Recognize some of those faces? They’re the pretty, smart, bad-ass mugs of successful business owners – some former clients, and all friends! #blessed
And because they’re all so kind and helpful, they agreed to answer the question:
“What’s the one thing that you wish you had done differently when you launched your business?”
You’re gonna wanna take notes 🙂
Rebecca Tracey Business and Marketing expert for new coaches – The Uncaged Life
I wish that I had focused in on a very specific topic and started creating content around JUST that topic. I had a few similar niches that I was trying to reach and didn’t have a strategic plan in place, so wasted a lot of time blogging about stuff that didn’t really lead people to buy a specific program from me. If I was to do it again I’d create a program about ONE topic and write blog posts, do podcast interviews, create webinars, and opt-ins, and run FB ads ALL about this one specific topic with the intention of getting clients into that ONE program. So in a word – FOCUS!
Kira Sabin Ringleader of the Dating Shitshow – The League of Adventurous Singles
Given myself a big, fat break. I had so many expectations of what I needed to be doing, how much money I was supposed to be making, etc., that I about talked myself out of this business that I truly love. I now know this is a long-game process. You will evolve and grow and so will your business.
Esmé Weijun Wang Award-winning author and founder of The Unexpected Shape, a resource site for ambitious people living with limitations
If I could launch my business all over again, I would spend *much less money* on educational products and courses—or, at least, I would’ve more carefully vetted the ones I did sign up for. I wasted literally thousands of dollars to learn outdated information from people who weren’t even experts in their field. It’s l tempting to take All the Courses or read All the E-books, but information overload is a real thing. Be careful about whom you learn from (and Michelle is the Real Deal, FYI).
April BowlesCreative Business Consultant – Blacksburg Belle
I wish I would’ve truly believed in myself. In that first year of business, I wish I had a way to see the future and know that I was going to “make it.” It would’ve prevented a lot of sleepless nights and bellyaches, and I didn’t really “make it” until I believed I could do it. “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford
Jenny Blake Business strategist and author of PIVOT: The Only Move That Matters is Your Next One – Jenny Blake
I wish I had focused on creating steady, recurring cash flow, rather than project-based billing as many coaches are taught to do (i.e. billing for a 3- or 6-month engagement). With the project-based billing structure (or rather, lack of it), I never knew what I would be earning and when, and I felt like I was constantly chasing down invoices and new clients to pay the rent. Switching to monthly retainer billing—where clients are billed on the first of every month, have 3 sessions at the same day/time each week, and can cancel at any time—saved my business and my sanity. I could finally predict how much I would be earning each month based on how many clients I had. In my book I call this a cash (flow) cow—every business needs one!
Kate Gremillion Career Consultant – Mavenly + Co.
I would have focused on doing one thing really well rather than try to be everything to everyone. I learned the hard way that not everyone is meant to be a client and some people can’t afford you and that’s OK. Listen to your gut, and be true to your mission.
Sarah Von Bargen Writer and teacher – Yes and Yes
I wish I’d been more strategic about how my blog posts related to my services and offerings. Sure, *some* of my blog posts related to what I did/sold, but the vast majority of what I published wasn’t related. Be ye not so stupid as me!
Susan Hyatt Master Certified Life Coach – SHyatt.com
I wish that I had hired help sooner. In the beginning, I was doing everything myself, as most of us have to do. I wish that someone had said to me, “Susan, you need to delegate and hire out everything that takes you away from your coaching magic.” When I did hire an assistant at the end of my first year in business, it was a real game changer!
Kate Swoboda Life Coach, Author, Director of the Courageous Living Coach Certification – Your Courageous Life
Spent more time articulating exactly how, in very pragmatic terms relevant to someone’s day-to-day life, someone practices courage. I think that better articulation of what a courageous life looks like—beyond just endlessly talking about happiness, authenticity, and inspiration!—would have helped my right people find me and resonate with me, faster. At the same time, I appreciate the wide open space I gave myself for experimentation and figuring it all out, and especially since I love where I’ve ended up, on some level I wouldn’t change a thing! 😉
Alexandra Franzen Author, Writer, Writing Teacher – AlexandraFranzen.com
When I launched my writing business, at first, I had almost zero clients. I wasn’t very busy. I had tons of free time. I wish I had used that free time to walk by the river every day, eat lunch outside, bask in the sunshine, or visit my mom and dad. But instead, I spent my time obsessively checking my Twitter stats and refreshing my inbox inside a dark room. All that precious time… wasted. What I learned is that if you’re “not that busy,” it can feel terrifying, but also… it can be a huge gift. Being “not that busy” probably won’t last forever, so cherish that free time while you’ve got it! A few years down the road, when you’re solidly booked up, you might nostalgically reflect back on those early days and wish you were a little “less busy” all over again.
Paula Jenkins Life and career coach – Jumpstart Your Joy
I wish I had fully trusted that I already knew what I loved, and had the courage to follow that. It was easy, early on, to get distracted by the “shoulds.” When I boiled it down, I love helping people find their voice; I rejoice when people (re)discover what brings them joy, and I fought following the path that would let me do those things. It turns out that podcasting, coaching, and consulting is THE things that I adore and that I can do as my work, too.
Tanya Geisler Leadership Coach – TanyaGeisler.com
Thinking that someone else had all the answers was a source of suffering early in my business build. I wish knew then, REALLY knew then, that I could trust my own guidance. Like, “bank on it”, trust. Sure, some people will have specific insight into specific challenges and it’s smart to ask for that help…but for the most part? My way IS the way. Was then, is now.
Tiffany Han Writer, Speaker, Teacher – TiffanyHan.com
I wish that’s I’d gone BOLD with my message and given myself permission to stand out in this crowded marketplace. It’s okay to turn heads yo!
L’Erin Alta Soul guide, Shadow diver, Spiritual teacher – SisterFire.com
Nothing! No one promised that building a business would always be easy or simple or profitable — but I knew I was doing what I was born to do and that it would be worth it. So I studied, took courses, worked with coaches, applied what made sense, let go of what didn’t. I was focused and persevered, even when it was hard. I picked up part-time and temp and full-time jobs when my business wasn’t making money. I kept going and growing and learning and eventually created a business that I love (that loves me back).
Shenee Howard Brand Strategist – Hey Shenee
Mindset, baby! I know it sounds woo but I can’t tell you how many of my problems early on were about my f-ed up mental game and not honoring my worth and setting boundaries with people. My best advice is to learn the business and the mindset required for being a business owner. That stuff is key. Oh! And talk to as many people as possible about the problems you solve. It will make everything easier!