8 lessons learned after 2 years in business
March 1, 2016. That’s the day I registered my business name, Two Creative Agency , and became an entrepreneur. I can not believe it’s been two years since I lived my life as an entrepreneur. If someone had told me that the last two years of my life would be like that, I would never have believed it. It has been an adventure full of ups and downs. However, the way we see things can change everything in our perception of life. I see failure as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Keeping that in mind, I have never regretted my decision to start my own business. I remember when I started thinking about that. It was in October 2015, I was in Dubai (a place where everything seems to move very quickly). Standing on the roof of a hotel, I noticed around me and everything was under construction and I thought, “Winy, look ahead. Everything moves so fast, the world is huge, why are you limiting yourself? What are you afraid of ? “.
To become an entrepreneur for me was to take charge of my destiny and use my innate talents to create, explore, find new opportunities and, above all, discover my own skills. This is the best decision I made.
Sharing is caring , as they say. I often refer to the famous Jay-Z when he says “HOV did that so hopefully, you will not go through that.” Because I really believe that if my experiences can come to the help of others, Well, it’s worth sharing them!
You may be at an already entrepreneurial stage or you are thinking about becoming one. Regardless, here are some lessons I learned that could help you during your entrepreneurial adventure:
I mentioned it several times, in a post on this blog and I repeat, the physical, mental, and food health are essential in the course of an entrepreneur. My first year was really a roller coaster in terms of emotions and also financially. If I had understood, in 2016, the importance and the positive benefits of exercises in the management of my stress, I think I would have had a year much easier. A fit entrepreneur is an entrepreneur who succeeds better, thinks more clearly, sleeps better … than positive. That’s exactly how I feel now, thanks to a regular exercise schedule, it has had a major effect on the profitability of my company and my life.
The money is chic
Listen, one of the biggest hurdles for any small business, well, it’s the money. It’s like I’m constantly waiting for a payment from a customer … sigh. And even if the bills of my company are payable upon receipt, I am constantly waiting, some customers pay me up to 90 days later. During the first year, this constant expectation was difficult but, in those two years, I learned how to budget and make sure I have the minimum amount necessary to cover the costs of my business while waiting to be paid by my clients. And then with time, it improves. Especially when I have several projects at the same time, there is always a guarantee that one or the other will pay in time.
Stop wasting my time
In the beginning, when I first started, I assumed (and should never be presumed) that my network will support me. Unfortunately, that was not the case. I remember the many proposals I was asked to write, I took my time to make sure they were perfect, I took several days, sometimes even a week. I also remember that all these proposals went absolutely nowhere. I remember one company in particular asking me to write several proposals at once. Dating after meetings, revisions of proposals here and there and never nothing, only the loss of my time. I also remember seeing the ideas that I had proposed that were not retained, all of a sudden used by this company without me being paid for my intellectual property. What I learned is that it’s a waste of time trying to work on several occasions with people who waste your time and do not pay you for your ideas. It’s really better to go to companies that value your knowledge, your unique talent and want to work with you and build a beautiful relationship based on mutual respect. Now, my proposals are more general and if a company wants to receive more details, it must pay me. your unique talent and who want to work with you and build a beautiful relationship of collaboration based on mutual respect. Now, my proposals are more general and if a company wants to receive more details, it must pay me. your unique talent and who want to work with you and build a beautiful relationship of collaboration based on mutual respect. Now, my proposals are more general and if a company wants to receive more details, it must pay me.
Opportunities come to those who have the audacity to create them
This lesson has changed my entrepreneurial journey in a dramatic way. What I realized was that it was important that I create business opportunities that would allow me to expand the scope of my business and my personal brand. With this in mind, I have identified the current needs and gaps in the market where I evolve and want to evolve. First, in 2016, I came into contact with Radio-Canada and I proposed a column focused on marketing and digital for their morning radio show. I present now for more than a year and a half this chronicle. In tandem, I also started thinking about project ideas that could have a positive impact on the Francophone community and with whom (companies, organizations …) I could collaborate to bring these ideas to life.Creators z , a digital and media training for young people.
Ideation is my thing. I am constantly thinking about creating new and innovative ideas that have a social impact too. For me, it is very important that my knowledge is at the service of others and that I have a positive impact on our society and a source of income for my company too.
Fall but, get up
Failure is an integral part of success. There is no success without failure. I made several mistakes, and I will continue to do so. For me, my mistakes have often been related to the operational management of my business and finances. But that’s what’s so cool in life; there is always an opportunity to learn and recover. When I realized that I had to change some aspects of my operational and financial management, I found competent people to support me where I had difficulty, without ego. What interests me is to learn and it is also to do everything possible to ensure the survival and growth of my company.
Self-improvement: the key to success
I finally realized that all the things that made me uncomfortable, these things were essential for my personal and professional growth. I learned to say yes to the challenges that scared me, those challenges that scared me. Because, it is not when one is at ease that one advances in the life. Then, every time I was scared, I succeeded and I advanced. So, my advice is that you have to become comfortable in your zone of discomfort if you want to surpass yourself in your entrepreneurial journey. I do not live a week that is the same, and it suits me Do not be afraid to deviate from the routine.
Teamwork makes the dream possible
My friend Carl-Edwin, who is also an entrepreneur, told me 2 years ago that everyone needs help and support. He was the first person to support my entrepreneur dream and he paid for my logo and website (thanks again, Carlito!). Even today, it would be almost impossible for me to manage my business and my multiple projects without the support of a team of great people. Support comes in many forms; sometimes it is an exchange of services with other entrepreneurs who have complementary knowledge, sometimes I hire other entrepreneurs to collaborate on my various mandates. I also have friends who work full time who gave me their time and advice on various projects. Others were angels who supported me financially when I was waiting for payments from various clients. I also have a great team of young women who support me and believe in my projects, and what I do. And finally, my family, my A1 from Day 1, who supports me and believes in my talent. Without them, I would never have survived the last two years. It takes a village to live a dream, thank you for the life of pampering me with the best people in the world.
And finally, we must have fun!
Listen, if you’re unhappy and do not fully realize your entrepreneur dream, why do you keep doing it? The first year, I thought I was going to crack, I really did not think of ways to have fun. When I learned to manage my stress, I started having fun again. I do not jump for joy every day but, I am very, very happy. I laugh in a daily way, I take time to do something other than work. It is imperative to have fun at work and after work too. That’s life.
And you, are you an entrepreneur? Do you have any lessons to share?