How to Succeed as a Solopreneur in Kenya.

People get into business or entrepreneurship in two ways, with partners or by themselves. A good percentage of entrepreneurs choose to start and run their businesses by themselves.

In solopreneurship, the solopreneur is the sole owner and operator of the business enterprise.  

People choose to be solopreneurs for different reasons but the main of all being the desire to be their own boss. When you are in a business with a partner or partners, it’s not about you alone and all decisions have to be in unison. On the other hand, as a solopreneur, the fate of your company is in your hands.

Entrepreneurs have a team that help them run various business aspects such as sales, customer service, accounts, human resource, production, etc. Entrepreneurs have a management team in place that can run the business on their absence.

Most solopreneurs run small scale businesses and are able to do most roles without the need of a team. They might hire contractors to do some tasks for them once in a while but still oversee all the operations.

Most people who take the solopreneurship path of doing business don’t require a group setting to be creative and productive. Therefore, if you need to be in a group setting to get your creativity flowing and be productive, being a solopreneur might not be for you.

As a solopreneur, you set your own working schedule since you don’t have employees working for you round the clock. You control the work to get done. Therefore, the success of your business literally depends on your motivation and your efforts.

‘Not so obvious’ benefits of Solopreneurship.

These are the obvious benefits of solopreneurship – being your own boss, working from anywhere, a flexible work schedule and work life balance. However, there more important and not so obvious benefits of being a solopreneur.

Skill set expansion.

As a solopreneur, you handle almost all the business aspects by yourself. In this process, you will end up learning new skills you did not have. E.g. you might not be a finance guru by the time you are starting your business, but with time, you will learn how to deal with the business finances.

Freedom to be flexible to change.

As a solopreneur, your decisions don’t need consulting unlike an entrepreneur who has a partner board to consult or employees to think about. That means you can quickly make necessary changes for your business. You can change your business strategies to adapt to the changing market conditions as quickly as you see fit.

Brand control.

Solopreneurship gives you the power to control your brand as you are the brand. You determine how your customers view and identify with your products or services. You are the one to promote your brand.

Ability to make what you are worth.

In solopreneurship, your efforts pay you unlike in employment. Your business gives you what you give it. Therefore, at the end of the day, whatever you get in returns and revenue is related to your effort. You are in control of your income as a solopreneur.

How to succeed as a solopreneur.

Just like entrepreneurs, solopreneurs build real business empires that provide revenue flow and create wealth.

If you are an aspiring solopreneur or you are one already, these 5 things will help you succeed in the world of solopreneurship.

Having a solid plan.

Before you even start, you need a solid plan to get you through. Just like any other business, you need to have set goals – long term and short goals. These goals will help you measure your progress as you don’t have anyone to be accountable to or a board to report to.

Have a solid plan that answers these questions.

  • How will I grow my business?
  • How will I achieve that growth?
  • Will I expand my business by creating additional products or services?

Have a mission and a vision statement for your business that you can go back to time after time. When you know where you are going, anything that is not helping you get there is a distraction and you can set it away. Your plan will be your guiding map.

Adapting to change.

In the world of business, markets change and consumer taste and behavior change. Consumer behavior controls business and you have to be able to adapt to these changes to succeed.

Be open to change and be willing to adjust to the changes. Adjust your business’ priority, vision, goals and operations to circumstances at hand. Prepare your business to respond to these changes whenever they happen.

Go wherever the market is going and where consumers are headed as this will keep your business going.

Working with other solopreneurs.

Solopreneurship is a one man band and the amount of work involved is overwhelming. In that line, most successful solopreneurs understand that they don’t have to do it all alone all the time.

There are some tasks you won’t be able to do or don’t want to do by yourself once in a while. It can be website development, copywriting, social media management, graphic design, etc. These tasks can be done by other solopreneurs and you can contract them if need be. You can then put your energy in the most important parts of your business where you are most productive.

You can pay freelancers to get some work done for you without employing anyone fulltime.

Not being in competition with others but yourself.

Not comparing yourself to other solopreneurs or entrepreneurs will work magic for you and your business.

Being in competition with others will only draw you away from working and improving your business.

How will you go forward when you keep getting discouraged by those ahead of you? You cannot grow by feeling small and beating yourself up. In life, there will always be someone ahead and someone behind and most of the times people tend to focus on those who seem ahead and progressing. With this approach, you forget that those behind you are working hard to go forward, they pass by you and get ahead.

Focus on your progress and not that of others’. Celebrate your small wins and the progress you are making putting your goals in mind to keep you motivated.

Using automated systems.

Since you do not have a team working with you or for you around the clock, automated systems need to be your best friend.

To help you run your business smoothly or easily, use automation software available for solopreneurs.

These automation software will help you use sales funnels to acquire customers and sell your products or services. You can use email autoresponders for marketing and scheduling software for social media management and regular social media content posting.

Conclusion.

Solopreneurship gives you a lot in return if you put in the needed effort. The best thing about putting the needed effort is that it does not come with pressure from partners or employees because you are your own boss.

You are in more control of your business, your work schedule and there is a high income or revenue potential. You don’t have to worry about the hiring process, payrolls or employee turnover. All you need is to outsource the help you need from freelancers to do a task an employee would do.

Most individuals are now taking the solopreneurship route in business and as an aspiring entrepreneur, you can go solo too.

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