Congratulations! You’ve made the decision to no longer be a part of the 40-40-40 scam. Working all of those side gigs has paid off. You’ve launched your business, and you’re moving towards your dreams!
You take a deep breath and exhale, realizing that wasn’t such a tough decision after all!
Now for the real challenge — growing and marketing your business to stay competitive and obtain a regular flow of customers.
New Business? It Won’t Be Easy
I’d be flat out lying if I said it will be easy. It won’t.
There will come a time when you reach a wall and despite your every effort, you can’t seem to get around or over it.
- You’re stressed from working 12-hour days.
- Your family and/or friends are seeing less quality time with you.
- You’re finding it impossible to find clients that will pay you what your services are worth.
- Worst-case scenario — your funds are running low.
You’re starting to think you made the biggest mistake ever by deciding to start your own business.
You’re crushed that your business is not producing enough results for you. What that “enough results” is will be specific to you. It may be financial. It may be networking and finding connections in your industry. It may be not knowing how to go about getting to the next level.
So, you do the worst possible thing.
You start thinking about giving up and going back to being employed by someone else … and helping that someone else obtain their dreams and goals while your dreams and goals get put on the bench.
The one thing I wish someone had told me is, “The struggle for a new business owner is real. However, when you keep pushing towards your goals, the end results will be worth it.”
Feeling stressed or overwhelmed? I get it. I’ve been there. So, in being completely direct —
Stop all of the thoughts about returning to a 9 to 5 job! You will regret the wasted time. Time is a very precious gift. Once it has passed, it is gone forever.
Think long and hard about that.
Tell Your Ego You Can’t Do It Alone
As a business owner, your ego can and will be your worst enemy.
Think you don’t need help or you can do it all yourself? With those principles, you are only hurting your business and all you will have is a legal piece of paper to show you’re a business owner.
You must be the one to make the first step. Unless you’re publicly posting your earnings online, the majority of people will never know your business is struggling.
There’s an entire community of people willing to offer assistance or become a mentor. Meet-Up is just one resource to look at.
If you’re attracting customers and don’t have the time to complete projects within their deadlines, consider outsourcing some of the work. You should never have to say no to a customer because you’re unable to do the work yourself.
Remember when you were hustling with side gigs while still working your 9 to 5? Find people like that to help you out. More than likely they’re searching using the same resources you also used.
Post advertisements on freelance and consulting websites and pass out fliers in your local area, where people are familiar with your face.
Also, let family, friends and former co-workers know you’re looking for assistance with your business.
If you know you need help, don’t be shy about asking for it.
When you want to grow your business, faking it until you make it is the wrong path to take.
Failure, Competition, and Marketing, Oh My!
Don’t quit because everything is not going as planned the first time around. If at first you don’t succeed, just say, “Well shit, I’ll just try again!”
- Failure is a part of business. If you’re continuously learning and trying new processes, chances are at some point you will fail. That’s OK. Just learn from the mistakes and go at it again! Any successful business owner who says they have never failed is lying to the point where they’d make Pinocchio’s nose look small!
- Competition is a part of business. Unless you’ve chosen a field where the demand for a service or product is significantly higher than the number of people with that product or skill set, you will find that the business world is vast and very competitive.
- Always be marketing. Business owners must constantly market their business and keep on top of new trends and products. Monitoring data for the best marketing strategy is also a necessity. Not just to stay competitive and attract new customers, but also to keep your existing customers! Competitors will always be looking to lure away a shared target audience.
Before you make that fatal business decision to give up — think about what it took you to get started in the first place.
Maybe you were battling internally with yourself — for a very long time — playing out a bunch of “what if” scenarios, and your passion and need to start your own business finally won. Maybe you were working the second job in the evenings, on the weekends, and side hustling every chance you got to save enough to kick-off your own business.
Quitting means whatever you did to launch your business will have been for nothing.
Review all of your options.
- If something isn’t working out, try another process or technique.
- Research influencers or other successful business owners in your industry and learn from what they’re doing. Learn from them — not copy. When you rely on copying someone, you will always be a step behind. You don’t want that, do you?
- Connect and network with others in your industry. Keep in mind that connecting does not necessarily mean a face-to-face or even an email conversation — though those are important too! It can simply be following industry influencers on their social media sites to see what they’re posting and who is engaging with them, reading articles and guides they post to their blogs, subscribing to their email list, attending their webinars, etc.
- Lacking certain skill sets? Take a class. There are countless free online courses available throughout the year — Google is your friend!
Start thinking outside of the box, or it will begin to feel like it’s collapsing around you!
Whichever new process you try, remember that quitting should never be an option.
Now get back out there and take it up a notch!