4 Key Decisions I made that Drove My Business Forward
Below are 4 key decisions that had direct impact on where I am at now with my business. And I am so far from where I was at 6 months ago.
I took a risk with each of these decisions, yet all of these risks only pushed me and my business forward, and in the last 6 months, I've taken on more projects than I have had all year.
I. Free work
Majority of my teenage and adult life while I was studying, I was told – do not ever work for free. That has stuck with me since then and I do abide to that rule. However! When you get to collaborate with some talented people, and in exchange they let you promote your business with their face – is it that much of a bad deal? So I did. I started contacting people and replying to message to those who offered their image, location, skills – and in exchange, I gave them my footage and photos. Test shoots and portfolio shoots were best thing I could have done for my business. Taster sessions, sampling, physical demos – anything that fits your business, that gives your clients a little taste of what you and your business are about. These are fantastic ways of researching your market, finding out more about your clients and having the opportunity to approach them directly and demonstrate your skill there and then.
2. Cutting my Income
I did have a full time job in an office, working for an aesthetics company as Marketing and Social Media Officer – however the job ended up costing me more time and money than it let me gain, and I wasn’t really happy about how things were going. I realised that an office job isn’t for me and it was slowly making me more and more miserable. However, I felt stuck because the pay was good and finally, I could bounce back from my financial hole.
That’s not what happened. The company expected miracles and expected them for cheap. So cheap, that they’ve run out of money. So they fired me. I panicked and called my mum. What do I do? No job? On my own? Just rented a new flat (barely), just about refurbished it (a bit) and put in furniture (just about) and now I potentially have two months of no income!? I was horrified.
Then I got a phone call. ‘Hi, Magdalena, we are looking for a videographer…. Would you be interested?’ and then it hit me.
‘Of course’. Of course, it is a good thing that I got fired from that horrible job I didn’t want to be in, in the first place. It is not a failure, it’s not a moment to panic. It was an opportunity.
I got myself a part time job, where I now work 3 – 4 days a week, half a day each shift. This keeps me afloat in quiet months. The rest of my time, I have dedicated to Mag’s Media and each day I have not been at my part time job – I’ve made sure I do something productive towards my business to not me in the same place I was yesterday.
No, not in stock shares or currencies. Investing in my own businesses, as I go along – mainly to do with equipment. When I first started doing videography work I didn’t have much equipment at all, apart from your basic DSLR set up with a tripod. It did however allow me to start making some money creating videos and photography for schools, universities and third sector organisations. Once I started making ANY money, I’ve created a list of the next equipment I needed to get and gradually started getting it. Now, even though there is always something on the wish list, I now have equipment that let me take my videos and my work further, beyond private clients and third sectors...
4. Carefully selecting people I want to be around
I’m a huge believer of how much positive and negative energy around us affects our daily lives. The reason why is because I have lived it and I’ve seen how surrounding yourself with different people has an affect on your own life and decisions. If someone is not there to 100% support you then why should you have them in your life? I’ve decided to only surround myself with people who spread positive energy, who are happy and supportive – and of course, they can expect the same back. This is both in professional and personal environment. Since I’ve made that decision and have been surrounding myself with supporting, loving and equally as talented people – I’ve seen myself grow and develop and the business is thriving. Your environment influences your productivity levels, motivation and overall well-being so do have a think about who you might want to spend more time with!