Embracing failure probably sounds odd to you, but it’s really not. It’s not to me, and I’m happy to say that this time last year I felt like a complete failure. But I’m ok with that. My business today looks TOTALLY different to what it was.
So, you’re going to find out why you need to learn how to accept and embrace failure if you want to achieve anything in life & your business….
1. Failure teaches you things that even success can’t
One of the best teachers in life is failure. It forces you to take a step back to look at yourself, and your surroundings, your business in an entirely different light. Things you may not have known before will come rushing to the surface, and you’ll be surprised why you didn’t think of that previously.
Successful people (whatever that is) get to live the life they’ve always wanted. They worked hard to be where they’re at. But, before they got to that point, they probably failed in one or more ways. And I can assure you that when they did, they learned from their mistakes. Myself included!
2. Failure makes you stronger and more resilient
The more times you fail, the stronger and more resilient you become. You feel like you can’t go any lower, and the only way to is up. That kind of mentality is just plain awesome, it’s the kind of mindset successful people have.
How far lower can you go if you’ve already reached the lowest point? Believe me when I say this, when you embrace failure, expect to come out stronger in the end.
3. Failure teaches you new opportunities
When you fail, you hit an invisible wall. You can’t go beyond that wall. So what do you do?
You go exploring, of course. If you’re not afraid of failure, you can easily find new opportunities, new ways to knock down that wall and reach your destination.
You don’t go sulking in the corner, feeling sorry for yourself. No, that’s not what winners do.
4. Failure forces you to think outside the box
If you really want to succeed at something, and you can’t seem to go beyond your failure, you need to start thinking outside the box. What’s in the theoretical box won’t help you succeed, so you’re forced to look elsewhere.
That is the beauty of embracing failure & where others see only the four walls of their ‘box’, those who don’t fear failure will find a way out. Needless to say, those that do manage to think outside the box pave a clearer path towards success.
See? and this is exactly why I always tell my clients to never ever compare your success (or lack of) to someone else’s. You have no idea what they’ve been through to get them where they are now.
What matters is how you pave your way to success….your way.
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The big question! How do you set those boundaries and avoid giving all your stuff away for free?
As a natural giver, I am more than happy to offer advice and help anyone out of any tricky situation, but I’ve always had a hard time not doing it too much, but I need to set my own boundaries if I also want to make sales. Why would anyone pay for my services, when I freely give all of the answers away?
So, I want to share my strategies with you, and also remind myself to do the same, and how to do it gracefully…
1 – Create products for your most popular services – If you’re constantly getting asked the same questions, then why not create a downloadable product (or package) to serve those people? That way, the next time someone asks you can point them here so they pay for it.
2 – Boundaries. Set them! – someone you just met always in your inbox ‘picking your brains’? Just gracefully ask them to head over to your public space, whether it be your Facebook group or page and ask the question there, as this will no doubt help others too…
3 – Set time limits – Someone is persistent and wants your help? Just set up a short call and stick to it. For example. I offer 15 min calls, after that they pay
4 – Give away the why for free but charge for the how – so you tell people the tools to use, but you don’t tell them HOW to use them. That’s the bit you charge for. So you can write a blog about the tools you use in your business, but then you have a call to action to the course that shows them how….
So, if you’re feeling like you’re getting stuck in the giving cycle, think about the resources you already have that you can point people to. No more giving away that valuable information for free!
As more and more of the female population decides to start a business, it gets harder to stand out amongst other women entrepreneurs. We try and be as active as we can, provide services that are different from others, or sometimes the same or similar, and it becomes extremely cut throat, and difficult to stand out from the crows.
Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
Utilise Social Media
Social media can be used for so much more than keeping in touch with friends and family. Create pages for both yourself and your business on multiple social media sites (Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, etc.). Then, share content that shows off the things that you have to offer.
Be sure to highlight ways that you are different than your competition.
Keep Your Promises
Clients and customers alike will notice when you deliver on every aspect of a promise that you make to them. Make sure that you finish everything that you start, and that you get it done in a timely manner. People remember that you were true to your word, and keep that in mind when deciding who to do business with in the future.
Go the Extra Mile
Doing more than is expected of you when working with clients or customers is a sure way to set yourself and your business apart from competitors in your field. If you can offer an extra feature or service that your competitors don’t, that’s an excellent point to make when trying to ‘sell’ yourself to potential customers.
Listen to Feedback
Even if you are successful when you launch your business, you won’t be able to keep up with the changing landscape if you aren’t able to adapt as a business owner. Take every opportunity that you can to collect feedback from customers and other businesses that you work with.
One way to do this is to provide customers with a satisfaction survey, either in person or via email. Make sure to include a section that lets the customer fill in suggestions on how you could improve your service. Not only will this give you an idea of how you can do better, it also lets your customers know that their opinion matters to you.
Seems obvious right? But you’d be surprised how many people actually don’t do this. Even the most successful of Female Entrepreneurs. It’s ok if you find things hard. Tell your audience, it’s ok if your launch failed. Tell your audience. Being as authentic as possible will mean that your audience will warm to you, trust you and then buy from you.
These are just a few ways to help to ensure that you stand out among the sea of female entrepreneurs. Yes, competition is fierce. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t be successful. With perseverance and due diligence, chances are you’ll realise continued growth along your well-deserved journey to success.
I’ve worked with many businesses who want to develop online. Sometimes they’re complete newbies and all the tech stuff just makes them ill, or they might know exactly how to do it all, but perhaps don’t have the time, or they don’t have the interest in doing it. They just want it done.
Sometimes, they’re in between and come to me for advice and guidance on the best way forward.
Knowing how to start your business online without headaches is really important to the long term success of your venture, so I’ve come up with my top 10 things that people do a LOT, and how to avoid them.
1 – Waiting too long to launch/ Product service
Yep, number 1 on my list is waiting too long to actually launch! Just get it done already. You don’t need to have everything perfect. You don’t even need a website. Just start gathering your audience and get seen.
2 – Launching the wrong type of product/Service
You might think the product or service you’re offering is perfect. But does your audience? Knowing exactly what they need and want is THE most crucial element of your business. The last thing you don’t want to happen is spend hours, weeks, months on making everything perfect only to find out that no one buys. Gather your audience and ask them!
3 – Not knowing your audience well enough
Before you can ask your audience what they need and want, you need to be super clear on who they are. Their age, sex, are they male/female, both? what they like, dislike, what their problems are, what do they struggle with, where do they hang out?
You might have a few, but think about THE PERFECT customer, the ones that make your heart sing, the ones that make you want to jump out of bed in the morning.
Be as clear as possible. Once you’ve nailed that, then you’re laughing.
4 – Not listening to what they want
So you know who they are, you’ve asked them what they really want, listen to them! Like I said before, you might think what you’re offering is perfect, on your head be it if you still continue to launch your product/service if it’s no what they are asking for.
5 – Not being unique – What makes you stand out from the rest?
What makes you different? What makes you stand out from the other business who does the same as you? Why should people buy from you and not them?
Make this clear in your marketing.
6 – Lacking in passion – you need to love what you do
Maybe the initial concept is not what you clients need, so you’ve had to change your plan slightly. Whatever you decide to do, you need to LOVE IT! Lacking in passion for the business you have, the flame will soon die out, along with your business.
7 – Thinking it’s going to be easy
I always get the ‘oh you’re so lucky working for yourself’ I don’t see it as lucky. I see it as bloody hard work! Always marketing myself, always making sure I’m visible, answering emails at 11pm at night when I’m lying in bed. Always working, never being able to switch off.
Running a business online is tough BUT worth it! I LOVE what I do, I know my customers love what I do, and I know the NEED and WANT the services I provide.
8 – Trying to do everything yourself
It’s the easiest thing in the world to do, think you’re superwoman, trying to do everything yourself. Trust me, the only want to grow you business is by building a team. Get people on your side who knows what they’re doing, find someone who is good at building websites, you might be able to do it, but an expert can do it twice as fast… (that’s just an example) Stick to what you know, stick to what you’re good at.
9 – Wasting time and money on the wrong tools
Gosh, I’m guilty of this one. Wasting money on the tools I don’t really need, or thought I did but never used them, or maybe not sure how! I’ve wasted endless of hours I will never get back on online platforms that promised the world, and just never got to see the time of day.
I now use a handful of platforms, know them inside out and use them with all of my clients too.
10 – Not believing in yourself
Mindset is a biggie, You need to know you’re blinking good at what you do! It’s true what they say, a positive mindset will attract positive things.
It’s easy to feel disheartened when a product launch goes flop, just do it again. Sometimes you lose, sometimes you win big, but it’s how you handle it and yourself that matters most. Like I said before, running an online business isn’t as easy game. But it is worth the effort.
Ok so you want to sell your products, courses, events blah blah online. You have a gorgeous website set up, you’ve spent weeks making it look beautiful, thinking about the perfect copy that will enchant your potential customers.
I bet you’ve forgot one thing, the legal boring dull bit… Terms & conditions…and not to mention your privacy and cookie policies.
You’re probably thinking well “no one even reads it” “I’m just a small business” “it’s just boring anyway”
These are all valid points, but yep, you REALLY REALLY do need these on your website, in fact, it’s probably the most important, if not THE important part of your site.
Terms and Conditions <yawn>
100% the dullest page on your site, however, this sets out the rules of using your website, however, there’s actually no legal requirement for defining terms and conditions.
Terms and Conditions may not be required by law, but it’s still a savvy thing to include.
These pages can limit your liability and cover your ass if a customer decides take you to court, as well as protect your rights to the content you’ve added to your website.
If you’re ever facing a legal battle (hopefully not!), a court will look at your website terms & conditions to determine the contractual terms between you and the customer. So when you’re writing them, make sure you have this in the forefront of your mind.
So what should I include?
The actual content included will be specific and unique to your own website and the type of content you supply. However, if you look around within your own niche/industry you’ll find that they’re pretty much the same.
So this is basically a section where you hold your hands up and waiver any liability from errors within your web content, really what you’re saying is that you can’t be held responsible for any errors in content.
So this will apply to anyone commenting on pages, blog posts etc,
You should always include a notice about copyright/trademark. For example, “Copyright © 2016. www.yourwebsite.com.”
If you are collecting any information from your customers (such as email addresses or credit card information), then THIS IS a legal requirement. This outlines how information will be used – check out mine as an example
Set Governing Law
This bit is to mention where your website is operating from in terms of the governing law (state/province and country).
For example, “These terms and conditions are governed by the laws of England and Wales”
But I don’t really know where to start! HELP!
If you’ve never put terms & conditions together before, it can feel scary and overwhelming. It doesn’t have to be! there are easy peasy solutions….
1. Copy someone else’s
Ok, I don’t actually mean copy it word for word. That is NEVER a good idea. however, you can use it as a guide and amend according to your own business requirements and rules.
2. Use a Terms and Conditions Generator
Hope onto Google and search for “Terms and Conditions generator” and you’ll see loads of sites to choose from that will do just this for you – generate Terms & Conditions.
Again though, be sure to read through it and make sure it covers everything we’ve already gone over.
3. Get a solicitor to do it for you
If you’re really not sure and still scared, then the best thing to do is to find a solicitor you can work with to put together your own Terms & Conditions. Obviously prices will vary but ask around your network to find a reliable company.
Outsourcing can be a real scary thought for a business owner, especially if you’ve never done it before. Handing over the responsibly to someone you’ve probably never met, it s huge deal! You know you need to do it, but you don’t know who to or even what!
You’re feeling overwhelmed, overworked and stressed, and there are simply not enough hours in the day to get everything done! BUT, this is a MUST if you want to grow your business.
So, here are 10 things you can outsource today:
You can easily outsource the full design of your website, or someone to make simple tweaks and edits, or even ensure your site is kept up to date and threat free from hackers
Why not outsource your online marketing, social media and even your newsletters? There are plenty of VAs, and experts with these skills. This would free up so much of your time so you can work on things you’re amazing at!
Trying to buy goods and services online can at times be very taxing considering you will have to create online accounts and have to deal with the buyers or sellers, but outsourcing the services of experts ensures you get quality goods and quality services without having to sweat it out.
It would be ideal to outsource the services of experts when trying to research your competitors on social media. Trying to do it yourself is likely to take a lot of time and resources, but the experts know their way around such researches.
Instead of creating a payroll system, which would mean hiring an accountant, you could simply outsource the services online. This will help ensure that employees or contractors are paid on time and accurately. It will also save you from doing calculations.
If you are too busy to be always on your social networking sites then you could get the services of a virtual assistant to help keep your page active and busy.
You could outsource customer service by having an online expert/virtual assistant in place to always answer to complains, comments and inquiries. This gives you time to do other things.
You can outsource the services of a transcriber from any location in the world. There are so many transcriptionists available right at your fingertips. These could include recorded class notes, memos or articles.
If you sell products online, you could be having so many orders coming in randomly that it would be wise to outsource the services of an expert to help with the order processing. This will ensure the products get delivered on time and in an orderly manner. Outsourcing is ideal for online businesses that do not have the space and money to pay employees, it makes it easier to have your work done from somewhere else and delivered to you digitally.
So there you have it…. my top ten tasks you can outsource today!