Fashion Business Owner Musings: Forgetting the Big Picture


Did you happen to read my post from last week? It was all about how important it is to take advantage of the opportunities that are presented to you as a business owner and a designer. And how a lot of designers don’t.

It was some tough love, a little bit of a kick in the pants to stop ignoring these opportunities. I listed a few reasons why I think this happens. But I missed one. One of the members of the StartUp FASHION Community emailed me to thank me for writing the post and she mentioned she thinks her issue around this is…

Getting too caught up in the day-to-day and forgetting the big picture.

Such a good point.

Is there any among us who has not had to work on this annoying tendency?

As businesses owners, we have a never-ending list of things to get done. And that list can often take over every single minute of every single day if we don’t do something to prevent it.

And I realize that that concept is easier said than done. But it’s the truth. If you allow all of the “stuff” to get in your way, and never look at the bigger picture of your goals, you will always be rushing around trying to keep up, with a constant feeling of being behind.

The truth is this. The to-list never goes away. Ever. Even when you have a team, even when you’re making money, even when you’ve been in business for years. So if it’s never going to go away, then why not allow yourselves to put it aside sometimes?

I know we’ve all heard the “work on your business, not in your businessquipBut I wonder if that really sinks in.

Do you feel like everyday is a struggle to get through the little things, leaving you practically no time for the big things?

If so, we need to help you change that. Because nothing will ever happen for your business if that’s the case.

Let’s start with your calendar. Use it. Once a week block off 30 minutes in your calendar to do something very specific around learning- go through a workbook, read a very informative blog post, listen to a podcast and then add a separate block of 30 minutes right after the first one to take action on what you learned. That’s big picture. That’s identifying an important step you need to take in your business and taking advantage of the resources available to you to do something about it.

Next, submit to the fact that you need to gt out there and meet people. As an introvert myself, I get that this is not always what you want to do. So do it in small doses. I commit to attending two live events per month that I think will help me grow my business. I RSVP and call it a day. That way, if more pop up, I’m free to go. But I’m also free not to go, because I’ve already committed to my quota for the month.

Another idea is to start each month with a business planning workbook. We give one of these to our Community members and it’s been so helpful to many of them. Simply sit down at the start of each month, quickly review how the previous month went and then pick one or two big picture goals to focus on for the month. Give yourself a deadline and work on the tasks that will get them accomplished, not the tasks that don’t have impact.

If you start to do these things regularly, over time you will begin to notice that you’re making progress, you’re learning things, you’re getting more done, and you’re taking advantage of the opportunities and resources that are available to you. In doing that you’re more likely to feel confident and proud of yourself, You’re more likely to feel a sense of accomplishment. And you’re more likely to keep going to reach new and exciting goals that stretch your idea of what your business could be!

I’m pumped just writing this!

Focus on the big picture, designers. Go get it!

Lots of love and encouragement,

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Nicole Giordano

Nicole is the founder of StartUp FASHION, an online resource and community supporting for independent designers around the world with building their businesses. A deep love for the craft of fashion paired with an adamant belief that success is defined by the individual, led her to found StartUp FASHION, where she helps independent designers and makers screw the traditional fashion business rules, create their own paths, and build businesses they truly love. More than anything else, she’s in the business of encouragement and works every day to remind makers and designers that they have something special to offer the world and that they can, in fact, do this thing!