When you decide to fully immerse yourself into the world of entrepreneurship and just being your boss, doing your own thing, you lose a lot of friends along the way, particularly those who just aren’t in tune with the life you choose. It’s not all doom and gloom however because as much as you lose a lot of friends, you gain quite a few as well.
Those friends that you do gain are mostly like-minded individuals and so I’d argue that they add a lot more value to your life than those of your friends you lost along the way. The funny thing is those who just didn’t understand your chosen path of entrepreneurship all of a sudden want to “come back” and be part of your life once it starts showing that you’ve “made it” somewhat, often through events such as your interest in travelling suddenly turning into the reality of going away a few times in a year. By then the game has changed so much that you really don’t need to be mentoring or “carrying” anyone along the entrepreneurship path and so you simply cannot relate to your old buddies anymore, for the most part.
So anyway, something I personally noticed with pretty much all of my new friends is that at some or another point in each of our entrepreneurial journeys, we sought to make the leap from merely being self-employed to being true entrepreneurs; we sought to be the rainmakers who go out and make the deals happen, bringing in the business for others in our employ to do the actual work. Before you can get to that stage, however, you have to make a transition through being the one who does the actual work, even if only for a little while, just so that you know exactly what it takes to get things done and what challenges each of your workers would be facing when doing their jobs.
One thing that came to the fore in each of our journeys to build our businesses was to focus on the branding and design along with asking the question of just how one goes about truly professionalising the product or service we offer, you know, adding that truly professional feel to it.
The answer though differs in its application because each sector has its own standards and although one naturally wants to maintain something unique about their specific offering to set themselves apart from the competition, certain standards of quality and professionalism still need to be adhered to. To the talented cameraman who wants to take their graphic design agency to the next level for instance, they start to notice that only the best equipment will do in many instances, such as their insistence on using Canon lenses on all their camera equipment.
The same applies to one of my web designer friends who made a sweeping change to implement the adoption of the use of Bootstrap across all web development that was to take place in his web design agency. Often it just takes the identification of that one standard to add that illusive professional feel to your product or service offering.