Identifying your mission in life can be a tough task in and of itself. But finding a way to achieve it can be even more challenging. Ideally, you should be able to combine your mission with your career so that you can draw an income while doing something fulfilling.
However, in today’s job market, changing careers might not be feasible. The only remaining solution is to start your own business. While this notion is often met with trepidation or fear, it’s not as difficult as you might think. In reality, you can start your own business, achieve your life’s mission, and stay financially afloat at the same time. All it takes is some common sense, planning, and a strong work ethic.
Here are some tips to get started:
1. Identify Your Mission by Gauging Your Passions in Life
Take an introspective look at yourself – look for your strengths and abilities and partner them with what you’re passionate about. If you are struggling, ask family and friends for ideas. They may offer insights, tips, and advice that you never considered.
2. Convert Your Mission to Income Generation
Once you’ve identified your mission, the next step is to turn it into a money-making venture. Research what other people are doing with similar ideas – and don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Whatever you do, develop a plan and follow it. Undoubtedly, as you go along, you’ll learn more and determine how to hone your plan to better accomplish your goals.
3. Focus on Customer Service
There are plenty of places you can go to get great food, but how many of them deliver it with exceptional customer service? The best way to set yourself apart from the competition is to focus on customer service. The cost-to-reward ratio often works out heavily in your favor. Whether your venture is product- or service-based, run your business in a fast, courteous, and friendly fashion, and you’ll be sure to build a solid client base that will serve you for years to come.
4. Effectively Market Your Business
You can have the best business idea in the world, but if no one knows you exist, your efforts will be in vain. Therefore, you need to effectively market your business.
Start by creating a website, so your customers have somewhere to go for more information. Then, create a page for your business on popular social media websites, including Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Creating an account is typically free, and these sites can be huge in generating new customers.
Be sure to manage all your social media accounts, and be as interactive as possible with your followers. The more promptly you respond to comments and questions, the more likely your business is to grow.
5. Save Money
If you’re a first-time entrepreneur, saving money by cutting small business expenses should be at the top of your list. Buy used items whenever you can, including computer equipment and office furniture. You can barter your talents with other professionals to get services you need for less. Also, avoid expensive marketing campaigns when you are starting out, and meet with professionals in your industry for other ways to save. Check out the website Meetup.com for networking opportunities in your area.
6. Expand Judiciously
Never overextend yourself financially when first setting out, as this may quickly lead to failure. Instead, build modest revenue streams, reinvest them in your business, and expand cautiously as you see fit. You’ll find that this business model will serve you much better than one of expanding too rapidly.
Some people feel guilty about receiving money while building or living their dream. But as long as you are ethical in your efforts, there is nothing wrong with profiting from hard work. As 2 Corinthians 9:6 says, “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” This is true in business and in life. As long as you approach the idea of small business ownership with good planning and save everywhere you can, you can fulfill your mission in life, be financially successful, and help others along the way.
What other tips can you suggest for finding your mission in life?
David Bakke runs an online reselling business and blogs about personal finance on Money Crashers. He lives in Atlanta with his young son and enjoys keeping up to date on the best ways to save money and improve his life.