There are lots of things to think about before you decide to jump into the deep waters of business ownership. It can be extremely fulfilling or excruciatingly frustrating depending on how you prepare for it, how you embrace it, how your personal style fits the ambiguity of it, and how well it fits into your life purpose, your calling of how you express your gifts and talents to the world. If the only reason you’re going into business is to make a profit, then stop right now and rethink your reasoning.
Corporate Structure: I was recently reading about the Deloitte Millennial survey of the cohort born between 1980 and 2000 and how 70% of them want to someday be working independently. What a change from the generations before them. They also want their businesses to be more socially conscious and give back to the community. Their civic mindedness has birthed a new business entity called Low Profit LLC which is a combination of the For Profit LLC and the Non-Profit. This new business entity makes some profit to remain solvent, but gives much of it back to the world for just causes and social activism. How cool is that? What type of corporate structure is best for your needs? Do you want to work from home, from anywhere, from a different location than where you live? Do you want employees or joint venture partners or contractors? Do you want simple or more complex? What type of corporate structure with their tax advantages would best suit your needs? Which brings us to the next of several of our High C’s of starting a business.
Clarity about your Calling and Conscious Choices: This is a “three-fer” combing your Calling and your Clarity around how you will consciously build your business at the intersection of your Calling and what the Community needs. Know WHY you’re going into business – find your Why that makes you cry and you can find your way. What are your personal and professional goals for the business and your life because your business IS your life when you own your own company. It becomes part of you – so make sure you like that part of you. Narrow your focus on what you do best and what is in alignment with your calling. Make a conscious choice about what type of business and how you can best use your talents in service to others. This is about using your God-given gifts for the benefit of humanity, not about making a buck. If it’s about merely making a buck, the bucks come and the bucks go just as easily. When you’re on purpose with your business, it tends to stick around much longer. What are your consciously creating? Be very, very clear on what order you want to put forth to the Universe and get specific on what you want to serve, how you want to serve and who you want to serve and WHY.
Community: This one is multi-faceted. Community as in where you decide to put down your roots geographically. Community as in what type of professional communities do you associate with and in what type of community do you want to become an expert? Also what type of community do you want to serve? Do you want to serve millionaires or those who are living in poverty? Do you want to work in the children’s or adult community? Do you want to work virtually, globally or locally? Decide who and how you want to serve.
Cushion: Having a financial cushion of at least one year of living expenses in the bank (not a line of credit on credit cards, not a home equity line of credit – we know what happened to those in 2008, and not money tied up in other non-liquid accounts). Having the peace of mind to make choices based on ethical decisions, sound logic and decisions based on positive energy and the path forward in alignment with your vision versus fear that the money will run out is the choice you want to make.
Create Connections: Join business networking groups, the chamber of commerce, do trade shows, and connect with people outside your normal circle to expand your network and your net worth. Stay in touch and be the one to connect others together. Be the resource for connecting at all levels and you will find others seeking you out for your contact list. As the Author and Envelope Entrepreneur Harvey MacKay writes: “dig your well before you’re thirsty”. Stay connected and create connections for the benefit of all and it will serve you well. I’ve found an amazing way to stay connected on a personal as well as a professional level while expressing my creativity in creating custom greeting cards and gifts. It also just happens to be an additional profit center as I send out positive vibes – getting paid to be nice to people. Now that’s what I call a win-win-win. Check it out and send some cards on me at www.BizBuilderCards.com. I’ll pay for the first few cards and postage to anywhere in the world. I’m hooked on creating kindness and gratitude to expand the positive vibrations in the world. Try it for yourself and see how you feel. I’ve also found a community of card senders and have enjoyed sharing stories with them on the impact of sending a little piece of cardboard with heartfelt thoughts.
Just like diamonds have their C’s for clarity, cut, carrots etc – I hope you consider the High C’s before starting or growing your business. Maybe you need to regroup a bit or started off on the wrong foot. There is always tomorrow to get it right and consider your High C’s before taking another step in the right direction. Growing your business on the High C’s will get you started in a positive way. All the best to you sailing the High C’s!
As the CEO (Chief Energizing Officer) at Hartful Living including GaiaHart.com and BizBuilderCards.com; I’m a Messenger and Mentor for women entrepreneurs, connecting them to their capacity to energize their work and their lives in the art of living Hartfully. At BizBuilderCards.com, you can make a living through giving with greeting cards and gifts to build your network net worth as an additive to your current business or an easy way to send gratitude and kindness to the world.