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As most of you may know, I have been performing magic professionally for over 15 years. But, 2015 was my first year as a business owner! I chose to change markets and branch out on my own. No reputation, no agents, no connections – clean slate.
Here are 7 things I learned my first year as a business owner.
7. Take a vacation
No, seriously, before you think about going into business for yourself, take a vacation. What do you do when you are on vacation? Where do you go? If money was not an object, how would you spend your time? I knew I wanted to do magic, but did I want to own a business? Did I want to be an entrepreneur?
6. Google Apps are your friends
After months of trying different CRM programs (Customer Relationship Management), I decided to make my own using Google Apps. The process was a lot easier than I thought! I wrote another post detailing how you can create your own CRM. Or, you can download my PDF ebooklet after subscribing.
5. Just get it out there
Reid Hoffman, the founder of Linkedin said, “If you are not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you launched too late.” Being “ready” was one of the many things that held me back. Taking risks and putting myself out there is one of the most important things I’ve learned my first year in business as an entrepreneur.
4. All markets are different
Originally, I am from south Florida. When I moved to Southern California, I didn’t know what to expect. I knew the weather was similar, but what the people?
I found an online course by James Munton called Zero To Booked Solid In 30 Day. This course helped me get my business in order. It saved me a lot of time trying to figure out how to start. James went through a similar situation where he had his business in one market for many years, then up rooted to a new market a thousand miles away.
It was just what I needed.
A long time ago, a previous employer said to me, “plan your work, then work your plan.”
In June of this year I hired Josh London to build my website, the one you are currently on. For the first six months of the year, I tried to build it myself. It was all part of the plan. I learned the hard way I need to stick to what I know. I am a performer, NOT a web designer!
The word “plan” feels so definite. It felt like rules I NEEDED to obey.
Try different things and don’t be afraid to spend money on them. Some things will work and some won’t. I cannot find out the best tactic to achieve my goals if I don’t experiment with them.
2. Professionalism is a lifestyle, not a job requirement
I hear a lot of people say getting paid makes you a professional. I disagree. Getting paid only proves you have a job. It has nothing to be with being professional.
Professionalism is a lifestyle. They allow rules to free them instead of restrict them. They live a life of order. Professionals follow rules, dress codes, and schedules. These are all things I used to hate. But, I knew if I wanted to run my own business, I would have to give up some of my bohemianism and adopt more professionalism. I am still not very fond of dress codes.
1. Time is NOT money
Time is ever so much more important than money. This is by far, the most important lesson I learned my first year in business. I can always make more money, but I cannot make more time.
How was your first year in business? Is there anything I left out you think should be in here?
Leave a comment and tell us about.
Happy holidays to all! Thanks for reading.