Business is Hard… Period.
Yeah. If you’ve started a business, run a business, owned a business you know it’s hard.
There’s simply no way to get around it.
Resiliency is probably one of the most important skills you’ll need because the process can wear you down.
At the beginning, it’s fun! Designing logos and websites, creating services and products, and talking about your business. All those things are exciting.
But, inevitably, things turn and what was once fun becomes a chore. You are spending all your time working in your business. You think about it at dinner and during the news. You sit down to watch a movie but you don’t see the movie because you’re thinking about all the things you need to do.
You stop going out with friends because, well, you’re working. They don’t understand and they get tired of hearing “no” so they just stop asking.
You start to miss the kids’ games or plays, and they start ask about when they are going to spend time with you.
And, here’s the thing… it’s all normal because that is what it takes to build a business.
Some of us love it enough to push through, to keep at it, because there will be a time when things do get easier. The first push, the building and growing push, that one is hard.
The question is whether or not you want to grind through it or get help.
When I started my very first business, I had no idea what I was getting in to. I wasn’t alone, I had my father and brother but they were really just as green in many ways. I had no mentor, there was no seed funding, we just bootstrapped it.
Every time I hit a spot where I didn’t have an answer… I called someone. Some of those someone’s were friends. Some were paid service providers.
The ONE THING I did not do is struggle to figure it out… probably because I’m impatient but mostly because it simply wasn’t efficient.
When I see people struggle with things for hours on end my eyebrows shoot up into my skull.
Why would you struggle when there are countless people who already have the answers?
Recently, a prospective client told me that she had spent hours… like 2 to 4 hours trying to get a blog post set up on her website. I was mortified.
In my website design business, I set up blog posts as a service for clients. It takes me less than 15 minutes to read through the emailed instructions, download the document and images, upload and layout the content, schedule, and publish. And that includes an email saying it’s done.
15 minutes. So let’s do the math. I charge $50 per hour, ¼ of that is $12.50.
Your time… worth $100 per hour? $50? $20? Times that by 2 hours… $40!
All of the things we do that we struggle with, that take more time than necessary, those are the things you should be trying to outsource or trying to find someone to help you with them.
Whenever I have a question about something I don’t have an answer to, I reach out to my network. I don’t even try to stew about.
I recently needed an app for a client. A quick Google search revealed that there were options out there. So instead of going from link to link to figure out the best one… I reached out and asked my bestie. She is one of those people who loves the rabbit hole, she tries all the apps, researches the shitake out of stuff, and I knew she’d have a suggestion.
A quick message on Slack and within 30 minutes I had a couple of suggestions. BLAM! DONE! And, I got stuff done while I waited to hear back.
Most highly successful people have a network of people – friends and paid professionals – that they reach out to when they need something. The needs can be small or big. Doesn’t matter. What does matter is that instead of spinning wheels they reach out.
If you’ve ever wondered why some people are simply more productive than others… well the reason is “reaching out”. They know how to do it, when to do it, and why.
What’s the why?
Ultimately it’s time and bandwidth. I save time by asking someone else, moving onto something else while I wait for an answer. I don’t clog my brain with useless researched information, I don’t raise my blood pressure by getting frustrated, and I don’t waste time trying to do everything on my own.
The secret… Efficiency.
I ask the question: What is the most efficient way to handle this?
Successful business people change their mindset.
Efficiency, give it a whirl. I mean it’s not sexy. But most real “secrets” aren’t.