There are times in running my business where I feel completely beat down, discouraged and ready to just sell or even throw in the towel. There are so many decisions that need to be made—business-changing decisions and life-altering decisions—and they all rest on my shoulders. I have employee issues to deal with and personality dynamics like you wouldn’t believe. Have you ever tried to mix sales people with creative people and put them in one building? It’s like putting a cat and Tasmanian devil in a paper sack and shaking it up. There are client relationship issues to deal with, and quite frankly, some people just can’t be satisfied no matter what you do for them. At times, all the things I mentioned seem to hit me all at once and take me to the brink of a breakdown. But, just about the time something happens, I get a swift kick that reminds me why I do what I do.
I get a swift kick that reminds me several short years ago, we started this company with an idea and a media kit. We started at a time when other companies were cutting back, struggling and even failing. We started this business by getting loans, maxing out credit cards, draining our savings account and robbing Peter to pay Paul. Today, just six and a half years later, we are a multimillion-dollar company, we have achieved more than 100 awards of excellence, recognized as one of the “fastest-growing media companies” by Inc. 5000 and have grown from four employees to nearly 30.
Excuse me while I pat myself on the back, but I have done a damn good job. Well, I say, “I” have done a great job, but I certainly didn’t do it alone. But “I” did choose my team, which means I can take a little credit, right? Why not?
If you are a business owner then you know exactly why sometimes it takes a swift kick. As one of my husband’s idols (Dave Ramsey) once said, “Only a business owner has experienced the fact that you can go from sheer excitement to sheer terror in a matter of 24 hours.”
It is the business owner who holds the weight of the world, and not just his world, but also the worlds of all of his employees and clients on his shoulders. It is the business owner who wakes up at 4 a.m. in cold sweats wondering if there will be enough cash flow to make ends meet. It is the business owner who is tasked with creating new ways to stay relevant and not become obsolete. I could go on like this for hours, but you get the point. It’s all up to you, the business owner, to make things happen.
So why put yourself in this situation? Bottom line is it is because you are just like me—you LOVE it. You love what you do because you are good at it. You love what you do because in the midst of all, you are making a difference. So, when you feel yourself getting kicked in the teeth, take time to reflect. Remember why you started, what your goals are and stay focused. Also, remember success is not looking at where you are today. Success is looking at where you started, compared to where you are at this moment. I am certain by that standard, you can consider yourself and your business a success.