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This Week’s Episode
On this week’s show, I share a recording of the second live episode of the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show! During this Google+ Hangout, I talked with Carlota Zimmerman, the forensic coach, author, blogger, social media expert, and entrepreneur behind the Creativity Yenta©. We shared our thoughts and answered questions on time management, productivity, budgeting, and social media.
About Carlota Zimmerman
Carlota Zimmerman is the forensic coach, social media expert, blogger, and writer known as the Creativity Yenta©. Carlota helps her clients articulate their professional goals — from writing a book to starting a small business — and then helps them create the opportunities necessary to bring their dreams to life. She writes for the Huffington Post and Thought Catalog, and was listed as a social media expert by US News & World Report.
You can find Carlota online on her website, Facebook page, Twitter (as @kittenmagix),Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+. She previously joined me for a live episode of the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show here.
About the Google+ Hangout
Carlota started off by talking about creating a mental framework that values your work and your business. I shared some of my home office productivity tips, including several that I spoke about in more detail in Episode 21. We both talked about choosing the right time of day for you for challenging tasks based on your own internal clock, having access to appropriate workspaces, and prioritizing based on activities that generate income.
I save time by having a different bag for each offsite activity (e.g., for each class that I teach). I don’t need to spend time packing materials or looking for things before I leave for classes. Carlota mentioned that she schedules “off” days where she doesn’t meet with clients or spend time on social media/online. These days allow her to catch up on other tasks.
We both talked about creating realistic objectives for productivity and the dangers of comparing yourself to “perfect” or “super” small business owners. I suggested turning off notifications on your computer or smart phone when you need focused concentration, and talked about the joys of living without a smartphone.
Christina Sofina asked how to minimize “getting caught up in life” and avoid skipping your small business routines, particularly blogging. I suggested that if you are still building an audience, it might not be noticeable; if you have a large audience, they usually understand. Carlota and I talk about how it may benefit you to take time off from creating content rather than putting out lackluster content. We give several suggestions for getting back into a routine after your blogging has been interrupted, including guest posts, creating a content calendar, pre-scheduling posts when you have time, and forgiving yourself for stepping away from the blog.
Marinke Slump asked about how to create the balance between work that will pay off in the future and work that pays off immediately. It is challenging, but if you only focus on the immediate payments, it is difficult to create a cycle where you can have a balance of cash flows. It may be helpful to create a budget and be sure to always include a mix of activities that includes some that pay off in future. Carlota talked about trying to do at least one thing a day that creates an opportunity for future income. (She also recommends doing one thing a day that terrifies you in terms of your business.)
Beate from Patterns Tried and True commented on the increasing expectations for free content. I talked about my decision to monetize the Underground Crafter blog in 2014 and how that connects to my overall budget for my business. Carlota talked about the importance of valuing your work. She suggested thinking about seeking sponsors once you’ve developed relationships through your small business.
Marinke wondered about increasing your professionalism. I recommended outsourcing to other professionals. My crochet tech editor, Juanita Quinones, was on the Hangout and I mentioned working with her as an example. Depending on your business you may want to consider working with editors, photographers, or technical support professionals. I also suggested getting professional development/training. I shared several tips for accessing professional services and training at a lower cost when your business budget is tight. Accessing these skills will definitely help you to bring your work to the next level.
Carlota recommended apprenticing for free or as part of a skills exchange with a professional with certain skills. You could also consider bartering services.
We talked about dealing with negative comments. I mentioned adding a comments policy to my blogs this year. (You can see the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur comment policy here.) Beate commented about negative reviews on Facebook. Carlota and I shared some suggestions for creating positive engagement on your social media outlets so that negative reviews are less visible.
We thanked the audience for sharing questions, and Carlota mentioned that she will share a free consultation with you if you like her Facebook page.
Carlota and I announced that we’ll be hosting a monthly live Google+ Hangout as part of our new collaboration, No Frills Small Business. Our Hangouts will be on the second Monday of each month starting on February 9, 2015 at 10 a.m. Pacific/11 a.m. Mountain/12 noon Central/1 p.m. Eastern/6 p.m. GMT. If you’d like an invite, sign up for our No Frills Small Business email list here.
Carlota will be moderating a panel discussion at Social Media Week 2015 in New York City, and I’ll be one of the panelists! If you’re in New York City on Monday, February 23, 2015, please join us for Career Building via Social: The New Reality for Budding Female Artists and Professionals. The other panelists will be comedian Kate Hendricks, and art writer Emily Colucci.
What questions do you have about time management, budgeting, or dealing with negative comments? What has worked for your business in the past? Leave a comment below, Tweet me at @cyeshow (or Carlota at @kittenmagix), add me to your G+ circle and send me a note, or leave a message at 646-713-8973. (You can call me for free through the Contact page.)
If you enjoyed the show
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