Credit: concept of businessman build his business empire
The Daily Edited started as a small business idea between my friend and me in 2014, but it’s now grown into a global accessories brand bigger than we ever imagined it would be. We both left our jobs as lawyers after months of really hard work and minimal sleep equated into a sell-out first release of our monogrammable leather goods and we haven’t looked back. Saying that, we learnt a lot in those months and I’ve tried to summarise the most valuable lessons here.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
Work hard, work accurately and with a certain level of speed. Don’t waste time overthinking the little tasks and get on with “doing” them. When you’re first starting a business, you’re often overstretched trying to get everything done, so these skills will make running a business much easier.
In regards to decision-making, don’t dwell on the small stuff. If you can do it now, do it now! The more small decisions you can clear quickly, the more time you’ll have to spend on the strategic, big, long-term goals.
Keep your hands on the wheel
You’re the only one that can influence your own success, so make sure you’re keeping hands on in your business, no matter how successful or big your business gets. I read a selection of responses we send to customers and provide feedback to my team, work on the shop floor once a week and still create all of the content and manage our social media channels. I also lead the marketing meetings and have my team assist me in coordinating the rollout of our activations, new products and campaigns.
By keeping in tune with how all parts of your business is running, you can know how to make improvements and be more efficient. Take ownership of your path and maintain that level of hands-on work, no matter how big you get.
Learning never ends
Don’t assume you know everything. I’m learning every day and have picked up so many skills by doing. Web development was quite foreign to me when I started The Daily Edited, but as an online business, it was important that I at least understood how it worked.
It’s ok to feel inexperienced, especially as it informs you what you can learn next. Information is always just at your fingertips (or a Google away) so take advantage of it. There are plenty of free resources online, like the small business networking and collaboration community Collab Zone, powered by ANZ. The community is dedicated to connecting like-minded small business owners and supporting them with useful information to help start, run and grow their businesses. I featured on the first episode of the Collab Zone Radio podcast and was thrilled to share the lessons I’ve learned along the way.
Keep your eyes on the prize
Be prepared to not have a life outside of work when first starting your business. The early days of The Daily Edited saw me working long hours and dedicating weekends to getting everything done. I also learnt the skill of managing the expectations of friends and family. Share your ambitions with your loved ones and hopefully you’ll have their support will allow you to keep driving towards your end goal. Putting in the hard yards at the beginning establishes a strong foundation to build from and you’ll eventually be enjoying your social time again, and a thriving business.