Client: Katherine Rowell
Company: d&k Accounting / Brindle House
Industry: Financial Services
Katherine Rowell from d&k Accounting is an Independent Financial Advisor, will writer and Director of an accountancy company.
Katherine was worried about dealing with another lockdown whilst having two children at home. Her workload increases during certain times of the year, and she knew she needed to be productive during the week and make sure her children were doing their schoolwork with minimal disruption.
Katherine knew she needed an accountability coach, and this is where I come in. Katherine knew that I would put plans in place, so all the work got done, the children’s schoolwork was completed, and everyone stayed on track.
Katherine and her family all got through the lockdown and subsequent school holidays with my help. Knowing she had a plan and someone to help meant that Katherine could go on holiday with her family whilst I held the fort for her.
Katherine Rowell has been a director of an accounting firm for three years, alongside her partner Dan Edwards. Together, they cover all aspects of accountancy, including Will Writing, Independent Financial Planning, Mortgage and Pensions advice, general bookkeeping, account management and taxes.
Katherine loves her work and the holistic approach to her business. She works mainly with women in their 20’s and 30’s, who may be self-employed, or their partner is. They look at the bad news headlines, and it worries them. They want to get plans in place but are often unsure about financial jargon and are put off by pinstripe-suited men. Katherine works with her clients to break down the terminology, get their finances sorted and help them with numerous options to suit their individual and family’s needs.
The challenges of working from home with two children
Katherine has a busy life juggling her businesses and her family. She is always on the go, trying to plan family activities and life around her clients. Things usually run smoothly, but what happens when a child is ill, a school holiday or a lockdown? This is where she knew she needed some plans in place to cover life’s unexpected niggles and changes.
She needed someone to keep her on track. Not a business coach who would provide goals that may or may not have been attainable, but someone she could call on when she needed an accountability check to make sure any goals were achieved.
Why Katherine chose to work with me
Katherine and I met through networking events in our area. She wanted to work with someone who knew her, her business and what her family life was like. By choosing me, Katherine knew there’d be no judgement, no unrealistic goals, and there would be beneficial and visible results.
Katherine knew that I would not just put a plan in place but make sure that she knew what the plan was and the steps to get to the end goal. Katherine knew that although I might not have all the answers, I had the right questions, which was important for getting the job done.
How I responded
"Pippa recognises that you're a human, not just a business."
First, I sat down with Katherine to understand what exactly was needed. A frank discussion about priorities, keeping the balance between working from home and family life, and managing her own expectations of what this will look like took place. This meant that Katherine and I could set realistic plans to help achieve some of the smaller goals.
We also came up with flexible working patterns that could be moved around if an emergency cropped up. Blocking off calendar time, making sure calls are finished by a certain time, and switching off in an evening were all part of that plan. Evenings are now where Katherine can relax and enjoy family time without worrying that she has a client call at bedtime.
Katherine got on board straight away. She knew that things had to change, or she’d be getting burnt out and would not be able to give anything her full attention. I know that first and foremost, Katherine is a mother and partner before her business persona, and these were her priorities. This really helped both of us make plans to ensure Katherine could do all she needed to.
"We're going on holiday on Saturday and I don't need to worry about anything to do with work. Pippa has it all handled."
There were some great results for Katherine that happened shortly after we began working together.
Firstly, a finance book that she struggled with for over two years was organised, structured and launched within a month of starting the accountability workshops with me. This was a huge result for Katherine, who knew what she wanted to write about but was unsure where to start. Work and family life meant that it kept getting put down the pecking order of priorities until I gave Katherine a plan and structure for completing it.
She was able to go on holiday with her family, knowing that she could relax for the first time in years and not feel like she had to be working. I was in charge of helping with emails and any client calls that may come in, and Katherine felt she could always do this on holiday, knowing she had someone in her corner.
Katherine also had her priority list and what tasks could be moved around or changed if something popped up unexpectedly. Using the tools that I provided and speaking to me weekly means that she can keep up with her workload and know that someone is on hand to ensure her tasks are completed within a realistic timeframe. Katherine can plan her week, blocking time out in her calendar to ensure that not only are her clients looked after but so is her family.
"Pippa makes you a better employee to yourself"