Saturday, May 15, 2010

Do You Have it in You?

Having your own in business takes some special skill sets that even I am still grasping.  Here is the beginning of a series of articles that will hone in on those often-overlooked business realities.
Lucky Encouragement Card
Lucky Encouragement Card by Lost Bridge Designs
Hopefully, you have a product you create or a service that is a viable commodity and you are now wondering “Can I take this to the next level?” or maybe “Can I quit my day job?”.   When I found myself asking these very questions a couple years ago, I was fortunate enough to have a partner that had business experience and really walked me through the pros and cons.  One of which, I thought I could handle with no problem but occasionally still gets a lump caught in my throat, is sacrifice.  There I said it…sacrifice.
Sacrifice is one of those “make you” or “break you” things that I do not think independent business owners get enough credit for.  Are you strong enough to turn off your cable to afford supplies for a craft show?  Are you willing to explain to your daughter the family vacation has to be postponed?  Are you willing to dip into your savings or 401K because you believe in what you are doing?  All of these are real questions that either I or my vendors have asked…their answers have differed between yes and no based on what they could sacrifice and yes, their businesses were affected to a degree each time.
What keeps me on track is having that ultimate goal to move towards.   It is easier to make the hard decisions when you ask, “Will this get me to my final outcome?” Whether it is a business plan, an idea-mapping collage, or one word on a scrap of paper…you should know what your goal is and prepare yourself to get there by any means.  Also, I should mention sacrifice is not all doom and gloom; it is in these trying times that make us more creative, persistent, appreciative, and give good fodder for that self-penned autobiography!


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