Fashion Business Owner Musings: Money Talk

spacerI think talking about money is one of the smartest things we can do as fashion business owners.

The typical sentiment is that money is a topic best left off the table, like politics or religion. But I totally disagree. I think that when we as business owners open ourselves up to conversations about money, opportunity then presents itself.

I’m not saying that this should be the topic of conversation with every other business person you meet, but finding people in your circle to have these important discussions with is a really good idea.

These should be people you trust. And since trust takes time, you probably won’t start off relationships with discussions about money. But over time, once a relationship is established, you should be open to starting these discussions.

What kind of discussions? Well, rather than “Hi, nice to meet you, I made $3000 this month, any tips on how to increase that?” think about the people in your professional life who you have already started to create a relationship with. They may be fellow designers or people who work in other parts of the industry. Or they may be fellow business owners who work in other industries altogether.

Have you started having regular discussions with them? Like mini-masterminds or accountability calls? If not, this is the first step.

Once you have that established, you can introduce topics of discussion around sharing your money goals. Or talk about how the money is flowing in your business, ways you’re making money, and things you’ve tried that haven’t worked out financially.

When you open up a dialogue in this space — i.e. begin the money talk– doesn’t it seem clear how beneficial this can be to everyone? Honesty and transparency about business and money lead to so much more learning and growth than discussions where everyone says “things are good, moving along, slow but steady . . . ”

Where do statements like that get you? Nowhere. Because no one knows what you’re working on, how’s it truly going, or what kind of money you really want to be making.

Just the other day I shared with a business buddy of mine that we (StartUp FASHION) are working on pushing past a financial threshold and reaching a new monetary goal. I simply mentioned it as something we’re focused on and then, a few days later, she texted me about someone she knows who may be able to help us do that. If I’d been reluctant to talk money with her, I wouldn’t have even had the opportunity to meet this person.

That’s just a quick story but honestly, stuff like this happens all the time, especially when we stop worrying about being embarrassed and instead open up and have the important conversations.

I’m sharing this because I know that money is often seen as a taboo discussion topic. Even when it’s not taboo, it’s seen as embarrassing for some people. But I think if that could change, if more people opened up to having honest discussions about the money behind all this business stuff we’re working on, only good would come of it. More help would be offered, more opportunities would be presented, and more businesses would succeed.

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!

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