Category Archives: Guardian Small Business Network

Rapha founder: 'Cycling now is a bit dull … there's all this doping stuff'

Simon Mottram, who recently sold his British bike wear brand to the Walmart heirs for £200m, bemoans the state of the sport he loves

It was the classic case of a frustrated customer who is so foolish they think they can do it better. I travelled the world consulting, I’m a bike rider and love the sport, so I would visit shops and meet cyclists. I realised there were enough people like me who wanted better quality. Then it was endless nights at the kitchen table and every conversation was about this idea. A friend of mine gave me a book of photographs of old racing and I saw an aesthetic I liked. It was all about human beings and not technology.

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Source: gad

Crystals, potions and tarot cards: the mystical rise of new age businesses

Consumer appetite for spiritualism has sparked a rise in companies offering everything from AI-powered astrology apps to subscription boxes for white witches

Harmony Nice is a 20-year old vlogger from Norwich. While she covers beauty on her YouTube channel, and her goth-inspired look is a hit on Instagram, it’s her potions, crystals and tarot cards that set her apart from your average YouTuber.

Nice has been practising the Wicca religion for about four years and has been sharing her beliefs with her 300,000-plus subscribers for just over a year. “Wicca is a nature- and pagan-based religion, with elements of witchcraft in it,” she says.

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Source: gad

Psychotherapist Philippa Perry’s guide to resilience in the workplace

Want to be less stressed in 2018? The author and broadcaster advises on how to deal with difficult times at work

Your strength is not in your resilience, it is in recognising and owning your vulnerability. We need to be ourselves with other people for most of the time, not just the person we feel we ought to be. If you are in a business environment where everyone seems to be wearing a “game-face” and therefore you feel you must wear yours too, you run the risk of feeling unsupported, isolated and disconnected.

It is stressful doing something that stretches you, that you have not done before, that might not work, but not all stress is bad. Stressing yourself is a way of keeping your brain fit. No stress at all means you are not getting a mental workout. You can, though, have too much of a good thing.

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Source: gad

The new death industry: funeral businesses that won’t exploit grief

From the ‘mushroom death suit’ to no funeral at all, entrepreneurs are transforming the burial sector

Most of us come to terms with paying taxes, even if we don’t much like it. But it’s harder to face up to what Benjamin Franklin famously said was the only other certainty in life: our deaths. And that’s a problem, because in England alone, around half a million of us die every year, leaving our bereaved families to arrange our funerals and, for the 59% who haven’t made a will, deal with the administrative and emotional miseries caused when a loved one dies intestate.

Death needn’t be as mysterious or expensive as it has become. That’s according to a new band of entrepreneurs who are aiming to challenge what they claim is the oppressive and sometimes exploitative industry that profits from our inevitable demise.

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Source: gad