A year ago I started my journey into business ownership. It has definitely been a rollercoaster of a year… Twelve months in, I thought it was about time to reflect on some of the things I’ve learned along the way (just seven, there have been more):
1) My family and friends have been fantastic; they’ve been unconditional in their support for me and what I’m doing. To them, and people I’ve met along the journey who’ve become new friends and my support structure, thank you, thank you, thank you! You’ll find their support and advice (and my case, G&T) is invaluable.
2) Clients aren’t simply clients, they’re people (and friends) who’ve believed and invested in me and Millichamp. Developing relationships hasn’t been a chore, it’s been a pleasure – and along the way it has been fun too. Clients are your lifeblood, take time to understand them and build mutually fruitful partnerships.
3) Look up and out. I’ve now realised it is easy when you work in a big organisation to focus inwards and not give a second thought to what’s happening in your community. There are so many fantastic businesses and people on my doorstep – they’ve become my new network. Take the time to look up and out – you never know who you’ll meet.
4) Love what you do, do what you love. I took a little time to hone what Millichamp was about. I realised it was important to me and my business to focus on what I loved. If you have a passion for something, find some way to channel it into what you do and how you do it.
5) Develop every day. From TED Talks to business books, conferences and CPD, I’ve taken time out to seek out development opportunities and challenge my curious mind. See it as an investment in you and it’ll reap rewards for your business too.
6) One day I had someone to call when my IT went bananas, the next day it was down to me! IT, accounting, HR, tax and more are your responsibility. You’ll become resourceful and learn to tackle new challenges. And, you’ll also realise when you need to call in specialist support, and that the price you pay is worth the investment.
7) Keep on yomping. Scientific evidence suggests we think and learn better when we exercise. Walking has become my new workplace – not only does exercise and fresh air clear my mind, it definitely stimulates the creative juices. Take a break and find your yomp!
It has been scary – but also refreshing and exciting. No more corporate politics. No more boardroom buzzword bingo. More flexibility and freedom. More worries about cash flow and my next pay cheque. But, I’m accountable and responsible for what happens now and next.
Here’s to the next 12 months.
If it is for you, good luck!
firstname.lastname@example.org / www.millichamp.co
First published on LinkedIn, 6 August 2018