Lately, in my networking, I am running into more and more Solopreneurs and single parent business owners. I truly applaud these entrepreneurs because I think it is amazing. Why? Well, because I can relate as I am too.
When I started TransAct, I was a single parent wearing many hats both on the personal side as well as the business side. My task list, and the learning seemed endless! I must also admit a bit overwhelming – 2 full time jobs and what felt like 600 different hats to wear – some not so well. Where would I begin to get the help I so desperately needed?
As you probably know, I believe very strongly in networking and building relationships with professionals. I had already cultivated a close group of professional networking contacts and these connections offered me and my fledgling business a level of trust and credibility based on their experiences with me and my prior work history.
In my business, I quickly learned the tasks I loved to do, and the tasks that needed to be listed for outsourcing when I was ready to pass some of those hats to someone else. Knowing this was instrumental and as I cultivated new clients, expanded my professional network, I knew where I wanted to bring on support first.
One of the most empowering opportunities as a business owner is to surround yourself with trusted experts for advice and guidance. For me, it was the accountant and bookkeeping team to assist with financial services, then the printer and web developer to enhance my marketing efforts. I found several great professionals with companies that were the right size and offered exactly the services I needed. Most importantly, they were professionals with the patience to listen to the direction I wanted to take my business, they offered to assess those plans providing both positive and constructive feedback on how to proceed.
Since then, I have grown and so has my business.
TransAct has spread its wings nationwide supporting a variety of companies, of varying sizes, from service and medical professionals, to retailers and restaurant owners. Even as the company has grown, I have continued to work with many of the same professionals that have been with me from the beginning.
As my business has grown and matured, it seemed easier to place a value strictly on the service cost; however, I realized quickly that the relationships, the level of experience with my business and the trust all have a value. This far outweighs apparent “higher costs”. I recommend a thorough evaluation of that cost-value equation before making a change to a new supplier or vendor.
I am always happy to share my insights with entrepreneurs, some who are on their own, as well as those who have paid for a bit of a head start, deciding to own and open a franchised business. No matter where you are in the stage of your business, whether it is planning, launch or development there are always a lot of things to do and not a lot of time to do it. As the old saying goes “time is money” and how we spend our time can be indicative of the money we can make – don’t limit the size of your business trying to do it all on your own – even when you can.
One more thing I recommend. Coffee. Join me in-person or virtually someday soon; we can share ideas and maybe we can help each other. I assure you, it will be time well spent.
~ Mary Ann