Running your own business is tough and can be a very lonely place. Many business owners have to wear all the hats, from being the head of finance, marketing, post, sales, admin, as well as driving the business forward – and with lots of small businesses operating from home it can be isolating – so how do St Albans Businesses cope without the “business buzz”?
Jelly was established in 2006 when two New York freelancers were talking about a major drawback of working alone; namely the lack of company. They decided to invite a group of freelancers to bring their laptops and work together in their apartment for the day, and called it Jelly as they were eating Jelly beans at the time!
A wiki page followed shortly thereafter as news of Jelly spread and it is still used heavily by most Jelly organisers to promote their events held around the world.
Jelly started in the UK in the autumn of 2009 when Lee Cottier set up events in the Bristol area. Judy Heminsley was also a pioneer Jelly organiser, and the Jelly section of her website has been used by many of the 50 plus groups now meeting regularly from Edinburgh to Plymouth and North Wales to Norwich. (taken from http://www.uk-jelly.org.uk/what-is-jelly/)
Sue Wybrow, who runs Popdance, found that whilst enjoying running her business from home, she missed the “business banter”, the chat with others, the brainstorming, the company and a change of scene – so having met a few people in a similar situation to herself, started a Jelly back in 2011 and it’s been going ever since.
All sorts of St Albans Businesses (and from the surrounding areas) attend the monthly Jelly at The King Harry pub on usually the 3rd Thursday of the month. People can pop in and out as they like, there is no charge, they bring their laptops, get all the things done that they’ve been putting off, chat with other local businesses, and share ideas, support each other and keep up to speed with all the latest business support.
Sue Wybrow says, “It’s amazing the connections that I’ve made at the jellies – not only is it great to chat to people who are in a similar situation to you, but also people share so much, from the latest app that they find useful to their business, to “did you know” about changes to tax for business – you never know what you are going to get out of it.”
The St Albans Chamber of Commerce invited the St Albans Businesses Jelly to take part in their Business Festival week – there will be a very special jelly at Grant Thornton’s new offices on 23rd June and the event has been completely booked already!
Check out the St Albans Businesses jelly here – www.popdance.co.uk/jelly
The next St Albans Businesses jelly is today – Thursday 18th June at The King Harry Pub, King Harry Lane – no need to book – simply turn up and say hi!