I always end the year by writing about my accomplishments, failure, regrets and resolutions. Today’s post is about failure.
Yesterday I told you that I’m trying to “get over” classifying experiences as failures. Uh, yeah, ignore that post while I tell you about my biggest failure of 2015, which is my company — LFR LLC.
I never wanted to run a business, but for whatever reason, I’m a forty-year-old professional consultant who teaches other people how to communicate. My clients are HR professionals trying to do a better job, and marketing departments who want to sell their products to HR professionals.
Somewhere in the middle, I make life better for people.
My job is okay, but running my company is a tremendously tedious and unrewarding experience. I’m not complaining about the work. It’s better to be your own boss than a submissive HR lady beholden to a corporate overlord; however, 2015 was the year that I realized that running a business was killing me.
So I did what I should have done long ago: I hired a CFO who helped me reorganize my business. He helps me keep a clean set of books and advises on all things related to cash flow and pricing in my company.
(I hope he loves his job because I’m tough to manage.)
Things are still messy at LFR LLC because I’m messy, but I feel better. And while the fear of failure and bankruptcy still creeps up in the dark hours of the night, it just means I am running a business in 2015.
Laurie – I have followed your career/journey for many years (I forgot how I discovered you) and you have come into my internet life intermittently. I have observed you develop from being a very courageous “in your face” provocateur to someone who appears to have earned well-deserved credibility.I admire you for many reasons.
I’m a semi-retired HR professional and a pro-bono small business mentor (SCORE). In my mentor role, I’ve had many clients who struggle after launch. The ones who are self-aware of their respective challenges (either personal and/or deficits in their biz model) can and do start making more thoughtful, knowledgeable and effective decisions. Oftentimes, I think, hitting a speed bump is just a milestone on the road to greater success. I think that may be going on with your business. You have a unique brand and I’m confident you will be an even bigger and better entrepreneur – you’re pretty awesome (don’t forget that you are a “bootstrapper” and that takes guts and those who are still standing after a few years are filled with so much wisdom and practical “know-how’). It sounds like the hiring of a CFO may help you to keep your business financially viable. Many entrepreneurs have great visions and specific skills, but lack other skills needed to run a successful business (understanding of cash flow, social media, leases, IP exposures, etc) because they are the sole employee of their company and can’t hand-off certain activities to someone else. Those that can’t or won’t engage someone to help in areas that require expertise that they lack make their business vulnerable to having inadequate working capital to pay their bills and that will eventually bring their business to an end.
I hope you have a New Year filled with much joy and personal satisfaction.
Now – go kick some butt!
This is a win, in my book, Laurie. Congrats!!
Even if you think you had a set back this year (I did, too, and working on recovering from it), I’d work for you any day. You take risks, and that is admirable. Cheers to a magnificent 2016!
Your courage never fails to inspire. You will always be a top drawer, rip-roaring success! Now if you could bottle that courage and sell it, you would be on your yacht in the Bahamas writing your blogs and HR would be so much better for it!
Capitalism sucks. You, however, are f-ing awesome…