Can you build a business if you don’t believe in yourself or your product?
No, you can’t. Not for more than a week, or a month, or however long it takes for you to run out of money.
You will price something so that it’s easy to sell, rather than price it to support yourself.
Here’s what will happen JUST BECAUSE you lack confidence in yourself / your product:
If you lack confidence in yourself, you won’t approach opportunities as opportunities. You’ll see them only as places that you could easily fail. Instead of easily succeed. Same situation. Different mentality = totally different results.
If you lack confidence you’ll require most situations to be zero-risk / moneyback guarantee which DOES NOT EXIST IN THE REAL WORLD.
If you lack confidence in yourself or your product, you won’t have the guts to sell it to others. To tell them WHY what you’re selling is worth their money.
If you lack confidence in selling, you will underprice yourself and then you won’t have money to pay yourself and you’ll have to have another side hustle just to support your new ‘business.’ And, trust me, you will be so tired from the first that you’ll burn out with the second. Add life into there and it’s a recipe for emotional, physical and financial exhaustion. If you priced your product what it needed to be so make your life work, you would avoid all of this. But then you’d also have to have confidence to sell it at a price point that will be more expensive than what people are used to. But people are used to things costing less because big businesses have scale and resources and tax incentives at their disposal so their pricing can be lower than your will be able to be as a small business. If your business is a hobby, you might also be tempted to under-price. Because you don’t actually know how much it costs to make (plus profit + taxes) and you want selling to be easy for you (‘Oh this is SUCH a good deal!”, -customer reaction)
If you introduce a product to the market but can’t make it work financially from your end (because you lack confidence in yourself) it’s going to be easy for someone else out there to take your great idea and actually make it work because, think about it for a second, THEY don’t have any insecurities about if this will sell or not- YOU’RE SELLING IT ALREADY SO THEY DON’T HAVE TO WORRY IF IT’LL WORK! This is why people steal ideas. And creative work. So they can shortcut the emotional world of wondering if their product or service is ‘worth it.’
We have one of the BEST and hardest jobs around. And it’s nearly impossible in a city like Cleveland.
We sell people on themselves.
That’s right. In exchange for a few hundred dollars, we allow people to test the notion of their own negative thinking in a really safe and low-risk environment (‘No one will buy this.” “I won’t make money.” “This won’t work.”) and super quickly- squash that thinking.
The thing is that we are human and our brains re-set to the next current version.
“No one will buy this” becomes “Well no one will CONTINUE to buy this.”
Instead of, “People like buying these things from me!”
Now, we don’t get a pass on this cute little scarcity mindset game our brains get to play but we’ve also probably risked more than any entrepreneur I personally know, so our bar is set particularly high.
We’ve endured a market that was crushed by a monster storm.
Financial gaps in the 10s of thousands with only 7-12 days to close them.
Team members walking out the night before events.
Brutal public criticism.
Brutal private criticism.
You’re scared of it happening to you? Most likely it’s already happened to us.
WHY? And why is that GOOD?
Well, first things first. I guess we COULD cancel or not show up or but we don’t.
We have COMMITMENT to our community, and more importantly, to ourselves and our words.
Operationally this means we don’t cancel our market for any reason (except safety) because we would actually destroy our business that way. Instead, what we did was work to make everyone resilient (It’s raining? You’ll still show up because we are too!)
Emotionally this means we are freaking the F out inside but we continue no matter what that tiny voice is saying
We have COURAGE even though there are no guarantees anything will work.
Operationally this means that we have no extra parachute. The money has been spent on making our event happen and if YOU don’t show up, we lose out. But we know it’s our job to get you there, so we put our heads down and do the work.
Emotionally that means that we meet fear head-on. We don’t run away. We look fear square in the face and say, ‘Not today, buddy. Not today.” Again and again and again. Our emotional resilience is high because of how much we struggle. Our mountain continues to get higher, but we get better at climbing and WOW the view from up here is spectacular!
We have CREATIVITY because solving complex financial and business issues takes looking in all different directions for answers.
Operationally it means that we are super innovative. We find solutions to every problem that cones our way.
Emotionally it means that we understand that the first time it might not work. Or the second. Or the 100th. We don’t get super overwhelmed with failure. Failure is just a formula that didn’t get us our results, so we change the numbers and move forward with more knowledge than before.
We have CONFIDENCE that we can do it even if we’ve never done it before.
Operationally, this means that we are bold innovators, and we build a business on showing people that the impossible is possible.
Emotionally, it means that we expect it to be hard. We are prepared for the battle, emotionally. We know that in order to sell something that the answer is to LOVE IT OVERWHELMINGLY. Loving our products. Loving our city. Loving our team. Loving our customers. It’s how we direct the necessary energy into selling, producing, creating, delivering.
We CONSISTENTLY show up for ourselves even when we don’t feel like it.
Operationally this means that we get up daily and show up, even when we’re not feeling inspired. Even when we’re beat down and bruised by entrepreneurship.
Emotionally, it means the same. Believing this hard in yourself while others are fighting you on it is TOUGH. In order to deal with it, my team has unlimited paid time off, so they can actually take a day or two to emotionally recover and get right back to it.