When you are in the business of being in business for yourself, it can definitely get lonely at the top. As a solopreneur, you often have to set your own deadlines, motivate yourself, and light the fire under your own seat to get things done. How you measure success is subjective. Is it important to you to make a certain amount of money? To have time off to travel? To be able to balance homelife and work? To get yourself out there in the world and have an influence on people?
No matter how you define success, these 10 things are what make solopreneurs successful:
1. They know that money isn’t the main focus
When money is the focus, the big picture becomes lost. You are in business to provide a service, or to do something you love or feel passionate about. The money is what results from this. When solopreneurs make it solely about money, the passion gets lost.
2. They get that being true to their brand is more important than selling out
Affiliating with companies that are not aligned with your values, will make your customers distrust you, and make them think you are selling them out, rather than creating relationships with them. Stay true to your brand. Focus your resources on expanding your message rather than diluting it with other people’s messages.
3. They know the value of their time
Successfull solopreneurs know that time is important. They are not afraid to charge what they are worth, and to say “no,” if something will take more time than it will be worth.
4. They are not afraid to try new things
Keeping on top of latest trends is important. Clinging to a software program, or a way of operating that is outdated keeps you behind. Forge ahead. Many programs offer things like free 14 or 30 day trials so you can test things out with no risk.
5. They are consistent, no matter what
If a successful solopreneur says they are going to send out a weekly blog, they send out a weekly blog. They also keep their branding consistent on all platforms, by using the same colors, fonts, etc. to be easily identified.
6. They surround themselves with people who are smarter than them
They don’t think that they are so smart that they cannot learn anything. A know-it-all has no room to grow. Just when we think we know something, a new study comes out to debunk the previous theory. Challenge your brain by having conversations with people who are more versed and educated than you in areas that you know less about.
7. They know the power of collaboration
Cross-promotion, and partnering with others can expand your reach, and increase your credibility. Don’t try to stay all by yourself but be open for collaborations which will bring you forward.
8. They make mistakes, and they keep going
Mistakes happen. Obsessing over them does not make them go away. When you make a mistake, take the time to clean it up, or rectify it as much as possible. Then, move on. Don’t let it stop you from taking action.
9. They remember to have fun along the way
All work and no play … well, you know how the saying goes. Staying focused and being productive is great, but if it is turning into too much “hard work,” it may be time to revisit your business. You should be enjoying your efforts along the way. If you are not, you can become burned out, and the type of business you are in may not be a good fit for you.
10. They celebrate their small victories, as a means of encouraging their big successes
When your eye is focused on a big goal, it can be easy to overstep the small victories that lead to success. Pat yourself on the back when you make that difficult phone call. One of my favorite examples has always been when brick and mortar business owners frame their first dollar bill they made from their business. Frame your own version of a dollar bill by celebrating your first twitter follower, your 100th email subscriber, and so on.
Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com