Things every solopreneur should know
5 min read
Over the last 5 years in business, there have been times when I’ve had a team and times when it was just me, myself and I. Here’s what helps me most when flying solo.
1. Don’t be poor-ganized
It’s easy to let administrative things slip when there’s no one to be accountable to, but your systems and processes are the backbone of your business. When you let things slip, they get stored as a to-do, another thing to catch up on later, and who needs more of those? These tasks are deathly boring, but completely necessary and could make or break your business. This is not to say that you should be spending a ton of time on them. In fact, it’s also important that they’re not taking you away from the core of your business, i.e. the stuff you love. The more you can delegate and automate, the better.
2. Schedule your bookkeeping
Isn’t it the worst when there’s a stack of crumpled receipts sitting on your desk? If you don’t have your bookkeeping automated, schedule it for every 1-2 weeks so that you’re regularly inputting your receipts, expenses, etc. Not only will it stunt the growth of that paper monster, but keeping on top of your bookkeeping is vital in case you get audited. *gasp*
3. Push yourself to get better
With no team huddles and hurrahs, it might be hard to motivate yourself to improve. Throw another block of time in your calendar every 1-2 weeks to revisit your short and long-term objectives. Not only will this fuel the fire, but it will remind you of your “why”. Why did you start this business in the first place? Go back to when the idea was germinating – what made you so excited to start? Reminding yourself of this will carry you through any trying times and will also spur new why’s to keep the passion going. After all, your business is ever-evolving, just like you.
4. Be mindful of the loneliness factor
After all, one is the loneliest number, especially if you work from home. It’s quite different from being in an office setting where distractions are often and welcomed, so be sure to take regular breaks. Pop on a podcast and go take a walk. You could switch up the scenery and work from a coffee shop, co-working space, library, etc. If you find yourself struggling with getting out there, band up with other solopreneurs for jam sessions.
5. Celebrate the wins – big or small
There may not be anyone to high-five or share a glass of bubbly with when you’re making business gains on your own. Be sure to find a way to celebrate and acknowledge your wins. Rather than glossing over them and powering forward to the next goal or target, it’s important to revel in the moment and be grateful for each accomplishment, no matter the size.
6. Vent the upsets – big or small
Similar to the above, you may not have someone in the office next door that you can just jump over and vent to when something’s on your mind. Venting is highly therapeutic – just having your frustrations heard will help you move on and get back to biz. If you can’t vent to family or friends, develop an outside support system. Connect with other entrepreneurs through local meetups or small business networking events. If you can find a mentor, even better. It’s invaluable to have someone to support you and hear you out while also providing valuable knowledge and experience.