Although I am a natural entrepreneur, never afraid to risk putting all my chips on the table, I was not a natural born business person.
I became a business person because I love to help people transform their lives with beauty. Had I not gone through that transformation purposefully, I would have had to close the doors to my original business venture, Flourish Design.
It was kind of a bummer to realize one day that I was going to have to wear hats in addition to ‘designer’ if I wanted to remain my own boss. Gulp. My creativity freaked out. I had really big visions of being a creative lady and rolling with that.
I did not see business as creative.
Business people seemed like they had to be number savvy and dressed in navy blazers. I saw myself as colorful, creative, and fun.
But I swallowed my pride anyway, because I preferred wearing this new hat (which was really ten hats) than wearing an ’employee’ hat any day. At first it sucked, I wasn’t very good at it.
But I am very competitive, and I like to be the best, so I placed myself in a whirlwind of transformation.
When I learned how closely business growth is linked to personal growth, I was intrigued and it made me move forward with even more momentum. I also would come to see the intricate link between self-growth and your environment.
This was like a fated journey I needed to go on to see what my true gift is. Becoming a rapid transformational business lady taught me how when we change how we are being on the inside, our environments will naturally change, too.
I finally got good at it, and I started to see the beautiful necessity for good business and personal growth in how great design gets in the hands of great people who need it.
I started to see smarter ways for me to share my gifts with those who need what I have to offer. Best of all, I learned that true business is a beautiful reflection of the creator of the business when done properly. Going down this path would make me learn with crystal clarity WHO I AM and force me to be my true self…a creative boss.
It’s weird – the way I experienced it, the only way I could get the hat trick I wanted – joy, financial freedom, and rich relationships with others – was to work on myself. Therefore, my own transformation was required to run my business properly.
It was all connected!
This was also a very creative journey. In fact, it has given me a very deep way to be creative and build beautiful brands, becoming far more creative than just designing landscapes alone.
Along the way, I found this quote by Andy Warhol, and I believe it to be true:
“Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art. Making money is art and working is art and good business is the best art.”
I had always wanted to understand more fully why people crave beauty. Beauty inspires us to move toward that next iteration of who we are.
If we follow the path of beauty, then we are really connecting with who we are. That’s the whole authentic thing that everybody keeps talking about.
In order to be that truly authentic boss creative, I had to dramatically shift my mindset.
Here are some creative boss myths and how I handled them:
Myth #1: Being a creative boss means working harder and longer.
You choose how long and hard you want to work, no matter who you are. Choosing a set amount of hours to work and sticking to a calendar is key. You will see what tasks need to be delegated.
I advise staying close to watching your cash flow but delegating some or all bookkeeping tasks to a professional. While you want to be the chief salesperson & CFO, you should delegate the task work. Delegating as much as possible will allow you to fully rise to your potential.
Myth #2: No one else can do what I do.
Yes, they can. I thought some of my core talents were not replicable. You can teach someone to design landscapes a certain way. All I had to do was hire someone the right person. Believing it was possible to train someone in my own style allowed me to be the design director. This new talent could be the designer.
I also put systems in place like manuals and design guides so I’m not dependant on that person. Putting systems in place is the only way to grow, otherwise, you have a personality based business. Owners burn out when they create personality based businesses. This happens when one person involved in too many details. These models are unsustainable.
Myth #3: Spending time on the numbers isn’t the creative part of my business so I can ignore it.
Spending time getting intimate with your numbers will empower your creativity. You will be informed about what’s financially possible and what your goals need to be. Ignoring numbers is a form of denial which locks up your creativity. When you’re unsure about how to make strategy decisions you’l get into decision fatigue. And if you’re accepting uncreative work just to pay the bills, you’ll spiral further into the same foggy strategy.
I suggest calendaring time to look at your numbers. Discuss cash flow with your mentors, coaches, and accountant as often as needed. If you really need help, check out a money coach I work with and adore, who totally understands creative businesses and the emotions around money – Mikelann Valterra.
Succeeding at being a creative boss has forced me to kick some really entrenched patterns and to make some seriously #badass moves. I am a transformational coach who helps other transformation leaders step fully into who they are.
If you are stuck somewhere on your journey and you want to kick up some momentum, download my FREE guide to editing out the junk in your life and making space for you and only you.
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