Lindsay’s In Business: PART 99. Everything leads back to sales

think outside of the box

Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

A fantastic podcast series from Richard Atherton’s Being Human is keeping my brain engaged during the 20-minute exercise routine I do every morning.

His guests talk about business, mental health, and all things human.  Yesterday’s guest was from a guy in the US, talking about his successful start-up.  Prepared to feel jealous, I clicked to listen, wondering if there was anything new or any reminders about things I’ve forgotten about that might help me on my journey.

He spoke about the 3 essentials – a great idea, great people, and capital to get moving.

  • I have the great idea
  • I’m building that team:
    • Miss X as Product Development and Quality Control
    • A software development company and a reporting freelancer
    • A communications freelancer
    • A business development freelancer
    • An advisory board
    • There’s an update on the Operations Manager role in a minute
  • And I have minimal capital.

Is the lack of capital undermining me?  Experience tells me that you need to prove the idea, with a history of sales and a pipeline of promise to attract funding.  But that even if you do get funding – and trade it off for the sacrifices in ownership and freedom that may bring – it’s not always a MUST HAVE.  In other words, even if it was needed, I wouldn’t be able to access it yet.

Let’s review that later.

Today, I took my first trip out of Delft since the ‘intelligent’ lockdown here in NL and went up to Amsterdam to see Anja for lunch.  Several scribbles from a good and progressive conversation later and I’ve got some tangible steps and names of people to contact.  Thanks to Anja for great support!

This summer, I’m going to combine relationship building, with PR, and sales efforts to plant seeds while the market moves into more of a state of readiness for the kind of alignment services we offer.

2021 will the start of big capitalization for Mirror Mirror – product sales, case studies, investment and at long last a damned INCOME.

My husband is starting to get really frustrated that we’re so broke all the time.  He’s still supportive, not least because it was always me earning the most income for the first 15 years of our relationship.  Things are the way they are.  It’s just taking time.

But I still need to be ready.  If 3 clients came along at once with multiple team jobs, we’d need to be SUPER ready to deliver.  I need a committed, competent and energetic team around me  – which is why I made the decision to let go of my Operations Manager.  I’m reluctant to even put this in writing – it was such a difficult decision.  But I know it was the right one.

As someone who came back from 15 years of being out of the workplace, her attitude, approach and readiness just wasn’t there.  There’s a lot to be said for staying in the workplace while you raise children, if you can; to protect your own identity, resilience and work prospects for the long term.

We exchanged notes on ‘how things are going’ using a pre-set document format for the half year review.  It was clear when comparing the two that the differences weren’t compatible.

Very Mirror Mirror, as an approach.  I’m glad we did it.

She’s upset, we’re both disappointed, and I’ve changed my view on what the role entails – it’s basically administration.  I looked up alternative resources on a paid basis via www.upwork.com and found some excellent virtual support staff for a great rate.   I’ve interviewed one already and will offer her 10 hours a week from July 01.  She can take a month or two to familiarise.   Perhaps when we’re busier I’ll have 2 people in this role to cover for each other and take a flexible workload.

Paying people direct means that I don’t owe anyone commissions or profit shares.  I just need to attract more sales to keep building it all up.

And we’ve got some good interest and have produced 3 great new case studies from work done so far this year to inspire confidence.

Mirror Mirror – a team alignment diagnostic tool and process in one, helping people align to the strategy, as well as each other.

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