5 Things That Will Make You A Better Businesswoman




At the start of this year my boss agreed to let me cut down to 2 days a week in the office, shifting my previously full-time career to a part-time job and freeing up more days of the week for me to focus on blogging. What was once a hobby that filled my evenings and weekends transitioned into the largest portion of my working life, and concerns about workflow and income suddenly became ever the more apparent. On the other hand, however, I realised how much freer I felt. Even though I’ve not yet taken the plunge into full-time blogging, a lot of work has gone into even getting to this point, so I thought it might be helpful to share five things that have made me a better businesswoman over the past year and hopefully, if you’re in the same boat as me or even heading in the same direction, it might be helpful!


1. Networking 


It’s easy to forget when when you’re self employed just how important it is to network. When you’re confined to your bedroom desk or the corner of your local hipster café, it’s simple to become absorbed in your own deadlines and editing and admin and to forget that you’re a part of a much larger industry. Blogging isn’t just made up of bloggers - it’s made up of marketing companies, PR reps, photographers, graphic designers, freelance journalists and every other thread of this tangled web we weave. I used to see bloggers heading into the country’s capital for “meetings” more than I saw my own family, and I could not for the life of me understand what they were meeting about. The irony of that is that I would then head into the office the next morning and straight back out to a meeting with a potential client. Now I find myself heading into London at least once a week, meeting new people and building new relationships every time. Whilst a facet of this is to of course try and stimulate new collaborations, a lot of it is just being an active part of the blogging industry and networking with other’s within it. A good coffee or two a day can’t hurt either, can it?

 

2. Confidence with money 


When I first started to charge for blog posts and social posts, I was useless with negotiations. I was terrified of overcharging and as such, ended up undercharging for a ~ really ~ long time. Now I’m well versed with the typical email exchanges: “Could you do a package for ‘x’ amount?” “I’m sorry, the lowest I could go is ‘x’” “Okay, would you also be able to include ‘x’?” “Yes, I can do this, this and this.” Finally feeling confident enough to not only negotiate fees but to also state that this is what my work is worth and I won’t do anything for less has allowed me focus more on the work I want to do, rather than the work I feel like I have to do. If knowing what to charge is a blogger bugbear that’s bothering you, then the best thing I can recommend is to confide in other bloggers and share together. Being able to discuss it with other people in a similar position to me has always been extremely helpful, but just make sure you are friends first - there’s nothing worse than a stranger asking you about your income!






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Jumper - Stradivarius (sold out - ASOS alternative here)
Skirt - Stradivarius
Bag - Sandro Paris*

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3. A Mentor 


Without really knowing it, my boss has been an incredible mentor to me. She started her own business from her dining room table and has now built the company up to an office and a team of four, all from her own hard-work, gumption and ambition. She’s the kind of person to say yes to anything and is always willing to take a risk and ask for more and go that one step further, all of which inspire me to do the same. Whether your mentor is your Mum, your boss or Julie down the road, it’s always good to be able to pick someone’s brains when it comes to running your own business, even if you’re not in the same industry. Oh, and if you know an accountant, hold on to them dearly because they may just become a resourceful pot of gold.

4. Fear 


Positive, right? It may sound morbid, but the fear of failure continues to be a motivator for me. Say I have a good month - well, that’s bloody great, but what happens if that slows down and it doesn’t happen again and oh my god will I be able to pay my phone bill and WHAT DO YOU MEAN MY CARD HAS BEEN DECLINED FOR THIS COFFEE? I never want to go backwards, I only want to progress. The fear of not being financially secure, and actually, the fear of not being fulfilled in my career always spur me on to keep going, to branch out, to push harder. Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy a lay in and a lazy day, but I never become complacent. It can always be better, so embrace the fear and harness it to make yourself better.

5. Time 


Time has been my greatest teacher (philosophical, huh?). Becoming a better businesswoman is something that naturally comes from time and experience, in the same way that blog and social growth most often come from time and experience too. As the months have gone by I’ve been able to learn what content I love creating the most and what performs the best, along with what actually makes me feel good about my work. On the flip side, I’ve also been able to experience some lows and well as highs. I’ve had exciting projects given to other bloggers at the last minute, quiet periods of no work and times where I’ve felt really unsettled and unfocused with what I’m doing. In an industry where there aren’t many set guidelines or concrete routes for us to take, we’re all inevitably learning as we go along, but if you’re feeling that you aren’t in the place you want to be then do keep going, but also give yourself time. If you work hard, it will come.







16 comments

  1. I love the sweater! It looks so comfortable. X
    http://www.thoughtsinstyle.com/

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  2. Really amazing post - loved reading this Chloe!
    I totally agree and think it's really important to have someone who will spur you on, make you think in different ways and generally inspire you! I've got mine from a couple of places I've worked and they have been so invaluable.
    x

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  3. Love, love, loved reading this. Totally agree on your tips. Though, networking doesn't come easy to me. I'm always to anxious and shy to step out of my comfort zone and meet with potential clients. Definitely need to work on that in the future, though.

    Love, Kerstin
    http://www.missgetaway.com/

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  4. This post is really helpful! I really agree with the importance of having a mentor - it's so handy having someone who's been there before to give you advice and a bit of inspiration.

    Love the way you've styled the jumper as well

    Julia x
    juliarachelday.co.uk

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  5. I totally admire you, saw your progression over the years and will be there for many more ups to come. Well done, you can be proud.

    On a fashion note, I don't really enjoy red, I like and wear every colour, my closet is full of it but red, nah, I only own 4 pieces. Sometimes, a piece looks better in red and I'll go for it but I think red looks better on blondes (I'm ombre brunette), and I happen to love that red sweater, especially how you styled it here with beige and not black (y). I loooove how you challenge yourself those days, your fashion game is on point and you're still doing "you".
    xxxx

    http://i-think-its-today.blogspot.com/

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  6. Networking is so important, whether it is for blogging, business or life in general, you never know when the skills of someone you have met are going to come in handy. I really like the jumper in this post too, such a great colour! xx
    www.misszarabelle.com

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  7. Really enjoyed reading this - very informative and inspiring! I find networking the hardest thing to do, although I'm trying to meet new people within the industry, since there are no concrete paths to follow as you said, it makes it all a little tricky. Thanks for sharing! x

    Summer, www.thetwinswardrobe.com

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  8. Love this, not quite brave enough to go for bright red but looks great on you!

    Kirsty x | kirstyeelizabeth.com

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  9. Okay first, this look is killer. Second, this is a truly wonderful read. Number five is the one that really gets me most of the time. Everything, including growing as a blogger and a businesswoman takes time, and it's annoying sometimes, but important to remember.

    Amber - amberelb.com

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  10. Red and beige are so good together ! Love the outfit !

    Sara,
    www.thecrimeofashion.com

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  11. You're such an inspiration and are doing so incredibly well! Definitely want to take these tips on board. Life has been so hectic lately but I'm determined to work harder on my blog to forge my own little business and mini career alongside my main job goals. xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

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  12. Congrats on going part time! That;s amazing! I'm toying with the idea of working towards doing the same eventually so this post was a really interesting read for me. Number 2 is what I'm struggling with now so it was nice to read I'm not the only one haha.

    Love the outfit too, the colours and textures are gorgeous together!
    Sinéad ♥ Fabuleuse Du Jour

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  13. Confidence with money is such a key point!! Loved this blog post! xxx

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  14. Thank you for this gal. So amazing that you have managed to drop down to two days per week at work - must make the world of difference! I have just started to actively network and arrange coffees to network, it is so essential! Your outfit is so babin' Immy x

    www.immymay.com

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  15. love the red with the camel! and thank you for inspiring me to want to work harder! It's often hard to work from home and keep motivated!

    Laura | roseandweston.blogspot.co.uk

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  16. I always have this fear of undercharging or overcharging! Thanks for sharing love
    xx

    ReplyDelete

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