4 Quick Lessons I Learned in my First Year of Business
On June 18th Elisha Consulting turned one! It has been one of the most exciting, frustrating, fulfilling, and challenging years all in one.
There are days when I wake up and I feel like I can conquer the world while others I question what I am doing with my life. These emotions come from starting a business and after a year I would have it no other way! Below are 4 quick lessons I have learned in my first year of business. They all came from successful individuals who have become friends and provided advice as I was going through growing pains.
Lesson One: never negotiate price, always negotiate service
Brian Giboney, Founder of Digital Sky is a mentor and business collaborator. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience. When I was writing my first contract I came to pricing and had no idea what to do. He walked me through how to price out projects and gave me tremendous advice: never negotiate price, always negotiate service. I learned to not drop my price per project, yet am more than happy to lower the number of services delivered which decreases the overall cost.
Lesson Two: know the difference between a freelancer and a business
Hami Arrington, Founder of Strats Marketing has become a friend and during our first meeting, she asked me if I wanted to be a freelancer or business owner. I had not thought of the difference, a freelancer takes on contracts while a business owner continues to grow credibility and eventually hires contract workers/employees to expand services. Both are great options depending on an individual’s overall goals. I am building a business.
Lesson Three: become a thought-leader in your desired field
Glen Nelson, External Communications and Public Relations Lead, North America at Capgemini, helped me and my teammate Preeti Singh when we were competing in Capgemini’s Innovators Race. Once when we were speaking he told me to become a thought-leader and expert in my desired field. I have taken that advice to constantly learn about marketing and have witnessed my clients reach new levels daily because of the work we put into marketing best practices.
Lesson Four: as cliche as it sounds, follow your passion
Deacon Larry Vaclavik, Managing Principal at Dini Spheris became a trusted friend and mentor. He is one of the strongest leaders I have ever been around and guided me during the most difficult time of my first year of business. His advice is timeless, follow your passion. I have seen articles and high-level individuals say to not follow your passion because it might not make money. From my experience, I would say that when people truly follow their passion, money follows. In a world craving authenticity, individuals who burn with passion draw a crowd . . . and financial success.
There is so much more I could write about and many people who have helped Elisha Consulting. My faith, family, friends, mentors, clients, and MBA program (Bauer!) have been the inspiration and support I needed during my first year of business. Thank you for an amazing first year and I cannot wait to see what happens in the years to come.
If you are ready to start your own business feel free to reach out and I would be more than happy to answer initial questions.