With the year coming to an end and this effectively the last work day of 2016, it seems right to share some of the lessons. I have been growing the business steadily since starting in 2012, but I think the mass appeal on this side of the world is just commencing. Our enquiry rate has definitely increased and the projects we win also. It is no longer just the great forward thinking brands that are talking about gamification in some way and implementing projects.
Rapid growth brings with it new challenges, from workload to financial as well as finding suppliers that can deliver in your time frame, at your work rate and to the quality you want. The lessons have been coming thick and fast, some were absorbed gracefully and others a bit less so.
Lesson 1 – always keep a close relationship with your existing clients even when suppliers are not delivering to the standard you want and give you excuses as to why something has or has not been done.
Lesson 2 – growth takes money and hence pricing will have to grow with the company, which will price us out of the market for some work, but also free up cash for expansion and development
Lesson 3 – always agree the fine print first, any time I have not done this, it has resulted in broken promises and botched projects
Lesson 4 – as a female business owner bringing in a male employee and taking them to meetings results in you not being seen by some clients nor heard in full. Not joking when I wrote about ignore the female owner tax as an additional fee before.
Lesson 5 – protect the brand and standards you have created, even if in the short term it means burning the midnight oil and demand your team to rise to this level
Lesson 6 – sometimes changing the business model to suit what you want to create takes tough decisions, cutting out parts that you may have included, change of mentors and suppliers etc.
Lesson 7 – take time out from the business for the important stuff like friends and family, exploring new areas, reading, and other fun things
I am sure there has been plenty more, but the big hit lessons are these. It is gamification that get’s me through some of the learning pains like the analogy of having only lost a life in the game, not the whole game for example. Cost of learning as a cost in points.
In all 2016 has been a great year in business and growth is good!
Wishing you a fabulous 2017 and a great New Year Celebration!