Everyday Tales of Business Folk: a business story for business people – Episode 3

This is episode 3 of my Tales of Everyday Business Folk. If you’re wondering what on earth I’m doing, sending episodes of a short story by email, Tales of Everyday Business Folk is a little tale designed to bring out some of the challenges I see businesses facing every day by following our hero Katherine, and her adventures in business.

If you’re thinking, well that’s all very interesting, but I’ve got to get this piece of work out to my client, you might want to leave this email open and come back to it over lunch.

The story so far. Katherine has lost her yummy but exhausting job in London working for a content marketing agency. She’s bored out of her mind with nothing to do except apply for jobs she’s not really into, worried silly about how she’s going to pay the rent, and the only thing that has given her any excitement and satisfaction over the last few weeks has been writing some marketing copy and a strategy paper for a client of her friend Claire who runs a PR agency in Brighton.

Katherine is bored again. She goes out for a run along the seafront in the rain, and ends up in Marrocco’s restaurant eating a plate of pasta she can’t really afford. Something is bugging her. ‘I’ve really enjoyed doing that work for Ryan, Claire’s client. And I’m happy to help Claire out, and she was really grateful. The flowers were nice too. But there’s something not quite right here.’

Claire had sent a huge bouquet of lilies to Katherine’s flat on Friday. And although they were beautiful, Katherine couldn’t help working out how much the flowers must have cost, and thinking that she would have much rather have had the money. Or a Sainsbury’s voucher so she could buy food without feeling that all her money was slipping away. She pictured a big hamper, full of tins of cat food, and maybe a voucher for the vet, and smiled at how much more useful, and thoughtful that would have been. She’d taken the flowers round to her mum’s at the weekend, so that had saved her some money on taking a Mothers Day gift.

Katherine realised that she was going to have to have a difficult conversation with Claire about money. And how Claire needed to actually give her some. Particularly if Claire’s client Ryan, or anyone else was going to need any more content written up. She picked up the phone, to ask Claire for a job. As she scrolled down her contact list, her hand paused. ‘Claire isn’t going to give me a job. And I don’t want to work for Claire, we went to school together, and I know what a nightmare she can be. I love her, but she’d be a nightmare of a boss.’

Katherine realises that she’s talking to herself out loud in an Italian restaurant. She finishes her pasta, her panicked brain whirring with all the possibilities.

What do you think Katherine should do? Has she thought about working for herself? Is she going to be a freelance copywriter? Is she going to work for flowers? Are the cats going to be okay? Click here to read the next instalment.