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Entrepreneurship Lessons Learned to Accelerate Innovation.
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Welcome to F-Stop*

Faulkner Strategic Consulting's monthly eNewsletter

As many of you know, I recently celebrated Faulkner Strategic Consulting's one year anniversary, which has been cause for reflection over my first year as a 'solo-preneur'. 
Here are some of the highlights of what I've learned over the past year:

1. The business development side of being an entrepreneur can be stressful! Knowing that if I don’t bring in the business, I don’t get paid, is quite a different feeling than getting a regular monthly paycheck from a corporate employer.  That said, I really like the absolute direct link between my effort and my reward--if I’m willing to take on more work, I make more money!

2. I love the flexibility that comes with this type of career. I tend to work in sprints and find that without the endless meetings of corporate life, for the most part, I can work when I’m at my most productive and stop working when I’ve used up all my mental energy. My work time is much more concentrated now so I can fit much more productivity into fewer hours. 

3. Feeling isolated hasn't actually been a big concern. This is something that other independent workers warned me about, but thankfully I've found some good ways to cope. One, I’m an introvert so I actually enjoy being by myself a good deal of the time. And two, I proactively schedule regular one-on-one in-person networking meetings and attend professional events to help keep connected.

4. The importance of networks cannot be overstated! I engage my personal network constantly for advice, feedback and specific expertise. And my professional network has provided not only my first clients, but through referrals and introductions, essentially my entire project list to date! Consulting is indeed a relationship business and I’m very glad that I had 14 years to develop those relationships before making the leap to my own business.

5. And finally, I’m learning to simply ask. It’s amazing how far you can get by simply asking. Most people genuinely want to help, especially those who are starting out or starting over, and I’ve been amazed by the graciousness of both close and casual contacts—and even contacts-of-a-contact—in giving of their time, guidance, feedback, and facilitating introductions. 


I’m only a little over a year in to this adventure and I know many more lessons, challenges, and pleasant surprises lay ahead so here's to the journey!
Thanks for reading this month's issue of F-Stop and please look for an expanded version of these insights in an article appearing in SUCCESS online next month. Previous issues of F-Stop are available for download here. Feedback is always welcome and please feel free to forward to friends and colleagues! 

Sarah Faulkner
Principal, Faulkner Strategic Consulting

 

Faulkner Strategic Consulting is dedicated to innovation that grows brands, driven by deep consumer and market insights.  

*Why F-Stop? In photography, F-Stop is a measure of lens speed which controls the brightness, or illuminance, of the scene. These concepts are central to innovation as well. The goal of F-Stop is to provide resources, information, and inspiration to illuminate and accelerate innovation.
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