30 Lessons Learned from My First Month Doing Business

I cannot believe that I made it one month.

That may sound odd if you've never done anything bold, but launching Work Nest redefined the saying "faith of a mustard seed:" for me. I candidly share my journey. It's to track my growth, yes. But it's also a testament to my superpower: faith in myself. I am guilty of having a delusional sense of faith in myself. Work Nest and my coaching business happen to be the tools used to showcase said faith. But neither define me. Neither will break me should they fail. Because like Ms. Oprah Winfrey said in this amazing interview regarding the launch of Oprah show, "if it fails, I will still do well...we are defined by the way we treat ourselves and the way we treat other people". 

So here are 30 lessons learned so far in business:

1. Like MTV stated in True Life, "You think you know but you have no idea". Starting a new business is similar to birthing a child. I've had two. You have no idea what's REALLY going to happen. 

2. Likes aren't the same as sales. Don't confuse social media excitement with success. They are not one in the same.

3. Keep pitching until someone bits if you're looking to get you're story covered by the media.

4. Have an actual story to begin with. No one cares that you launched a business. They care about the impact of your business.

5. Find a tribe. Even if it's virtual. You need someone who lets you vent to them when sh*t gets real because it will.

6. But don't let being alone stop you. No one really understood what Work Nest was when I launched this self-funded venture.

7. Speaking of money...actually speak of money. Often. Don't just give your services away. 

8. You may have money for your business. It's not enough. It's never enough.

9. Don't quit your day job. It's hard to resist, but you've got bills and businesses don't just flourish over night. You need to keep some stability until you're ready to jump. 

10. Use your resources. Tap into anyone you know who has been in business and willing to chat with you about the lessons they've learned. You need to hear them.

11. Listen. You think you know everything. You don't. Shut up and listen to your audience. 

12. Don't "pick people's brains". It's rude and inconsiderate of their business, unless you are not a threat to them or their market. Have something to bring to the table.

13. Leverage your strengths. 

14. Be particular about your time. It's a resource. Especially if this is your side hustle, like mine. I have to allocate time wisely which means a lot of nos and the occasional yes to something I would have said no to.

15. Don't share your business with everyone. This sounds counter productive, but I grantee that you will likely not find your clients/customers from social media. 

16. Know your key audience. Through and through. Behaviors, needs, fears, mindset.

17. If you know your audience and your audience is in your personal network, then yes, share.

18. Posting on Facebook is not selling.

19. Create a sales systems. One that can be replicated.

20. Build your email list. It's your lifeline.

21. Having a business card doesn't make you a business owner. I don't even have business cards, by the way.

22. #teamnosleep can miss me. I try to ensure that I get at least six hours per night because you cannot think straight when you're exhausted. 

23. Personalize the customer experience. 

24. Test and pivot. Emails. Posts. Calls. Products. Test and pivot and leverage the analytics to see what resonates with your audience.

25. Be Yourself. No one wants a replica. Be genuine. 

26. Lead with gratitude. I take the time to tell my members how grateful I am for them every chance I get. I'd have nothing without their support. Your support.

27. Win the day. There will be more fails than successes early on. I kid you not, I have 'closed' Work Nest 25 times out of the last 30 days. Stay focused on the end goals by winning the day.

28. Know your numbers. Know how much you need in order to sustain and make payroll. Know how much you need in order to scales.

29. Pay yourself first. Even if it's just a few dollars. The point is to get in the practice and mindset of doing it. Over half of businesses owners do not pay themselves.  

30. Just keep swimming. Like Dory said. It will be scary. You will be alone. You'll want to go back to the starting line. But I encourage you to just keep swimming. Eventually you will see the light. God, I hope so. 

I am so grateful for you and your support of this journey. It's for parents like you and I who need someone to remind them to keep pushing. 

Happy one-month anniverysary, Work Nest!