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20 Questions: Sally Coles-Robertson of Sisu (SCR)

1. Name?
Sally Coles-Robertson
2. Age? 
50 next week.
3. Business name? 
Sisu (SCR) Ltd
4. Located in…? 
Sandbach, in the heart of Cheshire.
5. What do you do?
Entrepreneur running my own salon
6. When did you become ‘self-employed’? 
In 1988

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7. What prompted you to make the ‘leap’? 
I am dyslexic and have ADHD (which were both actually undiagnosed when I first went self-employed) but had an impact on my views of being an employee. I guess I didn’t like being told what to do, didn’t like the restrictions of when I can and can’t take my holidays, and didn’t like all the other restrictions that come with being an employee! I wanted the freedom to do my own thing. 
8. Do you miss employment?
No way, I would never be employed only by my own company. 
9. In your personal experience, what’s the best thing about self-employment? 
Being able to choose. 
10. What’s surprised you most about working for yourself? 
The freedom. Being able to share the profits in the business as we are an ‘Investor in People’. 
11. What’s the best piece of advice you could give anyone else thinking of becoming self- employed? 
Follow someone who has done it. Success breeds success.
12. What’s the toughest aspect of self-employment? 
I am fortunate to have a successful business and I like to use that success to give back to the community. The main thing I find tough as the decision-maker in my company is deciding which charities to support and which to put further down on the list! 
13. Did you know there are 4.8m self-employed people in the UK? 
Yes, but there should definitely be more. 
14. Does the Government do enough to support people like these? 
Not a chance – much more support is needed. 
15. What do you think the Government could do to make it fairer?
Provide more support to those looking to go self-employed, so we have a good mix of people choosing to take the leap. 
16. Is being self-employed worth it? 
Sure is. 
17. Would you ever consider being an employee again? 
Not a chance. 
18. Have you ever considered ‘the next step’ becoming an employer – i.e. taking on staff? 
I already employ staff; it’s fun, we smile & laugh & work out any issues fairly. 
19. What’s the biggest barrier to self-employment? 
Lack of encouragement from the government. 
20. Do you think schools should promote self-employment as a career option?
I’m a STEM ambassador &  go into schools. Schools don’t make any effort whatsoever to promote self employment. Schools are only interested in exam results and encouraging students to go to university. The retention figures are lower than ever and I fear the future. I have just encouraged my son to become self-employed & he’s so happy.