Hey guys! It’s Freelance Friday time and I thought I’d write a blog post this time, as I haven’t done this in a while!
Since starting my business I’ve been able to look back and analyse what I’ve done so far and look at what I wish to improve. Through doing this, I’ve found some things that I wish I knew/did at the beginning. I have no regrets during the road of starting this business, however I do have things I wish I knew!
Wishing I started earlier
One thing I really wish I did, was start earlier. This sounds silly because I started when I had the idea and didn’t hesitate too much. However I wish I started my business when I was younger, even at 19. I’ve always been creative, but I’d never once thought about starting an online shop on creating products until I was 22. This isn’t something I could help, as I started when I started! But to any of you debating whether to start your business or not, just do it. You’ll end up wishing you started sooner!
Keep Organised from the Get Go
When you own a business, no matter what it is, organisation is key. I didn’t realise how much organisation was needed until it came to tax returns and all that businessy boring stuff. Keeping track of earnings and expenses- even things like shipping costs. Organising yourself to stick to a schedule and keeping your documents in one place will really help you out in the long run! Organise a place for important documents, photos, stock count etc.
Learn from those around you
This may seem like a given, but when starting out, and throughout the whole journey, you will come across many other business owners, some of which will be further down their path than you are. It’s important to learn from the beginning to use those around you as inspiration and to learn from them, rather than compare yourself to them. someone to look up to and use them as motivation, it’ll be a lot more fun that way. This is something I’m still working on, it’s natural to wish you were doing what someone else is doing! I found a really cool quote that says “if you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room” and I LOVE it.
Less Researching, more doing
Yes yes I know! Researching is important. Conducting market research is a key part of starting a business, but don’t let it take over. I wish I knew this when I first started. I spent a lot of time researching and kept putting things off as I “haven’t looked into it enough” when looking back, I should’ve just gone for it! Clarity comes by putting yourself out there and learning along the way. Block out any distractions and take action on what you’re wanting to do! If you do this even for 20 minutes a day, you’ll be surprised at how much further you’ll get.
It can be lonely sometimes
That’s not as depressing as it sounds, I’m completely fine! What I mean is, it’s you and only you starting up this business (unless you have a business partner) but either way, there’s no boss to tell you what to do, no employees to work for you. Your friends may not have experience in owning a business, so may not be able to fully understand. Running a business isn’t the same as working at an office job, you’re left to your own devices and it’s all down to you to work it out! That can be fun yet scary. It can be very stressful and it may be hard for you to express this stress to others, especially if they don’t understand, or aren’t really interested in your field of work. But you got this! You’ll always have people behind you, even if they aren’t experienced in your industry. You might just have to make decisions on your own sometimes!
Invest in the right tools
When starting a business, there’s a lot of hesitation in investing money into the tools needed to get the job done. I understand why, you don’t want to invest in some fancy equipment if you don’t know if your business will take off. But if you want your business to work, some investments need to be made. I wish I bought some of my equipment earlier than I did. For example, I only bought a Cricut earlier this year! I struggled at cutting out my stickers by hand and got blisters from holding the scissors as I was cutting out so many. However now that I have the right equipment, I can use my time much more efficiently. I’m also a lot more determined to create and sell more stuff because I’ve invested so much time and money into the business- I want it to be worth it! Sometimes you have to spend money to make money. We need less of the “but what if it ends up a waste of money” and more “it’ll be worth the money when I’m successful”.
Making mistakes is a huge part of learning. When I first started my business I was terrified of ordering/making products in case it went wrong. “That could be money and time wasted that I could’ve used on something else” I’d think to myself. I’ve invested a lot of money into my business, some of which may not have paid off as much as I’d have liked them too. That’s all part of the business, and I wish I knew this earlier. Embrace every single mistake and learn from them. Whether that’s an error in your product design, or damage during shipping from your packaging not holding up. No matter what it is, don’t dwell on it, take it as a lesson and don’t make the same mistake next time! You’ll find it a lot easier to grow that way!
So there are a few things I wish I knew/did when I first started my business. I can’t say I have any regrets, as I believe I wouldn’t be where I am if I didn’t do everything that the way I did! But I do hope this helps some of you starting out your own business!
Check out my shop: https://quinnspins.com/store/
Another Blog Post you may like: Quinn’s Pins: The Past 2 Years