This is the part of my life that really exhausts me, but excites me beyond belief.
Running my own business and being my own boss.
I LOVE having my own business. For me, it is like an addiction. One that I crave more and more of everyday. Over the past 5 years, I have run 4 businesses, with one still going very strong.
I talk to women all the time who want to break away from that 9-5 pace and work their own hours, structured around their family. There is something very appealing about choosing your own work hours, having flexibility and being your own boss. The reality is though, that there are few business opportunities that allow you to scrap the 9-5 and work 5-9.
Or is there?
Starting a business isn’t something that should be quickly decided upon. It is something that needs to be considered and carefully planned, because although the ultimate goal is to earn a full time income on part time hours, the reality is that the set up and growth can see you working for what feels like 24/7.
How I became my own boss
My business career started off in party plan (also known as direct selling or MLM). For most first time business owners with no specific skill to build upon or experience in business, I usually suggest a direct sales type business. There are so many benefits to this type of business model and as well as having low start up costs, it is generally risk free.
Basically, you get all the perks of flexible working hours, great commission and the added bonus of being your own boss. You can work hours that suit your family and you can simply say NO when working doesn’t suit you (without the guilt or the pressure from a boss). All of your marketing and support materials are already created for you and available for you to access and most companies provide training and advice during your start up and throughout your time as a consultant. Some companies also have rewards programs for your first 8-12 weeks and this is an opportunity to be rewarded with gifts and additional demo products for achieving your goals. Direct sales companies offer many ways to earn money, from simply selling and hosting parties, right through to recruitment and training opportunities. There is a level of earning to suit everyone.
In general, you are in business FOR yourself, but not BY yourself.
Although direct sales sounds fabulous (and it is) it only works as hard as you do. Meaning, it is WORK, and without a strategic plan, goal setting and working hard to achieve these goals, it is similar to trying to drive a boat with the anchor still thrown out. Out of the 75 consultants that were recruited in my team in the 3 years, I would say that about 40 of these women actually thought that party plan was a ‘get rich quick for not doing much’ type of thing. It is not.
The secret to choosing the right direct sales company…
When choosing a company, you should only sell something that you LOVE. True passion for a product or brand will sell much more product than something you’re doing just because you think it will be a good opportunity (or for the money). People not only buy your product, they buy your trust. You must believe in what you do and the product that you’re endorsing.
Personally, the perks of direct sales were simple for me. It offered me a chance to build some very sound business experience and achieve success and recognition at many levels. The highlights of my party plan career was earning a Tiffany and Co bracelet and winning National Consultant of the month on 2 occasions. Of course, there were so many other things too… holidays, jewellery, trophies, bags and purses.. the list goes on. I was chosen to run national training and recruitment courses and I was able to continue working as a teacher and work on my business of an evening and weekend when it suited me. I have often wondered how far I could have gone if I had pursued it full time. But, for Tim and I (who worked side-by-side with me to process finance and admin) it gave us additional financial freedom. We were earning thousands of dollars extra per month just by working around 10 hours per week (2 parties plus 3 hours admin and recruitment).
Eventually of course, it was time to move on. Since then I have built up 3 businesses. One which we closed shortly after start up. One that we grew and then sold for a nice profit and the one that still remains, Wicked Waiters. I owe all of my success in business to my start in direct sales. It taught me pretty much everything that I know. And I can’t rule out that someday, I may return. 🙂
Are you interested in direct sales but not sure what’s available? Start researching now!
Did you know that I have a library full of amazing resources to help you #PlanHardLiveEasy and create the business of your dreams??
In the library you’ll find all sorts of inspirational and practical downloads, templates and worksheets to help move you forward from here, to wherever it is you want to be.