Alright, I'm going to let you in on a little secret… There’s no secret to success! GASP! I know, I know, all those blogs and other biz owners telling you do this and do that for a six figure business in 6 months are full of it. With all that said, I'm a believer that you can stack the deck in your favor so I’m sharing what I personally think are a few traits and attributes that I like to call my secret sauce when it comes to success based off my own personal experience.
I truly believe the foundation of your success is based off the passion you have for that business. I know that sounds cliché but you’d be surprised how the passion behind your business helps pull you through all the ups and downs of being a business owner. What is going to make you jump out of bed in the morning? What is going to keep you on track when you just aren’t feeling it? Your passion!
This isn’t a fad you chase. This is something deep down inside you that you are completely and utterly obsessed with. Something you’re an expert in. It is a part of you. While you want to look for opportunities to fit a need in the market, this doesn’t mean you jump on the first opportunity you come across because it could make you money. Focusing on the money is the fastest way to fail in business.
In one of the informal incubators I was a part of in college and a few years after, there was someone that was starting a beverage company. The concept was extremely innovative and really a game changer but I always had a really hard time wrapping my head around that particular person starting and successfully growing that particular company because well.. It was a tea company. And that person didn’t even drink tea. Say whatttt?! This person saw a fad they wanted to jump on to make money. Not because they were an avid tea drinker and saw the benefits it has for those who drink tea necessarily. But because healthy drinks were becoming increasingly popular at the time and they wanted in on that... And that honestly showed. It’s not impossible for businesses like this to be wildly successful but they are very rare. And like I said before, you can stack the deck in your favor. So don’t chase that fad or that money. Develop your own opportunity out of something you are truly passionate about.
But don’t forget to learn along the way! My first two businesses were product based businesses in the fashion industry. My first company combined my love of shoes and painting and my second combined my love of accessories and finding a really awesome deal. While both of those companies focused a lot on combining my various passions, I quickly realized my true passion was helping other business owners build their brands through the various networking and brainstorm sessions I would go to and voilá... Bold & Pop fills that passion perfectly!
This may seem like a silly piece of the sauce but if you aren’t curious, you’re most likely not interested in trying or learning new things. And let me tell you.. Being a business owner has a seriously steep learning curve and because of this, it’s imperative that your curiosity leads you to learn as much as possible. You might not become an expert but having a good understanding of various topics you’ll need to know will be undeniably helpful.
While I went to a great business school and majored in marketing, I’ve also taught myself a lot of the skills I use everyday at Bold & Pop. Sure the background knowledge I have from college is helpful but nobody taught me how to actually run a company. Nobody taught me how to build a website or how to use social media to market a company. I taught myself both of those things which I have now made a career out of. Did the underlying principles I learned in college help? Of course! But how to actually do the work was all up to me and it’s taken a lot of research and practice on my own to get to where I am.
When we started Bold & Pop, I had only built websites for my previous 2 companies and I sure as heck wasn’t coding anything! But as I’ve developed and grown, I’ve become really interested in learning as much about coding as I possibly can to better assist our clients. I’ve done my own research (Google can be your best friend!) and have taken some simple online courses. I am by no means a developer but I have been able to continuously learn enough to really help customize our client’s websites to fit what they want.
Running a business is hard, y’all! Anyone that tells you otherwise is a big ol’ liar. And this is exactly why you need persistence. Think about it… What are you going to do at the first obstacle you encounter? Are you just going to give up or are you going to fight through it? What about the first, second, third, fourth, or fifteenth rejection you get? Because trust me, that will happen time and time again.
This is where that passion and your curiosity to learn how to do it better comes into play. You have to keep pushing through those hard times to get to the good. Running a business is just like life.. You have your ups and you have your downs. But just because you have one bad day, week, or month, doesn’t mean you should just close up shop. If Anna and I took all the rejection we’ve faced to heart, Bold & Pop probably would have only been a month long adventure.
Try to keep things in perspective. Look how far you’ve come and let your passion show you how far you can go. For every no, there is a yes out there. You just have to find them but that means continuously moving forward towards your goals and not giving up at the first sign of trouble. Persistence people.. it will serve you well!
So there you have it… My secret sauce to success! There are so many other skills, attributes, and circumstances that also contribute to success but when I really stop to think about it, these 3 are what it all boils down to.
What’s in your secret sauce? Share with us in the comments!