This month is a time of celebration and reflection. June 1, 2016 I hung out the Fenske Strategic Coaching, Inc. shingle ready to embark on building my private coaching practice.
In hindsight, overall, it’s been a fantastic journey. There have been some bumps and learnings along the way that perhaps weren’t needed…. having said that there’s nothing that I would have changed. Here’s the story.
I was born into a family of entrepreneurs. We were taught to work hard, be committed to our own success, and set lofty goals. My dad was always thinking about his next great achievement – he was of the mindset bigger is better. My mom is a gentle soul filled with encouragement and often comments “I’m so proud of you sweety” at the end of our phone conversations. That’s the environment and conversation that builds a great foundation for an entrepreneur.
Most of my career was spent in an environment where I could impact my own level of income. Commission sales, bonus structures directly tied to success, etc. I truly enjoy and appreciated the opportunity to be directly rewarded for the hard work I was willing to put into any role I had.
So – 6 years ago – I’m going full bore into entrepreneurship. I’m ready to set the world on fire and empower excellence one conversation at a time. Let me share some of my learnings with you.
Determine what you are good at and stick to it.
Determine what you are not good at and hire it out.
I’m probably one of the only Financial Advisors in the world that cannot do math…. even WITH a calculator. I was spending hours every month on my accounts receivables. It was slow and painful. Once I recognized that I could hire someone to do the accounting that was GOOD at it I was able to reallocate those hours back to being client facing.
Surround yourself with stellar supporters.
Unfortunately, according to Stats Canada, only 67% of the services producing small businesses survive past 5 years. Surrounding yourself with trusted and respected supporters may help you not fall into the 33% that shut their doors. The role of these supporters will vary from friend and confidante to referral source and cheerleader.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
There must be a database somewhere that flashes a bright neon sign when a small business is registered. I was astounded (and at the time) pretty excited about all the people that wanted to help me grow my business. They had the best ever client lists for me to buy. Some had the best ever coaching program that I should sign up for. I was inundated with requests from individuals to meet with them so that I can be educated on the fastest and easiest way to build my practice. I can tell you 6 years later there is NOTHING fast and easy about building a business. You need to be methodical and habitual in what you set out to do on a daily basis.
If you aren’t having fun just STOP.
People will often ask “why”. Why start your own business, why break away from traditional employment – just WHY.
For myself there’s a long list of whys, but probably the most important to me is that I truly enjoy what I do everyday. Not everyday is a perfect day but it’s the right day for me. When the work outweighs your “why” you need to move on. Life’s too short to not love what you do.
If you are currently on your entrepreneurial journey I wish you success. If you are thinking about embarking on this fun-filled, action packed roller-coaster ride I wish you success.