Grape vines

Almost everyone I know who isn’t retiring wants to start their own business. That generally means building an online presence, and that usually means getting professional help. This professional help might include coaches, trainers, required courses or certifications, virtual assistants, social media experts, website builders, technical support, and/or accounting. None of these supports are absolutely needed, but most could really help … if you can afford it, and if you luck out choosing the right people.

Pretty much all of them come with a hefty price tag, and for a starting business, that’s difficult.

I personally know how difficult it can be: my business is my own; I am largely online and need support for that. I have a coach and have benefitted hugely from my relationship with her. I finally have a good website and like my support there. On the other hand, I’ve spent way more on supports I ended up not needing, in my opinion from hindsight, at all! Business coaches who – it turned out – were more interested with what I paid them than with how I did as a result of their support, courses and certifications I ended up not needing, social media people who cost a lot and didn’t do a lot for promoting my business the way I needed it promoted. On top of that, it took a while to find the right fits – many of the people I attempted to work with were great, but just not the right fit.

The list is long. It hurts when I think about it. From talking about it with those I know who’ve travelled a similar road of starting their own business, I’m not alone.

Some of those mistakes were unavoidable because only experience teaches us what to look for and how to avoid pitfalls. I, like many of my friends, pass on what I’ve learned that might be useful to others just starting out.

Here’s one of those learnings: it’s about grape vines. Well, not really about the plant, but about an inexpensive solution to a problem that could have been very expensive – a personal problem, not a business problem, but I learned from running my own business.

The issue: people were beginning to cut through my side yard regularly. There are few fences in my area; I’m close to a corner, and cutting through my side yard could possibly shorten their walk time by a few seconds. I began to feel unsafe, so I needed a safety solution, pretty much right away. I have a big yard and long driveway, so getting it fenced is really expensive. Then on one of my nightly walks, I noticed a neighbour who had a simple wire fence that was covered with grape vines. I thought: I could do that! The wire structure and the grape vines could effectively be my fence.

There is almost always a grape vine solution to any problem. It may not be as elegant as a more expensive solution. Then again, it might be better!

Quote of the Week

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.”

– Albert Einstein


You don’t have to be an expert to solve big problems


I hope you enjoyed this article. When you’re ready to take the next step on your life journey, book a free 20 min consultation with me.