The other day I was having lunch with my three best girlfriends. With all four of us spread to the very drastic tips of Southern California (and even one with a baby), we only get to see each other once every month or two. And because of that, when we do get together, we’ve created this easy little system to start up the meal by going around to each gal and giving the latest updates. After the updates we expand, broaching any subject that dares to wander in our direction.
So as we sat around with our mimosas and homemade English muffins at this particular gathering, it came to my turn. I excitedly told the ladies about my new blog, Real Creatives Drink Champagne, and explained to them the type of articles I write there. During the explanation, I blurted out a word that I use weekly, but they’d never heard before. So naturally, one of them stopped me and asked with genuine curiosity, “What’s a solopreneur?”
I told her that a solopreneur is an entrepreneur that works alone. Meaning, they’ve created a business—no matter how big or small—and they run it from the nuts and bolts to the exciting visions. Sure the solopreneur may hire contractors to help her (think Accountants, Managers, etc.), but ultimately she does it by herself.
“That makes sense, I would assume most creatives would be by themselves,”she said.
And at that moment, I couldn’t help but wonder (I’m channeling my inner Carrie Bradshaw), are we putting too much stake into the word entrepreneur? And would we have more luck identifying as a solopreneur?
Creatives tend to be more right brained and some have a hard time venturing over into the left brain area. In fact, to most people everywhere, I would say that the general consensus is that “entrepreneur” belongs in the left brain category.
I mean think about it, an entrepreneur needs to run a business. And that means taking orders, creating a marketing plan, creating a business plan while they’re at it, getting a loan, doing the books, running the team, and just doing CEO things. That all sounds pretty left brained to me. And it looks intimidating to say the least and I only scratched the surface.
Entrepreneurs undertake the risk of starting a business and a company. And what does it usually take to run a company? People.
To a lot of creatives the idea of managing people and projects is like a death sentence to their craft. How could they possibly have time to work on their “thing”when they are running around trying to keep a business afloat. (“Nope, not going to happen my friends. I’m a lone wolf to the end.”) And simply, the idea of being an entrepreneur and having a whole business just sounds too big.
But what if we chew on the idea of being solopreneurs. Working by ourselves, having complete control, yet still run a “business.”The beauty of running a business when it’s just yours, is that we get to define what it looks like. We get to decide what kind of business model we should use, and if that means that it’s just you, then by golly let’s dive in. (We should really try to bring back the phrase, “by golly!”because it just rolls off the tongue. While we’re at it, let’s throw in a good old, “Oopsie daisies.”The kids’ll love it)
For us right brained creatives, it is scary to think that we need to spend time in the left brain. There are numbers and logic over there. That leftie guy doesn’t want anything to do with what the right brain creates.
But the joke is on us, because in reality, that so called leftie guy does care about his buddy the right brain. And that means that what the right brain creates, the left brain can’t wait to show off.
And the best way to do that is by becoming a solopreneur. Just you (the creative right brain wonder) and your left brain chomping at the bits to make a difference. By working together you will create a more cohesive plan to getting your creative thing out there. It won’t do anybody any good if you keep it all to yourself.
Because when it’s just the two of you, it isn’t as overwhelming. And when it isn’t as overwhelming, the guts needed to take you and your creative “thing”seriously, are much more pumped up and ready to go. And the only result down that path is creating something that matters to people.
So that’s why I’m leading the battle cry to urge all creative entrepreneurs to go into business by themselves, becoming that oh-so-sensual solopreneur. And your first contractor? The left brain.
Who’s with me? (I’ll bring the mimosas)