5 Ways to Build your Biz while Social Distancing

5 Ways to work on your small business while social distancing.
 
Hi friends!

If you work in the event industry (or let’s be honest, live in our COVID-19 world) you are likely a little bit scared right now.

Scared of the unknown- getting sick, cancelled events, lost bookings, running out of toilet paper. We ALL feel ya on that last one, right?

So wash your damn hands. Educate yourself.
And stop hoarding the TP.

Also, don’t panic.
 
Tabitha Abercrombie of Winston & Main shares 5 tips for boosting your biz while social distancing and living in the COVID-19 era.
 

I am a big believer that action alleviates anxiety, so here are 5 things you can do while bookings are slow and we’re all engaging in social distancing. AKA working without pants.

It’s something you likely excel at if you’re an entrepreneur, small biz owner, or freelancer, so you’re already winning. Give yourself a pat on the back with those super clean paws and get on with it already. 🙂

Okay, all jokes aside- here are 5 things you can do right now to work ON your business and not IN it, so that you’re in a great place when those bookings start rolling in. And they will. Trust.

Here are 5 ways to strengthen your business without putting on pants:

1. Update your website copy. Seriously, when was the last time you did this?
2. Refine or Create Systems & Processes. Inquiry, Booking, Onboarding, Budgeting, Ordering, Event Week Execution just to name a few. You should have a rock solid system in place for each of these that you execute EVERY single time to deliver EXCELLENT results EVERY single time. Okay, I’ll stop internet yelling now if you’ll stop reinventing the wheel. Deal?
3. Update your Portfolio & Crank Out those Blog Posts. I know I’m not the only one with a backlog of 20 events that deserve to see the light of day. The SEO isn’t bad either. 🙂
4. Practice Self-Care. Workout. Meditate. Acupuncture. Yoga. Read a book. Take a bath. Whatever you need- just start working these things into your routine NOW while you have time, and then continue them when you get busy.
5. Know your Numbers. Are you ready for tax season? Are you feeling good about how your offerings are priced? Are you tracking your numbers (or paying a professional) so that you can look at past booking patterns and see when you’re likely to be busiest as you deal with rescheduling your current clients? I always feel SO much better when I dive into my numbers and I bet your will too!

*Bonus- Do something nice for someone else. Drop off flowers. Go leave 5 reviews for your fellow small biz owners. Call your grandma.

Book Recommendation- The E Myth. Read it. Especially if you have no idea what the difference is between working ON your business and IN your business.

And finally- reach out if you need support in any of these areas, and we can book a germ-free mentoring session to deep dive into your specific biz needs.

 
Info graphic for small biz owners showing 5 ways to work on your biz while social distancing by Winston & Main
 

*Not a doctor. Not giving medical advice-
Please listen to scientists + experts. 🙂
** As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.



We’re Hiring an Amazing Studio Assistant!

Beautiful arrangement by Winston & Main of yellow, orange, and white icelandic poppies and ranunculus in white marble vessel
 

We’re Hiring an Amazing Studio Assistant!

We are a boutique Event & Floral Design Studio located in DTLA, dedicated to creating meaningful, memorable, magical, and shareable experiences for our clients. We specialize in custom decor, unique styling, installations + activations, and nature-inspired florals. We believe in creating stylish, art-filled celebrations for everyone, and seek to create events just as fun and layered as the people & brands throwing them.

Because no matter what you’re celebrating, the best parties feel like magic.

About you:

Are you creative & organized with a great eye for design? Are you a natural problem solver? Do you enjoy providing an amazing client experience & also enjoy getting crafty? Read below for the requirements and how to apply. I’m so excited to meet you!

Requirements:

Extremely Organized
Independent + Great with Time Management
Creative + Crafty
Warm, Kind, Fun, & Positive
Ability to work in person in the studio in DTLA on Mondays and/or Tuesdays
+ remotely (aka from your couch!)
Working knowledge of Photoshop, Illustrator & WordPress

Nice, but not required:

Weekend Availability to Assist on Event Installs
Floral Design Background
Art & Design Background
Photography Experience
Love of Social Media + Pinterest

Responsibilities:

Keep Studio Clean & Organized
Manage Inventory & Restock as Needed
Processing Flowers + Prepping Design Containers
Weekly Blog Post + Pinterest
Newsletter
Client Onboarding (Welcome Guide + Gift)
Client Communication + Follow Up
Décor + Crafting Production

This studio assistant position is 5-10 hours a week Monday/Tuesday and the pay is hourly as an employee, with the opportunity to work additional days on the weeks we have events. This is not an event or floral design position, but you will work closely with me to run the back-end of my business and there is the potential to grow with my company for the right person.

TO APPLY:

Email Tabitha@winstonandmain.com with subject line “Amazing Studio Assistant – your name” with resume, cover letter, reasons why you are the perfect person for this job, a link to your Instagram account, and any other info you’d like to add. I am so excited to meet you and welcome you to the studio!



3 TIPS TO CREATE THE WORK YOU WANT TO ATTRACT

Bright, textural, and unique desert bridal bouquet featuring protea, peonies, and strawflowers.
 
Hope you have your coffee (pot) or wine (bottle) ready friends,
cause it’s story time…

I want to tell you a little bit about how I came to be doing work I (mostly) love, and to encourage you to create the work you want to be doing in your own business.

 

Ready? Here’s the backstory:

*In 2015 I started Winston & Main, nice and burnt out from over a decade in the film industry. Not the best way to start a business.

I got scared + felt broke pretty quick, and took another full-time TV gig for a few months.
And I was miserable.

*In 2016 we bought our house, and while I didn’t take any full-time film or TV work, I styled A LOT of commercials and took enough film work to help pay for this newly acquired debt, and so W&M still felt like a side hustle.

I was still pretty scared. Still pretty miserable. And while I could do my film job in my sleep (and do it well!) I felt like my soul was dying for 12-14 hours a day, (normal film hours y’all) and then at night I was too tired to really do much else. Except whine/wine. You know how it is. Or you can ask poor Gavin. 😉

Dramatic, but true. When something is not for you anymore, the universe really lets you know.

BUT money talks.

And I knew I needed A LOT more work to sustain this lil’ biz of mine and to recoup the massive pay cut I took when I left the film industry.

*So in 2017 I put on my big girl pants, committed to my business, and haven’t looked back.

Hahahahaha. What a lie.
I look back all the time and am SO damn happy I’m not still working a job I hate.

And I am happy to report that once I truly focused, invested, and had a little faith in this business of mine, it returned the favor. I’m on track to hit a six-figure revenue this year, and a six-figure personal profit next year.

So what did I do exactly?

I created the work I wanted to be doing.

Because doing work you don’t believe in, or are sick of doing, or bored of doing is the quickest way to burn out, and I’ve already been down that road.
 

 

My 3 Tips to Create the Work You Want to Attract

Decide What Work You Want to Be Doing

As an Event & Floral Designer, this meant getting clear with myself about: 1. What type of work I enjoy doing. 2. What type of work will attract my dream clients, and 3. What type of work I can make a profit from.

At the beginning of 2017 I really considered these questions and then deliberately created a few editorial shoots to add new work that fulfilled these requirements to my portfolio.

And it worked! The work I am most frequently asked to do now, is a direct result of these editorials.

Spend Money

Once you decide to make the work you want to be doing, spend the money to do it well.

If you’re a florist- this is where you spring for those fabulously expensive flowers you can’t get your current clients to pay for. The idea is to create work that your dream clients will pay for. Also, playing with the good stuff (whatever your industry) is just plain fun.

And so while spending money won’t make up for a lack of skill or biz saavy, it can elevate your offering and allow you to attract clients your current work might not appeal to.

Challenge Yourself

Hopefully you have a unique style and your new work will end up reflecting this, but if you don’t have the skill set to make what you’re envisioning yet, then you need to learn.

Don’t create something that looks like everything else you’ve already created just because you don’t know how to create the thing you want.

Take a class or workshop. Watch Youtube videos. Experiment. Really challenge yourself to bring your vision to life, even if there’s some legwork to do first.

For me, this has meant lots of research, learning new mechanics, and plenty of failed experiments.
 
Lavender flowers floating in a milky bath.
 

To Recap:

No one is likely to hire you to do work if they don’t see what they are looking for on your site/portfolio/social media, but this shouldn’t stop you from going after the work you want.

Get Excited:

As business owners, we have the ability to create the work we want to be known for.
It’s magic. You just have to put it out there.

I almost didn’t publish this blog post, because it’s scary to be so vulnerable, and who reads these things anyway?
Did you? Did it help you? Do you have anything to add to the conversation?
If so, I’d love if you’d leave a comment below or shoot me an email and we’ll chat!