Karen Beddow, MD of Mini Travellers
Litigation lawyer turned travel blogger, Karen Beddow tells us about finding that all important work-life balance
What is it the company does?
Mini Travellers is a travel blog that provides reviews, advice, and information about family travel and UK days out. We work with brands to get their message out to families about what they can do with their children, and sometimes perhaps what they shouldn’t.
Describe your role in no more than 100 words
I am editor, IT manager, accountant, debt chaser, marketing, PR, social media manager and writer all rolled into one.
Give us a brief timeline of your career so far – where did you start, how did you move on?
I spent most of the last 20 years working for large commercial law firms such as Addleshaw Goddard, DWF and Brabners as a Property Litigation lawyer.
After I had my children and before I started Mini Travellers I also did some teaching at Manchester Met University and on the Legal Practice Course for BPP.
I still do some legal consultancy for Ortolan Legal, but I do this from home. I also sit on the Commercial Board of a Housing Association and run Mini Travellers.
What do you believe makes a great leader?
Someone who listens as well as leads. Someone who is fair and who is brave enough to employ people better than them and trust them to achieve great things.
What has been your biggest challenge in your current position?
To believe that just because I wasn’t in a full-time role in an office that my job wasn’t as important. It’s also been a challenge to find the right balance, something I am clearly still struggling with since I am completing this at 9pm!
How do you alleviate the stress that comes with your job?
To be honest this job is far far less stressful than my last job. It’s my own pressure and no-one else’s. I am less stressed though because I have time to run, and I love to get out in the fresh air and not have to think about anything else.
When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I always wanted to be an Estate Agent!
Any pet hates in the workplace? What do you do about them?
I dislike people who speak incredibly loudly on the phone, in an open plan office it can be incredibly distracting. Working for myself in my own office easily combats this.
Where do you see the company in five years’ time?
With Mini Travellers being led by a possible partner, and ‘Adventure Travellers’ developing.
What advice would you give to an aspiring business leader?
You have so many more transferable skills than you give yourself credit for. Think outside the box, be willing to learn, and there isn’t much you won’t be able to achieve with hard work.
What do you wish someone had told you when you started out?
Honestly, I’m not sure I wish for anything. Whilst at times I didn’t enjoy the stress involved with a full-time legal role in a commercial firm, I don’t regret a minute of it as it’s made me the person I am today who works incredibly hard and believes that I can.
Our BQ Bulletin emails will land in your inbox at 7.30am, Monday to Friday, with a mix of the latest local business news, national news, and features to inspire you. Sign up here!
Click here to read our privacy statement