|Working Your Business
Sometimes home based business owners need to hear some "tough love". It isn't necessarily fun to hear, but at times, it is needed to make sure that you are staying on track with how you should be running and portraying your business.
I am worn out from hearing the "poor poor me" bit; the complaining over and over again. Instead of whining about your situation, DO something about it. Instead of making excuses about WHY you can't succeed, leap into action to change things.
In essence, we all start out being able to succeed as much as the next person. I don't know too many home based business owners who were given the silver platter or a big bundle of money to start a home based business. So, why is it that some home based business owners soar and others sit and dwindle and eventually fade away? Why are some home based business owners always up and positive and others negative and look for what they can complain about.
It's all about attitude. It's all about goals. It's all about hard work. It's all about perseverance. It's all about seeing the big picture and doing what you need to do in order to make it happen. AND it's all about taking ownership and acting like a responsible adult.
If things are not working the way you want, it is time to step back and take a good look at what IS working for you and what isn't. It is also time to look at how you come across to others and how THAT may affect your business. There are several things you can do, or NOT do, to create a shift for your business:
1. Do some research and educate yourself on a variety of topics:
*How to Run a Successful Home Based Business
*How to Market Your Product
*How to Organize your Business & Time
*Search Engine Optimization (for those with websites)
*How to Write Ads that Work
*The Power of Networking
*Secrets in Advertising
*How to Budget Your Business
2. Take time to PUT INTO MOTION what you have learned. Don't put all that reading and research to waste by not applying it.
3. Don't be too proud to look to others for help. Look at the people that you see are successful. Instead of harboring possible feelings of envy or jealousy, or even the thoughts of "well I could never do that", study what they have done. Ask them if they could share some ideas or mentor you. Don't expect that this advice or mentoring "should" be free. Be willing to pay or barter for help. You can't expect that someone should give up their own time, away from their own business and family, to guide and teach you.
4. Make better use of your time. Take a reality check and chart your time for a few days, so you can see exactly what you are doing when you "should" be working your business. Are you spending too much time on message boards or email lists? Are you spending too much time chatting on Instant Message? Are you spending too much time browsing and getting "lost" on the internet? Are you spending too much time on customers who you may need to drop? Are you spending too much time on projects and day to day routines that could be more automated?
5. Realize that your business DOES need to change from time to time. You cannot expect growth from doing the same thing from year to year. Then be brave enough to make the changes that need to be made.
6. Reinvest the money earned from your sales to expand, promote and grow your business. Spend your money wisely on things that will help your business or your business "self" to grow and advance.
7. Don't share too much of your personal "drama" with business associates, especially in very public areas such as message boards or email lists. You can lose a lot of credibility if it looks like you cannot manage your own life (financially, emotionally etc). People will and DO look at how you represent yourself personally and how you run your life and they will mirror that sort of management and behavior onto your business.
8. Don't beg. It is not professional or ethical. Don't tell people that you are desperate to make a sale or meet a quota, or worse yet, try to get people to pity you for a personal situation you may be facing that requires you to need more money. You NEED to separate your personal life from your business. People will be turned off and view what you are doing as capitalizing on a bad situation in your personal life. If you need more money to come in, offer a sale or discount. Do it in a very upbeat, positive and fun way. Don't guilt people into doing business with you.
9. Each person brings a unique view and personality to their business. Utilize and capitalize on that uniqueness. Find your OWN way - through hard work, creative ideas and perseverance.
Remember the expression "Rome wasn't built in a day"? Well, neither can your business be built in a day. A successful and long living business will take time to grow as it needs to. This could be months, it could be years. The sooner you realize that there will be good AND bad times ahead, the sooner you can get away from the "poor poor me" attitude when things aren't as you had hoped they would be.
Cyndi Webb is the Founder and President of Moms Network - an organization dedicated to the promotion and success of Moms in business. Since 1997 she has promoted and worked with thousands of work at home moms in coaching and guiding them in how to help grow their businesses. Over the years Moms Network has evolved to include more than 15 websites offering free resources to moms from all walks of life, the Connecting @ Home print magazine and the annual Celebrating Moms Expo which attracts thousands of moms in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. Cyndi makes her home in Minnesota with her husband and two children.
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