Being an entrepreneur is hard work. There is no denying that. Being an entrepreneur takes an individual who is willing to take a chance and to jump in and make things happen. Because it’s not easy, there are ways that entrepreneurs can be mentally healthy that can assist them in reaching newer and higher heights of success in their endeavors.
Do you take care of your mental health? Do you make your physical and mental health a priority or are you too focused on business success that other areas of your life are suffering? You need to find a balance. It is crucial to business success and life success.
Ways Entrepreneurs Can Be Mentally Healthy
If you’re not certain if you’re mentally healthy, here are a few areas to consider.
- Do you feel sorry for things you’ve tried that “failed”? Entrepreneurs need to look at things they’ve tried, not as failures, but as experiments from which they can learn, move forward, refocus and try again. You can’t have an “oh woe is me” attitude if you want to thrive as a business owner.
- You’re not willing to face change head on. If you’re mentally strong and mentally healthy, you will embrace and jump into challenges and changes. Don’t focus on the “fear” of the unknown, instead focus on the welcome feeling of taking on a new challenge — it’s a chance to grow.
- Don’t get lost in the weeds of things you simply cannot change or control. Is the price of your equipment going higher? Not much you can do unless you look for a new supplier. If you mail a physical product and the price of shipping is going up, look for a new vendor or find ways to creatively absorb or pass along the costs. As an entrepreneur there are many things beyond your control — just as there are things in your life beyond your control. You need to know which battles to take on and which to let go.
- Be resentful of your competition. If your competitor is doing “so much better” than you are, you need to look and see if they are truly doing that much better or are they “faking it until they make it”? If you don’t have insider knowledge you don’t know how they are actually doing. What you can do is focus on your own successes and learn from your past experiments and move forward.
- Do you ever take time for self reflection? Mentally healthy people seek solitude as a way to reflect and recharge their mental and physical batteries. Meditate. Take a walk. Enjoy nature. Pet a dog. Eat a healthy meal — that is not eaten in front of the computer screen.
Take time to appreciate and celebrate your achievements. Learn from your mistakes. Keep moving forward toward your entpreneurial successes!
It’s so exciting when you start a business. You’re enthusiastic. You’re pumped about everything you do and everyone you talk with. What happens, though when the excitement wears off and you’re not making as many sales as you thought you would? When that happens you may be wondering how to take your business to the next level. We can help and we certainly understand what you’re going through — been there, done that!
How To Take Your Business To The Next Level
- Just do it! It’s easy to get stuck in procrastination because you’re a perfectionist. You surely don’t want to put an inferior product or service to market, but if you’re ready to launch, done is better than perfect. You can always tweak items to make them work better or perform at a higher level.
- Prepare to feel that let down. It’s normal. You just need to power through and look for the opportunities ahead.
- Provide free samples in return for honest feedback and/or testimonials.
- Make sales. You need to be willing to pick up the phone or knock on doors and make sales.
- Build your lists. Start a newsletter. Get sign ups from your website or ask current clients whether you can add them to your list so they can be the first ones to know about special products or services you’re running.
- You may need to experiment with pricing. You don’t want to undercut yourself, and you don’t want to lower yoru prices to simply compete with the business down the road. You need to make a profit, but if you’re in the start up phase, it may make sense to offer discounted pricing.
Where are you stalled with your business growth? Are you having issues with moving from one level to another? What can we do to help?
Whether you’re a Baby Boomer, someone nearing or in retirement, or someone who simply wants to own his or her own business, chances are you have heard of the “side hustle.” You may even have researched how to take a side hustle to full-fledged business but still aren’t quite certain how to make the leap.
We know. We’ve been there and we have worked with people in the same situation you find yourself in right now. They want to supplement their income or they want to leave their full time job and be their own boss and the own master of their career path. A side hustle might just get you there.
A “side hustle” is a way to make extra money and might be an ideal way to test the waters on whether you want to push this side hustle to a full time gig.
How To Take A Side Hustle To Full-Fledged Business
What are your goals?
Do you want:
- To just make a little extra money?
- Eventually go full time?
- Do something that you simply have a passion for without worrying about it becoming a full time gig?
Determine and understand your goals. Write them down. Once you’ve committed your thoughts to paper you will have a clear path toward the goal you’ve set. Setting goals keeps you organized and also lets you see whether you’re actually making money. Consider this: if you want to take your skill at knitting to a full time gig, factor in the cost of materials but more importantly, how long does it take you to knit a sweater? What if you paid yourself a set wage of, let’s say, $25 an hour. If it takes you eight hours to knit the sweater, add in the cost of yarn, and you will need to sell the sweater for at least $200 in order to have made any money. Is your idea viable? Do you just want to knit sweaters “for fun”? Neither is wrong, you just need to know.
Organization matters. You can’t move forward with this plan if you’re not organized in your thinking and in your approach toward taking the side hustle to full time business. You may think you work well in a messy desk, but you truly don’t.
- Clean your desk
- Write your daily tasks to meet your side hustle goal
- Use free organizational tools like Trello to keep track of your projects
Use a tool to organize your goals, your tasks, the people with whom you must meet to achieve your business success goals and your “big idea” projects (break them down into manageable tasks)
What is your brand? While you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on a brand logo or buy brand colors or fonts for your business card you should have a Facebook page and a website so people can find you. You can create your own business cards at a low cost site like VistaPrint.
Your “brand” also includes the feeling that people get when they meet with you — relaxed, uber professional, somewhere in betwee. Do you always wear a scarf or a bow tie? Those are part of your brand. When you have the money and a focused idea for your side hustle, then it might be time to spend money on a logo and other brand unique items.
Sell yourself. This is usually the hardest part for a new entrepreneur — to market and sell themselves and their product. In order to make a go of this you do need to be a salesman/woman. If you don’t promote what you do, how will people know about you? Sure, once you have brought a few clients on board you can ask for referrals and recommendations, but in the beginning you have to market yourself by yourself.
Starting a new business is a nerve-wracking time because you’re going from a steady paycheck to what could be sporadic income in the beginning. Make sure you have money in the bank to pay your bills for a few months if you decide to jump in full time to your business right now. Or you can ease your way into it by keeping your full time job and working your side hustle in your off time. Neither way is right or wrong, you need to do what feels right for you.
Are you starting a side hustle? Where are you stumped in the process? Ask us, we can help!
Ssshhhh we have some small business secrets to share. Okay, they aren’t actually secrets, they are more like best practices that entrepreneurs should consider when they’re either in the start-up phase or in the growth phase.
It may seem as though there is a “secret society” into which all successful business owners belong and you’re on the outside looking in. It’s not true, but here are some ways in which you can achieve higher business success.
Small Business Secrets
Keep current customers. It is so much more cost effective to keep a current customer than it is to find and nurture a new one. Don’t spend so much time seeking out new customers and new opportunities that you neglect your current clients. Stay in touch with them. Email or call them regularly just to check in. Ask what you can do to help them.
Find an accountability partner or a coach. Running a business can sometimes be a lonely task. It’s easier when you have someone you can bounce ideas off of or who can hold you accountable to business growth items you’ve said you want to pursue. It may be easier to find an accountability partner than it is to share your business frustrations with a spouse or significant other.
Surround yourself with winners. When you hire employees or bring in an outside contractor or freelancer to work with you, make sure you surround yourself with the best. Sure, you will get that occasional “lemon” that you thought was going to be great. Give yourself grace and move on when this happens. Just make sure you “hire slowly, fire quickly.” Don’t keep a bad employee on staff or your business can quickly suffer.
See. These weren’t secrets, but were instead, good business practices that you should consider for your own business. If you’ve decided to become your own boss, take it slow, write a business plan and surround yourself with great people!
Are you starting a business? Have you been running a business but have been “winging it” because you’ve never taken the time to write a business plan? If you’re running a business without a business plan you’re not alone. How to write a business plan is something we work with our clients to make happen.
When you have a business plan — and it doesn’t need to be a 100 page document — you have a roadmap toward future success and growth.
How To Write A Business Plan
Don’t be afraid of a business plan — even if you’ve never written one. We’ve put together a few simple steps that can get you on your way toward writing a business plan.
- Perform research. In order to write your business plan you need to understand your business and the industry in which you’re operating in and out. Understand your industry and every aspect of your business so intimately that you can answer an investor’s question with no hesitation.
- Know what you don’t want to do as much as what you want to do. Know your limitations and the limitations of the goods and services you will provide. Don’t think you can be everything to everyone. Choose a niche and laser focus on that. What have you seen others do that you have said, “I will NEVER do that!” or what have you seen that you think, “I definitely want to do that, but differently.”
- You can use business plan software or simply pull up a Word or Google doc or a piece of paper and a pen. The software you use doesn’t matter as much as getting the plan down on “paper.”
- Don’t forget the visuals. If you have visuals you can share in your business plan to share the information you’re putting into it — do so. Visuals are more intriguing to a reader than is a “wall of words.” What relevant images can you find to add into your business plan?
- Make your business plan adaptable for the audience with whom you will be sharing it. Think of your business plan as your resume or elevator speech. Pick and choose relevant items and share that with the audience you’re in front of. Not all audiences want to hear your entire business plan.
Start a business right — with a busines plan. If you don’t know where to begin, reach out to us, we can help.
How often do you get out of the office and meet people face-to-face? Do you attend networking events? Do you find them useful or do you just feel your time would be better spent if you just stayed in the office? What is your business networking strategy? Do you have one? If you don’t, then you probably are spinning your wheels and you should just stay in the office.
If, however, you want to expand your reach and meet new potential referral partners, then you need to get out of the office and talk with people.
What Is Your Business Networking Strategy?
Here are some tips to help you implement a business networking strategy to make meeting new people more effective and efficient.
- WHO will be at the networking event? If you go to an event knowing none of those in attendance are your ideal client, then why would you go? Look for events that may play host to your potential ideal client.
- WHAT do you want to accomplish at the event? Remember, you shouldn’t go to an event thinking “I’m going to sign up clients and make sales today” instead go the meeting thinking, “I am going to meet new people and start building relationships today.”
- WHY do you feel the need to network? Do you want some fresh ideas? Are you looking for a colleague?
When you’re at the networking event make sure you listen more than you talk. Get to know the person in front of you. Don’t just walk around handing out business cards without making a meaningful connection. Ask the person you’re talking with what they hope to get out of the event. Are they looking to build relationships? Are they first timers? Do they have a business that might be a fit for yours and you could become colleagues? You won’t know unless you ask.
Look for networking events in your area and make a list of those that make sense for you to attend. Remember, it may make sense to network outside of your particular niche if you want to grow your client list.