After spending the last year working towards the goal of prepping, launching & building a business, I've learned a lot about what it means to be a business owner, fundraiser, importer, marketer, designer & more, so I wanted to find a way to share with others the tools, tricks & lessons I've learned to help others start something no matter a person's experience level. To start, I want to debunk any myths related to the skills I had previous to launching the business because honestly...I was just in the right place at the right time and decided to make a change.
All great successes, regardless of what they are, happen in one place: at the intersection of timing, opportunity & choice, and the only thing we have control over is choice. Whether I was crazy or just had a lot of self-confidence, I convinced Meg that the best choice was to say "yes," and the rest is history.
I want to kick this blog off by admitting how unqualified I was for starting this business, but due to faith, persistence & focus, I've been blessed to be on the right track to building a fully sustainable business.
The 10 Truths
1. I designed our logo using Powerpoint (and still use it to do some design work)
2. I didn't know coffee was the seed of a "fruit" or cherry until last October
3. I studied Entrepreneurship in college, but my real business education occurred virtually...by Googling
4. I've never sold anything before except ballroom dancing lessons, so...I've never sold anything
5. I didn't know how to do ANYTHING marketing related: utilize social media, create content marketing, build e-mail marketing campaigns, send press releases, etc.
6. I never used any business software (CRM, Accounting, etc.) and still organize all contacts, finance, etc. using Google Docs
7. I never roasted coffee or knew what "single-origin" or "blended" coffee was
8. I had zero experience doing design work, and my original designs are relatively atrocious. I still don't own Photoshop but use the free software Canva and Powerpoint to do all design.
9. I've never imported anything before or worked with the FDA, and learned everything I know from Googling and cold calling people
10. I had no clue how difficult it was to actually start a business
Starting a business is just like running for the first time in months. You huff, puff & awkwardly run along, but you know that every day after that first day will get easier. Confidence is a result of persistence, repetition & focus, and no matter the task, from running to starting a business, this feeling of confidence will come over time.
To say that I've had a fair amount of late nights and stressful days would be an understatement, but because of these I've seen what I'm capable of. I'm beyond excited to share tips, tricks & lessons learned over the last year to hopefully encourage and inspire those interested in starting something from scratch to do just that.
Just like running for the first time, it all starts with the first step, so why not take that first step today? Buy your domain, begin building your website or start designing your logo, and I can promise that each step after that will get easier with time.