How to be a successful entrepreneur
With over 1/3 of business owners saying they never planned on starting their own company, there has been a huge increase in the rise of 'accidental' entrepreneurs ( Recruit Venture Group). If you are thinking of starting a business or already have one that is growing on it's own, then read on to find out what not to do!
Importance of Delegation
It's common for entrepreneurs and I know I am certainly guilty of this, to try and do everything yourself, from PR to marketing, social media to actual face to face meetings. It's your baby and you simply don't trust anyone else to do as good a job as you. Problem is this quickly leads to overwhelm and burnout as this is just way too much work for one person alone. Learn to delegate and you will free up so much time to focus on what you are good at.
If you are working with a small budget, find some interns who'd like some experience or trade experience for work. I've done so many trades with web designers, social media experts and admin assistants giving them products or coaching in exchange for their time.
Less is More
Anyone who has started a new business knows how much hard work goes into launching There are new contacts to make, contracts to secure, websites to update ..the list is endless. However working into the wee hours every night fueled by caffeine or wine and sacrificing family time or social get togethers may seem like the solution but sometimes you CAN spend too much time on your business.
Yes you need to put in the hours but it's much more productive to come back to something after a break rather then pushing through and forcing yourself to go on for the good of the business. I've noticed that the times I allow myself to enjoy my life, things are happening in the background anyway and I always feel better having given myself the weekend off or allowing myself an early night so that I can wake up refreshed the next day.
Freebies and Discounts
This is a common one for new businesses. Somehow we feel that because we are new and don't have years of experience behind us people simply won't buy our goods or services. Wrong! When we give stuff away for free, the message we are sending out is that this service or product isn't quite good enough so I am going to give it you for free instead.
Now there is nothing with gifting goods or services for free for example to journalists or other media who will then provide honest feedback or media coverage, but for potential customers who wince at the price I simply say now 'there will always be someone who can't afford you' and likewise 'there will always be someone who CAN afford you'. So hang on in there, stay firm and when asked about the price of your services or goods, try not to over justify why it's this expensive or cheap just be confident that this is the price. I'm always amazed when people ask for discounts because when we go into a supermarket we never haggle with the till operator- we simply accept the price and we decide whether to pay or not. It should be the same for your business.
This is a tricky one because for many of us, when we are trying to launch our dream business lots of things start to take a back seat. Health and wellbeing being one of them. I'm shocked when I think back to how badly I ate and how much I neglected my body when I first started out even though I work in a health conscious sector. I'd fuel my body on caffeine alone, skip breakfast, eat high sugar foods and almost every evening wine would be my work buddy.
Fast forward to now I no longer drink alcohol, I go to bed before 10pm each night, I body brush and have cold showers EVERY morning, I try to fit in at at least 30 mins of movement a day even if that is just gentle walking and I really look after my diet with plenty of fresh veg and supplements. Being sick is not an option because I don't want to risk weeks of inactivity for my business.
My health comes first so that I can better serve my clients. There is always time to nourish and look after your body and my morning routine takes less then 15 minutes and sets me up for the day. The results are that I have a clearer head for business decisions, I feel and look good so when I meet clients I don't look haggard and worn out and I feel like I am in control of my business and health and not the other way around.
Trust your intuition
Starting out is exciting and we can feel as though we want to take on every opportunity that comes our way. That old belief that any business is better than no business sticks in our minds. Saying YES to everything that comes our way however can ultimately lead to disaster if you are not taking time to assess whether you should align yourself with this opportunity. Many times, when I've felt like the energy wasn't quite right with a potential client but I decided to go for it anyway because I needed the money, it's never felt right and the contract swiftly came to an end.
After years of working in hospitality, I am a big believer in being treated with respect and kindness. Whenever I feel as though a client is not exhibiting those traits I simply say no. I never regret saying YES to the clients who feel good because I know that my intuition and my gut are telling me that this is right. Business can incorporate our innate guidance system aka our gut, because ultimately when we make decisions based on our intuition what we are really doing is creating a heart centered business and we are saying yes to our dream clients.