Why going solo is worth the effort
Dear Solo Self,
Just thought I would drop you a line to see how you are getting on.
You have been slogging away there all by yourself for a while now, and I thought I would check in and make sure you are okay.
I haven’t heard much from you lately. Been working pretty hard I guess?
I suppose when you left that salaried job and headed out into the wide blue yonder, you always knew it would be a lot of work, but, hey, you’ve never been afraid of hard work. It’s more than the work though.
The problem is that people just can't prepare you for it – a bit like parenthood. You see people all around you doing it, so you guess it can’t be that difficult.
But it’s all the things they don’t tell you: guessing at your value in the marketplace and how to compete without undercutting or losing out; how to meet your deadlines when there are only 24 hours in each day and you have to sleep through some of them; how to let people know what you are doing when you have no money for marketing.
Last time I had a good look you seemed to have more bags under your eyes than before you took this on, but perhaps it’s just the natural ageing process?
Well, maybe this note is getting a bit gloomy and maybe you haven’t found it all that rough. But most small business owners say the first year is a nightmare in many ways; what do you reckon?
Maybe you could drop me a line and let me know. That’s after you’ve said g’day or had a day out with your family – I know they miss you.
They’ve been very understanding about the long hours and the tightened belt and the lack of fun times.
But for them it’s a bit like watching someone chasing an invisible rabbit across the paddock. I know YOU can see it, but from where they are standing you look, well, a little bit crazy.
On the other hand, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to hear from you that you don’t miss the office politics one bit.
That even though when things go wrong and you turn around to find someone to blame, and there’s no one there, you are really relieved because Kerry from Accounts always made your life a misery.
And now you are free of that; free of backbiting, bitchery and bull.
And there’s no joy like seeing your name above the door and on the business card and telling people you are your own boss. How good does that feel! Doing without holiday and sick pay is worth it.
The work you do, the ideas you have, the product you make, the contacts you nourish, the profit you take, is yours – all yours.
Anyway, if you don’t get time to reply to this – don’t worry. I think I've worked it out for myself that, all in all, you’re doing fine. Just fine.