Survival & Success Tips for Struggling Entrepreneurs and Business Owners
“My Business is Struggling, Can you Help?”
The story never gets old. Every day I hear how independent and small businesses are struggling. Some old fashion advice I remember hearing early on as an entrepreneur that I still stand behind:
You have to have three years of expenses in the bank in order to cover your business venture.
This may be an old fashion rule, and to some, unrealistic, but having the funding to operate a business AND support your personal expenses still apply in order to have stability and be able to focus on growing your business. Allowing you the luxury of both business and personal decision-making to be based on what is proactive and efficient. When you struggle financially, you are more likely to make decisions and take action from fear-based thinking (like lack and scarcity). Even if you do not have three years of expenses saved, an equivalent would be to have a reliable stream of income, while building your business, in place. “Don’t quit your day job” as they say!
To figure out your expenses requires a business plan, which many small business owners overlook.
I highly recommend making a business plan. You will see the costs in black and white and it will make you feel more professional because you are treating your business with respect. Business plans evolve and are super beneficial in so many ways. For example, in the process you will see your challenges, you might end up exploring new ideas and avenues for streams of revenue that you hadn’t considered.
“Following your passion will make you successful” is a myth.
I am a proponent of positive inspiration, in fact, it’s what I do. Being emotionally ready, confident in your dream and following your dreams is one level, and only one level, in a paramount structure and foundation to your success. Passion acts as your emotional cheerleader and muse. Actions and strategy need to be implemented for your business to thrive.
Expect to work seven days a week.
When you are in business for yourself, you are always ‘open for business’ until you are profitable and the business runs itself. So the physical and emotional requirement of owning your own business coupled with the financial strain, which every entrepreneur can get on board with, can deteriorate your passion very quickly if you don’t have realistic, structured support in place.
Be egoless and an open vessel.
Always be open to learning and taking every experience as an experience to grow from.
Being purposeful with your actions and doing what is needed is another foundational element paving the road to success.
I see so many talented people who believe they have a great solution, product or service and yet are floundering. Many times they don’t want to admit that business is bad. It is hard to admit (review ‘be egoless’) because the fear they may be seen as a failure, not expert at what we do or a fraud it a judgment tied to struggling – and a myth.
In some circumstances, let’s be honest, some people are not great at what they do. So it’s a great wake-up call to find what you really ARE good at! But for those who are really great at what they do, yet can’t seem to make a thriving business out of it, it’s not that they lack talent, passion or commitment it’s the fact that they are not implementing what’s needed in this day and age to be successful.
If you are not supporting areas of your business you need in place, but instead, following dated business models or you are filled with ego, you will be all up in your own way of success! Let’s face it, you can’t put an ad in the Yellow Pages anymore and expect lines of customers outside of your door. (Do they even still print that book?) These days call for you to be more creative and responsible. There are other solutions, tools and ways to support business, creatively, systematically and fundamentally.
Small businesses at high risk of failing typically are ones that cater to helping people or causes, craftspeople, independent ownerships, solopreneurs or businesses in which you are emotionally tied to and wanting to make a positive impact in the world, are typically the businesses that have the biggest struggles. Coaches, speakers, writers, artists, etc. Relying on booking one session, gig or selling one item at a time, seeing one client at a time and having to wear many (or all) of the hats, put us in a very anxious and stressed filled state. When we are struggling to make ends meet, overworked, disorganized, etc. we tend to be cornered into a reactionary decision-making position, which typically does not serve us.
The reality is, people will only want what you have if they are experiencing some sort of discomfort or know how good what you have makes them feel.
YOU know you have an excellent product or service. YOU know how someone will benefit from it. Unless THEY know they need what you have, and TRUST that YOU are the one they should get it from, you’re not serving anyone. There are lots of tools and methods to get what you do out there, get clients and develop new streams of revenue. Utilizing what is right for you and your business is essential for success.
How available and accessible are you?
People need to get to you, your product or service easily. Would you open a shop with no available parking within 10 miles? Would you make your business hours from 7 pm to 3 am because you like to sleep in? (Well, that will work if you own a bar!)
“How do I bandage this gaping wound?”
- Be Real
- Get Creative
- Implement Winning Actions
The biggest problem:
So many business owners react rather than pro-act. Planning is essential. It becomes a gaping wound slowing bleeding out with no plan or support. Waiting until you can’t pay the mortgage or are surviving on PB & J to find a solution is not healthy. Trying to resuscitate a business is an uphill battle and typically does not end well. After all, it’s in prevention and finding support and taking action before you are in such a critical state.
If you don’t invest in yourself, how can you expect anyone else to invest in you? Take the actions to support your BUSINESS, not your ego. Your talent, service, and passion are used up along with your sweat equity and funds if you don’t have a plan.
I know the real deal. I wish more people would tell their true story and let every entrepreneur know the actual reality of success. It’s a challenge, and you have to be crafty, resilient and sustaining. You need to surround yourself with true champions and be in a financially stable situation in order to take the risk.
Would you jump off a cliff with no parachute?
I believe in taking a risk on yourself. Cheering on innovative, creative, passionate risk-takers gives me a personal high. I find those who believe in themselves to be the pinnacle of inspiration. However, taking a risk on yourself without proper tools, support and knowledge are just bad … Period. It’s kind of like watching people who love to sing, step on stage for an audition on American Idol and, of course, are a train wreck! Just because you love doing something doesn’t mean you are equipped to do it. Getting the equipment is your responsibility. Maybe they should have taken singing lessons?
The internet has loads of resources. Find people who are successful in your line of work and follow what they do. Ask questions, find answers and implement winning actions. Seek solutions beforehand.
I am the Founder of The Wellness Universe, and we have assembled a panel of 7 experts on a free webinar I highly recommend you to join if you want to grow a successful business. It’s called Success 7. Our 7 trusted experts will be covering 8 areas of business you need for business success.
An epic impact requires, even grander, epic ideas, followed through by hard and smart work. Go out there and make the world a better place! Your unique contribution is needed.
Please comment below and tell me what your struggle is. Let me help you. Please share this with people you know who will find it helpful.
– Anna Pereira