Many small business owners are independent by nature, but that doesn’t mean you should always build your business alone. One of the first major questions that any would-be entrepreneur faces is that of readiness to even start a business. Once you get past that question, you might want a second opinion about how you’re doing, whether it’s about properly invoicing your clients or hiring your first employee. So, instead of trying to operate within a vacuum, do a little networking and reach out to a mentor. There’s no shame in not having all the answers yourself, and the willingness of others to help you succeed may surprise you.
As 4WT Media founder and CEO John Trefry explains, he wouldn’t be where he is today if it weren’t for the tutelage and friendship of some mentors he had along the way. Most notably, John cites DocStoc founder Jason Nazar as a major influence on how he conducts his business. 4WT Media, which specializes in high impact video content production and strategy, might not exist today had John not learned from someone who’s struggled—and succeeded—with his own small business.
Connecting with someone who’s already taken a similar path—and succeeded at it—can be an invaluable asset, especially when you start planning your own business. Whether it’s figuring out the best ways to protect your idea, create invoices that get you paid, or how to go about getting the right retail or office space, a mentor will be able to point you in the right directions when you come to inevitable forks in the road. With their wisdom paired and your hard work, other small business owners may one day be lucky enough to have you as their mentor.