Now it's just a waiting game...and a frantic hunt for my birth certificate this evening, as my passport was stolen and hasn't yet been replaced!

acdcfan Thu 18-Aug-16 15:19:45

Sounds very promising! Good luck for Monday and keep us posted! smile

MrsMargoLeadbetter Thu 18-Aug-16 17:07:41

Well done. Fingers crossed.

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