A solopreneur is an entrepreneur that has one employee, themselves. Since this type of entrepreneur is “a one person band,” achieving balance time and prioritizing is crucial. To do these things and also their business at the same time, there are 3 actions that every solopreneur needs to take.
1. Treat your business like a business, not a hobby! – A significant amount of solopreneurs run their business like a hobby. Most people work on their hobbies when the feel like it, but in business this leads to inconsistency for their clients and the need of their services. Even though it is only you, your clients should not get that feeling in your interactions. Avoid the perception that you only “work when you feel like it” by setting weekly office hours so that clients know when you will be available. Make sure you stay focused on growing and developing your business by committing to a minimum amount of hours that you will work on it weekly. Also, setting up separate telephone numbers and email addresses for your business is a must as you want to be able to separate your business from your personal communications.
2. Schedule time to stay on plan — Operating as a solopreneur, you will be pulled in many directions at once. This is the nature of any entrepreneurial endeavor, so avoiding this challenge is not realistic, but what you can do is not to let it get you off plan. Many times you can be caught up in the day-to-day operations and lose track of the direction of your business. At a minimum, a monthly review of the progress that you are making towards your business plan goals is necessary. This will keep you moving in the right direction or allow you to make the necessary course corrections sooner than later. The farther you get off plan, the harder it is to get back there, so avoid it all together by staying on plan.
3. Create a support team – When most solopreneurs start out they feel as though they have to do everything from logo design to accounting. This is not the truth. Even though there may be some limitations on what can be “outsourced” to others based on investment capital and the proprietary nature of your products and services, you will still need a team to help you make the most of your time. A lot of entrepreneurs get so caught “working in their business” that they forget that it is as important to work on the strategic vision of the business. Having a team to help you will free up time for the strategic part and allow you to “work on your business.” This can be accomplished by adding a virtual assistant to help with the administrative items, a social media a manger to handle your online brand, or a coach to help hold you accountable to your plan. Your team structure maybe be different, but you will have to have one to really maximize your opportunity.
Keeping these 3 things in mind may not guarantee a solopreneur success, but they will definitely help them to maintain their sanity and focus.