2 February 2015

An Open Letter to Emma and the #LoveYourDoorstep team in #Enfield

Pathway towards Gentleman's Row, Enfield Chase.

Dear Emma and the +Love Your Doorstep team,

I am writing to let you know that after the ups and downs of the last few years, I have had a complete change of heart and would please like the opportunity to be an Lyds business.

Firstly, I would like to apologise for comments I have made, that I felt were my true opinion at the time but have caused upset and grief for you. I did not intend this at all and I am truly sorry. Having been off work for a while, due to illness, has given me plenty of time to mull over things and just two weeks after making some more negative comments about Love Your Doorstep in a Facebook conversation, I have looked at myself and the situation and I would dearly love to make amends and try to heal the hurt that I have caused. I really do not want to leave this mess behind in my life, please allow me the opportunity to make it better again.
It was the Facebook post that got me thinking. The negativity of the post made me intrigued, so, I checked your website and twitter feed and my opinion has changed. I can see that you have developed the business into so much more than a Facebook group.

It took me a long time to get used to the changes in the group in the beginning and it clashed for me that it was a free community and then changed into one where you had to pay to join as a business. But actually, Emma, you have created a visionary and completely new business model. I've been doing a lot of thinking. I think you have had to put your foot down and create strong boundaries because it is easy for friendship, kindness and business to get all mixed up. Like if people come into my shop, start chatting, don't want a coffee but are just saying 'hello' as a friend, taking my time and energy away from when I'm working. I feel I want to give stuff to them because they are my friend but on the other hand, if I run my business like that, I won't have one.I didn't really get this for ages, until there was some distance between myself and Enfield.

Your Twitter feed is strong and you have worked hard in building up strong links within the Enfield community, such as with the FSB, Enterprise Enfield and so on.

I have always respected your talent and vision, Emma but I found the new changes and rules very difficult, I can be fairly rigid in that respect due to my asperger way of thinking.

I think when we are angry, or emotional, we react rather than respond and I've been reacting all over the place.

Looking again at Lyds from a distance, it is incredible what you have done. The designs are really slick, the website works well on my phone, I love the shopping campaign stickers and the blogging area on the website is cool too. I have to say, I really have changed my mind.

Last year, I had too much Lyds from friends all over my timeline, I felt strangely emotional about posts where Lyds showed a film at The Dugdale Centre and about when they went to parliment. I felt left out and pissed off. But it was Lyds that did that work, not me and looking back on it now, I think I was upset because I was jealous. I didn't realise at the time.

I was so emotional and upset with all the posts, I then decided to delete any of my Facebook friends that were too enthusiastic about Lyds, to preserve my sanity, I deleted all of the enthusiastic ones and that felt better, until I realised that I had hurt some of them. The whole thing has been very difficult for me. I even started not to enjoy the Ideas Station, my social media workshops for women because every time the question would come up about whether I thought Lyds was good or not, I'd try to go for a bland, 'I wouldn't use it for my business but it does work well for other businesses', approach. Or the 'If you're not good at social media, it could be good for you.'. Or 'I don't recommend it but some businesses love it.'. I could never get away with a brushaway comment, to avoid my discomfort. The rest of the meeting would sometimes dissolve into a heated debate about Lyds and not about solving social media problems. It was embarrassing and took the motivation away for me to continue.

Now, I want to support what you are doing. Maybe some people will find that inconsistent, maybe hypocritical but I am proud to admit, actually, I am wrong I've made lots and lots of mistakes. Yes, I have changed my mind. I want people to know because this has been such a public affair and I want to help to heal the hurt.

People have seen me as one of the biggest ringleaders of the 'we don't like lyds' brigade.......I didn't want to be that. Emma, you and your team are running a never done before concept business, I had no patience and didn't make allowances for the learning curve involved.

The comments I made on Facebook two weeks or so ago sound bitchy, when I reread them, at the time they felt honest and truthful.  However, having taken another look, Lyds is actually something that is working well in these extremely difficult economic times and I realise there is a core of businesses who are repeat customers because it works.

I didn't even realise that you have a job board, I have a part time job that I would love to advertise on there.
I've made a lot of mistakes in dealing with this situation and it's all been fairly public. I am not afraid to say, my attitude has been wrong.

It is time for me and others in our community to give you, Lyds the respect that you deserve.

I am all for campaigning and for economic justice and have changed a few negative things in the world. Lyds is not a negative, it doesn't need a campaign against it, however inadvertently that situation has arisen and it doesn't need an emotional response.

If you don't want our business, I don't blame you but I just thought it fair to publicly share my change of heart.
I hope that together, we can build bridges, not walls.

I am very, very sorry for the way that I have been and I really would like the opportunity to support your concept, if you can ever, please forgive me.

Yours Most Sincerely and Hopefully,
Karen Mercer. xxxx
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