Thursday, September 20, 2012

Becoming My Own Boss

Before starting my own business, I worked at a media agency.  In the corporate world, I had bosses "above" me in the org chart and associates working "under" me.  I was a part of a team, for better or worse.

My director brought in new clients and steered the strategic direction of our group.  My direct boss managed client relations and higher-level projects and processes.  My associates produced media plans and reports.  I supervised the media planning process, communicated with strategy teams, and conducted negotiations.

I'm making our job descriptions fairly simplistic... but please stick with me.


Now that I run my own business, I'm in charge of all of that.  I have to bring in new clients and assignments, steer the strategic direction of my business, manage client relations and higher-level projects, supervise the whole research-interview-write-revise process, communicate with sources and other businesses, negotiate and set my fees... oh, and actually do the work.

I have to (get to!) write and edit and consult... because after all, that's the heart of why I'm doing this.

I'm not complaining though.  Becoming my own boss has benefits that contributed to my decision to take this leap.  I can set my own schedule, choose my own projects, work on what makes me inspired and happy, meet new people, learn about topics that interest me, help others become more confident writers.

But all that freedom can be overwhelming.  I have to deal with the uncertainty that comes with being the only person driving my business.  Any growth or movement is up to me.  I have to make decisions and trust that they will lead me in the right direction.

I don't have everything figured out, but I'm learning as I go, trying new things, and discovering all the amazing possibilities.

For those of you who run your own business, how do you deal with the responsibility of being the sole person in charge?  For those who work for a company, how do you balance working as a team and growing as an individual?

18 comments:

  1. Having set up my own website recently alongside a full time day job, I have to say that one of the big keys to making sure I grow personally and get things done is dedicating specific time for it. i.e. blocking the time out in my calender to do things just for me/my learning time and sticking to it.

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  2. Thanks for your tip, Tina! I'm still figuring out the best schedule for me now that I work from home. Having that freedom and flexibility is great, but you're right - you have to determine the best way to use your time!

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