Yes, there’s a sweary in the image, Totally relevanty!!
When you are just starting out you often look for advice from peers, people you work with or family. And I say this with absolute honesty that when you do this, unless those peers have been in business for themselves for a while and are qualified to be dishing out advice, prepare yourself to hear some of the worst advice you will ever hear.
One of the common ones, and my personal favourite is “Never turn down work”
We hear this ALL the time
Now I can see it from both sides; you want work, you want a steady income and you don’t want to disappoint people. But you also need time to work ON your business, make connections and, first and foremost, NOT be strung out by over-committing yourself
So, one of the best skills you can learn is to say NO.
(I’m not saying you should be rude, or run away, or scream, burning bridges is never a good idea)
Saying No, or rather, not immediately saying Yes, is a good habit to get into. It gives you time to step away and figure out whether you want to work with them, if the project or workload is worthwhile, whether you have the time and resources to fulfil the tasks or even just to get some headspace from stressed out clients.
You will get roped into projects or problems because the person who’s problem it is, has projected that problem ON TO you and you want to help. But that’s when its especially important to step away and realise that it’s THEIR problem, not yours.
One of the best tricks I heard about was Robert Kiyosaki (the chap who wrote rich dad, poor dad) who used to tell customers he would need to consult his business partner.
Often even just making a quick phone-call to run through the details of the deal out loud, before deciding.
On the end of the phone would be his business partner, who was in fact, his cat.
But relaying the details out loud were enough to get the clarity on whether it was something he wanted to pursue.
If you don’t have a business partner, or a cat, or perhaps consulting a person isn’t relevant, then just consult your diary. Usually a quick glance at the busy diary is enough to get me back down to earth with a bump, regardless of how much I want to get involved!
On that note,
If it’s something that’s incredibly exciting it can be especially difficult to step away. It can also be a lot harder to leave the project once it begins
So that’s when its SUPER IMPORTANT to take a step away, have a look at the diary, see what time you could commit to it and make an informed decision.
“I’m too busy” IS a valid reason
Often you will hear people saying that being too busy is just an excuse but there is NOTHING WRONG with not wanting to over-commit. You will have existing commitments, projects, work and home life responsibilities. We are all busy people now.
If you find you have extra time when you can help that’s absolutely fine, but don’t be bullied into overstretching yourself.
Being upfront and not being involved is better than resenting the project and not enjoying it because you’ve been a stressed-out ball of anxiety just to bring it to fruition.
Walk away. Decent people will appreciate the honesty.
Anyone who doesn’t is probably someone you have had a lucky escape from.
If you want to find out if working with TMG is a good idea, why don’t we have a chat? You can email us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org