In today’s world, more and more people are striking out on their own and starting their own business. Working for yourself has a lot of good perks, but the downside’s can get the best of you if you aren’t careful.
There are two phases of owning your own business, and these two phases require very different skills: 1) Starting and building your client-base, and 2) Once you’ve got a good client-base, you have to maintain it.
1) Starting and building a business takes a real “go-getter”. You start from scratch and now you are on your own. There is no boss, no check coming on Friday, none of the security that can come with having a good 9 to 5 job. So you are on and there aren’t really any boundaries. You are making your pitch, you have opened the door and made your first steps at promotion or advertising, and here they come. Everyone has to go through the beginning stage, but once you find a good foothold, you find something that works to bring in clients, then you blossom. For many people, this becomes a sport. It is a rush to be all alone and go out there and get customers, but at a certain point, everything changes. Time and time again I have people come to me that have too much work. They are working seven days a week, people call them at home or during off hours, they can’t keep up and they are going crazy. Often times there are relationship troubles that come along with this. Hopefully, things won’t get too bad before it is realized that some sort of transition has to occur.
2) In the beginning, you were on fire, but now you have over worked yourself. You are in over your head and you are drowning. It is time to level this off a bit. It is time for you to set some boundaries, and here is how its done!
– Ask yourself some questions: How many hours do you want to work a week? How many clients would be good and healthy? What would be healthy schedule look like? What would allow time for your relationships, your family, and a social life?
– Have you given out your cell number? Are people calling at all hours and on weekends? The good thing about the cell phone, is that you don’t have to answer it, but can you resist? What if someone has a problem?
– You’ve got to create boundaries, and now you can!
The point is that in the beginning, there are very little to no boundaries. As your business grows, you must make the transition into having boundaries. Otherwise, things can turn out not so good. In the beginning, all you say is “Yes”, but this cannot be the case after you get busy, you will have to learn to say “No”, or to not answer the phone, or to say “I need to reschedule you for another time.” You can do it!