Welcome to a catch-up with one of last year’s newbies, Jennifer Martin, who runs Zest Business Consulting. Jennifer joined the interviews in September 2014, and when I got in touch with her with her update questions last month, she replied, “Thanks so much for the follow up. This is really fun! I enjoyed seeing my answers from last year and reconnecting with your website to see what you are offering too,” which was lovely to read. Last September, this is where Jennifer wanted to be by now: “I see myself working with groups of people from all over the world through webinars, seminars, and in-person retreats. I can see myself giving in-person presentations to large groups of people and having a big smile on my face.” Let’s see how she’s got on …
Hello again, Jennifer, and welcome back to Libro! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?
Yes! One of my goals was to be speaking in front of large groups with a big smile on my face. Well, I can thankfully say that’s happened! In the past year I have had at least 1 paid speaking gig each month and yes, I was smiling every time. On my birthday this year, I spoke to all the Hospitality Managers at the University of Southern California (USC).
In the last year I ran a few virtual groups; More More, More Clients, More Life! and Tapping Your Way to Wealth with EFT. I also just started teaching an Entrepreneurship program through a local non-profit (Women’s Economic Ventures). I just bid on a speaking opportunity in the Ukraine for a week-long Entrepreneurship Forum: if I get it, I will proudly say I have accomplished all my goals.
What has changed and what has stayed the same?
What has changed most is my deeper engagement with social media and my completely getting over stage fright. I have also provided chapters for two different books (about business) and was quoted in more than 30 magazine and blog articles. I’m much more clear now about what I enjoy and I’m willing to easily turn away business that isn’t a perfect fit for me anymore. I’m also doing more travel (by choice). Oh yeah, I’ve also doubled my income.
What has stayed the same is that I LOVE what I do and continue to help small business owners create profitable and satisfying businesses without having to give up their lives or their sanity. I also still do most of my work from my home office and I’m still really busy.
What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?
I have learned a TON about how to create engaging, entertaining, and valuable presentations and seminars. I’ve also really upped my game in the social media arena. I’ve also learned that I need to have really good boundaries and that taking care of myself first is essential for my own sanity AND for the benefit of my clients and my business.
Any more hints and tips for people?
1. Commit yourself to your business and your success daily
2. Don’t go it alone – find a peer group or a business coach or consultant to help you work through possibilities and stay on track (accountability)
3. Be willing to publicly state what your goals are ( like I did here)
4. Remember that Done IS better than Perfect
5. Take Leaps of Faith and above all…..
6. Follow your passion
And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?
I see myself spending more of my time giving presentations, seminars, and being hired as a keynote speaker. I will have a program that I offer as a download online. I will double my income again and travel every month somewhere interesting to work with clients. Oh, yes, and I’ll work fewer hours too.
Great tips there, and good, solid and brave aims for the next year – Jennifer’s obviously open to learning constantly and is overcoming her fears and pushing herself hard – what a good example to the solopreneurs and small business owners who she helps!
And finally, Jennifer’s free guidebook
If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources.