What if You’re Not Ready to “Out” Your Business Yet?

January 17, 2013

In a recent coaching session I was talking with a client who is in the “pre-launch” stage.

Meaning she’s laying the foundation for her business by, solidifying her niche, her message, setting up her website, blog and social media profiles.

She’s been working furiously on setting up the back end of her business before she goes into the “launch” stage.

In our session I was asking her about her progress and what more support she needs before she launches.

Of course she mentioned needing some support with techie issues with regard to setting up her business online but then she paused. She said she still wasn’t ready to “out” herself.

She explained that no one knew about the business she was working on at night and weekends. She had confided in only a few people and was not quite ready to announce herself.

It would seem counter intuitive to do all the business building leg work and not tell anyone, but it’s different for Employed Solo Entrepreneurs—it’s necessary to protect yourself and grow behind the scenes for a period of time.

But there comes a time in a business that you can’t hide behind learning, building and creating and no matter what stage you’re in you need to just go for it.

What happens if you’re not ready? What can you do so that you can start telling people and protect yourself at the same time?

Here are a few tips:

1. Start with those you know will be supportive

It’s easier on the ego when you have a fan base who is supportive of what you’re doing. Tell friends and family members who you know will give you praise and kudos. If you’re concerned about them keeping the news quiet then let them know that you’re in the beginning stages of growth and you aren’t ready for everyone to know yet.

2. Know where you can promote your business

One question I get over and over from my clients is “How do I promote my business using Social Media when I don’t want anyone to know yet?” and here’s my answer–take it slow.  When I first started out I used Twitter all the time. I was able to create a great following and grow my business, it felt safe to me and in the very beginning I didn’t even use my name.

3. Hang out with other entrepreneurs-either budding or established

There’s a wonderful book called “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill and in it he writes that a key to success is to surround yourself with like minded people and to Mastermind with them. I fully support this notion and know for fact that this works. It’s happened in my own business and I know it can in yours too. Where can you go to hang out with others who are doing what you’re doing?

4. Put a toe in the water

Make a decision to take one small “risky” step each week. You need to adjust to being an Entrepreneur. Yes it’s scary and it all feels vulnerable but what is the alternative? It will get easier and the more little risks you make the more comfortable you’ll become taking on the bigger ones–like quitting your job, raising your fees, hiring help and so on.

What would you recommend to this client to help her ease into her business launch and “exposing” herself to the world?

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Jeannie Spiro: Business Coach & Strategist

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I’m Jeannie Spiro, business coach and strategist for woman coaches and service-providers. Want to make more money in your business? Here’s how I can help.

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