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‘I am in a very lucky place’

‘I am in a very lucky place’
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‘I am in a very lucky place’
Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications by Siobhan Stirling - Sharp Minds Communications
Owner/Director - Sharp Minds Communications Ltd

It’s a position that many small businesses would love to be in: to have so much work coming in, that you can cherry pick what you take on.  That’s the enviable position of Kings Hill Churchill Square client, Inheritance Law.  We’ve been finding out the secret.

Flying solo  

Inheritance Law is a sole-practitioner law firm run by Caroline Brooks-Johnson.  Qualifying in 1994, Caroline was a partner in a local law firm for 10 years before deciding to branch out on her own in 2014.  Having always concentrated on private client work and property, when she set up on her own Caroline decided to concentrate on helping individuals with later-life planning, both of their estates and providing for loved ones, but also in making provision for potential care needs and how their affairs should be managed if they are no longer able to make decisions for themselves.  It was a natural progression: Caroline qualified as a full member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners in 2008 (and is currently the Treasurer of the Kent branch) and is a member of the Law Society’s Private Client Section. 

Even though she has no intention of taking on other people, Caroline ruled out working from home: ‘I didn’t want to be receiving clients at home, and I like that separation between work and my personal life, so I knew I wanted to find a suitable office. I did look at one other business accommodation centre, but they didn’t even call me back, so moving into a CapitalSpace office at Churchill Square at Kings Hill was a no brainer, especially as it’s a 10-minute commute.’ 

Effective business support
 

It’s a decision that has enabled Caroline to concentrate on providing an excellent service for her clients: ‘Sue and the CapitalSpace team at Churchill Square look after all the things that I don’t want to do – such as making sure the broadband is working, keeping the kitchen nice, answering my calls – so I can get on with running my business.’ 

Caroline is so enamoured with the CapitalSpace set up that she supported our planning application for Building 80 and was the first customer to move into the new building, from her previous office in Building 30.  ‘As I work on my own, it’s great to be in the same building as the reception team.  It was difficult for me to meet and greet clients before, but now the CapitalSpace team do it for me.  Working on my own, it’s also nice to see them in the mornings and say hello.’ 

A lucky place  

Caroline is the first to admit that she is in a very lucky place: ‘I am more than happy where I am.  My problem is a great one to have: I have more work that I can manage, and my business development plans would ideally be to work fewer hours, but it means I get to pick what I take on.’ 

So how has she built her business to the point of being able to turn work down?  ‘I don’t do any advertising; all my work is through word of mouth – mostly I act for existing clients and their family and friends but I also have a number of other solicitors, accountants and financial advisers who like my approach and refer their clients to me.  My feedback forms say that I am very approachable and down to earth.’ 

It’s clear that Caroline doesn’t just have a great bedside manner – she loves her work, and that’s what keeps the phone ringing: ‘I have a big elderly client base – I act as attorney and court of protection deputy for some of them.  I have a good manner with the elderly – I love them all and want to take them home for Christmas!’ 

Expertise, excellent customer service, a great referral network and a love for what you do: it’s a winning formula that can be applied to any small business.  

To find out how CapitalSpace virtual offices or business premises

could benefit your growing business,

call 0800 107 3667