We are still on a high from last weeks event, Renew Night. I still can’t believe it actually happened. I can remember last year thinking about moving to Ohio and pondering how we could show our new community that our hearts were to give back and not just sit in the corner. The idea of Renew Night came to me because Andrew and I love what a new year brings. We felt this event was the perfect way to start off 2016 and gain some vision.
It was so fun gearing up for the event, planning the appetizers out, decorations, and final touches. One of my favorite things though was being able to encourage my friend Ashley West along the way. I knew talking to her several months ago that she was the girl for this event. She was absolutely petrified to speak and I may have even made her break down the day before. Sorry Ashley! But she pulled through and MORE than pulled through.. She nailed it! It was such a proud momma moment (haha) to see her up there after all the tears she had cried over speaking. I knew she would be fantastic and she was!
We started off the night with some mingle time and amazing appetizers made by our sweet friend Linda. It was an amazing thing to see all of the photographers mingling and meeting each other. We headed right into our first speaker, Ashley West. She shared her photography journey and how 30+ weddings and tons of portraits may have been a HUGE accomplishment for her but she was drained. She decided to pull back this year to 20ish weddings to focus on her husband, friends, family, and enjoy life outside of work more. Her chat was incredibly eye opening for so many of the new photographers that are striving for success. Ashley put it into plain sight that this business is amazing and awesome but all with in a healthy balance.
Next, Kari from KariMe Photography spoke and her story was very similar. She also shared about her crazy year and how chaotic it all felt but what a blessing it was that her business has grown. Her and Trevor have decided to look at this year with a new perspective and really focus on relying on the Lords strength and saying YES only to the BEST YES’s.
Finally, Andrew and I finished off the night with some practical tips for keeping a healthy balance, building your business, and tips to keep your heart in the business healthy. We talked about organization tips, having a vision statement, losing the comparison trap, finding community, defining boundaries, creating office hours, and more.
After our chats were over everyone hung around for nearly an hour and it was an AMAZING thing to see. Our industry has come so far and it was so humbling to see that we created an environment for photographers to encourage one another in. Thank you all that came out and attended!
For Business Tip Tuesday I thought I would share my notes from our talk, Enjoy!
1. VISION STATEMENT
Think about what your business does and what, in an ideal world, you would like it to do and how you would like to appear. Consider the services and attributes that your company provides, then imagine how it would be if you provided the very best version of them possible.
Here is a sample of our vision statement:
“Our desire is to not ever let this “business” become a business but rather an avenue to serve others. We believe that our skills and talents were given to us for the purpose of providing for us but more for the purpose of giving to others. We desire that when our services have been completed that we actually left some type of life change more so than a great photo. We want to do things with excellence, serve to our best ability, and work within a healthy balance of life. We want people to remember us for more than our work, we want them to remember who we are and that we cared.”
2. DEFINE SUCCESS
What do you want to get out of this? Is it realistic?
3. MAKE A PRACTICAL PLAN
Daily, monthly, quarterly, yearly
4. GET ORGANIZED
Canned emails, Trello, Update questionnaires, studio software- Honeybook, shootQ, 17hats, office space, TeuxDeux, planners, hire an accountant, rearrange your office etc.
5. DEVELOP A SCHEDULE
You know what works best for you!
Daunting Tasks first
Emails 9:00AM for 20 minutes and after lunch for 20 minutes
Mondays: Catch up day
Tuesday: Blog day
Wednesday: Forward Focused day – working on those goals you set
6. LOSE COMPARISON
Comparison keeps us busy. Curating feeds and running around with our heads cut off. There are specific people just for you. The comparison trap is a result of a low self-esteem.
7. FIND COMMUNITY
We have come a long way in COMMUNITY. We all can find someone to lean on!
8. GET EDUCATED
Creative Live, photographers who inspire you, your camera manual, online courses,etc.
9. HAVE SOME HUMILITY
Be honest with yourself about what worked and what didn’t. Be willing to change what you think works.
10. DEFINE BOUNDARIES
Limit social media, saying no to clients who drain you, use your vision statement to filter, set office hours, saying YES to the right things, and not sacrificing those you love to do a job you love.