One of the things we talked about during the Creative Arts Business Summit was building a support team for your business. Teams are one way to leverage your business to grow. When I think of professionals in the quilt and fiber arts industry who do this, I first think of pattern designers. They know that they cannot possibly stuff all those patterns into plastic bags themselves. It’s not long before they’ve enlisted every family member and friend in that task. At some point it becomes so unwieldy, they look for additional help, often at the local sheltered workshop.
So, who do you put on your team? I like to look at the team as three legs on your company stool. You have your advisory team, your work team and your support team. And, of course, some people may be on more than one team.
Your advisory team might include your accountant, your lawyer, your banker and your insurance agent. They are people who help your business stay legal and in the black. You might talk them to once a year or once a month or as the need arises.
Your work team helps you on a more day-to-day basis or project basis to get your work out into the world. It might include the pattern stuffers and testers, your virtual assistant, your bookkeeper, your web designer and web tech person, your photographer, your sales reps.
Your support team might add your spouse, your networking group or mastermind partners, your coach. It might include your housekeeper or day care provider so you can focus on your business.
Where do you find these people to help you so that you can work on your business? Friends and colleagues are good place to start for a recommendation. Your guild or other groups you frequent are another source. You can also try Craig’s list or look online. A google search may be just what you need. I have one client who is successful using odesk.com. Another uses elance.com. Your IAPQ member benefits are another source. You can use our IP attorney if that need arises. And, if you are looking to add a virtual assistant to your team, Suzanne Moore can help you identify what your needs are.
I believe that once you add support in the way of team members you will begin to see your business grow in ways you just didn’t expect. And, it’s a wonderful change.
Who do you have on your team and when did you realize that you needed to add to your team? Please share your thoughts below.