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Why did you start your business?

by Lesley Jones


WHY did you START your Business?


This is one of the biggest questions, that as a business owner, you need to know the answer to. You need to understand the implications of your answer and you need to live by it.


During the last 12 weeks, I have met a lot of Entrepreneurs that have been asking themselves this question.


When they started their business, it was because they had a passion for giving value through their products and/or services to many people.  Along the way, as the business has grown, it has changed direction slightly and whilst this is often a good thing, sometimes it can create unknown stress as your ‘purpose’ is getting diluted, and you can feel lost.


Having time on our hands, as a lot of us have had over the past 12 weeks, has enabled us to breathe and reflect on who we are and what we really want to achieve during our lives.

For a lot of us, working for someone else, is not going to get us where we want to be.  It may be a regular salary, but it does not fulfil us. We long for the weekends and evenings to spend time doing what we love to do with the people we love to be with. So we set up our own businesses as we think this is the best solution that will give us control and allow us to be creative and feel fulfilled. 


Running a business does have its challenges, especially if like me you left a well-paid corporate job to set up on your own. I very quickly discovered that there was a lot I didn’t know about running a business. Lots of ‘things’ I needed to do and whilst I met lots of people along the way who could help me move forwards, I didn’t know they existed when I started out.  Like so many business owners, I got busy being busy, doing my own marketing, proposals, sales, and accounts and of course delivering to my clients.


Add to that, lots of rushing about networking, meeting new people, following up and keeping in touch with clients.  It was exhausting, not to mention the cost of petrol, coffee and hotels.


These last 12 weeks, as I have reflected on how I run my business, there are many aspects that I will challenge myself to go back to.  One word that keeps popping into my mind, is WHY?

  • Why am I in business for myself?
  • Why do I do my own VAT return?
  • Why am I a member of so many networking groups?
  • Why do I insist on meeting people face to face?


So, my questions to you are:

Why did you start your business?

There are many reasons, these are just a few I have come across:

  • to fill a gap between jobs; but it has been more successful than I had anticipated
  • to have a better work-life balance; whilst I look after children / elderly parents
  • so I can create financial security for myself and my family
  • to be able to ‘give back’ to society.


True Entrepreneurs start their businesses knowing full well what they want to achieve, but not necessarily how they will achieve it.


Who should you be by now?

As you cast your mind back to when you started out, you probably had goals and to some extent, ideas of grandeur for the business that you were going to create, and how it would change you and your family’s lives.


Are you on track?  Have you already reached your goal, or as you look back, do you recognise that the business has not moved forward very much in the last few years. 

Are you still doing the same old ‘stuff’, being stressed by the same old ‘things’ and still paying yourself the same ‘income’.


More importantly, does who you should be by now, align with who you really want to be?  Anxiety and stress can be created in response to who you ‘think’ you should be (often influenced by others), compared to who you ‘want’ to be.


What should you be doing by now?

If you have achieved your original goal, fantastic, you have created a business that works and provided you the life-style and income you set out to achieve.  For you the appropriate question is probably WHAT NEXT?


However, is the business that you have created what you really want?  Does it afford you the life-style you really want, or did you create it because you thought you should!


If you are not where you want to be, WHY?  What are you going to change so you can move forward in your business and your life?


What do you really want and Why?

For a lot of us, our work environment, maybe our client base, what we sell and how we sell it has changed significantly over the last 12 weeks, and if I am honest I don’t think the way we work will ever go back to exactly how it was before.


As we come out of lockdown, I am seeing business owners react in one of two ways, either:

  • they still have their heads firmly stuck in the ground and are waiting and hoping that everything will get back to ‘how it used to be’ soon OR
  • they are embracing the new norm, asking themselves WHY? taking this opportunity to refocus their business and create a plan to get themselves where they really want to be.


Which CAMP are you in?

Over the coming weeks and months, Lesley will be running a number of workshops helping business owners reflect on their WHY, gain clarity on what they WANT and create a PLAN for their new normal.


If you are ready to reflect on your WHY? or would like to find out more about Lesley and her workshops, please check out her Mentor page.


25 way to get more customers

Lesley Jones

Lesley Jones is a Sales Masters Guild Personal Business Mentor.


“ If I can make just a small improvement in the appalling statistic that 60% of businesses fail within their first 5 years, then I will know that I have made a difference” says Lesley.


Find out more about Lesley on her Sales Masters Guild profile page


Read more blogs from Lesley