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My biggest challenges ...

I’ve been thinking about what the biggest challenges (read - worries) for me when running Shear Pace are.

There are so many of them – here are a few of my favourites - ones I need to find some solutions to.

I work in a tiny niche which is generally rural, and in NZ at the last census there were 1584 sheep shearers – this is a pretty small group of people. Often these hardworking people are based in remote areas and can often work in areas where there is no cellphone reception or wifi. I’m also very worried that what I provide to this amazing niche of shearers and woolhandlers is not of value to them and they won’t be willing to spend money on my products or services.

I have three small children (aged 5, 4 and 2) and all the children have food intolerances (to some common and occasionally odd foods e.g. kumara is a problem for one of them) so every meal has to be made from scratch and this takes up a lot of time. If we have food infractions they can get ill with a change in health, sleep (not sleeping well), comfort, and behaviour – I often need to spend extra time with my children just to keep them happy (they feel awful and often cry for long periods of time when they have had food that does not agree with them).

Wonderfully, but also a big challenge, is that my husband works incredibly long hours, being away from before daylight to after dark every day if the weather is fine (he used to be a shearer, and while this is similar, we also have him at work on weekdays when the weather is bad!) and we have just purchased an orchard, which, while small, does create a lot of work, most of which I can’t do at the moment after a fall off a roof four months ago.

The result of the last two is that the time I have away from the children is limited, and I must be really good at focusing on what needs to be done on the business, in the home and on the orchard when I do have time.

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