Basically, as has been documented on this site, I've really had enough of my job. It's an unpleasant environment, I've gone as far as I'm realistically going to and I'm really uncomfortable with the level of rampant homophobia throughout the office and it's doing me no good at all psychologically. I've been applying for stuff regularly for about nine months but not had any interviews yet. Have been feeling pretty down about it all for some time.
My boyfriend's a counsellor and had a go at starting his own private practice full-time about 18 months ago. It didn't take off for a number of reasons. Partly because he's not good at promoting. Partly because he went down a couple of blind alleys and partly cause he didn't have any real advertising budget.
He's been working admin for a while and has come very close to a couple of full-time counselling jobs but he's said he's at a point now where he feels he needs to be doing counselling full time. After a long chat about both our situations on Sunday, he asked if I'd be interested in making another go of setting up a private practice, but as a partnership, so he can focus exclusively on counselling and I can do all the admin/promoting/advertising/books. We've worked out the logistics and basically if we can get him enough work to do 25 hours a week, we can both make enough to scrape by. If it goes up to a proper working week, we'll both be getting by comfortably. I know it'll take an awful lot of work to get it off the ground, but I reckon it's doable, and if it's not, at least it gives me the impetus to get out of this job and then I'm in a position to go for something else.
Just a few things I'm not sure about. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
-How likely is it an idea like this would get funding or a grant from anywhere? I know there are a lot of projects designed to help young people set up business. Can anyone recommend anyone to speak to about that?
-What financial support is available in the first few months of setting up a new business?
-Is it easy enough to run the books of a small operation like this with no accountancy experience? Would a basic book-keeping course be enough to make it straightforward?