by Chantl Martin | Featured Contributor
Why Entrepreneur Friends Can Help You Accelerate Your Small Biz Goals… And Where To Find Them
The internet likes to paint the online entrepreneur’s journey as this lavish part time job, part time party that you can accomplish in four hours a week from the beach (without a charger in sight). If you’re on this site, it’s safe to assume you know that’s not reality. In fact, the entrepreneurial journey can sometimes feel a little lonely, right?
There are late nights and early mornings where you’re pretty much creating in a bubble. You pull out your laptop, grab your coffee or tea, log on to the internet and begin plugging away creating your blog or app or website or (fill in the blank) all… by… yourself. When you’re brainstorming new ideas, you make a list of things you think would be cool, maybe you throw up a landing page to see if people would be interested in buying it and then you wait.
And don’t get me started on those awkward moments when you get push back from a vendor or client and you do that thing where you agonize over your response because you don’t want to be too forceful or too mousy (kind of like the three little bear’s porridge – you want your reply to be just right).
Surrounding yourself with other business women gives you a sounding board to bounce ideas off of, friends to sympathize with you and great warriors to regale you with their entrepreneurial battle stories. Other small biz owners have a fun way of letting you know you’re not alone, you don’t suck at life and, most important, you CAN get through any rough patch and totally slay your goals.
Creating your goal-crushing entrepreneur circle of friends is easier than you think and can come in whatever form you’re most comfortable with. Here’s where I’ve found my best Biz BFF’s (and a starting point for you to find yours).
If you’re not apart of any Facebook groups, stop what you’re doing and join one, like, yesterday! These are the greatest little online communities that you can join and start engaging in conversations with random people you don’t know that can one day become your legitimate best friends. The best part is you can totally chat all day long about your wins and your losses… in your sweatpants.
Meetup groups are special interest groups where you can meet people in your area that are interested in the same thing as you. There are tons of meetup groups around the work that are focused on everything from sewing to writing to entrepreneurship to hiking. The best thing about meetup.com is that if you don’t see what you’re looking for, you can always create it. It’s incredibly easy to begin forming bonds with other people that are in the same field and may have similar challenges.
Mastermind groups are a little bit harder to find than Facebook or meetup groups because their usually small, exclusive groups, sometimes paid and, to be honest, you have to know someone who knows someone to get in. If you are able to find a local mastermind, join it as quickly as possible! These groups are very small and focused on deep diving into marketing and sales strategies. It’s a very low fluff, high intensity membership with huge benefits. If you’re looking for one, I would start by hitting up the local networking events and simply asking around.
I know, you have more than enough to do in your small biz. Going out of your way to make (and grow) connections with other entrepreneurs may seem like yet another thing to add to your to-do list, however, you will be investing time and energy into relationships that will multiply ten times over. Your new business besties will be with you through your journey, teaching you what they’ve learned, connecting you with their networks and helping you reach your goals faster.