I remember vividly where I was sitting at Bread Garden Market, when a former boss and mentor asked me, “Who are you learning from?”
I was only a few months into my photography business, and we were talking about how I wanted it to be different – I wanted to stand out. I didn’t want to just take good pictures – I wanted my photos to make a difference.
I didn’t want to just trade time for money again. I wanted to build something that would give me time freedom.
And after I made my impassioned speech, his question knocked me off my soap box.
His question didn’t make any sense to me. What do you mean, “Who am I learning from?.. Don’t you know about YouTube? I can learn everything I need to know on the internet for free.”
There was definitely a part of me that thought asking for help was a weakness. After all, why did I invest two years of my life (and thousands of dollars) earning an MBA in Marketing if I couldn’t even run a small business by myself?!
But this is one of the wisest questions someone has asked me – he knew what I didn’t.. The only shortcut to success in business is learning from someone who’s already done it.
A few months later, I finally admitted that even with an MBA in Marketing, I was struggling to put all of my knowledge into practice. I was feeling overwhelmed with all of my big goals that didn’t seem to be coming true, no matter how many hours I put into it. And I was laughably undercharging for my services because of my low self-confidence.
Long story short, I enrolled in Maddie Peschong’s mastermind in October 2020, and it was life-changing for me.
I was so scared to invest in business coaching after only 6 months of owning my photography business, but it was 100% the right decision for me.
Having a business coach has helped me to increase my confidence, my pricing, and pivot to being a well-respected and sought after brand photographer in my area in only 6 months. It’s only March, and I’ve already increased my revenue by 50% from last year and am booking branding clients 4 months out.
Would I have been able to do this on my own eventually? Probably.
Was I able to take approximately 101 shortcuts to get here faster because Maddie’s already solved most of the problems I’ve faced in the last 6 months? Absolutely.
Was it way more enjoyable to grow my business in community, form real relationships with 10 other ambitious women, celebrate each other’s accomplishments, always have a helping hand for ideas and feedback, and be able to talk to people who actually know what the f I’m trying to do? Also yes.
Being a solopreneur can be L.O.N.E.L.Y. And self-doubt THRIVES in isolation. I’ve learned that there’s a distinct difference between having a good idea and having the confidence and know-how to execute on that idea.
If there’s one thing I know to be true, succeeding in business is all about the execution.
So now, looking back on my mentor’s question to me, “Who are you learning from?”, I can say with confidence that I’m learning from someone who’s giving me the answers to questions I don’t even know to ask. And that is invaluable.
And when the first mastermind ended and it was time to decide on whether or not to invest in a second round I reminded myself of this question again.
I view having a business coach as my competitive advantage, so I’m starting the second round in April.
If you’re feeling lonely, unsure, or unconfident in your business, I’d encourage you to do some research on business coaches who’ve already been where you want to go.
Dive deep – read their content, listen to their podcast, ask hard questions, talk to people they’ve coached. Do your due diligence, but DO IT.
If my experience can teach you anything, it’s that businesses thrive in community – go find yours today. <3
P.S. I have a pretty great IG community too, and you can join me by following @jadeboydphotography.