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not worked in over a decade and want to start a kids party business.??!!

(32 Posts)
Eeekblunders Fri 20-Jan-17 12:32:09

I've literally not worked in over a decade. TBH. I have almost zero work experience.
I've mostly enjoyed being a SAHM. However, now my youngest is at school I'm kind of twiddling my thumbs, counting the hours and getting quite depressed.
I'd love to work. But have a bad track record and am scared of egging it up.

A friend and I would like to set up an activity party/ holiday sports camp.
Have you set a holiday camp/ birthday party business and what are your tips and experiences.


mouldycheesefan Fri 20-Jan-17 12:36:49

No but I have used services from both.
I think insurance, staff crb checks etc are the first things to look at. Also do you really want to work weekends doing parties and school holidays running activity camps? Do you have childcare for your own kids whilst you do those things?

ghostyslovesheets Fri 20-Jan-17 12:58:15

What are your qualifications for running a school holiday camp - which I am thinking would need to be OFSTED registered and staffed correctly

Leeds2 Fri 20-Jan-17 13:00:20

Check out if there are any premises you could use, and how much rent you would have to pay to use them.

VladmirsPoutine Fri 20-Jan-17 13:01:34

It doesn't sound like you've done research. Have you considered health and safety? Insurance? Ratio's wrt staff?

ailPartout Fri 20-Jan-17 13:02:08

My advice is to write a full business proposal and have it looked at.

If you can't do this, learn.

When proven it is viable, follow through with your plan and good lck.

What stage are you at at the moment besides asking on MN if your should 'start a business'.

BreezyThursday Fri 20-Jan-17 13:07:57

Running a part for a couple of hours where presumably parents might be too is somewhat different to running a holiday camp.

If it's a boredom, rather than money, issue, why not see if you can go to college and do a course in childcare as a starter - something I'd expect most people working in such fields to have.

lalalalyra Fri 20-Jan-17 13:10:26

What kind of activity/sports camp are you thinking of?

lalalalyra Fri 20-Jan-17 13:17:07

When you say holiday camp do you mean like a playscheme/holiday club?

I'm the chair of a playscheme/out of school care. We're voluntary, but you'd have the same major things to do (you'd also have chasing up payments too).

DBS/PVG checks depending where you are based.
Funding - I spent 3 1/2 hours on a funding application last night and it's nowhere near finished (although you might not have the same applications if you are charging enough to make a profit)
Admin - the biggest nightmare in my life atm is the waiting list.
Equipment storage - particularly an issue if you are hiring a venue. We have permanant storage in the school yet I have 3 filing cabinets and half a garage full of stuff stored in my house because the stuff can't all be kept in the cupboard we have.

Have you thought about volunteering at a kids' club/playscheme for a while to see how much goes into it? People always underestimate how much work it is.

user1484317265 Fri 20-Jan-17 13:18:00

If you want to do market research take it to the right place. But it doesn't sound like you have any kind of actual plan, for a start kids parties and holiday sports camps are 2 wildly different things.

Do you have qualifications or experience in any of this?

Eeekblunders Fri 20-Jan-17 13:18:30

It would be a Multi Sport / Activity Party.
My friend is a sports coach and would initially run the sessions.
We were thinking of themed parties. Like football / basket ball and Mini sports day with a range of short games like sack race, tag, egg and spoon race.
The Holiday camp would be Multi Sports. So, an hour of football, an hour of obstacle courses etc.
It's true I've done very little research. I was just reaching out to anyone who had experience.

shakemysilliesout Fri 20-Jan-17 13:22:02

I'm being annoying but I think your reason for not wanting to be an employee is a bit strange and is holding you back, I don't know what happened before but I think you perceive yourself messing up? but I doubt you will, but running your own business it's much easier to eff it up and risks are much higher, I think go work this summer at a kids camp and see it from an employees perspective, learn, find your skills etc.

It's always hard getting back to work but running your own business in a industry you don't know is much harder.

MistressMaisie Fri 20-Jan-17 13:27:39

Sit down and draw up a business plan - which is a posh name for how much will it cost to set up and start it running.

So , hire of building .....X pounds per party
use of 2 vehicles to ferry toys/games, decorations to party........X per party
Cost of fuel to run 2 cars to party.................10 quid
Heating cost of venue per party...................Y quid
Cost of our childcare whilst we run party at weekends................Zquid
Cost of cake....................................................14 quid

etc Then once you've worked out that you make enquiries as to how much you might expect to charge per party.

How many parties might you expect to run per week.
Then work out monthly outgoings and proposed incomings.
If it isn't a large negative number - start making plans and firming up your business plan with actual quotes.

CommonFramework Fri 20-Jan-17 13:30:08

If you haven't worked in 10 years and have very little work experience, I think you should be wary of starting your own business. I'd decide what you want to do and get a job first, ease myself back into it - and meanwhile do lots of research on the business I wanted to start.

I'm not sure what you mean about having 'a bad track record' at work...

OneWithTheForce Fri 20-Jan-17 13:32:51

An acquaintance of mine set up exactly what you are thinking of a couple of years ago and it has been massively successful. She got premises and sublets it in the evenings to other clubs for indoor training as well. The one reason IMO that she has been so successful is that there was nothing else at all like this in our area. She runs 1 day camps on days that schools are closed for strike action for example. Basically if there is any time at all where any local school is closed she runs a camp.

MatildaTheCat Fri 20-Jan-17 13:43:50

Start by doing a course in business. Learn to do basic accounts, regulations and law, planning and projection, marketing and advertising. You can have the best ideas in the world but running a business is not the same as being a party planner or whatever. Having a business head is essential.

Eeekblunders Fri 20-Jan-17 15:48:38

Business course is a good idea.

Newtssuitcase Fri 20-Jan-17 15:51:00

With respect, are people going to pay for someone else to run a party where they do egg and spoon races and tag? Anyone can do that. Unless you're dirt cheap then surely it won't be worth it and if you are dirt cheap then you won't cover your costs with insurance, travel etc.

OneWithTheForce Fri 20-Jan-17 15:58:46

With respect, are people going to pay for someone else to run a party where they do egg and spoon races and tag?

Are you kidding me?? Do you have children? No-one does parties at home anymore. It's all soft play or climbing centre or sports centre. People pay £8-£15 per child attending round my way. The place I mentioned in previous thread gives a two hour party session where they get party food and then a sports activity like football with warm up games like tag.

BalloonSlayer Fri 20-Jan-17 16:07:54

I think it sounds great. Are you thinking of getting premises or would you do the parties at people's houses? I always loved the parties we had at home with other people doing the entertaining best.

Eeekblunders Fri 20-Jan-17 16:31:16

We were hoping to use a venue. Like a sports hall/ church hall. I guess mobile / at venue of their choice cuts overheads quite a lot.
Lots of these party businesses don't have a venue.

Sonders Fri 20-Jan-17 16:40:24

If you're under 30 I'd recommend the Prince's Trust as they offer a business course for free. I run my own business myself and although I'm confident in my product and what I deliver - I have massive gaps in my knowledge that cause me endless stress. All the tax and accounting stuff throws me into a right tizzy so I wish I had someone to help me more with it.

IME it would definitely be better to start a business with someone you trust and respect, but make sure you iron out the responsibilities from the get go!

ImperialBlether Fri 20-Jan-17 16:43:14

Why don't you try to get a job during school hours, OP, rather than one that takes place when your own children are at home?

Do you particularly enjoy looking after children? Do you love it when your children have lots of noisy friends around?

Eeekblunders Fri 20-Jan-17 16:47:46

I love and respect my friend and am honoured she even considered me. I've got no qualifications at all really and am pretty unemployable. So, I'd like to consider this as a potential opportunity.

OneWithTheForce Fri 20-Jan-17 16:58:48

Ok, I'm a little concerned now. Was this your friend's business idea and she has asked you to join her? Is it possible she is hoping you'll invest financially? Have you agreed to? It's really great that you love and respect your friend but in business love and friendship muddies the waters. It blurs the boundaries and leaves newbies in uncomfortable positions where they feel pressurised to make unsound business decisions. Please don't be swept along with someone else's business plans. Only go into this if it's actually something you can fully commit to, have done a proper business plan for and can see a real profit. You also need to consider the implications of what happens if you and friend disagree on how it should be run in the future. What if she wants to shut up shop and you don't? What costs would you be liable for? How much of the business would be yours? Etc. You need to think really seriously about this. Personally I would never go into business with a friend in untested waters. She has never done this before and neither have you. The potential for a lot of heartache and the loss of a friendship and money is huge.

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