Displaying items by tag: entrepreneur - Page 7
Marketing Eye started with investment money. The first few years, we had some tweaking to do, which was stressful, because I wasn't just playing with my money. Bringing a new model into a mature market is just a case of rolling the dice, seeing how they fall and hoping for the best. But I believed in it with all of my heart. I thought I knew something that others didn't and that was that all small businesses need to manage cash flow with no surprises and they all need marketing. This is a formidable combination, capable of allowing small to medium sized businesses the freedom to do what they do, without being held to their next invoice.
There were changes that needed to occur in the business model, but the day we got it right we never looked back. In the time leading up to this moment, I doubted myself, cried myself to sleep because I felt like a failure and constantly put myself in situations where I was uncomfortable. I was stressed off my head and didn't know how to deal with it. No one taught me how to do this. Often, a simple thing that would go wrong, would seem to me like the end of the world. Once, some hackers hacked into our bank accounts and emptied them. I had a public speaking engagement only an hour later. Instead of dealing with it later, I cancelled the engagement. I didn't know what to do and I didn't have the hindsight to know that it could wait an hour or two. It was the wrong choice and something that I now realise was not how an entrepreneur acts. They are supposed to suck it up, put on their good shoes and show the world how things are done.
The drawbacks, well, there are a number but one of them has never been that I didn't want to get out of bed and turn up to work. Instead, I wake up early and make my way to the office as fast and efficiently as possible.
What I find challenging is the same things most small to medium-sized business owners find; people management, enough hours in the day to do all the things that you want to do and find the right talent. The latter being the single biggest issue I think most agencies find today.
There have been many hit and misses and lots of unnecessary frustration, but finally I think as a team we have hit the nail on the head and I am about to test it to the nth degree.
Flat Organisational Structure
Weaning employees off hierarchy-driven decision making has been a test of both patience and perseverance. Gen-Y's have been told that they need leadership in order to be successful, yet some of the most successful companies in the world, like Google, are saying quite the opposite. Their investment in a flat organisational structure has not only shown dividends on the balance sheet, but it has created a workplace and culture that the world-over admires and respects.
For smaller companies that have an established organisational structure, driven largely by an entrepreneur, it is more difficult to adapt to a flat organisational structure with the primary reason being that both parties; the entrepreneur and the employees, find it difficult to let go.
I have been travelling the world growing "my small business" and have found that it is almost impossible to be the leader I would have hoped to be, living the life I do. I certainly am no role model in this department, nor do I follow the many books I have bought over time on "how to be a good leader" no matter how much I try but ultimately fail in my pursuit.
It's tough enough running a business, without having to deal with the things in life that make you question your own decision making process and to a degree, the path that you are going on.
I have wasted the last few years in no-man's land, pushing through on the business front and having great success that has made me proud of the people involved who have made it happen, but for me personally, I am not quite there.
As we talk I realize that entrepreneurs are no different from celebrities, movie stars, singers, musicians or any other career that is centre stage.
The reality is we all have a bit of neurotic behaviour in us - whether we like it or not. Some entrepreneurs are more neurotic than others - micro-managing, controlling, double A-Type personalities that find it hard to accept another person's way of doing things, and then others just tip the iceberg.
Many entrepreneurs have a goal, or an idea of where they want to be. They are achievement orientated and often lack discipline, needing to hire the latter in to complement their existing skill base.
It's been a roller-coaster of a year already and its only 7 weeks in. Everything imaginable has happened to me this year, and I am already exhausted, but somehow exhilarated at the same time.
There have been so many changes; life, business and game. I feel like I have lived through so much, yet there is still so much more to achieve.
Yesterday, I had the privilege of spending half an hour with a young entrepreneur by the name of Kylie Marie, who is inspiring, ambitious, energetic and ready to take on the world. I now know why older people liked spending time with me when I was new to business, because that energy is contagious. I couldn't help but smile and be totally inspired by what Kylie is doing and her fearlessness in business. Her brow bars, Browco Brow Bar, will be everywhere in the next year or so, along with her eyebrow products that are to die for.
The other day, a few of us from the Marketing Eye team were at a client meeting and they mentioned that they buy all of their employees an ipad for Christmas.
You should have seen my employees faces! They were green with envy. It was as if they had all been given ferraris.
I thought to myself, "that's really cool" but not for a second did I think that they received something worth more than what my employees in Atlanta received. Perception is an unbelievable thing and more and more, companies are being encouraged to "buy" their employees happiness.
Many new age companies, with venture-backed operations offer:
It's no secret that I have taken a few days off. For a start, my social media accounts have come to a stop and I am not checking my emails. Instead I am giving myself time to think and soak up the atmosphere of Christmas and family, without disruptions.
I won't lie by saying that I don't want to do all of these things, but I know that in order to give 2014 my best shot, that I will need to have a few days off and really get back to grassroots.
A week of discovery in one of the most beautiful countries in the world, Argentina, has led to a new discovery of my own: that the world is full of surprises.
Caught up in the hustle and bustle of a city that boasts more than 14 million people, Buenos Aires is the hub for the world’s best polo players, Malbec wine, salsa dancers and beef.
You cannot live by normal rules if you travel to Buenos Aires, because the city simply won’t let you.
From the availability of buying the Argentine peso at a rate that is not less than half of what you would get buying it on the street, to the ability to eat at a reasonable hour – Buenos Aires asks you to take a risk, and that’s what the 400 entrepreneurs who graced an EO conference at Alvear Palace do every single day.
#24yrold downloaded two television series for me. The first was Revenge, and I was so absorbed by it that I couldn't go out for an entire weekend, preferring to watch show after show with my dog by my side.
Then came Suits and I was mesmerized. You see, Harvey Spector and Mike Ross, are the lead characters and my own relationship with my number two in Atlanta is incredibly similar. It's really like looking in the mirror or watching a video of ones' self and seeing so many similarities that you actually learn a bit more about your #2 through a better understanding of the characters.