Last week I published a post about two of the big lessons I've learned so far in the business of starting a business: Each Day Brings a New Challenge and Faith is Paramount.
As a follow-up, I have a couple more to share.
3. H is for Hustle
Selling is such an icky, complex, awkward, difficult and yet, crucial thing to be good at.
I remember pre-Azulina how I would say things like, "ugh, I hate sales. I could never be a saleswoman. I'm so bad at selling. Blah, blah, blah."
Then Azulina came into existence.
I began to realize that if I wanted to be successful in business, I would not only have to get over my discomfort of selling, but I'd have to get really good at it. To be a successful entrepreneur, you have to be a good salesman.
I can't tell you how many awkward conversations I've had, but when a cold call turns into a new wholesale account, all of the prior six, seven, eight "no thank you's" were part of getting to a "yes." I've learned that getting turned down is just part of the job.
What I Do About It: It's actually pretty simple, if I don't get my selling pants on, no one will. I talk to as many people as I can. I try to say "yes" to every outing. I get my samples in front of everyone I can. For lack of a better word, I hustle.
4. It Takes a Village
One of the most beautiful things about starting Azulina has been sharing this experience with my family, friends and friends of friends. It has been a cross-continental effort and I am humbled by all of the generosity.
For example, my boyfriend's friend offered me a desk at his office until Azulina grows big enough to needs it's own office--and he won't let me pay rent.
A gal I met in the American Women's Club of Bogotá is hosting a trunk show for Azulina this afternoon in her home (if you happen to be in the BOG and want to come let me know!).
A fabulous Houston blogger is hosting a giveaway this month to celebrate the launch of our new holiday collection--a connection made by a dear friend.
I could go on...
In the same way that raising a child takes a village, starting a company takes a village too.
What I Do About It: When the going gets tough I reach out to my village. I ask for help. I try to keep perspective and remember that I am not alone. When I feel uncomfortable about selling something I remind myself: it never hurts to ask. When someone in similar shoes reaches out to me for advice or help, I give them all my attention, because I'm part of their village too.
Thank you for all your love and support, as always. When more of these learnings come up I'll keep the series going. For now, have a beautiful week!
Con Mucho Amor,
Founder, Azulina Ceramics