You have a great idea, you start developing it and think you have a clear view of the path you want to follow, but sometimes you get stuck.
It could be because you didn’t realise that the journey would be so long and stressful. You didn’t realise that no matter what the Facebook gurus had told you, there is no guaranteed formula for success. Soon it seems more and more likely that you won’t make seven-figures in your first year of operation.
And that makes you second guess yourself, right? Is my business idea as strong as I first thought? Is my product going to work? Will I have enough money to get it off the ground?
Naturally you want to run these ideas and concerns by your dearest and closest, but this can also be an issue. At this point you are at your new-and-excited phase, passionate, ready-to-do phase. You have so many ideas and questions to ask. Your closest and dearest are often not available to the level you would like them to be.
They have their own lives to worry about and that doesn’t involve your business idea, or new venture being top of their priorities. They have their own jobs, businesses or are simply too busy looking after the family.
So in your head you hear, “I don’t really care”. But it could simply be, “whoosh, that just went over my head” or “really, I don’t have time right now”. Remember, your project stems from your inner genius, not theirs.
As new business consultants, we see these things all the time.
Starting a business
or even just being a sole trader…
CAN. BE. A. LONELY. PLACE.
On one occasion I had a chance to hear it when a couple standing in a line at the cinema behind us had a conversation I couldn’t not listen to (sorry) when the wife told her husband: “If it doesn’t work, you can always go back to work for the bank.” He went silent and when I looked back to see his face I knew exactly what he was feeling. This was her way of trying to put him at ease, thinking, “he can always have his old job back”. But all he heard was, “she doesn’t think it will work for me and she is already in Plan-B mode”.
It can be a lonely place. So there are few things you can do.
1. Find “like minded” forums you can join, share your concerns and bounce ideas in. They are normally close groups so Google them and see if you can apply.
2. Go through your list of contacts and check if any of them have business experience. If so, organise to meet to see if they would be happy to spend some time with you, in order to address some of your questions and concerns (it has to be someone close, so you don’t look like you’re just after a “freebie”).
3. TED talks. I love TED talks. They are great places at which to be inspired and maybe find topics that particularly concern you, especially when you can’t afford a professional motivator. Type in the subject you want to listen to and listen!!
4. For structural and stable support, choose a coach. Coaches charge a fee, so be smart in selecting the right one for you. There are key things to consider. How flexible is the coach with their time? What is their background? Did they just jump out of 9–5 job to become a coach? Or do they have a deep and sound business history that will help them understand you better?
DON’T. BE. ALONE. IN. THIS.
Bounce around ideas and find the right partner who can assist you. One who can provide you with honest and constructive advice (sometimes even brutal). Worthwhile feedback with no sugar on top can be the difference between success and failure!