Business owners have a lot of weight on their shoulders.
December 31, 2001 I quit my job. I had $1.24 in my personal bank account. I had no idea how I would be paying my bills in January. Rent. Car. Food. Whatever. Something inside of me had had enough. I could no longer work for the company I was with. I just threw my arms up and said screw it. A seasoned IT pro in the wrong place at the wrong time, I hit the streets. I went door to door. An amazing thing happened- I found networks to fix, websites to build, computers to repair, etc. All this stuff was right up my alley. Fast forward to 2012. House, wife, kids, a few cars. I had trashed my credit, fixed it, been sued, had my identity stolen, been robbed, you name it, it happened. But something else happened- I started to enjoy problems. It certainly wasn’t genetic, but I definitely have the entrepreneurial blood in my veins.
Turning problems into opportunities.
I am not sure if this can be taught or not, but in every problem I see opportunity. I have met my fair share of people who are just p’d off in general, or let the littlest thing ruin their day. Well, that is fine. It takes all types for the world to go ‘round. For example: I am not emotional, and it took me almost 40yrs to understand what emotions are, but I now try to appreciate everyone’s qualities, even if they are much different than my own. Not everyone can turn a problem into an opportunity, and not everyone will. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!
The back burner
Every business owner has 400 things that need to be done. In a day, they may accomplish 300 things, 200 of which were NEW things to do. Things fall to the side. A bill might not get paid, a phone call won’t get returned, they’ll forget things, etc. Some business owners are much more organized that I’ll ever be, but for me, I always felt this way. I placed certain priorities above others, and some things which really needed to get done simply never got done. I even put off my own Internet marketing on occasion.
Everyone depends on you as a business owner. Your family, your kids, your employees, your landlord, and your customers. Without customers you can have none of the above. In business, you’re not really the boss. At least I always felt like I had 300 bosses and I was always trying to please each one. You have to make decisions, fast, with no regrets. Many decisions will be the wrong one, but as long as you’re right most of the time, life is good.
When a business doesn’t make enough money, everyone suffers.
During the first several years growing my business I worked. A lot. I didn’t want the money, I wanted success. Customers would be served, and employees would be paid. They were my top priorities. I paid rent late. I had my electric shut off. I ran into hiccups. Employees and customers never knew this, and they didn’t need to. It was my responsibility. I had accepted the job from the customer, and it got done. I had hired these people, and they were going to get paid, no matter what. After years of struggling the business did really, really well. I owed everything to my Internet presence.
Is neglecting your Internet presence irresponsible?
I would never come out and say “Hey, your website sucks, no wonder your employees make $8/hr.” And, I do not blame business owners. So many have been screwed over by SEO companies, or been lead down the wrong path. But, the information is right here. I can’t help everyone, but if you dig through this blog a little there are enough how-to’s to get anyone started building their web presence. My little business that started with me walking down the street with a few screwdrivers in my hand resulted in a booming business with international customers. You really do owe it to your employees, your family, and your customers to give it your best shot. That’s just part of being in business.
You can’t help those who won’t help themselves.
I currently live in a small town, and even with stories like this, there are plenty of business owners I know that refuse to even set up a website for their business. Those same people are just scraping by like I once was. As an experiment, I offered some of them a free website, which they declined. One of them won’t even set up their FREE Google My Business listing. Why?
Can the Internet really help a small business?
If you are STILL in denial, I have a case study here for you to look at called the value of ranking in Google search. Please read it. I can not help every business but am open to basic consulting and even offer tips to those who reach out and email me.