We’re discussing the steps you can take as a business owner to make yourself and your company a professional, trusted, “real” business; not some sloppy and suspect half-hearted attempt to grab a few customer dollars.
Here’s the next step: Search out one or more experienced mentors to guide you in your business.
If you can find experienced business people that are willing to provide you some direction, advice, and counseling, you will be miles ahead of the pack of those who simply “go it alone” with no additional help.
Solo business doesn’t mean that you refuse to get help from outside sources.
It merely suggests that you don’t have that help in the form of additional employees on your payroll.
Leaning on someone that knows the way, someone that has been down this same small business path previously, will give you the confidence and insight (perspective) you need to make tough decisions and well-informed business choices.
It would be especially helpful to seek out a mentor in the niche that you are dealing in.
That may not be possible, of course.
Another suggestion would be to find a mentor who understands the business model or approach you have chosen, even if the mentor has no experience in the industry.
For example, if you choose to begin a membership subscription site dedicated to assisting insurance salesmen in their trade, you may not find a mentor that has direct experience in that niche.
But can you locate someone that has experience running a membership site?
Even better would be to find a membership site owner that dealt with an audience of salesmen, or professional services customers.
Just because you can’t find a mentor in your niche, don’t assume that there isn’t good advice and appropriate help available in another industry that could be adapted to your own business situation.
Don’t hesitate to assemble a business assistance team made up of several mentors that can guide you in areas of their personal expertise.
Today’s most successful businesses gather together experts and make them directors on the board of the company to oversee the operation and give direction and advice.
You can do the same in your small solo business.
There is another way to be mentored: hire or outsource professional advice.
Hire a lawyer or CPA to give you guidance in areas of your business that are important and very knowledge-centric.
You still have a solo business not shared with partners of public stock holders, but you are paying for the help of an expert, which is usually a smart business move.
There are other business development resources in most of the larger communities that offer some mentoring: universities, community colleges, SBA, SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives), the local SBDC (Small Business Development Center), etc.
Smart business owners recognize their own limitations and make up for the lack of knowledge and experience they have by seeking the help of other professionals.
To your online business success,