First Ollie’s baby, then a Banks business is born

New life marks new beginnings in the Banks household as Lizzie takes the opportunity of renewed motherhood to launch a new career. Ollie needs to get on board, or be left bobbing behind in her wake…

Ollie Banks was only dimly aware that Lizzie was talking to him, and that he’d been mumbling ‘Yes’ and ‘Mmmm’ at irregular intervals.

“So that’s all settled then,” she said, in the middle of Jack’s 2am feed. “I’m going to start a business.”

Ollie was suddenly wide awake in spite of almost two months’ broken sleep. “Pardon me? Where did that idea come from? What business? I was asleep; whatever I said doesn’t count.”

“I’m a modern woman, and if you believe half of what you read in the web, that means I can have it all; you, the children, home – and a job. Now we have super fast broadband I can work whenever I choose. I’m going to be a blogger. I’m going to write about health and welfare things, and the experience of parenthood, for anyone who’ll let me. I’m already a mum for the second time, so that base is covered, and my nursing experience means I can speak with authority. What’s more, I can write a bit. Taken together, all of that should mean I’ll be able to make it work. Oh, stop making that silly noise; you sound like an outboard motor…”

Small BusinessOllie had been trying to protest, but had managed to say only: “But, but, but, but…”
“Look Ollie; the world’s changing. So much of what’s important is on the web these days; I can share things that new mums need to know in a way that they can understand, and they can read it when it suits them. There’s no need for them to turn up to appointments or wait in for experts to come round – goodness knows, everyone is so pushed for time these days, and it feels as though there’s no public funding for anything anymore. Mumsnet did something similar, and look how that’s taken off. Why shouldn’t I do the same?”

Ever-practical Ollie saw an opening, and took it. “Finance; yes. How do you intend to fund this business?,” he wanted to know. “Jack’s costing us a lot already, and getting money management right is a tough topic for companies.”

Solo Expenses backs the venture
Lizzie already knew the answer. “That’s the easy part. We already have the resources we need – a computer, a phone, and the ideas in my head. There will be next to no capital outlay, and as far as expenses are concerned, it will be the kind of money I’d be spending anyway, as Lizzie Banks, at least in the beginning. We already have as much accountancy expertise as I’ll need to get me started, because of Solo Expenses. We already know how well that works when it comes to expense management because of your job and our own personal finances, so it looks as though the blogging business already has an expense manager. I’ll just set up the business with its own version of the expense manager app, and open a new bank account – or a Banks account…” She laughed at her own joke. “Money management apps are revolutionising financial control; we just need to think outside the box a bit to make them work their hardest for us.”

Ollie thought of another hurdle. “And when will you write these pearls of wisdom? Isn’t there enough for us to do already – especially you?”

“Oh, I can do that when Alice is at school and Jack’s sleeping,” she said. “Lucky Jack,” said Ollie. Lizzie ignored him.

“Ollie, I can make this work, I know I can. It’s going to be so exciting, so the answer you’re looking for is ‘yes dear’. My mind’s made up; believe in me and I’ll show you it can work because of all the technology we have at our fingertips and the ideas I have in my head. But in the meantime, some stuff that’s important is still very much old school, like the fact that Jack needs changing. Your turn.”