Klimb Creative Turns One:
The Things I've Learned.
Wow! It's hard to believe that Klimb Creative turns one this month. This last year has been one of new adventures, meeting new businesses, and taking on new projects. I can't thank my clients enough for their business. It's truly been an honor to assist in the development and further growth of their businesses! And to my family and friends – thank you for your constant support and encouragement. I couldn't have done this without you. And last but not least, thank you to all my colleagues and business partners in crime. You've helped mold Klimb Creative into the business it is today.
Even though this last year has been an amazing experience, but it doesn't mean it was always easy. I've learn so much about business ownership – the late nights, the early mornings, the income fluctuations, project management...the list goes on. So in light of being in business for one year, it's only fair that I do a post about the things I've learned along the way.
1. Being a business owner isn't as glamorous as it seems.
Yes, the flexible schedule and working from home are perks. But being a business owner is hard work – continual hard work. It takes determination, dedication and creativity. You have to take risks and leaps of faith. You can't be afraid to fail, and you have to be open to continually improve yourself and your business. You have to have confidence in yourself and your ability to provide quality products/services. Not many people see the sweat and tears that pour into your business. But believe me, it's there! In every small business, there are hurdles and milestones that have been achieved – and there are also detours we've had to take and lost opportunities we've encountered.
However, through all the hard stuff, there is this great sense of accomplishment for the business I've built – I'm sure every business owner can say that. I still get those first-love jitters when a new business signs on with Klimb Creative. I still do my happy-dances when a project is completed and the client is thrilled with the work. I still treat myself to a fancy latte when I meet with a potential client just to hear about their business and how they want to impact the lives of others. It's worth it!
2. Having a community within your business is crucial.
One of the biggest things I've learned is how important community is to the success of my business. Coming from working with a team of people for several years, entrepreneurship can get a little lonely. Celebrating a big win or the launch of a client project by yourself in your home office can be anticlimactic. Even my dog rolls her eyes and leaves the room when I break out in a happy dance(not really)! This is why having a community is so important. We all need to feel encouraged and be reminded of why we do what we do. We need to celebrate the wins and analyze the losses.
I realized this pretty quickly into the launch of Klimb Creative. So I went out and found myself a crew I could count on for collaboration and team building. Having a crew of collaborators has helped for bouncing around new business ideas and for shooting holes in them too. It's important to get a second opinion and a new perspective on our ideas before running with it. And even though we all run different businesses, we all need a shoulder to cry on and someone to do happy-dances with!
3. Don't be so hard on yourself.
Like I said, entrepreneurship can be a lonely field to work in. It's not hard to compare yourself to competitors and start doubting the work you do. I've learned to keep myself surrounded by good people who also believe in what I'm doing. Not too long after I launched Klimb Creative, I saw this photo on LinkedIn. I can say that this is a pretty good representation of what it can feel like! One day is excellent, the next is horrible, and the day after that is good again. It's easy to get caught up in your own head!
4. Invest in your business: Get the tools you need to be successful.
As an entrepreneur, you want to keep your overhead and expenses low. My mistake early on was that I wanted to keep it so low that I didn't equip myself with the tools I needed early on. Now, that has since changed and I've added creative tools, software and programs, but my mindset has also changed. I learned how important it is to invest in my business and get the tools and resources I need to provide quality work for my clients, and set myself up to be productive.
I can't tell you how important it is to have processes in place and documentation! This was drilled into me by my former boss - and I get it now! Most of the projects I've done up to this point have been 80% the same when it comes to how they're done. The more I've documented, the faster I've been able to complete projects. Why? Because I have checklists for what to do, what to look for, and questions to ask.
Klimb Creative has come a long way over the last year. I'm incredibly excited for what year two will bring. I'm currently working on a couple new partnerships, fine tuning the services Klimb offers and also creating new service packages. More details to come, so stay tuned!
And Thank You again for help making Klimb Creative's first year a great one!