Are you worrying about the recession and the shrinking economy? Is that stopping you from starting or growing your own business?
Figures out in August and September said that unemployment had slowed. Is this a blip or explainable? The news reporters are citing the Olympics, Jubilee and double Bank Holidays as a reason not to see the good news. It has been reported that the growth in employment is actually across the country – not just London-centric.
Small businesses adapt faster than big business
I believe the growth can be explained – small businesses are adapting faster than big business. Starting and growing a business has never been easier or cheaper. That is also why the economy is shrinking, because so much stuff just costs less. And it is also why part-time employment figures are increasing. Okay, so now you are going to argue about part-time work meaning less income. Not necessarily if you work smarter.
Which brings me to the question, are you part of the old 20th century world 2000BSM (before social media) or are you revelling and thriving in the 21st century 2012WSM (with social media)? If you are 2000BSM then you must change your thinking, change your way of doing business and become flexible, if you are to survive as an entrepreneur in 2012WSW.
Think about what has happened to technology and how we’ve done business in the last 3-4 years … Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Linked In. Then there is outsourcing to business experts across the globe, self-publishing from e-books, to SlideShare, cheap Vista Print materials.
Big businesses are burdened with office overheads, but we can be adaptable. Look at the adaptability and innovative idea that founder Tom Ball has created with emerging new business Near Desk. Tom has recognised that small businesses, creatives and entrepreneurs are working differently and need their work space to be responsive. NearDesk offers flexible work space and a built-in business community by the hour (including tea and coffee!).
Let social media spread your business message
2012WSM is an amazing time of opportunity for people who can think differently about a problem, people who can build a community, tribe or following that buy into their personal philosophy. There is no such thing as passive income, even in the world of property investment, where I spend a lot of my time. To attract and grow our wealth and build our businesses we need to think and develop our ideas.
As our ideas are shared, and our following grows, we can spread our message, but that’s not going to put food on the table. To be heard in our noisy information overloaded world you need a clear message and then you need to make money from it.
That’s where the “dreaded sales conversation” has to take place. You need to let your followers know how they can do business with you, when they are ready. Be clear about what you are offering.
Small businesses will revolutionise the economy
I belong to a group of entrepreneurs working with Daniel Priestley of Entrevo. Daniel is passionate about the entrepreneurial revolution, he firmly believes that small businesses are going to revolutionise how we do business and how our economy will grow and develop. Successful small businesses will offer value by doing things better for other people who are busy. It doesn’t mean you will be doing it all – but you will know how to and who can do it!
Having said all that, nothing beats picking up the phone and speaking to someone who has been reading your blogs or your tweets for months. They have a problem and while your “free” material has really helped – maybe offered them ideas or suggestions, recommendations or tips, they just need more help. They need someone to do it for them –’ Oh you could do that’ – or they need someone to hold them accountable to a specific set of tasks – if you are a coach or mentor you could do that too.
If you don’t make the call you can’t make the big sale – the one that will put pounds in the bank. Small business owners have the ability to respond quickly to the dramatic and exciting changes in technology and the new ways of doing business. What are you great at? What are you known for? What can you do to help other people?
Stop listening to the media, turn, and face the future, and take responsibility for being the best you can be. What business are you going to start, how can I help? What do you need? What business are you trying to grow, can I help?