At a networking event yesterday I was faced with the question ‘Can I do it alone? Do I want to do it alone?’
This question came from a respected source. This guy is successful. I call him an entrepreneurial ‘surfer’ as he rides on each new wave of whatever is looking to be big. He’s a true entrepreneur, slightly detached from any of his businesses, with the ability to spot an opportunity and use his business skills to pick it up and run with it regardless of previous knowledge.
I find the business world full of fascinating, inspiring, creative people with such a flair and passion for life and success.
But back to the question “Can I” and “Do I want to do it alone?” I’ve always assumed that I would do it alone. I’m one of those people who built a business based on passion+expertise. I was passionate about creative thinking and trained myself up so I could deliver the type of services needed. It was natural for me to dive in on my own. I was also surrounded by other people who were doing it alone- so why not?
But you know- now the question’s been posed I’m thinking- wouldn’t it be great to share my ideas and enthusiasm with someone who would get equally excited? My own ‘Sparkler’ ( I mention Sparklers in my book). Or how about someone who had more of a ‘commercial brain’ and could see the potential of my ideas and just help me put them out into the world in the right form at the right price. That would be most welcome.
I’m a bit of an ideas person. This is both an asset and a liability. I make some of them happen but leave some of them on the shelf. Which ones remain on the shelf is not down to any robust business evaluation process, but just down to what’s going on generally at the time and how people might first react to the idea. If people are not as positive I would like, I withdraw and shelve it. The ‘sensitive creator’ in me gets hurt which is so not good business sense!
I think sometimes we have to open up about our limitations this is certainly one of mine. There is stuff I would love to do living only in my notebooks and my imagination.
The other thing to consider is the effort any idea needs to take to market and the impact of that on your everyday ‘proven’ work. New ideas need a lot of love and nurturing. They need time to get used to being out in the open, to acclimatise, to adapt to the new environment. I have many gorgeous bulbs waiting to be planted and flower. I don’t know which ones people will like but I love them all equally.
Can I do it alone? Honestly the answer has to be no. I’m good at seeing opportunities, creating solutions and delivering but the bits in between I could do some help with. I would love someone to hop on board and say “Yes let’s do that one now as there’s a definite market need and then we’ll launch that one as it’s a natural fit…” I’d also like someone to say “Not sure about that one- let’s leave that on the shelf for now”.
How this might work I don’t know- but maybe I can leave the how to someone else too! I like to believe in a bit of magic, so if you’re out there and you get what I do, I’m here waiting for your call.