• The Business Owner

Meet the Boss - Karen Sykes

Company Name: Families Manchester Magazine

Position: Editor

Industry: Publishing


What was your first job or role after education?

I worked in a solicitor’s office as an office junior making tea, photocopying and filing.


Could you describe your career path for the reader?

I moved up to the position of clerk then PA before I took qualifications with the institute of Legal Executives, started dealing with personal injury cases and became a Legal Executive. After being made redundant I joined my husband in his new business and took over the marketing role to try to increase customers. After the company folded, I wanted to stick with marketing in some way.


What is your current role and what is your favourite part about it?

Currently I am the owner/editor of Families Manchester magazine which is a niche magazine aimed at families of kids aged 0-12 in Greater Manchester giving them information, advice and ideas for things to do. I love it as I work for myself so work round the children and love the creativity of it.


Are you optimistic, realistic or pessimistic about 2021?

I am realistic that things are still difficult for many people, but I am optimistic that things are getting better and there is light at the end of the tunnel.


What is the most important task you carry out each day?

Contacting advertisers to generate sales for the magazine and keep up relationships.

Generating sales and keeping up relationships with advertisers.


What advice would you give to your 21-year-old self about your career journey?

Don’t get too hung up on “your plan”! As things can change, you can too.


Have there been any positives about 2020 and lockdown for you?

Spending more time with the family was priceless.


What causes you the most stress at work?

Recently it’s been the lack of advertising sales and therefore cashflow.


If you could instantly change one area or thing about your business, what would it be?

More regular customers!


What do you do to unwind?

I love to watch movies with a glass of wine


If you could give a single piece of advice to a start-up entrepreneur what would that be?

My lovely late Nan always used to say, “If you don’t ask you don’t get”!