Most small business owners we speak to say “I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time”.
They’re figuring out their businesses, one goal or challenge at a time. It can sometimes feel like there are no places to turn, but good advice is readily available if you know where to look.
It’s important to craft a network around you to learn from – these could be both people you know personally and don’t (thanks to Twitter, books, blogs and podcasts). There’s already great advice and inspiration out there to help you achieve a goal, solve a problem or inspire you to improve your product, business or self.
Below we walk through some useful places to find business advice and important questions to ask yourself to help you find the best advice and advisors.
There are 3 parts to figuring this out:
- What am I looking for? Guidance, Advice or Inspiration
- Where’s my medium? Twitter and Blogs, Books, Conversations, Podcasts and Audiobooks
- Who are the right people? Have they experienced something similar? Are they inspiring?
1. What am I looking for?
“I have a goal and I want to understand the common errors people make in reaching this goal that I should avoid.”
You want to find the person or people who have been there and done that. They could be close to you, or just a tweet or email away.
“I’m struggling with a problem and it would be useful to learn from someone else’s solution or just have someone to listen to me.”
Find your mechanism. It could be chatting about it with someone trusted, writing, drawing or walking it out quietly alone or finding the person whose solved it before and borrowing their solution.
“Who are the people doing things I aspire to do?”
Find these people and ideas and follow and capture them. Collecting the things that inspire you can be very valuable. Pinterest boards, liked tweets, saved articles with pocket or evernote, a youtube playlist – the tools are around you to collect and curate your most valued resources.
2. Where’s my medium?
Find what works for you, because good ideas are everywhere.
- Podcasts and Audiobooks: iTunes, Soundcloud, Google Play Music and Audible are all great places to find free podcasts and audiobooks. Why not try out Small Business Focus or Tribe of Mentors?
- Books: If you’re looking for books on a certain topic or in a certain category, try Goodreads. You can also look for recommendations from your book store similar to the books you’ve already found.
- Blogs and Twitter: Subscribe to the people (or companies) that write and curate great content. Try out Farnam Street, Medium or our very own Yoco Blog.
- Events and Communities: Check out our monthly Yoco Meets networking events, or Meetup for entrepreneur and business focussed events near you.
3. Who are the right people?
This is a very personal decision, but generally the best people are those that have no other incentives other than giving you good and honest advice. They are generally are either close friends or family, or have the right experience.
We’d love to know what, where and who you currently get guidance, advice and inspiration from! Get social with us on Twitter at @Yoco_ZA or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.