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working with your best friend – an interview with lydia and carrie

12th August 2022
Lydia's PA, Fi, sits down with Lydia and Carrie to discuss their thoughts on working with your best friend...
Interested in working with your best friend? Having worked as Lydia’s PA for coming up to a year now, I can safely say that Carrie and Lydia’s friendship and partnership is one of the strongest I’ve known. Given that Carrie’s my older sister too though, I’ve witnessed their story evolve from that of best friends back in the day to best friends and business partners over the past six years.

Watching in awe as they’ve navigated copious amounts of pressure; built a tremendous track record of success (whilst learning from mistakes en route); not to mention learnt to cope with a shocking amount of online abuse at times; I couldn’t be more proud of the fact that they’ve somehow managed to navigate it all with their heads held high…

And come out stronger than ever, both personally and professionally that is.

With that in mind, given that I’m often asked about their dynamic behind the scenes, I thought I’d sit down with them both to find out what they attribute to their success. Not to mention share their advice with you all, should you find yourself wanting to work with a friend too that is…  

F. What inspired the decision to bring management in-house?

L. I think for a long time there was a real glamorisation of big management companies and that they were the only option if you wanted a successful career. After trying one and having multiple meetings with others though, nothing really seemed to fit. When Carrie came on board I quickly realised that this was the way forward. This business is so personal and so intrinsically linked with our lives that creating a close knit family environment with clear missions, goals and values at the centre of it all – that isn’t confused or muddied by spreading management across multiple talent, genres and sectors – was a really great way of doing things.

C. I also think it helps that we tried it before we committed to it for a good year or so beforehand (albeit unknowingly at the time!) I used to go round to Lyds’s and help her with her bookkeeping. We’d sit on the floor with G&Ts and her books and I realised that she was actually shite at organisation! My logical brain was like ‘ok, I can help to restore some order here’ and once you start to notice that, you can pinpoint how to elevate each others good points whilst filling in the gaps. Because of that, it was very apparent what role I’d play if I were to join the business and how I’d help things grow without necessarily having a strict job title and role.

F. Why Carrie?!

L. I think anyone that’s worked with Carrie knows “why Carrie?” It’s not something that’s easily put into words because she’s so unique – the way that girl’s brain works is fascinating! She gets that balance of care for me on a human level and drive to push the business forward seamlessly, which is so important in an industry that you can easily work yourself into the ground in.

F. How did you both approach setting boundaries at the beginning and how have those boundaries evolved over time?

L. To be honest, not very well initially. I had no boundaries between work and life and I expected everyone working for me to be the same. There’s no manual that goes hand in hand with owning your own business so a lot of the lessons you find out along the way. As long as you keep communication lines open and you can discuss better, healthier ways of doing things without the fear of judgement, you will keep moving forward.

C. Absolutely. We said from the outset that we’d always be honest, we’d never be scared to talk about money and if either of us has an issue, we talk it out in a fair way. Sometimes that could mean that one of us says, “time out, I want to sleep on it…” It’s about respecting each other’s boundaries.

F. On that note, money can often be a difficult topic to broach… was it a case of Lydia’s success is your success?

C. From the very outset, Lyds was and is a champion of we grow together and that was and has always been the way we looked to structure the business model.

F. Why do you think it works?

L. We care more about each other than we do about the business and only good, positive things can come from relationships like that.

C. Agreed. You still have to make time for the friendship. If you don’t make time for the friendship, it becomes just the work versions of yourselves. Over the years, the way we’ve navigated that has changed. Early on, we used to talk about work stuff and personal stuff all at the same time, in the same WhatsApp conversation, through the day, through the night etc… Now we have separate WhatsApp groups. We can brain dump into the work one and both know that we don’t have to respond ‘out of hours.’ The friendship one is always open though. We’ve found that we tend to hold back on personal stuff throughout the week though so that we can really appreciate friend time at the weekends.

F. Top 3 nuggets of advice for working with a friend? Go!

L. 1. Communication is everything – being able to communicate in an emotionally mature way is a super power! 2. Respect each other. 3. Have fun whilst your doing it!

C. Friday wine helps too…

F. And finally, who’s the boss?

Without hesitation…

L. Lumi. Lumi’s the boss!

Interested in getting to know the team better? Take a look at our summer favourites here.
Have a wonderful weekend in the meantime everyone. It’s set to be a scorcher – find Lydia’s guide to preparing for a heatwave here too!

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