Creating Clarity 010
I started my business after being let go from my corporate job.
Since then, I’ve…
- Found work fulfills that me
- Built a profitable business
- Have the freedom to work from anywhere
If I had to do it all over again, here are five things I’d do differently.
Thing #1: Have the courage to say No.
As I got started, I thought saying yes to every client request was a good thing.
It led to work I wasn’t “qualified” to do and, in some cases, wasted hours researching how to do it effectively.
I learned later that saying NO…
- Frees you up to say YES to the things you are great at
- Sets boundaries for you and your clients
- Begins the process of defining what you want to be known for
Thing #2: Clearly define my offer.
Sounds logical, but it’s not.
When you start a business, you tend to chase revenue (see four below), which in most cases means you “offer” whatever your clients want. That’s what I did. Two years into my business, I was writing resumes, LinkedIn profiles and implementing StoryBrand.
This wide-ranging offering created confusion for both myself and prospects.
Instead, I should have taken the time to do the Like it, Love it, or Lose it exercise so that I could have focused my offer. Having a well-defined offer makes…
- You easier to do business with
- Your message clearer
- Content creation easier
Thing #3: Schedule time for lead generation
As a solo business owner, you do everything, which typically means that other things like sales and marketing are put on hold when you get clients.
Instead, schedule time in your week for sales and marketing because sales and marketing…
- Is the lifeblood of your business
- Keeps your pipeline full
- Never ends
Thing #4: Put profit first
Like I mentioned in Thing 2, in the beginning, I chased revenue. The internet gurus talk about revenue because their big numbers are impressive. But, the funny thing is, they rarely mention profit.
Boy, is that a mistake. Chasing revenue leads to…
- Unfulfilling work
- Clients that are not an ideal fit
- You being overworked and underpaid
Instead, put profit first. Thinking about profit “forces” you to consider the expense side of your business. The revenue may look great, but it’s not worth your time if you lose money.
Thing #5: Give yourself some grace
Running a business is hard. You will make mistakes, and that’s OK. It took me a few years to realize you need to follow YOUR path – not someone elses’.
Instead of trying to duplicate someone else’s business, focus on yourself and your business. Determine the type of business you are trying to grow and focus on what you control.
Only Gary Vee can be Gary Vee.
Building a business is a marathon, not a sprint. If you remember this and stay on your path, the rest takes care of itself.
Five things I’d do differently to build a profitable business faster.
- Be OK with saying NO
- Define my offering quicker
- Never stop sales or marketing
- Think profit first
- Give myself more grace