Published: 08/03/2021

Celebrating International Women's Day!

Latest News

In recognition of International Women’s Day, we interviewed Amanda who is a business owner with years of experience in the retail and convenience sector. 

Amanda is the proud business owner of D & B Whites Newsagents, a family run business that she inherited from her father. Based in Havant, just a stone’s throw away from the train station, Amanda and her family have been welcoming customers from all walks of life, for three generations.

We spoke to Amanda about what it is like to be a shop owner, the challenges of running a business and how she juggles work and family. 

We asked Amanda to describe a typical day at D & B Whites Newsagents.

“My husband starts work at 5am, as he sorts the papers. It’s a very early start for him, so when I arrive at 9am, he goes home for a snooze.

I usually leave the store and go home around 1pm, leaving the store in the capable hands of one of my daughters until I return again at 5pm. However, since the outbreak of Covid, I have been using that time to drop-off essential food and drink items to local people who aren’t able to visit the store in person. 

On average, I probably work around 50 hours a week but I always make sure I have Wednesdays off. 

We asked Amanda what being a business owner means to her and why she became a one. 

“For me, being a business owner means I have the freedom to do what I want. I can sell what I want and I can make my own decisions. If it goes wrong it’s fine. I learn from it and do it better next time.”

We asked Amanda how has being a business owner has impacted her family life. 

“I run my business alongside my family, so we see plenty of each other. Being my own boss means that I am in charge of when I take my holidays and time off. My daughter has been the Manager of the store for the last 5 years, so that has meant that I and my husband can take more holiday - just so long as we take the grandchildren!” 

We asked Amanda what her greatest professional accomplishment is to date. 

“I’d have to say that my greatest professional accomplishment is the fact that we’re still open. There have been some difficult times over the years, we’ve had to make cuts before and we’ve been close to bankruptcy at times. D & B Whites Newsagents is now a 3rd generation business and I’m proud to say after all these years, we’re still going strong.”

We asked Amanda what her favourite aspect of being a business owner is. 

“My favourite aspect is the people. The customers we serve on a regular basis become part of your store. I know everything about my regulars and I live my life vicariously through theirs! Even if I’ve had a bad day, I enjoy going into the store because customers help you to forget about it all. You go in and put a smile on your face and theirs.” 

We asked Amanda to share the best business advice she’d received and wishes to pass on to other retailers. 

“The best piece of advice I ever got was from my Dad. He told me: ‘the only difference between us and the big stores is the personalisation.  A nice chat and a smile can go a long way.’ Even decades later, that bit of advice still rings true for small, independent businesses like ours.”

We asked Amanda the most important thing she’s learned as a small business owner over the years. 

“You need to invest and keep moving forward. It’s important to keep reading the retailer newspapers and magazines, so you can see what other store owners are doing and remain competitive. Keep expanding your products and don’t be afraid to try new things. When my Grandad first opened the store all those years ago, the only things he sold were jarred sweets and tobacco. Times have certainly changed since then, and quite rightly, so has the store.” 

We asked Amanda who has been the greatest inspiration in her life. 

“My Dad, without a doubt. He ran the store for many years and he always had a smile on his face. He even continued to work when he was ill. He would talk about anything and everything with our customers, from sport to gardening. He always made everyone feel welcome. I continue to follow his example and always do the best that I can do.”

Not a Payzone Retailer?

If you’re not a Payzone retailer then come and join us - it’s easy!

Fill out the enquiry form here or give us a call on 0800 0566 015 to find out more about our fantastic range of products and services.

Latest News

Case Studies

Newsbox retail shopfront at night
Latest News

Asif's Story

Asif’s Glasgow City shop was one of the first independent retailers to offer a 24h service, over 20 years ago. Find out about his experience with Payzone here.

Payzone retailer
Latest News

Retailers On The Frontline: Meet Suresh

Welcome to Retailers On The Frontline, a special series that rewards and celebrates the fantastic work of Payzone retailers. First up, is Suresh. Discover how he has been helping his community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Payzone retailer
Latest News

Retailers on the Frontline: Meet Ashani

Our next stop in our Retailers on the Frontline series is Ritzmart Store in Watford, which has been run by Ashani and her husband since 2017. Discover why we want to thank Ashani and her husband.