The Journey of Solopreneur!
Solopreneur sounds like an autonomous power but in the true sense it’s more of a balancing and multitasking assignment in the most efficient and effective way. In case of entrepreneurship and other public and private companies, you can inculpate others for the delays, defective executions, or non-performances but a solopreneur has no such option. They can’t transfer the responsibility on someone else. Personal accountability is the trademark of a solopreneur. No matter whether you are a consultant, freelance writer, graphic designer, ecommerce seller, travel agent, translator, etc. being productive is the only hack to build your business. As a solopreneur you will naturally receive many advices and suggestions but only you know what it means to put your everything on the line and so it’s extremely necessary to trust your instincts before making any decision. You will have to believe in yourself when nobody else does. Being true to yourself helps you build an authentic identity of your brand. You can reach your true potential, only when you know your “WHY” and when you have the guts to stay consistent because the rewards of your hard work will come after a long period of hustle. The journey will be a lonely ride because of no support or assistance. But it’s important to understand that all greatness comes from some element of loneliness, some element of solitude, that’s when our minds work best because of no dependency on anyone else other than the divine. Loneliness is an opportunity to bring your best self out. Solopreneurs usually have what it takes to drive solely trusting in their journey and believing in themselves.
If you have a particular set of skills and some creative psyche, and you can believe in yourself when others won’t, solopreneurship is for you but if you are too fearful to take risk it is not meant for you. Courage is the backbone to live an authentic life. Bad attitude is the only disability. Solopreneurs understand that just because something doesn’t go as planned, does not mean its not good, sometimes it results into something more meaningful and magical. Solopreneurs welcome uncertainties; they welcome the gift of solitude.
For solopreneurs it’s best not to wait for opportunities but to create them. The most powerful tool in the hands of anyone is how they respond and not react towards people and circumstances and at the same time not let negativity take the best of them.
Some practical tips for solopreneurs to work smartly are:
· Maintain the records of all your customers in detail like contact details, records of sales, conversations you had with your customers, their expectations, their feedback, services due, etc. If you meet the requirements of your customers, you’ll earn trust and reliability. For the starting solopreneurs records can be maintained in spreadsheets, that would be sufficient but as your work expands you can use Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software System. Also, separately maintain a record of potential customers so that you can pin them occasionally. Maintaining records help us save time from unnecessary search of required information, we just have to click open the specific file and all necessary data is available, this helps us stay organized and improves our efficiency and is less tiring.
· Since there are various channels of communication these days, it’s essential to optimize each channel for closing deals, for providing customer service, for advertisements and publicity, etc. It’s best to be creative so that it does not feel that you are selling something constantly. Consistently update your social media a/c’s, provide a stable web presence, create message for email enquiries, etc.
· Be available and present. As a solopreneur it becomes naturally challenging to handle everything all by your own but nonetheless this cannot be an excuse for poor performance. In order to develop individual connection with each customer it’s necessary to stay connected. When you develop personal relationship with your customers and they feel belonged, they turn from present customers to long term loyal customers and you earn the customers word-of-mouth referrals. As solopreneurs the best way to maintain a balance between professional and personal life is to set a particular time and be clear regarding it.
· Since a solopreneur has to create, develop, build, manage, market, handle accounts, provide customer service, approach potential customer, get feedback, solve grievances, has to follow up, etc all single handedly, its best to automate files, set time for calls, etc. so that the process becomes easy and effective.
· You need to resolve customer grievances, respond to the customer’s feedback and never ignore it. Incorporate the feedback received into your business practices, this will help you understand your customers better and will also make your customers choose you over your competitors. Also it’s advisable to request the customers to share their experiences on social media.
· If you use the customer service and feedback tips wisely, you’ll build loyal customers for your brand and that will provide you the enthusiasm to do better and serve better. Remember, your brand value depends on goodwill which is earned through loyal long term customers, nothing can replace customers.
Always make time to learn. The more you learn the better self equipped you will be.