Summary

Entrepreneurship can be surprisingly lonely and draining. But so rewarding. We just need to make sure to take care of ourselves along the way. Consultants often work alone and for a long time lead alone. Having support systems in place give you the structure and backing to keep you moving forward. Building a support system relies on finding the right people to support you, but also, it’s on you to make that system function effectively.

Transcript

Hey, David Bradley here. And let’s talk about support systems that you can build around you as a marketing consultant. And the marketing consultant path typically means that you’re going out there on your own. Sometimes you might already have a team around you. You might be building more of an agency approach where you have others with you, but for most of us that go into consulting, there’s a sense of individuality. And I want to do the solo approach, or I’ll just build up to a team later on. And even at that, if you do have a team, the business owners, the entrepreneurs who Excel the best typically have their own support system outside of their employees. They have others around them. And we’re going to talk about who those others are, because whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in business for 20 years, if you have zero employees and that’s all it will ever be, or if you’re looking at hiring your hundredth right now, either way, you’re going to have a support system in place, or you’re going to need a support system in place.

And that’s because quite honestly, entrepreneurship gets lost. It gets very lonely in the marketing consulting path when you’re doing everything alone or everything virtually. And first I’ll say, don’t worry, this isn’t some kind of pitch to just hire a coach and you can hire me. And all of that. This is really about who can you look to for a support system? So the best place to begin is if you have a partner, someone you live with specifically, whether that is your boyfriend, girlfriend, fiance, husband, wife, whatever it be, you should probably look there because most likely you have a lot to share in terms of the emotional ups and downs, in terms of finances, in terms of what they vision is going to look like for your life together. And it makes sense to start there and a good relationship should have that level of communication and sharing involved.

So I won’t lecture you too much about relationships, but I will lecture you about what we should look at when it comes to the partner’s concerns and how we remedy them. So typically the partner concerns are, well, how are we going to pay rent or pay the mortgage? You know, when I, even, if they work is one salary going to be enough and how, how long am I going to have to support you unless you’re coming out of the gate with a waterfall of cash coming in. So it was a concern, the finances, they probably don’t get what you’re doing, unless they have some professional experience in that capacity. Then maybe they get a bit more. But if you’re just going out there on your own, and they’re used to their nine to five in a very traditional sense in another field altogether, then they’re in the dark and that’s nothing against them.

It’s just, unless you enlighten them, unless they have experience, they don’t know what it’s going to be. Like. They probably don’t know what your vision is, unless you’ve explicitly shared it with them. And even at that, if you shared that your big idea is your vision for your future. Do they know what the day to day looks like and how that builds up into that ideal future that you’re looking at? There’s also the chance that you’ve already started. You’ve already been doing this and they see the struggles that you faced, that it isn’t so easy that you don’t just become a millionaire overnight. So there’s a lot at play there. Those are kind of the key concerns, and it really comes down to money and understanding, being aware of everything going on. So it becomes your job to share with them what they need to know.

And this is going to be true if we’re talking about partners, if we’re talking about some other kind of support system around you, but the understanding component component is vital. You need to sit down with them and explain, this is what my vision is. This is my plan to get there. This is what I’m doing on a day to day basis to build up to that. And this is how the business operates. Now, this is how we get clients. This is how we serve them. This is how the dollars work. You know, I hire subcontract, this workout. This is what I pay. And in exchange, I end up with this much profit from my efforts, let them understand all the kind of intricate levels of the business and how it operates in your role within it and where it’s gone that aside. And you establish that there is a real business.

There you have things figured out, you have the vision, you have the plan. What are the partners? Can you look to, maybe you don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend, some kind of partner that you live with. Maybe you’re kind of just really off on your own. And you’re trying to still come up with a support system. That makes sense. Well, there’s always the family and friend option. You can always reach out to the people that you’re close to. You do want, want to be mindful of the fact that sometimes not always the best option, uh, they care about your wellbeing very much. And if they don’t have that entrepreneurial spirit mindset or really understanding, then they might try to settle you down, push you towards, you know, go the 95 path. It’s safe and secure. Be employed by someone. Don’t try to do all this by yourself.

It’s too dangerous, too risky. If you communicate your whole vision and plan all of that, it should mitigate it to a degree, but just be mindful of who you select. The great option is other consultants. So if it’s a consultant, that’s in the throws of it in the beginning stages of their career, or if they’ve built up their business, they have something that’s highly successful in either capacity. As long as you have someone, then that could be a great option because if they’re a consultant, whether it’s a marketing consultant or some other type of consultant, they’re at least going down and just understand very intimately what you’re going through. They’re going to know about all of the triumphs and the challenges that you face. And they’ve just been there and done that, or they’re going through it as well. Take some of my other advice.

I’ve mentioned in other videos of joining, uh, boards committees, places that you can volunteer your time and your expertise, or even just through networking, you’re going to meet different people. And these people could be folks that you involve in your support system. It could be, uh, just that you find yourself gravitating towards someone else professionally. And the two of you hit it off. And you’re able to discuss matters that are a little bit more intimate that you might not just share openly networking, but that you’re comfortable exploring whether there’s a professional relationship where you can kind of be advisors to each other. You can support each other. If you’re in college or recently, uh, went through college, or if you just have some connection to the college or you can reach back out, you can always talk to an instructor who probably would be willing to share their time to talk to a past student.

And this is always a good option because you’re getting someone who maybe doesn’t have the business experience, unless they’re an adjunct, maybe they’ve married full time academics. That’s all they’ve ever done. Well, there is still value in the fact that, but, uh, they have the internet’s actual kind of capacity to help you to question what you’re doing, how you’re doing it. And they tend to be an audience that likes to help other people learn and grow. So that’s one option retirees. Likewise, they spent decades in business and now things are calming down. Well, sometimes they will gravitate towards opportunities to reinvest their knowledge in someone else. That is where they were decades ago. Professional advisors are always an option. So, plenty of business coaches out there, but there’s also an accountant. If you do have an accountant, or if you’re going to need an accountant, they can also serve to, uh, to you as advisors to look at the broad scope of the business and how it operates and where it’s going, do be mindful that not all accountants are business accountants, not all business accountants are really entrepreneurs, but if you get the right accountant, then they can be a great resource because you’re talking about the financials and the progress of your business.

Anyhow. So that’s someone that you would then be able to lean on a bit as well. So just keep that in mind, you’re going to need a support system of some sort. Don’t try to do it all yourself. Uh, even at that, you’re gonna, you might have to do the day to day work by yourself, but don’t try to handle the emotions and the thought of what I do at every step, all by yourself. Look elsewhere. If you’re watching this video yet, who’s open to learning. And that is a method of support. Whoever you end up having in your support system, and it might not just be one contact, it might be a select group. You know, my number is structured. It might not be a weekly accountability call. It might be just randomly reaching out and saying, Hey, just want to give you an update on what’s going on here, going to go and view.

In any capacity, there is a level of transparency that’s required to do as well. That transparency is the easy stuff of, well, this is my vision of what I’m trying to build. And this is the stuff that I’m doing day to day, but it’s also the hardest stuff to share of the financials, the struggles, the challenges, the failures, along the way, if you’re honest and open, if you have the right support system, it’s going to help you tremendously to make progress because a lot of entrepreneurship is all up here. It’s the actions that you take every day, but for those actions to work and for them to manifest in the right way, you need the energy behind that and the mindset that you have in the energy that you take with you day to day. For a moment to moment, that’s going to dictate a lot of your success as well. 

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