All you accountants out there, read no further or cover your ears for what I’ve got to say to my fellow business owners.
Every check, credit card transaction, or cash purchase you make for your business shouldn’t be viewed purely as an expense. I’m not talking accounting principles here, I’m talking mindset.
If you treat all spends the same, you will likely miss out on doing things that will have a far greater impact on your business growth. Some expenses are smart investments. If lumped in with printer cartridges and copier paper, you’re not giving them a fair shake.
My mentor is the one who opened my eyes to this many years ago. We talked a lot about what I needed to do to grow my business. I would immediately respond – “I can’t afford that!”
That’s when I learned about my huge blind spot. The decision was not whether I should spend the money on my business, but whether I should invest the money in my business.
That shed a whole new light on expenses. Investments were the workshops that gave me the knowledge I needed to stay competitive and growing; and, mastermind groups to get me out of my own head; and coworking. Yes, I worked from a coworking space before I started Suite Spotte because I got so much energy, ideas, and inspiration from other members. These were some of the investments I made to take advantage of the growth opportunities I was then prepared to create. And still do today to keep growing.
Sure, money was often tight. But somehow, I found a way. Whether it was by asking for a workshop fee as a Christmas or Mother’s Day gift from family instead of the fresh flowers or new sweater I usually got. I’ve also been known to sell off some “vintage” items that had been stored away. Or cooking for a month instead of picking up something quick and pricey a few days a week. Or even postponing an upgrade to the latest cool phone. Be creative! The money is there. If you really want your business to grow, you will find it.
The next time an opportunity comes your way that will help move your business forward. Step up and invest in YOU!
Find out more about what you should invest in for your business from the experts at the Rocka Million Weekend.
Suite Spotte was fortunate to have local high school interns work at Suite Spotte this summer. Lyons Township High School intern, Joanna, shares her experience at Suite Spotte. Thanks Joanna! We miss you already!
Suite Spotter Mike Bash shares interviewing tips with Summer Interns.
When I first heard about Suite Spotte, I had no idea what coworking was, and had little experience with business in general. Over the course of my few weeks at Suite Spotte, I learned so much about entrepreneurship, coworking environments, and business itself.
I really feel fortunate to have gotten the opportunity to work in a space like Suite Spotte, not only because of the rapidly growing coworking market, but because of the diversity of the people here.
I did get the chance to sit down and talk with a few Suite Spotters, and it was so interesting to see the similarities and differences between people. I really got a sense of the people who come here and why they come here. I found it super interesting and motivating to see so many different people in so many different businesses and fields working in such a collaborative environment.
The main project that I worked on here at Suite Spotte was developing ideas for an online membership site and researching coworking management software. If I’m being honest, some of the work could be tedious at times, but other parts were extremely exciting, and overall I found the experience very valuable.
It allowed me to take steps out of my comfort zone, discover how I can leverage certain aspects of my personality into strengths, and see how well I work on a single project both in a group and individually. The skills that I learned while working at Suite Spotte are skills that I can apply to high school, college, and beyond, and I’m very thankful for that.
Suite Spotte is a really special place. It fosters creativity, productivity and learning, as well as an amazing sense of community and collaboration. I’m so grateful to have been a part of it!
As we get ready to kick off RUSH WEEK at Suite Spotte, fellow coworker Mike Bash of Silcon-Valley-based start up, Eversight, shares his decision to become a Suite Spotte member with Morgan Searles of Patch.com. Check out what Mike has to say here.
Thanks Mike and Morgan for helping to spread the word!
I first heard about Suite Spotte at a winter holiday party for my children’s school.
All of us parents were attempting to mingle as only parents of very young children do – in between wiping noses, changing diapers, and rescuing our children who had climbed too high and couldn’t find their way back down.
While chatting with one mother, my ears perked up when she mentioned something about working with her team.
A team? Wow. I had just begun my social media marketing business earlier that year, and only in my wildest dreams did I ever think I’d have a team.
I had to know more about her and her success. We chatted as we could, as the children spun and zipped around us. The more she talked, the more I wanted to be a part of this community of entrepreneurs and small business owners in the Western Chicago Suburbs that she seemed to be a part of.
And that’s when I first heard the words “Suite Spotte”.
She told me that her friend Sue had opened a coworking space in La Grange, and entrepreneurs go there to work and collaborate. The new idea of working from a coworking space instead of my home office held so many possibilities for me. I had to learn more immediately.
Not to waste any time, I filled out a “Book a Tour” form on the Suite Spotte website the next day, making what I think was one of the best decisions so far for my business.
Since then, I’ve become a regular at Suite Spotte, taking advantage of every bit of the collaboration and community that I can. All that I’ve learned and experienced could hardly be included in a single post, but I will break the biggest benefits up into three main categories…
When I arranged for my first Day Pass, I was expecting everyone to be heads-down working, typing furiously or sitting in with a phone glued to their ear, in their own little world.
It couldn’t be further from the truth. While there are moments where the only sounds in Suite Spotte are the click-click-clicks that indicate that deadlines loom, usually there is a quiet buzz of conversation happening somewhere in the space. People sharing ideas or asking advice. One member telling another that she referred a client his way. A laugh over a miscommunication. (Did she say eyeliner or highlighter?) Without the hierarchy and drama of a typical one-business space, it is office culture at its best.
2. Ideas and Inspiration
Suite Spotte is never short of well-timed ideas and advice. If ever I have a question, no matter how basic it might be, other members are willing to give me not only an answer, but more ideas to expand upon my original idea, resources, or even a helping hand. I often leave Suite Spotte at the end of the day with my head swimming not only with thoughts of work I need to do, but also inspiration to make my business even better.
And because all of the members have different backgrounds and experience, I’ve been able to expand my vision and see a problem from angles that I never expected. I’ve found this to be especially true during the Entrepreneurial Masterminds, which are members-only lunches every Wednesday where one of the attendees is put in the “hot seat” and can either share something happening within their business, ask for advice, or show off a tool that has brought them success. Every week, even if I’m not in the “hot seat”, the ideas push me to take my business further and think further. Which inevitably leads to…
Working out of Suite Spotte has certainly set my business in the right direction. It has offered not just a space to work and focus, but the inspiration (and occasionally referrals!) necessary to grow. With this growth, I have even put together a small virtual team with whom I collaborate, checking that dream off my list.
I know that my business wouldn’t be as successful today if I had never found this coworking space.
Now I’m no longer an outsider looking in on an exclusive club of entrepreneurs in the Western Suburbs. I am a part of this exciting and thriving community. And I couldn’t be happier.
Amber Dewey Schultz, founder of Clique Social + Design, helps service-based entrepreneurs and small business owners convey their message, connect with their fans, and drive sales through strategic social media. Known for her innovative marketing strategies, Amber has used social media to amplify online launches, design passive income streams, and grow raving audiences for local and national clients.
When not busily working and collaborating at Suite Spotte, you can find her on kid-friendly adventures around the Western Suburbs with her husband Ryan and two children, Vivienne and Milo.
If you haven’t heard of Periscope, it’s the next big thing in social media. And now, Suite Spotte is on it!
Every Wednesday, a few of our members get together during lunch to have an “Entrepreneur Mastermind”. One person is randomly chosen to be in the “hot seat”. There they can discuss something new and exciting in their business, ask the group for advice, or tell everyone about a new tool or service they use and love.
Since this group organically formed in May, members have helped each other overcome the hurdles and celebrate the successes that come with being a business owner.
The last Mastermind in June was broadcasted on Periscope by Amber Schultz, and had over 75 viewers from around the globe.
Here is the recording of that Mastermind, minus the comments of people watching the broadcast…
What advice would you have given Terry had you been at the Mastermind?