Being Open and Available

There are people who are on the fringe of your business, people who are acquaintances, those who are prospective clients, clients and associates, and if you think of these categorically as concentric circles of, at the center are your lifelong clients and friends. The goal would be to continually invite people into the next level of your business relationship.

To do this you must be available. Create a method of communication which may be accessed anytime your prospective client might need to get ahold of you. This is fairly easy to manage in this digital age, and/or with a virtual assistant.

You don’t necessarily have to be available 24/7 but your communication method does need to be available, so at least they can send you an email, text, or leave a voicemail.

In order for this to have any hope or working, you do need to reply as soon as possible. The highest success rates for converting prospects to clients comes from live interaction in the moment of contact. If this is not part of your marketing paradigm then make sure your people know that if they leave a message you will get back to them as soon as you can and do it, remembering that the longer it takes you to return the call, the more likely that your prospect will go elsewhere.

Before you meet with a prospective client, acquaint yourself with his or her business, and personality, so that you can have some idea about how to best communicate, relate, and help them. Fortunately, this is much easier in this day and age due to most everyone having a web presence and social media activity.

When you meet with a prospective client be sure to show them your best stuff. Leave them with something of value, a tip, secret, tool, technique, something that builds their confidence in your ability to be their go-to man or woman. You have skills, skills that they need. Make it easy for him or her to think of you in their hour of need.

Adjust your business model to not be a one-shot deal with your clients, building long-term business relationships over time, with regular consistency reduces your marketing expenses and increases your profitability over time. Make your business model all about repeat business, ‘ere the importance of keeping the door open over time.

Let them know that you will be contacting them in the future and make sure that you follow up. Remain in your prospect’s conscious awareness. People are different and prefer to be contacted in different ways. Try to reach out live and in person. If your potential client is unresponsive, find better ways to keep the lines of communication open, such as texts, emails, message chats, etc.

Out of sight, equates to out of mind, and if you’re not reaching out to your clients, they are unlikely to reach out to you in their hour of need,

Once you’ve met with your client or prospective client, you want to leave the meeting in such a way to be open and inviting to avail yourself to continue to do business or build a relationship with your people.

Following your meeting, recap what you have discussed. This lets them know you’ve been attentive and care about their needs or concerns, and this review can also achieve a greater degree of clarity, as they refine their assertions, or clear up any misunderstanding you may have had during the meeting.

A follow-up email is an excellent way to document the meeting and create a hard copy of the meeting which can easily be accessed by either of you in the future.

Overcoming Entrepreneurial Burnout

You’ve dreamed, been given the gift of an idea from beyond, a special skill or service or any of the myriad reasons people get inspired to take the leap of faith and start your own business. You’ve been bit by the entrepreneurial bug.

Maybe you’ve been feeling life is taking you nowhere, that it’s time to do your own thing, live life on your own terms and be your own boss. You’ve decided that it’s time to take action and do what you love and allow others to compensate you for following your passionate dreams.

You love the freedom of being able to set your own hours, share your gifts, talents and special abilities while letting your inner light shine as you exercise your creativity, reach your lifestyle and financial goals, enjoy more happiness and make the world a better place.

You’ve taken action and made the commitment to take a risk to embrace your dream, and you find out that entrepreneurialism (starting and running your own business) may be more than you bargained for. When you started out, you were enthusiastic and empowered with self confidence and love. Then, after a while, of dealing with the day to day operations of running a business, your confidence and determination begins to wane. Even though you’re doing what you love, you may feel your energy draining, begin questioning yourself, and possibly find yourself entertaining a personal bout with depression.

In my work with entrepreneurs, it is not uncommon for these otherwise potentially hugely successful business people to waver, when this is the critical moment for them to push through this thicket we refer to as burnout.

15 Signs of Entrepreneurial Burnout

  1. Lack of energy
  2. Increased anxiety
  3. Work too much (long hours)
  4. Not eating right
  5. Denying your own self-care (exercise, meditation, reading, journaling etc.)
  6. Feeling as though the weight of the world (your business) is on your shoulders
  7. Not interacting socially
  8. Noticing your personal relationships are deteriorating
  9. Holding yourself to unrealistic high standards
  10. Doing everything yourself
  11. Feeling guilty for taking time for yourself
  12. Endlessly pushing yourself to do more than expected (or even possible)
  13. Beat yourself up for not managing your business better
  14. Being disappointed in the level of success you have attained
  15. Not taking the time to celebrate your wins along the way

If any of that sounds like you, it might be time to re-evaluate and get a grip on your life. Don’t sacrifice your quality of life for your business. It’s easy to get in over your head, it’s not only expected in business, but it is also a primary element to moving your business to the next level and allows you to increase your opportunity for massive success.

You have forgotten about yourself – the most valuable component – of our business. It’s time to focus more on caring for you and nurturing the most valuable asset you have: You.

You can do this by considering

It Is What It Is

Simply accept that things are the way they are. Sometimes stuff happens that you have no control over. Get a grip, it’s not all about you. Sometimes you make a mistake, accept responsibility for that, get over it and move on. Don’t beat yourself up. And when you have a win (look for them – even small ones), celebrate it!

Being bold enough to make your own way invites challenges. It’s up to you to make sure you have the strength to deal with them when they arise. And if you need a hand, don’t hesitate to ask for help. Not everything is your fault and don’t let anything get in the way of your attention to yourself comes first.

Make and Take Time

Make time to rest, relax and take care of yourself. We all have the same 24 hours a day, and you’ve been denying yourself a portion of the available hours. It’s time to reallocate and prioritize. Consider some time management and scheduling to maximize the time you have.

Look Out for You

Make priorities of making opportunities to do the things you love to do and take better care of yourself. Start paying more attention to the way you eat, exercise and sleep, make adjustments to enhance these basic primal needs for your mind and body. Also find ways to make room for activities that promote better health and joy. Rebuild neglected relationships (or make new ones) and manage the more important, meaningful areas of your life.

Do It

Think about it, if your son or daughter were conducting their affairs, like you, you would be all over them to make changes, to take better care of him/her self. Take your own advice. Make a commitment to you and your own self care and love. Learn (and practice) to say, “No,” when your business or others demand expectations of compromising your attention to you, without feeling guilty.

While it may sound counter-intuitive at the outset, your renewed mind, body and spirit will be better equipped to do more with less if you’ve put yourself first.

Cut Yourself Some Slack

When you’re frazzled, feeling like your world is crumbling around you and it’s all your fault, stop. Take a break. Try to look at it from a different perspective. In every tragedy there is treasure, you need only to take the time to find it. Then it all makes sense.

And if you fail, forgive yourself and get back on track as quickly as possible. Failures are necessary components of success empowering you with invaluable education as you push forward. Don’t beat yourself up and keep going. You have everything you need to get you from where you are to where you want to be. If you keep going, the things that you don’t have will appear when the time is right.

You got this

Look for the good in everything and you will find the success you’re looking for. It might not turn out like you thought it would, but the results will be better than you imagined because every adversity will lead you to a far better place if you persevere.

Starting a Business Ideas

Let’s say (just as a simple exercise, not that this has anything to do with you, so no need to take it personal) you suddenly had lost your job in a down economy and after weeks or months looking for work, you were unable to secure gainful employment… What would you do?

You might consider a few ways to make money, when it looks as though there is none to be had, in an effort to survive. You could ponder the idea of engaging in a life of crime, like selling illegal drugs, car jacking, robbing a bank, or other endeavors, like selling your own blood, panhandling or standing on a street corner with a “Will Work for Food” sign, etc…

Some people, like you and me, we pull up our bootstraps and find a way to allow others who have some of this allusive money to feel compelled to bless us with some of theirs in exchange for some product or service. Call it what you want, we’re starting a business.

Oh, that’s easy for you to say, you wrote the book, Business Ideas for Home Based Business. Regardless, it’s not that hard to figure out how to create opportunities for others to give you money (without holding them at gunpoint).

starting a business ideas open for business craigslist

Think about it, you could figure it out when you were young (or you know other youngsters who did). If a kid wants something that costs money, he/she can figure out ways to make it happen (by other methods besides theft), like having a lemonade stand, babysitting, mowing lawns, washing cars or walking dogs.

A stroll by any community bulletin board will give you some ideas. As I stop for gas, a quick review of the bulletin board at the gas station has postings for housekeeping, fire wood for sale, handyman services, landscaping, and other postings with more of a business-like approach, such as auto repair, beauty supplies/services, massage therapy, pet grooming, aromatherapy, tarot card readings and a variety of business opportunities.

Of course, nowadays instead of a bulletin board, you’re more likely to find free postings on Craig’s List. Some of the postings I’ve seen recently include painting services, guitar lessons, yoga classes, educational tutors, web site design, computer virus removal, pet sitting, dog training, wedding photography, catering, pressure washing, laundry services and other odd jobs.

You can see there is little excuse for someone, even with the most remedial skills, can offer assistance to someone else in the community possessing the wherewithal to exchange cash for services.

You have skills – we all have skills – that would offer advantages to others who will pay you for a little help here and there. The more creative and industrious you are, the more you can charge.

I am impressed by the number of entrepreneurs who have started profitable businesses that started on a shoe-string as the result of being hit with hard times. In this manner, a financial shortfall with a little ingenuity could turn into a booming business and set you on a new path of self-sufficiency, business success and eventual prosperity.

Start small and you could build your business into a virtual fortune.

People are waiting for you now, and enthusiastically looking for your posting… So what are you waiting for?