The big 0-3. What an achievement! You’ve gone through the bumps and bruises, ups and excitements of the first two years of business and you’re still here! You’ve decided, this is it, you’re all in! And now you’re ready to discover how to survive your third year in business.
Does that sound about right?
If so, then keep on reading, friend. Year three is all about continuing to level up and build upon your first two years of progress.
Continue to level up
As previously mentioned, every business is a constant work in progress. If you aren’t continuing to learn new things, improve upon your current status and aren’t levelling up, your biz is going to stay stagnant. Maybe where you are right now is exactly where you want to be. If so, kudos! But know that as the years pass, new businesses will come onto the playing field. So how are you going to ensure you stay heard above the noise and newness? Keep discovering, keep exploring and be open to growth and possibility!
Have clear goals
Goals can fall into a number of categories. It may be that as your business grows your systems and processes aren’t cutting it, anymore. Maybe you need a better CRM. Maybe you need a new booking system to handle your input and output. Whatever the case may be, do your wee biz audit and ensure you’re on top of what you need to function smoothly and successfully.
You may also have a plan to grow your product line or offer more services, or perhaps even create some of those golden, pretty darn swoon-worthy “passive income” products. How good are they!? Get planning and set yourself up with deadlines and milestones each step of the way. Have other team members (or family members!) hold you accountable and reward yourself for the win. This helps keep you inspired!
Continue to branch out and meet others in your industry. Grow those relationships, because as they grow, so, too, do the opportunities to inspire and support each other and your businesses.
Is growing your team on your list of clear goals to achieve in your third year of business? If you’re still moving and shaking, chances are you may be at a point where you can no longer handle all of the ins and outs of running a biz on your own. In order to take your biz to that next level, you need others to support that growth. Other experts, other eyes and ears and other cheerleaders who are ready to help set your biz up for success.
Another big goal of mine was to step into more speaking engagements. This allows me to not only get clearer on my own mission and the messages I want to put out to the creatives and lawyers I help support, but it also helps me create more of the wonderful connections and relationships mentioned up in that previous paragraph there. ;)
Stay on top of finances
As your business grows, so does your income (one hopes)... but your expenses might, too! At this stage in the game, I’d highly recommend having a bookkeeper to help support the comings and goings of cash flow. It may also be worthwhile to sit down with an advisor to help set up financial milestones and discuss the benefits or risks of any larger financial decisions you may need to make to support the growth of your business.
Take time out and celebrate your wins
Inspiration can’t come when you’re overworked, overstretched and burnout, amiright? So don’t forget to give yourself a break every week (read, every week!), whether it’s two days, a day or some other mix and match that works for you, to have time for yourself to recover and connect with the things and people you love outside of work. Annnd give yourself a proper holiday away from the office, too! It does wonders.
Another lovely jolt of inspiration and excitement can come when you allow yourself to celebrate your wins, big and small! Remind yourself of what you’re achieving and why you are doing what you do. Speaking of celebrating, at this stage in the game you have the ability to explore awards and be considered for opportunities of recognition in your field. How cool is that? What an honour to be seen by your peers as someone who is making a difference. Allow yourself the chance to explore these opportunities!
Celebrate. Nurture. And remember how much you freaking love the biz you’ve created!
For me, an ongoing goal is to always continue to grow, learn and discover new ways that we at Foundd can help support our community of creatives. We do this because I love helping others thrive, because we love to see others succeed. So we have more plans to support you beautiful humans as we venture into our (gasp) fourth year of business! Watch this space!