Entrepreneurship and small business ownership have an appeal that’s easy to understand. The thought of working from home, making your own hours, and not answering to a boss or supervisor sounds like a dream come true to anyone working at a job that no longer serves them. That’s why I wanted to share my own story and that of a few other entrepreneurs as part of a series I’m putting together on entrepreneurship: an inside look.
I walked away from both a job and a small business when I made the decision to leave it all behind and come online in 2006. I resigned from my job as a classroom teacher at the end of the school year, and gave away all of my real estate clients who would better serve their needs.
But the real “behind the scenes” look at entrepreneurship tells a deeper story from those who live this lifestyle every day.
Reba Collins shares her thoughts on why she loves the entrepreneurial lifestyle, one that includes spending time with her kids and grandkids in her post Family… A Big Reason Why I Love Being an Entrepreneur But That’s Not The Only Reason:
I think about the time I’m able to spend with my kids and grandkids because I have a flexible schedule and no one tells me when I have to be at work.
When I think about being able to spend my days working with my husband, the gratitude swells up in my heart to the point it almost brings me to tears.
And that gratitude continues every day when I think of the opportunity I get to change lives with the products and information I create.
As I get older, I’m grateful that I get to use my brain. Writing, creating products, decision-making, goal-setting, branding, growth, bookkeeping, processes, they all give me ample and endless opportunity to keep my brain fresh.
And, I’m grateful that there are no age restrictions, I won’t be “retired” when I get to be 65.
Then there are the simpler things, for example, I have full control over where I work, what equipment I use, and how my workspace is set-up. That helps me feel good and removes frustration when I work.
I can take a long lunch with a friend and not have to explain to anyone why I was gone for more than an hour.
I don’t have to spend a bunch of money on clothes (or tight-fitting high-heel shoes) to “dress for success”. My success isn’t defined by how I look.
I wake without an alarm and am no longer perpetually tired.
Reba has so much more in her article, so be sure to read it all. The reality is that working as an entrepreneur means you must focus on finances and money in general every single day. I was used to receiving a paycheck every fourth Friday from the school district, and on a very irregular schedule in my real estate business. Once I was running my own business and depending upon myself to bring in enough income to cover all of my expenses I did experience some fear around this issue.
Jenn Brockman has written an article that brings up some excellent points around the topic of Do Finances Paralyze You in Your Business?
If you do your research first, you’ll save yourself from lots of financial headaches. Many new entrepreneurs will dive right in and simply hope for the best. If a lack of money is their main driving force, then their desired result can fail or do poorly.
There are many financial issues that commonly occur in the entrepreneurial world. Let’s look at a few of the monetary problems that might be coming your way, and how to get through them without being paralyzed by fear in your business.
Is Your Bank Account Pressuring You to Play It Safe?
In business, we have to make all sorts of decisions, and some of them very quickly. What’s more, we have to always be aware of the overall financial picture so we can make sound decisions.
Growth is expensive in many cases. For example, you may find your time slipping away and become desperate to have extra hands to help you. This means you’ll have to pay for that extra hired help.
Fear of failure is the driving force behind many of the decisions we make. First of all, you really need to let go of the fear of failure. Fears hold you back. If you are playing it safe simply because you don’t want to fail, you aren’t making your decisions based on success. And honestly, failure isn’t the end of the world.
I can certainly relate to what she shared, especially the fear of failure. The last sentence, “failure isn’t the end of the world.” is a powerful one. Read Jenn’s complete article to read more of her brilliant ideas.
So, now you’ve moved past the fear and on to living the lifestyle you’ve been dreaming of. You have some products and offer a coaching or mentoring program. Money is coming in, but at the first of every month you still have to find new customers and clients and think of new ways to bring in the money. The truth is that there is more to the story and Peggy Everson shared this in It’s Not Just About That Initial Sale:
To encourage repeat purchases and increase the value of your customer, try these ideas:
Create a Membership or Subscription Service – One sure fire way to increase your income and develop continuity income is to set up a membership or subscription service of some kind that your audience needs. This can happen via an app, or it can be the delivery of the product. Just about everything is on subscription these days, from cat food to toilet paper.
Offer a Payment Plan – If your products are pricey, you can offer a payment plan. Even if they’re not, you can enter PayPal’s credit program and let your customers pay by credit.
Increase Your Targeted Emails – Using your autoresponder, send your list members more targeted emails asking for the sale. Remember, they signed up for your email. If they don’t like what you send, they will unsubscribe. But if people aren’t going to buy something from you, there is little reason for them to be on your list.
Increase Social Proof & Engagement – Today, everything is about engagement. That’s the reason social media is so popular. It’s no longer enough to sit behind your computer and send emails and write blog posts, now you need to respond to your audience in real time when you can. The best place to do that is with social media.
Survey Them – When you get a customer, they should immediately be delivered an autoresponder series that will nurture them, engage them, and make them feel more satisfied with their purchases while also recommending more purchases. But you want to add to each series a survey to ask them how satisfied they are with their product.
Did you know about all of these? if so, are you implementing each one regularly? Be sure to read Peggy’s complete article that contains so much more in the way of business insights as a part of entrepreneurship, an inside look.
You can see that this topic of entrepreneurship: an inside look is one that we can all learn from and resonate with. I would love to know your thoughts on what I and these three savvy entrepreneurs have to say based on our experience and expertise.
I’m author, publisher, and entrepreneur Connie Ragen Green and would love to connect with you. If you’re new to the world of online entrepreneurship please check out my training on how to sell yourself at Sell Yourself and Your Stuff and learn how to gain an unfair advantage when it comes to building a lucrative online business.