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Any business owners on here? I'm wigging out about mat leave.

(3 Posts)
purplebiro Sun 17-May-15 12:36:35

I am 37+3 today, first baby, and run my own business which I started from scratch and has taken a huge amount of work, commitment and energy to get to where it is today (just about stable!!).

I have a board of directors, but they are more non-exec/advisory than anything and a small group of PT staff who are more or less at capacity for their hours. I am fairly confident I have been able to delegate all of my day to day duties now, with a view to officially starting maternity leave (unpaid) tomorrow - which will consist of handing over the main business email to a member of staff who I have trained over the last few months to handle things and will be paid overtime if she needs it (and has the time available to do the overtime if she needs to but who I also trust not to take the p1ss!). One of the other directors will take on HR duties and another accounting stuff but neither seem particularly invested in doing it right/well...I have agreed with the other directors that I will not work on the business operations until mid-September at least but that we will review then whether things are going OK without me and I can take more time or whether it is time to step back in.

So it's only four months...but oh my god I am nervous - for the last four years the business has been my baby and - as much as I realise my priorities are going to change - I have people who rely on me - staff for whom this is their only income, customers who make their income via our service, and a community that uses our service and relies on me to provide it PLUS my entire professional reputation is invested in this business (I am being deliberately cryptic here about the nature of my business - it's not large but it is visible) and if things go wrong I don't trust in either the directors' or the staff's ability to keep things going how I'd like them and the business will have no strategic leadership for four months at least...

Plus I am also keenly aware that my reaction to having to let go for a while is not going to be pretty - see the above for evidence and that's before I've even started leave - the tip of the iceberg. I am massively emotionally invested - I started the business when I was at a very low point in my life and the structure that the work has given me over the last four years pretty much saved me from falling down a very deep hole...

So - anyone been in a similar situation got any tips on how I can calm my anxiety?!?!

Ladypug Sun 17-May-15 20:11:35

Hi Op,

I'm in a very similar position, only behind you so I am only just starting to make these tough decisions now but I'm freaking out. I really can't see the business surviving and thriving without me, I care more than anyone and I'm so invested, it's been my life for years. I'm also planning on taking 3 months then reassessing but the fantasy is 6 months. Sorry I can't offer any more help but if you want to talk about it and freak out together feel free to pm x

purplebiro Mon 18-May-15 13:37:06

Thanks Lady - I have now officially handed over - have some admin bits left but that's it...will keep you posted about how I/the business fare.

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