Laura Woodward-Drake: Why compete when you can collaborate?

PUBLISHED: 11:31 03 November 2020

Daryl Fulls and Mark Ashworth

Daryl Fulls and Mark Ashworth

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In her latest column, Exmouth Chamber of Commerce chairman Laura Woodward-Drake talks to Daryl Fulls of Scribble Link

New chamber of commerce chair. Picture: Laura Woodward-DrakeNew chamber of commerce chair. Picture: Laura Woodward-Drake

Exmouth is not only a town packed with a variety of industries but also with an amazing array of entrepreneurs and business owners.

Sadly, the support for business owners has been a bit of a rollercoaster and we have a few more hurdles to cross before many can feel confident again.

However, in one of our online support forums, one resilient member channelled the mindset of ‘what can this do for me?’ rather than ‘why me?’, which was an inspirational way to look at this situation.

I recently met with one of our wonderful Chamber Executive members and seaside residents, Daryl Fulls, who has embodied this concept through his innovative response to the pandemic’s effects on his business.

Scribble and Ink merges with BOSSScribble and Ink merges with BOSS

Daryl commented: “When lockdown came it knocked me for six - I seriously thought about packing business up all together. We had spent five years building our two businesses www.scribbleandthink.co.uk our creative design studio and www.scribbleandink.co.uk our office supplies company and come early 2020 we were right where we wanted to be - turning a profit on both for the first-time and looking forward to a rosy future.

“Then came lockdown.

“I had visions of us being knocked back two to three years and honestly, I just didn’t have the emotional resources to go back and start all over again... but thankfully my team are more resilient.

“They took the helm and steered the ship through the murky waters of March April and May, freeing me to think a little and to explore what the other side of lockdown might look like.

“For quite a while I have been thinking that collaborating with local competitors was way better than competing with them and to that end, we have always enjoyed a very good relationship with BOSS stationers. So over lock down Mark Ashworth, boss of BOSS!, and I spent many hours dreaming of a better future post Covid.”

On October 1 , Mark and Daryl decided that the best thing to do, to survive the storm, keep his team going and come back stronger, was in fact to merge.

They stripped out lots of combined overhead, websites, bank accounts, back office, rent etc and are now working together in an energetic profitable business.


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