My reflections and top tips on running a business.

Written by Natalie Doyle

December 15, 2022

A laptop, notepad and pen

December is always a month that seems to encourage reflection for me.  Looking at what has happened in the past year and making plans for the new year.  2022 has been the first full calendar year of running Sport Sister.  This year, there has been a lot to learn, and I’ve loved developing and evolving the business.  I wanted to share some of the main things I’ve learned this year.  I hope they might be helpful for anyone else running their own business.

1. Try new things. At the start of any business journey, you probably have an idea of where you want the business to go, and what areas you want to focus on.  Sometimes these ideas are clear in your mind and sometimes a bit hazy.  Don’t be afraid to try new things out.  Some will work better than others but the learning is always invaluable.  Some things we’ve done at Sport Sister this year have not worked in the way I thought they would, whereas other areas have completely exceeded my expectations!  It’s all part of the excitement of the journey.

2. Don’t be afraid to shout about your business.  Shouting about my achievements makes me feel very uncomfortable! However, I appreciate it’s a key part of raising the profile of the business and letting people know what we do and how we can help.  Fortunately, I have a brilliant Social Media Manager (https://themindfulgingernut.com/) who puts out fantastic social media content and pushes me to continue improving what we put on our social channels.

3. Push yourself out of your comfort zone.  For me, this is reaching out to potential clients and pitching to them about how I feel we could add value to what they do.  I know we can provide a fantastic service to these organisations but it still feels a bit ‘salesy’ to me.  However, I’ve pushed myself out of my comfort zone this year and contacted so many potential clients in this way, and got a lot of new work thanks to it!  Plus it definitely gets easier the more you do it.

4. Make the most of the technology available to you.  I think I’m going to do a whole new post about this in the new year because the technology I’ve used to benefit my business this year has saved me so much time and made things run so much smoother, which helps me feel more in control.  From accounting software to project management software, my CRM system, social media planning, etc etc.  This definitely needs a post for itself – watch out for it in January!

5. Be flexible. I see that Sport Sister is constantly evolving as a business, so I’m open to flexibility in how I work and what projects we work on.  This has led to some real variety in the type of projects we’ve got involved in, which means we then have more options when it comes to speaking to new potential clients about how we can support their organisation.  Plus, I love the variety it brings to my working day. Be flexible and open to these new opportunities and don’t pigeonhole yourself too much if you want to explore new things.

And that brings this year to a close.  I want to say a huge thank you to everyone that has supported Sport Sister this year. It’s been a great year for me.  If you need support in growing women’s and girls’ participation in sport then get in touch and let’s make some really exciting things happen in 2023!

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