I'm a winner! Business Dad of the Year

David Fawbert Photography: Winner of Business Dad of the Year

On Saturday night, I won my first ever business award. I've been to lots of awards ceremonies, but usually as the official photographer or part of the team organising the event.

Shortly after receiving the award

So it was with unbelievable pride that I was awarded Business Dad of the Year by The Family Network, at a glitzy ceremony in Docklands.

The Family Network - and the Stratford-upon-Avon branch in particular, run by the wonderful Gill Cleeve - has been a fantastic source of support, friendship and fun over the last 12 months.

And what a 12 months it's been. The awards night came just two days after the one-year anniversary of me registering David Fawbert Photography at Companies House - though it took me a few weeks to get everything sorted and start properly trading.

I still remember the day that Gill added me to a Facebook group called Networking Mummies. I checked that it wasn't a mistake and I was definitely allowed in there - and shortly afterwards it changed its name to The Family Network - and I haven't looked back.

I've used lots of the services offered by members, and lots have used me as their photographer. But that's not why I'm a member. It's because the members are dedicated, hard-working and talented - and not just in business. They all juggle their businesses with their families - children, spouses, parents - and make it work. And we all support each other and have fun.

There are loads of photographers just in the Stratford group. But we don't compete. We recognise that we all offer something different, have different styles, and sometimes we're fully booked. Sometimes, we even recommend each other to clients. Just yesterday, I worked alongside fellow member Charlie Budd, AKA The Tall Photographer, at the Micro Business Show.

My children seeing me off to London at the railway station

I do all of this for my family. Starting my own business has been a huge challenge. I work harder than I ever have before. But I'm also there a lot more for my family than ever before. My wife and children are amazingly proud of me, but we're a team - maybe we should be Business Family of the Year?

So thanks to everyone who has supported me - either by being a customer, offering advice and support or just being a friend.

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