Friday, February 1, 2008

How's It Going?

People keep asking me this about my business.

I know everyone means well, so I can't resent the question, but on the other hand, I feel like people don't understand, either. I'm selling a service, not a product, and a rather uniquely intangible one at that.

It's a lot like selling real estate as an agent. You put in hours and weeks of work and then you get a fat commission, maybe weeks or months after you started the process. You don't go out, make a sale, and see the money 3 - 7 days later.

I'll work my butt off marketing in the next 4 weeks, but I may not see any money until March or April.

Also, I didn't strike out on my own - I bought into a franchise, which meant that I had to spend loads of time learning how to do things their way. I'm still learning.

In January alone I spent a full week in training at corporate headquarters and another 4 days at conference. All time that I was not even trying to get January was pretty much a wash.

Lots of money out the door for travel and supplies, and absloutely NOTHING coming in, but...such is the nature of start-ups. After conference (last week) I am really excited about the company and where it's headed. We talked about goals for the next year, initiatives and our 5 year plan for growth. I really feel like I got in on a good thing at a great time!

I am very excited and happy.

A surprising thing for me is how many people close to me that I thought would be happy for me and supportive are not. I was unprepared for the negativity and naysaying of people I consider friends and acquaintances I admire and respect. I have gotten more support and well-wishes from strangers and online friends than from people I see every day.

Perhaps it was naive to expect that everyone would cheer me on.

Neutrality doesn't bother me so much, but a lot of people seem to think I have taken a foolish risk and I have thrown my money away. They have all but told me that I will fail. That has been disheartening, but not discouraging. All the more reason for me to succeed and prove them wrong!

So...that's how it's going.

Thanks for asking, I know it's because you care, but I haven't much to report right now. Believe me! I will post enthusuastically when I get my first clients and make my first commission. And to all of my friends in the blogosphere - thank you so much for your support! I have needed it to counteract the negativity I continue to encounter in the real world!

I have been terrible about not returning e-mails, but I have read every one and I than you all for keeping in touch with me while I was away.


S0uthernGirl said...

Yay! I'm happy to see you and to hear that you're still excited about your business. You'll need the positive attitude and stick-to-it-ness to counteract the negativity that people throw at you and to put in all the hard work that is needed to make a business successful. The funny thing is, those same people who are saying that you can't make it work will probably be the first ones in your face, with their hands out, when you're doing a raging success.

blackrussian said...

Thanks, Girl!

Anonymous said...

I still don't understand why some people speak so quickly before thinking... You made the right choice and success just isn't a doubt in my mind. Sometimes when friends make negative comments, they do it because they are scared. Scared that you will change and forget about them. What they don't know is their negativity could be the very thing that runs you away.

Keep up the positivity and I'm rooting for you! Can't wait to hear you say you have your first client.

Glad to hear you're doing well too.

NappTown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
NappTown said...

Keep your head up and keep striving towards your goal. :-) You have the right attitude to succeed so I am sure that you will
God Bless

Renea said...

You, my visionary blog-friend have been tagged. Check my page for the rules.

n'Drea said...

Girl, don't you know you need to be careful about the folks with whom you share your dream? Some will try to abort it before it comes to fruition. Surround yourself only with those who will pull you up and help you and your vision to soar. Critics will always be around. Just keep them far from you. I'm happy for you.

Ebony said...

Some people will stomp on your dreams because they are not bold enough to reach for their own. I admire your courage.

Renea got to you first, but I tagged you too :)

blackrussian said...

Thanks, Napptown, I appreciate the love.

Aargh! Renea! Don't you know I have enough to do!!!
I'm not really mad at ya, but dang, girl, it might be a little while....

You know, 'Drea, I've been so excited and happy, I couldn't help but talk about it. I wasn't THIS happy when my SO asked me to marry him (THAT should have told me something, eh?)

It really didn't occur to me that everyone wouldn't share my enthusiasm. Like you've noticed, I'm a pretty optimistic person, and I'm always happy about the success or anticipated success of others.

Thanks Ebony...I think Locsuluv tagged me too! ... When I do get around to it, one post is going to have to do for all!