In the entrepreneur community, scale, is a very popular word. It can mean several different things but in this case, it means growth. If you are able to take your passion and turn it into a business, that’s a wonderful thing and should be applauded. If you can take that same business and successfully scale it, that should be commended. While it may seem like an unnecessary factor to consider, there are many businesses that make income but can’t handle explosive or consistent growth. Some businesses are created to be and remain small. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with keeping your work load small and easy to manage but if you want to turn your passion into a viable business that supports and sustains you, it has to be created to grow.
For example, if your passion is writing short stories, you can make money by writing short stories for other people. If it takes you three days to write and edit a complete story and you work on your stories Monday-Friday from 9am-4pm, you would only be able to churn out about 1.5 stories a week. If somehow the word got out and 5 people asked you to write a story a piece and they were all due in one week, you’d end up working a lot of overtime or have to turn away potential clients.
This business model is not built to scale. You are limited to the number of stories you can produce and if you want to get more clients, you’d have to adjust your hours, write stories faster or hire other writers. It can be hard to make those kinds of changes once you’ve started working. But if you go into it knowing that those things will have to happen, you are more apt to be prepared whenthe time comes. One reason why many new businesses fail in the first three years of existence is that they’re not built to properly handle growth. Yes, a lot of customers is a good problem to have but only if you can take advantage of the opportunity.
There are definitely some other processes that can be put in place to help with scalability like automating or outsourcing some of your business tasks. But with any process, it takes time and preparation to really benefit from them. When you are creating a business, it’s ultimately up to you as the owner to consider your long term goals and what needs to happen to successfully grow your business. This is best done early on.
We can often be our own worst critics, especially when it comes to stepping outside of our own box and doing something different. Negative and doubtful self-talk is natural but it shouldn’t stop you. Neither should you not knowing what to do next. Yes, I’ve given you some steps to follow but if you noticed, many of them involved doing some research. We live in a society where information is an important commodity and it’s very readily available. Take advantage of it.
Just as not following your passion brings with it the responsibility of a dream unfulfilled, following your passion and being successful brings with it the responsibility that comes with that success. The great thing about following through with something that’s risky is that even if you do fail, you can rest comfortably knowing that you tried. If you do nothing at all, you never know what could have been. Happiness is a decision. If you make the decision that you are going to follow your passion and that it will make you happy, it will.