Running a business certainly has perks, but it can also be a terrifying (and risky) endeavor. It's not a decision that should be made without a lot of thought and consideration, but what do you need to know after your have decided?! I think there are a few things that everyone should know about running your own business. It takes a lot of hard work and discipline and unexpected adventures happen every day. So is running a business really for you?
1) COSTS MORE THAN YOU THINK - When you are starting a business, you should make a list of everything you will need to open shop. And don’t forget the small details! In the photography industry you need a website, a bookkeeper (even if it’s you), an accountant, equipment, insurance, client gifts, a way to spread the word about your new business and much more.
I started my business without any debt and upgraded my equipment as needed. This freed me up to purchase necessary things to run my business without having a lot of debt tying up business finances.
2) STARTS SLOWER THAN YOU THINK - Business take time to build. Even if you do everything right from the beginning (branding, marketing, finances, etc.) that doesn’t mean that your business is going to become successful overnight. I actually worked another part-time job in college to supplement our income because businesses just take time.
You haven’t failed if you get a part-time or full-time job while you get your business off the ground. If anything, I think that you will be better off for it!
3) MORE COMPLICATED THAN YOU THINK - There are a lot of aspects to consider when running a business: marketing, branding, accounting, finances, web presence and so on. Don’t ever try to run a hobby like a business or it will burn you. It’s important to set aside money for business savings and taxes as well as giving yourself personal income. When all of these aspects work together in a healthy way, you can breathe and know that you are running a business and not the other way around.
4) MORE CHALLENGING THAN YOU THINK - So you think you know what you’re doing with a camera? You still have to find a way to get better. Part of running a business means that you are going to have to constantly improve your product and customer service. Your clients aren’t ever going to settle for second best and you shouldn’t either!
You are your own boss! Congratulations! Now you get to set your work hours, lunch break and envision where you want to go from here! Just be sure to stay disciplined so you can keep moving forward. What are your weaknesses and strengths? This is so important to know when you are running your own company.
5) MORE REWARDING THAN YOU THINK - If you have read through the first four and still want to run your own business, then I’m excited to tell you that running your own business is exciting. Succeeding at something you love is FUN. You will learn to embrace the challenges of business with arms wide open because you are a problem-solver, a go-getter and passionate about your business.
You get to set your own hours and work extra hard before you go on vacation. You might even get to see the world while you run your business (you know that I love traveling!)! You get to celebrate with your close friends when you accomplish something or your business takes a giant leap forward. You still get promotions and you get to share them with the world (that’s called marketing)!!
If I could run five businesses well, I would do it in a heartbeat. I even know what they would be!
What challenges do you face in business and how do you overcome them?