Lessons learned Log

I have just celebrated (with a curry, if you’re asking) the end of my second year of running my own business. After congratulating myself on successfully avoiding the inevitable LinkedIn plea for plaudits, I took to reflecting on the highs (many) and the lows (a few, but then again, too few to mention[i]) of my two years of independence.

So, for what it’s worth, here is a selection from my “Lessons learned” log. Take from it what you will; steal, adapt, ignore or hoot with derision. These are in no particular order and many may be completely wrong.

  1. Come to terms with the fact that no-one loves you during August and December. And try to enjoy the time off. Decorate. Write books. Rearrange your stationery. And don’t panic.
  2. Congratulate yourself on the fact that by far the best form of marketing/business development is to do a damn good job the first time. And the time after that. Etc. Ad lib to fade. . .
  3. Standing up in front of an audience for an average of three days a week is an excellent weight loss mechanism.
  4. A celebratory gin afterwards isn’t.
  5. Balancing current delivery with future work generation is a delicious tension that should never go away. If it does, you are doomed.
  6. Love all your clients more than all the others.
  7. Remember that the clients who read blogs are apparently the most intelligent and astute.
  8. Learn to love admin days. And get used to the fact that no-one is paying you for them.
  9. Get feedback, but remember – perception is not always reality![ii]
  10. If you work from home for more than a few days at a time, under no circumstances give in to the temptation of watching Bargain Hunt at lunchtime[iii]. It’s a slippery slope.
  11. Keep your saw sharpened (see previous blogs).
  12. Whether you have too much work, or not enough, take each week at a time and don’t panic.
  13. Don’t panic. It’s all going to be fine.
  14. No, really.

[i] Actually, that’s not strictly true. But I’m not going to.

[ii] Like all facilitators, I have had the feedback that an event was “too long”, “too short” and “about right”. From three people sitting next to each other. I mean, really. What am I supposed to do with that?

[iii] And under no circumstances start making bets with yourself as to whether the Blue team or the Red team will win. Therein lies madness.