Professional Practice Demystified
14 Must Do Business Practices to Put Into Place NOW!!!
Many business owners jump from one fire to the next allowing their customers to run their show. Here are my top 10 Best Business Practices that have allowed me to survive and thrive as a business owner doing what I love:
- Don’t sit on your good ideas. Don’t hesitate…put them into practice quickly. You will have time to adjust them as you go. The first to market is usually the most successful. When you are researching, planning and learning…others are going to market with your idea. The Process: Implement-Test-Measure-Revise-Repeat.
- Marketing is the real business you are in. Add at least 1 hour each day for marketing. Place it on your calendar as an unbreakable appointment.
- Spend any downtime on relationship building. Join at lease two online and one offline groups, associations or networks that have your target market decision makers as members. Be an active and good participant who communicates coherently, consistently and credibly. This will establish rapport, trust and expert status. Beware: Do not try to sell them at every opportunity.
- Make sure you know exactly what your customers experience when dealing with you. Put strict customer service rules in place and make sure they are followed at all times.
- Under promise…Over deliver. Give them more than they think they are getting. I am not talking about breaking the bank here, just build the extra in.
- Engage your client base often. Ask for feedback, ideas and suggestions. And, most importantly…listen!!!
- Always, always have your business cards with you. Be a good listener. Ever person you encounter in your everyday life should leave with your business card in hand. Make it a practice to hand out 25 cards each week!
- Work and re-work your business plan at least once a year. Get rid of things that are not working and always be on the lookout for new services to add to or enhance your brand.
- Hire an accountability partner. A good business coach can be one of the best investments your will ever make for success.
- Always get it in writing. Expectations of both parties, completion dates, price and payment terms will make it easier to deliver and satisfy your client.
- Embrace social media. Engaging prospects frequently is the best way to find clients and grow your business. Conversations about what you do are happening hundreds, even thousands of times each day. These conversations are happening with or without you. Do not miss out on this shoestring marketing way to promote your brand. Make it a point to become social media savvy this year…the longer you wait the more you will regret it. Hire a neighborhood teenager to teach you.
- Write hand-written thank you notes to people who buy from you!!!
- Build a local search engine presence. Optimized listings, online coupons and client testimonials will give you a competitive advantage. Tight integrations with a blog and other social media will make you even more powerful.
- Be creative…find creative ways to trim your bottom line and understand that everything is renegotiable today! Find new, less costly vendors for cell phone service, Internet, web hosting and merchant account providers as well as suppliers. A little bit of research could mean more profit for your business.
someone asked for advice about starting a business today…this is my response…
congratulations for wanting to take the leap into your dream!!! there are many of us who have been exactly where you are and i offer support in the creation of your business and salute you for asking for help!
Things I wish someone had told me before starting a biz:
- Trust your intuition and passion. There is no idea that comes to you without the resources to accomplish it…what you need is already there waiting for you.
- Always choose passion over profits! Passion is sometimes the only thing that will keep you going when there are difficulties and/or low funds…and there always are these times. When you are passionate about your mission, you infect others with that passion…and that will bring the income. So learn to talk your passion…everywhere.
- Do the work it takes to create a business model that works for you. That means planning, research, and time. Doing the business plan can be the most rewarding time in your journey…if taken seriously and done well, it can give you clarity of purpose and define the path to prosperity. Without one, you will struggle and jump from one thing to another looking for something that works. You may stumble upon it, but charting your course is much more efficient.
- Know your core values…and your core business values. Then create your business mission statement and values. Post and read these frequently and make sure every decision you make is in support of these.
- Take an action step toward your dream every day!!! Don’t get stuck in the planning and the research…do something that will propel you forward. Just do it!!!
- Find support of others on the same path as you. Connection, especially when working from home, is necessary to keep you accountable and on track.
- Ask for help when you need it. Do those things that you are best at and will be the best return on investment for you…leave the details to others and hire help as soon as you can. It will free you to create the dream.
- Believe that what you do is of value. Create a pricing structure that supports the value and the dream.
- Learn how to ask for the money!! If you have to stand in front of a mirror for an hour every day until you can ask for the job without flinching, blushing, or laughing…do it.
- You must do 3-5 hours of targeted marketing a day. You are in the business of marketing, no matter what you do, sell, or offer. You have no chance of success, if nobody knows you are in business and what you have to sell.
3 strategies to breakthrough self-sabotage…
creative entrepreneur business tips
“Problems cannot be solved at the level of awareness that created them.” –Albert Einstein
as a mentor and coach of creative entrepreneurs, i facilitate breakthroughs…this is really ALL i do for my clients…
i walk with them as they breakthrough and claim their soul-based authentic power and passion…
i find that there are basically two types of clients:
- one who does the same things with the same mindset with the same routine day by day, month by month, even year by year…and
- one who accepts challenges, embraces change, and adapts their plans accordingly…
i often find that clients are their own worst friends…why do i say this? being your own best friend can propel you into your wildest dreams while self-sabotage can keep you stuck, blocked, or even paralyzed from moving forward and claiming your best life and career!
you cannot keep doing the same things that brought you here and expect a different outcome…you have to find new strategies and, this is the biggie, actually implement them…
how do we get to the place where my client experiences and even expects breakthroughs?
- Be quiet and listen to your authentic inner voice…not the inner critic, but the true voice that knows exactly what you need to do to achieve your goals. Stop listening to others or worse, buying into their well-intentioned suggestions or ideas. Accept and understand that they are on their own journey and are looking through their personal filters. It is easy to confuse their path with yours. Take time every day to quiet your soul and connect with your inner guidance system that is always 100% correct. Trust that you know what is best for you.
- Learn that fear, doubt, and chaos are the signs of a breakthrough…if you reflect on your past you can probably find several examples of this. When you experience any tightness or painful feeling, practice connecting with it deeply and allow it to lead you to the opportunity it births. It is almost always a occasion for growth…personally, professionally, emotionally, spiritually, financially, etc. The more chaotic, painful, and frustrating the circumstance…the bigger the breakthrough.
- Stop chasing perfect…perfect is impossible period! You know the drill. You must know everything…have every possibility covered…have every duck in a row…have every i dotted and t crossed…it must be just so…I am just picky! Face it…all of this is just a delay tactic, procrastination, self-sabotage at its finest…and the single biggest stumbling block for many. When you allow yourself to embrace the ‘done is better than perfect’ attitude of most highly-successful people, you are well on your way to fulfillment and achievement.
Trust your intuition, embrace fear, and let go of perfect…these steps will lead you to more authentic power, more fulfillment, more balance, and more profit.
Take Debbie Ford’s self- sabotage quiz to see how you rank.
Rebecca E. Parsons is a seasoned creative entrepreneur with over 35 years of successful self-employment. She will share unique business and mentoring tips with you as you build the business of your dreams. Look for her mentoring programs as part of our unique offerings in the Member’s Only area.
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