Oftentimes, we're asked for advice from various friends, acquaintances, even customers of ours, on starting or growing a business. Most of the questions we get center around operating a business in a down economy, like "how do you hang in there when it's so tough?". Others couch the question differently, like asking what motivates us to keep showing up on a daily basis. Multiple paragraphs could be written about this subject, but we ran across a recent blog post from uber-entrepreneur Seth Godin that pretty much sums up our advice to anyone starting out:
What does your brand stand for?
Compared to what? Compared to all those that you compete with for attention, for commerce, for donations and for employees, what do you stand for? Are you one of a kind or even one in a million?
Hyatt, Marriott, Hilton... they don't actually stand for anything, do they? They can't, because they stand for precisely the same thing. Puma vs. Adidas vs. Nike... They all want to stand for winning. How substantial are the differences?
Make a list of the differences and the extremes and start with that. A brand that stands for what all brands stand for stands for nothing much.
---Seth Godin, May 30, 2013
Another great piece to read is Jonathan Morrow's post about fear, entitled The Cowardly Entrepreneur. When, in the body of his post, he writes "The lesson is that courage isn’t about acting in the absence of fear; it’s about acting despite it", he had our attention. This, along with Seth's post, really nails it in terms of advice for those just starting out (or those who need a jump start) in their businesses. To quote Seth, "Go - make something happen"!
Along those lines, we're hosting a book signing event on Thursday, with author Carol Woodliff. Carol is a healer/shaman, and this event will be very exciting, with readings and demonstrations. You'll find the event notice on our Facebook page and we hope we'll see you there!
We'll talk again next week, friends - enjoy!
Lori and Scott