Simply Out of Focus
One of the biggest challenges I’ve had the last few weeks and months is figuring out who I am and what I’m doing. Not so much on a personal level (though that has probably played into this as well) but more on a professional level.
I had this idea in my mind, I would quit school and make a name for myself doing the things I loved.
That hasn’t worked out as simply as I thought it would.
As I got into a schedule and started chasing my endeavors I discovered that there were no less than five different things that I was aiming at. I’ve been working on them over the last few weeks. I’d spend a few days on one idea, work on a website, think things through, work out plans, talk to people about it… then switching to another endeavor and work on it for awhile.
Then I realized I may have a bit of a problem.
Realizing I Can’t Do It All
Then about two days ago I started to realize that I can’t do all of these different things and expect to do them well.
The interesting thing about this realization is that this is something I’ve told numerous other people. Don’t try to do too many things at once. If you try to do to much you won’t be able to do any of them particularly well.
I mean really. Would I hire a guy to build me a website if he was also a photographer, videographer, graphic designer, construction worker, farmer, and blogger? Well maybe I would, but I’d much rather hire someone to build me a website who is specifically a web designer.
And so that made me think some. I ended up asking myself a few questions.
What do I really want to do?
The first thing I needed to talk to myself about was my desire. Which one of the different business ventures do I really want to pursue? Which one do I want to pursue now?
As I looked at the five different ventures I was soon narrowing it down to two or three. A much more manageable number.
In fact here are the three ideas that I narrowed it down to.
- PhotoSiteWP – a blog/website that is specifically aimed at photographers and visual communicators. The idea was to have a great blog with all kinds of good content to make setting up a WordPress website much less daunting. As far as monetizing it I have a few ideas. I’ve always wanted to make a serious attempt at making a living via blogging and I think this could be a place I could do that…
- ImagineWP – basically this would be the website building side of my work. Not so much designing of websites as developing and placing content, then tweaking themes to make things work how I want them to.
- LBurgHomes – primarily a real-estate photography site, focusing on interiors and architectural photography. Each home will also receive a post with all listing info so that they can contact the real-estate agent.
What can I do pretty soon?
Another thing I needed to ask myself was how soon I could build some kind of viable business around any of these three things.
This of course is a question that could lead to all kinds of other questions… but I believe knowing which of these things are long term ideas vs “near future” ideas is pretty important.
The other side of this is that I can fail more quickly. Failure isn’t fun… but it usually is part of the process.
This narrowed things down a bit more.
- PhotoSiteWP – This is probably the longest term idea of these three. It takes time and a lot of work to create a blog that is followed, shared, loved and profitable. It’s very possible… but it usually takes quite a bit of time.
- ImagineWP – I love building websites using WordPress. I’m quite comfortable in the admin area and can hack my way through child themes and get where I’m going. But I want to learn more before I market myself as a web developer / designer.
- LBurgHomes – I’ve been doing some of this already. Photographing homes and architecture for clients is something I already do…
So I’m going to focus in a little bit. Instead of approaching entrepreneurship with a shotgun I’m going to approach things a bit more specifically.
For now that means that I am in the middle of working on the LburgHomes website and creating promotional stuff.
I need to do a few more things on the site and setting up the structure of how things will work, then I’ll start talking to a bunch of realtors in a pretty major way. (I’ve never done cold calls before… or stopped by businesses to show them my work… Kinda freaked out…)
What do I do with the other things?
This of course leaves us with the other two things, and what I’ll do with them.
My plan, as of right now is to go ahead and set the sites up for each of them.
- PhotoSiteWP – In a few weeks I’ll go ahead and start posting the content that I’ve been creating in the last few months on the PhotoSiteWP blog. Initially I’m going to aim at a three post per week schedule.
- ImagineWP – I will hopefully get this site up in a few weeks as well, it’ll be pretty simple. I’ll add a link to ImagineWP in the footers of each site I’ve built in the past… but I’m not going to push things too hard to begin with.
Then We Will See
From there we will have to see how things go. I may decide that I’m better off doing just one or two of the three things… but that’s the plan for now.
What kinds of things are you focusing on in your business?