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Ideas to achieve a values-based business practice

Expert Answers to Biz Questions

Listen in! Pick up some expert advice to a reader's question that we selected from CyberSchmooz.

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The Biz Question

I'm feeling overwhelmed. How do you figure out what to do next? I'm not sure if I should be building my website on my own, or working on my finances to look for an angel, or reading about new technology that would help me, or what! In the meantime, a trusted mentor has stopped speaking to me. Or maybe, I should be working a second job to raise cash? All of this is giving me Terrible headaches. How do you all prioritize?

Kim

Answer from our Guest Expert Allison Gaea Jucha of Yes!Coaching

Kim, I hear how frustrated you are and understand completely how infinitely difficult it is to prioritize when everything looks like a priority. We've all been there, so don't feel alone. Let's see if we can get you to take a deep breath and focus a little to relieve some of this frustration. I'll try do some prioritizing for you, but I'll also ask you questions to get you on the right road.

Do You Need Financing?
Building your web page is important to marketing, and reading about the latest technology is good for getting you on the cutting edge. But if your biz needs financing, make that your immediate priority -- especially if your biz is your only source of income! Sit down and concentrate on ways to inspire cash flow. Try lowering expenses wherever possible, raise prices on popular services or products, and get larger businesses to sponsor you. Get that second job. Or find that angel, Kim. Do whatever it takes to get the green flowing back into the biz. But do it in such a way so it's totally in line with your values. Don't upset your apple cart by going against your gut instincts. It'll only add to your headaches.

If your biz doesn't have a healthy supply of financing and strong cash flow, then efforts to increase your online presence via a web page or to buy the latest high-tech gizmo won't matter one bit -- you won't be in biz long enough.

Are You Ready to Expand?
If your biz is doing okay in the money department, and you're worrying about increasing revenues soon, then, yes, make marketing your number one priority. Learn about all the marketing techniques -- such as newsletters, direct mail pieces, and public relations -- that can foster your biz growth.

And of course, this would include the Web and developing your own web site. If you feel you can do this on your own, then get a how-to book on the topic. There's plenty out there, such as Connecting Online: Creating a Successful Image on the Internet published by The Oasis Press. Web designers/ developers are a dime a dozen anymore. Perhaps a college student would be interested in developing your site with you in exchange for the reference in her portfolio? Get your image on the World Wide Web as soon as possible to help in your biz expansion

Do You Need Guidance?
First, get complete with your mentor. Ask him or her how you both can repair this schism between you. In the end, you may continue with him or her or look for a new mentor, but at least you won't have any unfinished business leftovers.

Do You Need to Reevaluate this Business Move?
Is this business bringing you what you set out to have? If you have more headaches than joy, you might want to reconsider how this business can and cannot take you there. This is not meant to sound as defeatist as educational. Really, now that you've been playing at it for a while, take an honest look -- how will this work get you where you want to go? Will it? Be truthful, and set new goals based on your answers.

Make Your List.
So what are your priority areas? Marketing? Revenue? Mentorship? Meaning? Whatever they are, set reachable goals within those areas. Ask for help. Keep moving forward. And remember, sitting back now and then to take stock is another way to move forward. Allow yourself the time to do this work, Kim, and you'll begin to see which way to go. 

Have a biz question of your own? Go post it in CyberSchmooz

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