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11 lessons for 11 years.

1. When you first start your business with a partner, make sure to have a good exit plan and strategy and know what it means! Get documents in place to support this. Do this while you are friends!

2. Take care of yourself! Being a business owner can be stressful & you need to be able to handle any situation that comes up. Take time for yourself, eat healthy, and workout regularly.

3. Examine what you do all day. Take a few months and track the types of activities that you work on each day. Sometimes it’s helpful to step back and review this information to determine what you may need to work on and what areas you might be spending too much time on.

4. Set goals. Set daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly goals for you in your business as well as personally. Expect the same of your team members as well.

5. Be consistent in your own marketing. Sometimes it’s hard to find time to do your own work. Make your business a priority by scheduling yourself into your work flow.

6. Grow your team & create a good work environment. We take time every Monday morning to sip coffee and chat about our weekends and then discuss what we each have on our plates for the week as well. It gives us a chance to connect and then also ask questions when we are all together in the same location.

7. Review your business frequently. Ask your team for their feedback. These are questions I ask myself when I am reviewing our business. What types of things could be improved? What types of things would help streamline our processes? What types of things could we automate? What could we do to help create a better customer experience?

8. Have fun! Have fun and celebrate successes along the way. Give out Kudos often and let your team members know that they are appreciated.

9. Stay Organized! I think this is one of our keys to success. We developed an online tracking system to support our in house filing system for each project. Make it easy to find anything you may need.

10. It’s easier to keep a client than to find a new one! Make sure to stay in regular contact and let them know they are appreciated.

11. As a sole business owner, it’s helpful to belong to like groups, where you can brainstorm and discuss business items.

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