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Let’s assume that after a lot of soul searching there is no doubt you want to be self-employed. The first challenge is defining your business. What is your business going to do and who is it going to serve?
It’s crucial your business reflects your uniqueness, strengths, and passion. If it does, you will be on the road to success because people will respond to your genuine passion. Your essence will shine through and that will attract your audience to you.
Are you struggling to find what your business should be?
It’s time to brainstorm. Here are a couple of exercises that you could try.
Exercise 1: Mind Mapping. I love mind mapping. I find it an easy way to get ideas down on paper because non-hierarchical. It’s not a list. See the attached to this blog or google mind maps.
Here’s what works for me – but you can adapt it to suit you and your ideas.
- Take a large piece of paper and write down “My Business” in the middle. Draw a circle around this.
- Draw 5 lines branching out from the center with a circle at the end. Insert one of the following words in each circle: Skills, Strengths, Experience, Uniqueness, Interests.
- Take a moment to get the right mindset for this exercise. It’s important that you allow yourself to be creative. Let your mind wander free. Don’t try to rationalise your thoughts or limit them in any way.
- Now start to populate your mind map with ideas and thoughts. Just go for it. This is only about ideas. Do a little research on mind maps if you have never used them before. Creative ways to make them even better are by using colours, drawings, etc.
- The next stage is to evaluate your ideas. But I advise you to leave that for a day. Take a break and come back fresh.
Exercise 2: Who are you?
This exercise helps you see the uniqueness of you. Answer the following questions:
- Identify 2 or 3 experiences that have really shaped who you are.
- Recognise 2 or 3 things you are very good at.
- Think of 2 or 3 examples of when you have r made a significant difference to persons or situations.
- Write down your top three values (do a Google search on values and then pick the 3 that resonate with you).
- Now brainstorm ways that you can combine some of these answers in a business context.
How do you develop your ideas?
It’s time find out which of your ideas "have legs". Here are some suggestions that can help:
- Talk to people about your ideas. Make sure you select people whom you can trust to be honest and who don't have a hidden agenda.
- Do a SWOT analysis of each idea (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats).
- Do some market research – find out if other companies are offering similar or the same services. Look at their websites. Read articles. Find out more.
- Attend the She Means Business seminars. They are regular, free and online. You will get:
- Free information about business set-up, accounting, and tax.
- Free business and personal coaching to get clarity and feel empowered
Go to www.she-means-business.co.uk to register for the next seminar.
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