GOOD

Small Business Owner? The 5 People You Might Want in Your Corner

I’ve been a small business owner for eight years now, and I’ve been given so much advice that I’ve forgotten more of it than I can remember....

I’ve been a small business owner for eight years now, and I’ve been given so much advice that I’ve forgotten more of it than I can remember. Growing my freelance web writing business from one writer to a team of ten has been challenging, rewarding, fulfilling, scary and totally fun. I couldn’t have done it without having my own personal team; a group of people who are truly dedicated to seeing me win.


Every single small business owner needs these five roles in your corner. They can be friends, family, neighbors, colleagues or competitors and more than one person can play a role. But you must have all five to see your business grow without completely losing your sense of self and sanity. I call them the 4 P’s and 1 C:

The Pusher

When you’re running a small business, there’s always more work to do—more to learn, more people to network with, more systems to learn—just more. It can get exhausting. The Pusher keeps you pushing the envelope, teasing from you what you’re truly capable of. For me, this is my accountability partner, Kim, who reminds me about my goals and what I need to do to reach them. Identify the person or people in your life who always points to the brass ring and push you to grow stronger.

The Pacer

On the flip side, when you have a Pusher, you’re also going to need a Pacer. He or she reminds you that too much growth all at once might not be the right thing for the business. Typically, the Pacer is someone who truly cares about the health of your business. And I don’t mean in a nagging type of way, “Do you think you’re doing too much?” Rather, The Pacer listens carefully to your business challenges and responds with thoughtful analyses of your current challenges.

The Protector

The Protectors feel close enough to you to remind you of the life you might be neglecting why you try to grow your business. Their role is to encourage you to find some balance in your life. They might be the people who say, “Maybe it really doesn’t make sense to travel to six cities in five weeks.” Small business owners by their natures push themselves; the Protector reminds you that you work to live, not live to work.

The Peerleader

This person could be a colleague, competitor or someone you turn to when the day just isn’t going well. But he or she is a peer—someone who understands the intricate challenges you face in your field.

I once had a terrible client meeting and I walked out and called my friend Matt, crying. He works in my field and he totally got what I was saying about why the meeting went so poorly—he talked it out with me. He agreed I didn’t handle certain parts of the meeting well, but he also reminded me that client engagements in our industry are complex. The Peerleader will give you the truth without the sugarcoat, but will remind you that you are human. Having someone who truly understands your field is critical when you’re a small business owner, and you don’t necessarily have ten other colleagues with whom you can share your daily challenges.

The Cheerleader

Everyone needs the person who tells you are fantastically talented and up for the challenge of running a business. The Cheerleader probably doesn’t understand the ins and outs of your field or your business, but knows you and what you want to represent to the world. He or she can function as the person you call when you don’t want to rehash all the gory details, but just want someone to remind you that you’re awesome. Every single one of us—small business owner or not—needs a cheerleader (many, preferably). Don’t forget to find the person—or people—in your life who remind you that you’re doing exactly what you should be doing.

With the 4 P’s and 1 C in your corner, you’ll be able to keep your audacity of spirit—the very thing in you that pushed you to jump into the roaring currents of business and pull yourself up the ladder of success.

Photo by Sarah Shreves

Articles
via Alan Levine / Flickr

The World Health Organization is hoping to drive down the cost of insulin by encouraging more generic drug makers to enter the market.

The organization hopes that by increasing competition for insulin, drug manufacturers will be forced to lower their prices.

Currently, only three companies dominate the world insulin market, Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk and Sanofi. Over the past three decades they've worked to drastically increase the price of the drug, leading to an insulin availability crisis in some places.

In the United States, the price of insulin has increased from $35 a vial to $275 over the past two decades.

Keep Reading Show less
Health

Oh, irony. You are having quite a day.

The Italian region of Veneto, which includes the city of Venice, is currently experiencing historic flooding. Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro has stated that the flooding is a direct result of climate change, with the tide measuring the highest level in 50 years. The city (which is actually a collection of 100 islands in a lagoon—hence its famous canal streets), is no stranger to regular flooding, but is currently on the brink of declaring a state of emergency as waters refuse to recede.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet

Since the International Whaling Commission banned commercial whaling in 1986, whale populations have been steadily recovering. However, whales in the wild still face other dangers. In the summer of 2018, four Russian companies that supply aquariums with marine animals captured almost 100 beluga whales and killer whales (aka orcas). After a public outcry, those whales are swimming free as the last of the captive whales have been released, the first time this many captured whales have been released back into the wild.

In late 2018 and early 2019, a drone captured footage of 11 orcas and 87 beluga whales crammed into holding pens in the Srednyaya Bay. The so-called "whale jail" made headlines, and authorities began to investigate their potentially illegal capture.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
via Twitter / Bye,Bye Harley Davidson

The NRA likes to diminish the role that guns play in fatal shootings by saying, "Guns don't kill people, people kill people."

Which is the same logic as, "Hammers don't build roofs, people build roofs." No duh. But it'd be nearly impossible to build a roof without a hammer.

So, shouldn't the people who manufacture guns share some responsibility when they are used for the purpose they're made: killing people? Especially when the manufacturers market the weapon for that exact purpose?

Keep Reading Show less
Business
via Gage Skidmore / Flickr

The 2020 election is a year away, but Donald Trump has some serious ground to cover if he doesn't want it to be a historical blowout.

A Washington Post- ABC News poll released Tuesday shows that Trump loses by double digits to the top Democratic contenders.

Vice President Joe Biden (56%-39%); Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts (54%-39%); Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont (56%-39%); South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg (52%-41%); and Sen. Kamala Harris of California (52%-41%) all have big leads over the president.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics