The Power of Judgement

I have long lamented being a boss. It is without doubt the hardest thing I have ever done. I have lamented being a young boss and a woman boss, a flower boss a creative boss an HR boss and a management of accounts boss. Every single part of it is awful.

It is hard enough most days to endure the critique and often celebration of our floral creations. Add in peoples opinions on how you handle yourself in a business way, how you resolve staff miscommunications or remain in control during testing circumstances, whilst also trying to be your own person outside of flowers, don’t event get me started on how the persistent 4 am starts mess with your head , well lets face it you might as well sign a declaration of insanity.

I know I am judged, I know that many people that once worked for me don’t particularly care or like me much. It is funny how you are put on the same pedal stall as many flowers, when you fail to meet peoples expectations as a boss or even as a human.

When I fail at this , it is not because I want to let people down, it is because I am human, I get things wrong ( ALOT), I actually think my fail rate is remarkably high, they say the definition of a stupid person is somebody who repeatedly makes the same mistake time and time again ( sometimes I think that is me, am I stupid or have a just found myself in a position that I was never really destined for ). Regardless maybe I can change my destiny, I’m not sure, that conversation is for a different day.

I often wonder if they think about it from this corner I sit in , it is likely they do, the only problem being I have spent a lifetime perfecting my ability to cover up how bad things really are and focus on the future, so whatever corner they try to sit in they don’t really have the full picture.I make sure the corner they sit in is pretty, I used to paint, i’m good at that. I often put myself in their shoes and don’t blame them. I wonder if they know that I defaulted on every payment ever supposed to be made to anyone or anything for any purchase I make or building rented in my tarred name, it doesn’t matter to them, I still manage to pay them late. It’s a failure in their eyes because I couldn’t meet their terms. I get it, people fail to meet my terms every day, but i’m hardened to it I expect it, to experience somebody meeting me on my terms would most likely result in an intoxicating shock , that could end everything. I have had days when I have driven back from the market almost willing other drivers, to drive into me so that it could just stop. There is however a deeply sensible pragmatic voice buried deep inside me, part born from growing up with both a suicidal mother and step mother and part given to me by that old friend destiny and that voice just knows , that is not the answer.

I am very persistent, even though there is much hurt, much consumed that I can never tell, because I am the deadly boss. I am, in the words of one of my most favoured previous employees ‘ hella’ resilient, I am deeply almost madly passionate about being alive. I care to a point past most about how as a society we can create a better place to live, eat work and judge others. I have a burning desire to always improve not only myself but this flower industry, I so badly want to develop a greater understanding and future where this/ our industry can become more sustainable.

We started composting, that is also a conversation for another day, I have to dedicate an entire conversation to composting because my dad is also involved, and Thomas is larger than life so both him and the compost need some dedication.

The composting stinks, but it is better, we have now biodegradable cello and basically guilt our customers into not using it they can have a jam jar instead of having their flowers in water and cello. They can still have the cello, but I doubt they have a compost heap to help it degrade. We stock more and more British flowers than ever before, I spend hours trawling for growers and paying more money for the flowers, because think it’s better. Is it better ? it must be. Like anything I think perhaps this is all about awareness to judge less and be aware more. If we build on peoples awareness surely that opens up both new and old doors.

We moved the shop around, we changed the shelves. I have more time than I did in a long time and unfortunately for the girls my attention has gone there. It is better, it is more ‘shopable’ is that a word ? The girls are doing great they are handling my interference well, and making some beautiful shop bunches, to translate that, that is bunches we pre make that any one can just pop in and buy. I.e you don’t have to wait, you can just grab and grow your mostly British bunch, in it’s recycled paper and lack of cello and just gift it to your friend or yourself..we are trying to move to the future. I gotta walk Neel, she remains the sole being that doesn’t judge.

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Hattie Fox