These are but a few lessons I learnt in business in 2012.
1. No more verbal agreements.
Agreements "in principle" ie verbal agreements have no standing. Everything
must be in writing. Make sure you and the parties mentioned in the agreement
have SIGNED copies.
2. Return on relationships is more important than return on investment - ROI
Even though I am aware of this, I realised that not all business partners have the same mindset.
3. Too many fingers in too many pies cause diluted effort.
Oh and how we love pie! As serial entrepreneurs we sometimes get
caught up in too many ventures. Nothing wrong with exploring additional ventures,
however we have to do some calculations. Have we considered our time, capacity and HEALTH?
It's better to concentrate on less initiatives in order to give more attention to the selected few.
4. "Going the extra mile" for clients doesn't always work.
Because I am passionate about what I do and because I'd like to see all brands
succeeding, I tend to spread myself thinly by doing more than the stipulated scope of
work for a client. This additional service is not always recognised and appreciated.
5. Work hard, play hard!
Nothing great has ever been achieved by little or no effort. As entrepreneurs we HAVE
to work hard, very hard. I know as a start-up, I started with nothing but my flare
for social media and wanting to assist other start-ups. I received no hand-outs, no capital,
no financial favours, BUT I had guts. Raymond Ackerman says: "You need 10% capital
and 90% guts to start a business." Even though working hard is important, playing hard
is important too. I don't play much but when I do I make it count. There has to be a balance
in your lifestyle!
6. Juggling Family, Friends, Business, Health and Spirit
I think I've listed my hardest lesson last... I love my family, I love my friends, I love God,
I know my health is important and my business needs a healthy competent ME to survive,
having said all of the above, I struggle to juggle!
Former CEO of Coca Cola, Brian Dyson, said in a 30 second speech:
"Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. They are Work, Family, Friends, Health and Spirit and you’re keeping all of these in the air.
You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four Balls – Family, Health, Friends and Spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for it.
Work efficiently during office hours and leave on time. Give the required time to your family, friends & have proper rest.
"Value has a value only if it’s value is valued."
My wish for all of you in 2013:
Whether you an entrepreneur, an aspiring entrepreneur, an employee, a partner, a stay at home mom/dad, I hope that your wish for 2013 becomes a reality. This wish may require much effort on your part and there are times you will want to throw in the towel.
Remember, perseverance and passion is key to your success!