June 30, 2020
By: guest contributor Carla Lopez of boomerbiz.org
When you’ve poured your heart, soul, and bank account into your own business, it can be devastating when it doesn’t succeed. If you’ve recently had to close your business, you aren’t alone. According to Forbes, more businesses close than launch each month. Let’s look at what to do after your business has failed and how freelancers can help you get a new venture off to a good start.
Take time out for yourself
Running your own business can be emotionally taxing, and when the business doesn’t succeed, it can be incredibly draining. After you’ve closed, take time to de-stress, collect your thoughts, and decide what to do next. Take a short “staycation” and practice self-care. Get enough quality sleep, eat right, and exercise daily. Grant yourself some grace and engage in activities that make you feel good not just physically, but also emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. For some people, that might mean daily meditation. For others, that may mean seeing a counselor to discuss the emotions they’re experiencing.
Analyze the business failure
Though you don’t want to wallow in self-pity or obsess about the failure, you do need to figure out what happened. Be honest with yourself as you look over the history of your business to analyze where things started to go south. Was there a true market need for your product or service? Insufficient capital, poor marketing, overexpansion, and dysfunctional leadership are just some of the many reasons why small businesses might fail. You should also have a trusted friend or associate analyze the situation to provide additional insight from an outside point of view.
Dive into your finances. Would it be fiscally responsible to start another business right away? Do you have the capital or ability to get financing? Do you have another source of income for yourself and your family while you get another business off the ground? These are all important questions that you can use to figure out if you are financially ready to start a new business.
Just because your business has failed doesn’t mean you should stop networking. In fact, you should expose yourself to even more networking opportunities. You should join a business-oriented group in your community so you can communicate with like-minded individuals. Participating in volunteer work can also expand your network and inspire you to come up with new ideas for your next project. Additionally, find a mentor who can provide expert insight from a different perspective. Business mentors can also help you make new connections to potential customers and even partners. According to Entrepreneur, quality mentorship can aid in the self-confidence of entrepreneurs and also help you stay in business longer.
Get back into the game
After you have come up with a new business plan, it’s time to get back into the game. Start out slow and don’t throw every dollar into your business from the get-go. You shouldn’t hire a full staff of employees, and instead use freelancers. Remote staffing websites such as Upwork can connect you with every type of freelancer imaginable all over the globe. Whether you need administrative help, customer service support, social media expertise, or specific technical skills, you can find freelancers who are up to the task. Using freelancers eliminates much of the overhead costs associated with full-time employees, including sick pay, vacation time, health insurance, retirement plans, workers’ compensation coverage, disability insurance, and the employer half of Medicare and Social Security taxes.
Business failure can be overwhelming and lead to feelings of doubt. However, it can also be a learning experience. With a new perspective, a network of trusted people, the support of a mentor and freelancers, and a solid business plan, you can soon be back on the road toward success.