Freelancers, solopreneurs, and most small businesses start in the little leagues, running leaner than lean and barely getting by, much less growing to the big leagues. It’s all that time and money allow, right? Bootstrapping business means running on as little expense as possible. And it’s how many people get sucked into these small biz mindsets. It’s easier to trade your time for money in the beginning. But, if you’re like me, that little taste of power, taste of pride, will leave you breathless for more. More than freelancing can ever give you. More than solopreneurship will ever provide.
But if you want that power, pride, and peace of knowing you own your own, you have to grow past the “little” thinking that keeps you in the little league. That means being scrappy: Planning. Scheming. Following through! on those plans.
Strikes one and two
Time and money are the lead strikes against small biz. Owners are busy trying to do it all because they think that’s all they can do. But, there are ways to grow past these self-imposed limitations.
For cashflow: Start an IndieGoGo campaign. Save your dollars. Pool your resources with others. Get backing from investors. Sell crap you don’t need. Change your diet and stop eating out. Cut out the weekly night at the movies. Stop buying lottery tickets. Get a raise a work. Get a better job that will earn you more money (if you have to work a 9-5 + trying to start a biz). There are loads of ways you can get the cash you need to up your game.
And time?: Get your ass out of the bed. Period. I’m up before 4am every morning. Because that’s my biz time. Everyone is still asleep. The world is silent (except for Killswitch Engage screaming in my ear) and I have peace to get stuff done. If you can’t get up early, then stay up late. Stay away from the TV. Shut down everything online and stick to your plan. (The Strict Workflow Timer is great for slapping your hand when you venture into sites you’re not supposed to during its Pomodoro time set up).
Step up to the plate
When it’s your turn at bat, you’ll have to swing for the fence. No holds barred. Because you can’t run a Badass’d biz walking the bases. [Tweet me :)]
Swinging for home runs means thinking like the Babe, not a pinch hitter just trying to get to first base. What do your clients need that you can expand on and grow with? For example, Ash Ambirge over at the Middle Finger Project has teamed up with a lawyer and created the Small Business Bodyguard. BOOM! Did you know you needed a lawyer? Would you start a brick and mortar biz without the proper legal education? Exactly.
She saw a need and expanded on it. No. Not really. She BLEW IT UP and created something we all know we need, but didn’t want to have to deal with. Then, she made it accessible for everyone.
GRAND SLAM, baby!
What do your clients need that you can explode like that?
Making It a Grand Slam
Sit down. Develop your idea. Then, think about who else you can bring on board to really make an impact for your customers. That’s when you’ll make your mark. That’s when the sparks will fly for your fans.
Do you need a team of designers? Do you need someone to develop an app? Do you need a VA to do the things you don't have time to do? Once you lay your plan, the gaps will stare you in the face - that's where you need help. Get it so you can grow.
It not only takes an idea. It takes discipline. It takes working through the fear that it won’t be good enough. It takes working through the nights when you’d rather be watching movies. It takes taking the little steps that seem so tedious and laborious each day and just fucking doing them.
Those little steps are killers. They seem small and insignificant, but without them you can’t get anywhere. And self-doubt? OMG don’t even go there. Your brain will tell you everything you do is not good enough. Don’t listen. Period.
Park your ass in the chair and get it done. Without discipline, you'll advance the bases, but it'll only be one walk at a time.
Round the bases like a BOSS and get out of the little leagues.
What's stopping you from making it to the big leagues?