Business Tips

MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight: Queenie Johnson

Happy Monday, future moguls! I hope you enjoyed your long weekend and were able to take some time away from working to relax and have fun with family and friends.

I’m happy to be back with another Mogul in the Making Entrepreneur Spotlight, featuring Queenie Johnson, M.A., founder of SheRises.org, a premier brand academy for enterpRISING women who are ready to up their game, step into their next level of success and achieve those seemingly impossible goals in life and business.

Queenie is such an inspirational woman of God!  Although I have yet to meet her in person, from our online encounters I can tell she has a genuine desire and passion for helping others succeed. Not only does she teach women how to uplevel their lives and businesses, she also runs a company called Distinguished Learning Group, an education company that offers academic tutoring,workshops, and a summer day camp for kids ages 7-12.

Check out her story…

Queenie Johnson Founder SheRises.Org

Name: Mrs. Queenie Johnson, M.A.

Location: Los Angeles, California

Business Name: SheRises.org – Brand Academy & School of Success

Years in Business: 3

 

Are you a full or part time business owner?

Full Time

Why did you start your business?

I started SheRISES.org because I wanted to create a place modern business owners could expand their Business, Brand & Brilliance
using biblical principles.

SheRises.org Logo

What has been the most rewarding aspect of having your own business?

I enjoy seeing clients get results, but more importantly I love seeing the impact that they have on others as a result of the work we’ve done together.

What are your biggest challenges?

When I first started it was learning how to blend all of my ideas, clarify my vision, but once I nailed that down I’ve been able to attract my clients and establish my brand perspective.

What is the best business advice you’ve ever received?

Focus on doing one to two things at a time, not five to seven. Your business deserves top notch focus.  When you’re doing too much, attempting to release all of your visions at once, you’ll end up splitting your energy, resources and brand presence. Get clear and stay focused. I know that this is easier said than done, but it’s the best advice that I can give.

Do you have a team or are you a one man/woman show?

I run SheRISES alone, but I do outsource a lot of my work.

Where do you see your biz in the next 5 years?

I can’t wait to see where God takes SheRISES.org.

What advice would you give to other Moguls in the Making?

Focus on your profit plan, marketing plan and client creation plan. Everything else is a waste of time. Period.

For more information on Queenie Johnson and the SheRises School of Success, check them out online at:

Instagram: @mrsqueeniejohnson

Facebook: SheRises School of Success

Twitter: @SheRisesSchool

If you would like to be featured in the MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight, please email your request to info@nikolaahaiwe.com

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

 

MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight: Zon D’Amour

Happy Monday, future moguls!

I’m so excited to share our latest entrepreneur spotlight!  This week, I had the pleasure of interviewing Zon D’Amour (isn’t that the coolest name you’ve ever heard?!), founder/editor-in-chief of AimerAmour Magazine, an online resource site for young professionals interested in the business aspects of the entertainment industry.

Two years ago, Zon made a BOLD decision to move across the country, from Washington, D.C. to Los Angeles, to pursue her dreams and open herself up to more opportunities.  It is that fearlessness and drive that has allowed her to score interviews with some pretty big name movers-and-shakers, entrepreneurs, and celebrities.

In this interview, she shares some great tips on the importance of networking and building genuine relationships, and explains why you should hone your craft and get plenty of experience before starting a business.

Check out her story…

Zon D'Amour, Founder AimerAmour Magazine

Name: Zon D’Amour

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Business Name: AimerAmour Magazine

Years in Business: 5

 

Are you a full or part time business owner?

Part Time. I also freelance in tv production. Aimer Amour Magazine Logo

Why did you start your business?

AimerAmour Magazine is an online publication with an emphasis on the business aspects of the entertainment industry. I’ve coined the site VIBE plus Black Enterprise. I created AimerAmour because I saw a void for this particular type of content in the media. The magazine is a resource site for young professionals. I interview artists, actors, executives and industry tastemakers who discuss their trials, errors and successes in the entertainment industry.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of having your own business?

There are so many rewarding aspects of having my own business. AimerAmour has allowed me to make some amazing work relationships and friendships through interviews and collaborating with other businesses for events. I majored in Film at Howard University and my ultimate goal is to direct (music videos, commercials & television) so I film my interviews whenever there’s an opportunity for an in-person meeting. I get the chance to practice my production and editing skills through the magazine. It’s also helped me to learn a lot about digital media. If I didn’t have the magazine, I wouldn’t have the same interest in computer coding and design.  It’s rewarding that my business motivates me to keep learning new things so that I can remain on the cutting edge of media and technology.

What are your biggest challenges?

In 2013 I relocated to Los Angeles from Washington, DC. Creating new relationships and securing new content has definitely been a challenge. As I begin my second year in LA, more opportunities are beginning to present themselves. It’s a daily challenge to believe that I should keep going but every new opportunity reminds me that I should continue to follow my dreams. Zon D'Amour, Founder AimerAmour Magazine

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

“…Never focus on knowing the right people; Focus on being the right person to know…” And “People interact with who they came up with; their peers, not the mentees or the people trying to get on.” Both quotes are by Charli Penn, Relationships Editor for ESSENCE.com I recently interviewed her for my magazine  and her advice has really changed my perspective. Instead of focusing on securing an interview with a major celebrity, I’m interested in finding phenomenal up and coming artists, featuring them on AimerAmour and growing with their brand. I never underestimate what others are doing because consistency in whatever you do will eventually yield success.

Do you have a team or are you a one man/woman show?

I’m a one woman show!  I would love to have a part time intern. (And yes, I’m accepting applications!) I hope to eventually have a publicist and someone to assist with branding and marketing. I’m a true believer that GOD will place the right people in my path at the right time. Until that day comes, I will continue to wear every hat and increase my brand’s awareness through networking and consistently publishing intriguing and sharable content.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?

Great question! I honestly haven’t thought that far in advance because GOD usually rearranges my plans and my timelines! However, I would like to create and host an international travel show where I’m covering entertainment and entrepreneurship initially on Afro-Caribbean islands then going even further abroad.

What advice would you give to other Moguls in the Making?

I would advise any aspiring Moguls in the Making to intern in their field before they venture out and start their own business. Regardless of what you want to do, you should definitely intern with someone to learn how an effective and successful business should operate on a daily basis. That will make your life so much easier in the long run. A lot of people have great ideas but haven’t thought about the day to day necessities to keep a company afloat. When you’re an entrepreneur that works from home, it’s so easy to fall behind on your work. But the point of reference from interning will reiterate the need for organization, structure and strict deadlines. When I was at Howard University, so many of my peers didn’t want to take unpaid internships but you have to! How else will you learn? Google can only teach you so much. Having mentors, being on sets and being in offices, whether you’re getting paid or not, is invaluable. My background is in tv/film production not in journalism. In hindsight, I would have done collegiate internships for the publications I admire. Also, humble yourself and work for smaller, lesser known companies whether it’s a small publication, production company, etc. The smaller the company, the more opportunities and responsibilities you’ll have more immediately. Many people want big name companies on their resume and there’s nothing wrong with that but the larger the corporation, the more competitive it will be and there will be little room for error. In a large corporation there will be a hierarchy and  fewer opportunities to give your input because you’re the low man on the totem pole. In a smaller company you can wear more hats, have more responsibility as well as contribute your ideas and creativity. Don’t underestimate smaller companies because that may be the perfect outlet for you to establish yourself.

For more information on AimerAmour Magazine, connect with them online:

Website: http://www.aimeramour.com and http://www.zondamour.com

Instagram: @aimeramour

FB: AimerAmour Entertainment Magzine

Twitter: @aimeramour

AimerAmour Magazine is the official media sponsor of the June Mogul Meetup, hosted by yours truly, and featuring Kelsey Borlan Lee of The Brand Gals.  Kelsey will be teaching the “6 Essentials of Building a “SMASHING Brand.”  If you have been wondering how to connect with your ideal clients, grow your business, and make more money, you definitely do not want to miss out on this event.

June Mogul Meetup Flyer

Get the discounted ticket rate of $7 when you use code: AMOUR at checkout.  Purchase ticket here.

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

You Need a Business Mentor, and THIS is Why…

Do you have a business mentor/coach? Well, I do (because EVERY successful business owner should), and he gave me a swift kick in the behind, and challenged me to do something outside of my comfort zone. If you know me, I have never met a challenge that I couldn’t take on…and beat!

Now, I am passing that challenge on to you! Watch this quick video…

If you are in need of a business coach or mentor to teach you easy to implement, effective strategies to grow your business, click here so that you and I can work one-on-one to get you on the path to having the type of life and business that you desire…and deserve!

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

{Video} Outsourcing: Let It Go, Watch It Grow

I know a lot of entrepreneurs who get stuck on a business task for hours, weeks, even months…trying to figure  everything out on their own in an effort to either save money, or because they feel that doing it themselves is the ONLY way to get it done “just right”.

For those entrepreneurs, my advice is always “let it go, watch it grow!” Check out this quick Mogul Business Tip video to see exactly what I mean.

Please like, leave a comment, and/or share this video if you found it helpful in any way. Don’t forget to subscribe to the Mogul in the Making YouTube channel for more tips on starting, growing, and marketing your business!

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Success Coach | Marketing Strategist | Motivational Speaker

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

FREE Report: 25 Resources and Tools Every Entrepreneur Needs to Build Their Business

Hey there, future moguls!

I am beyond excited right now!

Why?

I’ve just put the finishing touches on a FREE GIFT that I am giving away to you, my dear entrepreneur friends, that will help you build the successful AND profitable business that you desire…and deserve!

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It’s a report titled “25 Resources and Tools Every Entrepreneur Needs to Build Their Business”, and yes, you heard me right: it’s yours, FREE!

I have rounded up 25 of the best resources and tools that you can use to help you build a website, create a strategic marketing plan, manage your time and projects effectively, and much, much more.  Best of all, many of these tools are free or require very minimal investment!

Just click on the “Download” button below to claim your copy.

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Can you do me a favor? If you find this report helpful, please pass it along to an entrepreneur friend that you know would benefit from it as well, you know, because sharing is caring!

Also, I’d love to schedule a complimentary 30 minute business clarity session with you (via phone or Skype), where we will discuss your business goals and come up with an action plan to get you on the fast-track to making those goals a reality…and bring in some major cash flow while you’re at it 😉

Are you in? Great! Shoot me an email at info@nikolaahaiwe.com to get you scheduled on my calendar and we’ll go from there.

In the meantime, enjoy this free guide!

 

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

 

Featured: BeBlogalicious Solopreneur Spotlight

BeBlogalicious Solopreneur Spotlight Nikola Ahaiwe

Earlier this week, I had the pleasure of waking up to the wonderful news that I was chosen for the “Solopreneur Spotlight” for BeBlogalicious, THE go-to site for influential multicultural women and social media enthusiasts from all over the world to collaborate, connect, and uplift one another.

In the interview, I talked about what it’s like to be a one-woman show,  my biggest challenges as a solopreneur, what I wish I knew before starting my business, and a whole lot more!

Head on over and check it out here.

What did you think of the interview? Could you relate to the things I shared about being a solopreneur?

 

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

Which Social Media Sites Should You Use For Your Business?

Let’s face it: social media can be intimidating and overwhelming if you are a small business owner looking to market your business online.  With so many different sites to choose from, how do you decide which sites to spend your time, effort, and sometimes money, on?

Well, let’s break down the differences between the most popular social media sites, to give you a better understanding of where your focus should lay.

Facebook

Facebook is not just for connecting with friends and family.  It is a great way to build brand exposure and direct traffic to your website or blog.  Although the social media platform has taken a lot of heat for it’s constant changes and crazy algorithm (the site filters what you see in your newsfeed as opposed to allowing you to see everything that is posted by your friends or business pages that you have “liked”), it is still the #1 social media platform out there.

Twitter

Twitter is a microblogging platform that allows you to share information in 140 characters or less. It is a great way to stay up-to-date with real time news and connect with people that you may not otherwise have direct contact with.  It’s current advantages over Facebook is that there are no fees to advertise, and you are able to see tweets from everyone that you have followed…not just who the company chooses for you to see.

Google+

Although Google+ has yet to reach the popularity of Facebook and Twitter, it allows you to integrate your online social media presence with the #1 search engine in the world.  It is an excellent site to use if you have a blog and are trying to get your site ranked high in the search engines.

YouTube

Video marketing is, perhaps, one of the best ways to connect with your target market.  It gives them the opportunity to see and hear you, and possibly see your product or services in action.  It is a great way to create that know, like, and trust factor and possibly create a viral buzz.  YouTube can be used to upload video testimonials, tutorials, tips, or a host of other topics regarding your business.

Linked In

Linked in is similar to an online resume.  It is great if you are looking for a job or to network with other professionals.  Unlike the other popular social media sites, you will not likely drive a lot of traffic to your website, but it provides a great opportunity to connect and build relationships with prospects and potential employees.

Pinterest

Pinterest has become so popular that it’s traffic has surpassed Google+, Linked In, and YouTube combined. Users (also known as “pinners”) can create, collect, and share information in photo or video format.  Because of it’s visual aspect, using Pinterest is an excellent way to gain referral traffic to your website/blog.

Instagram

Smart marketers have recently jumped on the Instagram bandwagon because it allows you to connect with an active network of people through images.  With this app, you can take and share pictures with your followers.  This is a great opportunity to get personal with your clients and give them a sneak peak  behind-the-scenes of your business.

Check out this Infographic found on mediabistro.com, that breaks down the most popular social media sites used for business:

Social Media Networks Statistics Infographic

Which social media sites are you currently using for your business? Which sites would you say have yielded the best results? Let me know in the comment section below.

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight: Anetra Henry-Hunting

It’s that time again: Mogul in the Making’s Entrepreneur Spotlight, where every Monday we feature an entrepreneur to watch.  I hope you have been enjoying the series, and taking away the golden nuggets shared in the interviews!

Today, we are featuring Anetra Henry-Hunting, founder of The Hunting Group, a boutique-consulting firm that provides management, marketing, and customer retention plans to small and medium-sized businesses.

Anetra was affectionately introduced to me as “the connector…because she knows EVERYBODY!” She connects people to resources, and is the go-to gal if you are: 1. looking to obtain sponsors for an upcoming event, or 2. interested in becoming a sponsor to attract clients to your business.

Read on to find out how a lay off from her corporate job led to entrepreneurial success:

Anetra Henry-Hunting

Name: Anetra Henry-Hunting

Location: San Diego, CA

Business Name: The Hunting Group

Years in Business: 4

Are you a full or part time business owner?

Full Time

The Hunting Group

Why did you start your business?

After being laid off in March, 2009, I went on several interviews and kept being told various versions of no—you’re over-qualified, we’re going with an internal candidate, etc. I decided to tell myself YES and started The Hunting Group with my husband, Nicholas. Like many entrepreneurs, I had several different skill sets and first attempted to be all things to all clients. After a severe injury in 2011, I was forced to focus on finding my real purpose in business, and that was to help people understand sponsorship so they could get the sponsorship they deserve or find their ideal clients with ease.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of having your own business?

Being able to live out the ethics I hold dear in business.

What are your biggest challenges?

Sponsorship is not one of those topics that most people are truly educated about, so the biggest challenge we’ve had to overcome are people’s misconceptions about how it works, (having to pay for our time), and their misguided expectations (over-valuing their product).

What is the best business advice you’ve ever received?

Invest your time where you get the biggest bang for your buck. –Tyra Howard (my mentor)

Anetra Henry-Hunting
Anetra Henry-Hunting speaking at The List Tour San Diego, educating attendees on Sponsorship.

Do you have a team or are you a one man/woman show?

Carla Stewart is my partner and Dawn Jessie is our admin.

Where do you see your biz in the next 5 years?

There are many interesting changes happening in the field of sponsorship and we plan to be on the cutting edge of them. We want to increase our educational efforts as well as turn more small business owners and entrepreneurs into SPONSORS instead of having the mentality they need to be in a constant state of seeking sponsorship.

What advice would you give to other Moguls in the Making?

Pick ONE thing and do that thing well in business.

If you are interested in learning more about the benefits of sponsorship, and find out how it can work for your business, contact The Hunting Group today! You can find them online at:

Website: http://www.hunting4solutions.com
FB: http://www.facebook.com/hunting4solutions.com
Twitter: @TheHuntingGroup

If you would like to be featured in the MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight, please email your request to nikolaahaiwe@gmail.com

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight: Marisa Quinn

Happy Monday! It’s time for another round of Mogul in the Making’s Entrepreneur Spotlight!

Today, we are spotlighting Marisa Quinn of Marisa Q Photography.  Not only does she run a thriving photography business, Marisa is also a professional model and actress!  She is very passionate about capturing the true essence of her clients, revealing who they really are to their core.

Check out Marisa’s interview, where she breaks down how to juggle multiple careers, shares tips on how to manage overwhelm, and explains why just taking the first step is so important when it comes to starting a business.

 

Marisa Quinn Photography

Name: Marisa Quinn

Location: Santa Monica

Business Name: Marisa Q Photography

Years in Business: 5

 

Are you a full or part time business owner?

Full time multi-faceted entrepreneur. I am a photographer, as well as a working actress and model. Each of my passions informs the other – it’s the perfect marriage of careers!

Why did you start your business?

Marisa Q Photography was born from pure passion for images that capture the beauty of humanity. I took a class about 6 years ago just for fun, and within 6 months my instructor said I had such a natural gift and keen eye for portraits, that I could start a business! It was all the encouragement I needed. A few weeks after that, I had a website up and running, and was booking my first clients. The funny thing is, my experience in modeling has been such a huge help being on the other side of the camera, because I can help my clients find their best angles, and I understand what it’s like being in front of the camera. My experience as an actor has helped a lot as well – because the entertainment industry is so focused on branding, I can help not only actors – but individuals and small businesses establish and manage their own personal brands.

Marisa Quinn Photography

What has been the most rewarding aspect of having your own business?

The most gratifying aspect of running Marisa Q Photography is the gift of being able to help someone further their own career and follow their biggest dreams. I specialize in Headshots for not only actors, but freelancers, corporate employees, and small businesses. If people are coming to me for a portrait – it’s because they have big plans, and they need a dynamic headshot to help them put their best face forward.

What are your biggest challenges?

Juggling careers. I have learned to schedule my day so certain parts of it are devoted to acting, and certain hours to photography. Changing hats can be exhausting – but at the end of the day, it’s a challenge I revel in.

What is the best business advice you’ve ever received?

The best piece of wisdom I have ever received is that “overwhelm” is a CHOICE, and a cunning form of resistance. The truth is, there is only one thing to do at one time – so stay present, and you’ll get everything done without going bananas. A great support system I have for that philosophy is organizing my “To-Do” list by URGENCY and IMPORTANCE. Take care of the urgent AND important matters first, then the urgent, then the important. Schedule things out in time (eg: at 4pm on Weds I will…), and suddenly the weight of the world is no longer on your shoulders. You know it’s all gonna get done.

Do you have a team or are you a one man/woman show?

I have a wonderful freelance team of Make Up Artists, Hair Stylists, and Wardrobe Stylists that I work with on my shoots – and agents and managers that aid in my acting endeavors. However, the day to day running of my businesses is pretty much a one woman show. That being said – delegating to additional freelancers (web designers, editors, etc) is an AMAZING and essential component of how I get everything done.

Where do you see your biz in the next 5 years?

The demand for professional headshots is increasing by the day – I can only imagine what it will be like in 5 years! It’s definitely not just for actors and real estate agents anymore – EVERYONE needs a professional headshot to stay competitive in the job market these days. I can definitely see myself training up-and-coming photographers in the Marisa Q Photography style of portraiture and branding. Creating a team of headshot photographers specialized in dynamic image management and branding to keep up with the ever-increasing demand of the digital age.

What advice would you give to other Moguls in the Making?

If it gets your blood pumping, then follow that dream to the ends of the earth! Even if you don’t know “how” you will do it – just focus on taking the first steps. Action informs you – TRUST that. Just keep taking action, and the rest of the path will reveal itself. Oh – and of course, “May the odds be ever in your favor!”

Check out some of Marisa’s work below:

Marisa Quinn Photography

Marisa Quinn Photography

Marisa Quinn Photography

If you are ready to take your brand to the next level, or are in need of headshots that will set you apart from the pack, contact Marisa today! You can find her online at:

Web: http://www.marisaqphotography
FB: http://www.facebook.com/MarisaQPhotography
IG: http://www.instagram.com/marisa_quinn
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/marisa_quinn
Yelp: http://www.yelp.com/biz/marisa-q-photography-los-angeles-2

If you would like to be featured in the MITM Entrepreneur Spotlight, please email your request to nikolaahaiwe@gmail.com

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

P.S. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more valuable business tips, resources, and tools! If you found this post helpful in any way, don’t forget to share it with your network!

Think Like An Employee, Act Like a Boss: 5 Tips to Working Productively

Tips on Woking Productively

Source

Making the transition from employee to full-time business owner can be a tough adjustment for some.  After years of living the cubicle life, and sticking to a strict, structured schedule, it is natural to want to break free from the life that you used to know and settle into a life of freedom!

But when you make the switch to being your own boss, it doesn’t necessarily mean that all structure and discipline should go out the window. In fact, that mentality is the quickest way to set you and your business up for failure.

A smart mogul in the making knows that there has to be some sort of structure to keep things flowing smoothly and make your working time productive.

When I decided I was ready to be my own boss and became a full-time entrepreneur, I thought that meant working in my PJs from the comfort and warmth of my bed, “multi-tasking” by watching television or chatting with friends and family members (you know, to make the day go by faster), and doing whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it.

There was only one problem: I found myself not getting much work done.  I realized that I was treating my business more like a hobby rather than the budding empire that I was trying to build.

It wasn’t until I made a conscious decision to make these changes that I saw a drastic difference in my business:

Think Like a Mogul

Coming from a corporate background, I realized that what made the company I worked for run so smoothly was the structure.  There were set working hours, checklists of what needed to be accomplished each day, and deadlines.  When I first made the switch, I was lacking all of these things.  Then, I had an AHA-moment: what if you ran your business as if it was already a major empire. These days, I follow a schedule pretty closely to make sure I am actually getting work done and moving my business forward. Now, I know you probably decided to go into business for yourself to free up more of your time, but the reality of it is you STILL have to work, sometimes harder than if you were an employee (more on that in a future post). Set a schedule that you will be able to keep up with, make daily to-do lists, give yourself deadlines to finish projects, and work as if you are the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Entrepreneurship does not mean you get to slack. Always keep in mind that you are trying to build an empire.

Eliminate Distractions

Distractions, such as watching television and taking phone calls, are the biggest productivity killers.  It’s very hard to focus when you’re trying to catch up on the latest episode of Scandal (or whatever shows you can’t live without) or when your phone is ringing off the hook from friends that want to chat you up at any given time.  I’m all for multi-tasking, but this will get you absolutely nowhere, fast.  Turn off the television,  make sure your friends and family members know and respect your work schedule, and stick to it.

Schedule Breaks

I confess, I am a Facebook junkie! I am one of those people who must check the goings-on every few minutes. Yep, I know it’s bad (hanging my head down in shame). My solution: I’ve decided to schedule breaks into my daily schedule.  Just like if you were a 9-5 employee, you would typically get two 10-15min breaks, and an hour lunch.  Don’t fool yourself into thinking you have to work straight through the day in order to be productive.  Breaks are actually necessities.  Make time to stretch, grab a bite to eat, and even pencil in social media or other activities you feel that you can’t go without.  Depriving yourself only makes you want it more, so allow yourself to take a breather.

Get Dressed Up

Sitting around the house in PJs all day is a sure-fire way to stay in lazy mode.  When you get up in the morning, get dressed, comb your hair, put on your makeup, etc. Do whatever it is you would do if you were heading into the office to work.  Studies have shown that the way you look is directly related to how you feel. So, if you stay in that just-out-of-bed, hair all over your head, fluffy pajama wearing mode, you’ll likely feel sluggish and unmotivated to get much done.  However,  if you pull yourself together, you’ll feel more ready and willing to tackle your to-do list head on.

Location, Location, Location

Sure, working from the bed is the most comfortable place in the house, but it’s also the most dangerous. Not in the actual “danger” sense, but meaning, it is probably the place that you will get the least amount of work done because to the average brain, bed = sleep, relax, tired, etc.  Your environment can drastically affect your work productivity, so choose a location that is more conducive to getting things done.  If you have  a place in your home that can be turned into your “office” that would be the best choice. If not, consider the kitchen table, or any other quiet area that will allow you to stay alert and get things done.  Also, if you need a change of environment from time to time, drive over to your local coffee shop, café/restaurant, or bookstore.  The bumbling atmosphere will keep you awake, and just being out of the quiet and stillness of your home or office will up your mood, which is very important if you plan on getting anything done.

What other tips do you have for staying productive and getting things done when working for yourself? Please share in the comments below.

To Your Prosperity and Success,

Nikola Ahaiwe
Business & Success Coach/Motivational Speaker/Blogger

Nikola Ahaiwe - Business Coach, Motivational Speaker, Blogger

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