IS BUSINESS FOR YOU?
Some may think one is born as a business person, have to have specific skills/ knowledge to do it. Be a natural leader maybe, able to crunch endless figures, have loads of ideas possibly or even in the right place at the right time. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses, ideas, motivations, dreams. Just got to work out yours so can work towards what’s best for you!
———————- SO LETS BE HONEST
—— Work life balance
It isn’t all plain sailing. In the early days it is expected you will be working long hours (40+ week sound fun?), alongside the part time job that pays the bills and life (eating and washing clothes is rather important apparently). Might feel really unsociable in that the passion and vision takes over and is all you can think about and want to do. Having to manage your work load and “free” time is important so you don’t burn out or lose sight of your business leading to failure. Have a day off a week and/ or book a holiday as a reward for putting x amount of hours in. Figure out what you feel deserves a reward – what milestone is worthy of a biscuit and which a holiday and put ya feet up for 5.
——– Be YOU:
Can be hard to figure out who you are and what you want and then see that as a business venture, but once do will feel free. Asking around and reading others’ stories, can help you see what your dreams and ambitions lie, making for a clearer vision. Work out your strengths and weaknesses so you can know what you need to work on and/ or help with. Once you start the ball rolling you will be overwhelmed with motivation like never before and with belief, can just go for it, your way! If sweating it out in the office, in a suit for some ungrateful boss is for you then great, but for many it’s the realisation there must be something else. Take what you can from this and channel your fuel in to something with much more meaning. Something worked on by you, for you because it is what YOU enjoy and want to do. (am a poet and didnt know it)
You will have to weigh up your situation to ensure the risk is going to be worth it. Do you believe in it enough to put your current job/house/ family on the line? Are you willing to make immediate sacrifice (nights out and fancy gadgets) in order to achieve success? Business is risky and yea can fail, so just make sure you are passionate and willing to commit fully. Put 50% in get 50% out, I doubt you will be flying in the first year. If you think you need to stay in work to make ends meet then put it in the plan in the intention of leaving at some point. For example ” I will stay at work to maintain personal cash flow so I have less pressure on immediate business income and won’t need a wage. When I have gained some growth in 2/3/4/5 years I will leave work so can do the business full time! Its also important to prepare, so have enough funds to last for the first 6 months to ensure don’t run out of cash.
—– Negative people magnets (Negnets)
People that don’t understand, is because its your vision and they will try to stop you pursuing it. They may be jealous or stuck themselves so have a cynical view on the world. Keep them at a distance. At the end of the day may as well try right? No one is perfect, we all fail at some point, but it is how one learns from this that is important. People that care may be worried for you and say get a “normal” job or “get a secure income and buy a house….settle down”. NO job is truly…. secure and at least if you own and run it, you can more likely foresee or have some control over what happens. A job and settling down may be enough for some, but personal experience shouts we are all different. Best way is to approach negnets with answers and passion! Get ya plan down, know where the money is coming from (big motivator), make a pitch and practice. Then when they throw questions and risky resolutions for your “failure” you can break it down for them. This said it is best if can to have a mentor to ask advice and on a day to day basis surround yourself with like minded and positive people. Not many people will “get it”, but what is normal….. Conforming? Nothing will change YOU, nothing should, so believe in the vision and go for it! Everyone is different – embrace it!
——– Self belief will be tested
I compare business to a mountain, you will start at the bottom all excited, with all the motivation and energy surging and then a few days, weeks may pass and you realise everything gets heavier. Your legs move slower with each step and your mind is like….just give up….everyone thinks you should get a job anyways….You will second guess your judgement, your plan and decisions. But remember you asked for a hand off the chap mid way as he had fresh water, and a rope for your broken bag….. A rest you look back and see you made it so far, learning all the way. More time and persistence and goals completed you will get there and your work mountain looks much smaller from the top. Chance for evaluation so can do it all again…. aha.
My personal roller-coaster mountain
- Aber Live success. Hand over 2012
- Worked 3 festivals
- Continued working café as failed at interviews. sofa surfing
- Aber Live fall, Rewired Music BORN – March 2013! Showcases May – June
- Worked 2 festivals over summer = inspired.
- Bought promo goodies for fresher’s fair – love pens
- Left Tamed Sept 2013. Somewhereto_ workshops and O2 Think Big funding.
- Bought cheap car. Practically live on my mates’ sofa
- 1st I will give up moment* Got through to Big Ideas Wales Bootcamp!
- Wanted consistent known income so started two days @ Windsor Health Feb 2014.
- Inspired to continue and came up with “Play it your way!” at Big Ideas Wales Bootcamp.
- Worked V festival and Aber Tribute Aug. 2nd round of O2 Think Big funding and more Somewhereto_ involvment that led to an award!
- Bought PA and promo goodies for freshers fair.
- Car broken (Again). Moved into Powell Street Sept 2014.
- 2nd and pretty activated give up moment*2.
- Did the supposedly “last term” half heartedly and got very lost…. Felt moving to Bristol to get a job would solve all…..justified by saying I will play music there… probably wouldn’t have though.
- Chats with people I inspired, about plans and what not. Craig Kirkwood – photographer “just don’t get a 9-5 job” How that stuck with me… thanks man!
- Young Ambassador Training (nearly didn’t sign up because anxious)
- Training July – Again BIW have reminded me it’s ok to be different. To want and NEED to run a business and for me it’s in music. Is ok to “be YOU. It’s actually better”. I came back inspired and re-found the why. TO INSPIRE! My 3 things have always been, travel, inspire and music…. So let’s do that. STAY I SHALL! August 2015
- Re-brand and focusing on the journey. (Artist development and more)
*Fear and risk: As much as I can face the music when sh*t hits the fan, I spend the lead up time being terrified, worry/ anxiety putting me in a box and stopping me perusing what feels right, listening to negative people. Luckily, I managed to notice this and have worked on my self-belief and confidence. As soon as I started to believe and took the necessary small steps, I realised it would only get easier. Lesson – be honest and believe.
*2Negativity and financials: Felt like I would fail, so thought no point continuing. I could just get a real job and sing on the side? Won’t make this an earner…. Was ringing in my head, so wanted to run and am sure since starting the business many people around me would think the same and quite possibly said it. To run a business with no alternative income and initially no wage terrifies many, but for me is now all part of the challenge. The vision gets stronger the more I do, so the more I want to see it through and keep believing. Lesson – ignore negative comments/ people and take calculated risks. Trust your intuition.
——————– WHAT WE HAVE TO FIGHT FOR ALWAYS MEANS MORE!
So yea all has been said leading to one last point and a strong one. PLAN, BELIEVE AND GO! Even if it isn’t business and you want to be a bin man, just go for it and make sure you are YOU! Business allows you to think creatively and solve problems on a daily basis. If you want to make a logo in pink and brown you can. Obviously, good business sense means should have a reason why and be worth the risk (financially/ reputation), but at the end of the day it is your business (baby), so if it feels right try it. If it fails, then try something else, because you have the choice and vision. The best thing is when it DOES work and you get the credit, reaping all the rewards. It will all be worth it. Find a passion for something and get your teeth in to it. Have a skill and turn it in to a new venture. Things can get hard, so make what you do what you love, bringing a satisfaction in what you do for a living as well as outside it. You won’t feel the need to escape for the weekend at the pub, or for a week holiday to inevitably return to the mundane 9-5. You can do hours you like, in something that doesn’t feel like work. Ok…till get to taxes….. But hey once earning enough can be delegated to an accountant. Stop counting down the days and start living them in something you LOVE then when it works reward yourself with that thing you initially sacrificed!
Interested in finding out more? There is so much help out there for startups, so get creating those ideas! Here are some links:
BUSINESS WALES > http://business.wales.gov.uk/
BIG IDEAS WALES > http://business.wales.gov.uk/bigideas/
SOMEWHERETO > https://somewhereto.com/
LOTTERY FUNDING> https://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/