Breakthrough: How to overcome business loneliness
Start-ups: Not alone in feeling alone.
At 29 years old, Sarah Murray took her formal training and experience of clinic-life and ploughed it into launching her own Truro-based practice: Align Chiropractic.
What Sarah discovered, however, was that running your own business can be a pretty lonely place.
“One day I started Googling for business help because I was feeling really alone in starting my business.”
“I knew that I had to juggle lots of balls and wear lots of hats, but I am also aware that my strengths lie in helping people. I was getting really anxious that I didn’t actually know how to help myself.”
Being a new business owner can be lonely
Alongside having to wear some uncomfortable hats as a new business owner, there’s often someone missing to bounce ideas off forcing you to make important decisions on your own, dealing with rejection, stress from financial worries and suffering from imposter syndrome.
“Being a start-up is a bit scary and particularly when you don’t have anyone to turn to for support or those ‘I’m thinking about doing this’ chats.”
Help with combating business loneliness.
When Sarah discovered the Unlocking Potential website in early 2021, she contacted some of the Breakthrough programme’s alumni, and, feeling reassured that it would help combat her business loneliness, “with nothing to lose and lots to learn”, she booked herself onto the next Breakthrough four-part workshop.
“Being in a big online group was really good as we could all share our thoughts and help each other. I found that everyone has a contact who could help you. It was great for me as a start–up knowing nothing and needing direction. There were so many people who already had businesses, so it was great to connect with like-minded people who are also feeling the exact same or had been through a similar process.”
Help with pinpointing the perfect customer.
Session two of the Breakthrough workshop helps business owners identify how your business really adds value to your customers, plus how to group different customers (and their needs) together to create meaningful marketing messages.
“Breakthrough helped me identify my customer segments and how to approach and engage with those people by using different forms of social media and forums. I wrote everything down into a plan – this makes me more accountable, but it also means I can see the direction I want to go.“
One-to-one business support
Being part of the Breakthrough programme includes one-to-one support from a Business Development Manager (BDM), who has experience working in your area. They also form a support cushion and someone to chat to about ideas and any problems you stumble across. They’re also someone to celebrate those all-important business wins. Buddied up with Sarah was Kathryn Timmins, who worked with her to develop a business action plan, breaking it down into manageable chunks.
“Sarah was feeling isolated and over-whelmed by an ever-growing to-do list so I worked with her to develop some business-critical goals focussed around building brand awareness and identifying effective marketing channels. Sarah has accessed some coaching in social media through the programme and attended an Unlocking Potential Marketing workshop, both of which have provided her with the tools to help increase customer engagement.”
What does the rest of 2021 look like for Align Chiropractic?
Sarah is now set to grow the business. With Breakthrough’s guidance and one-to-one support, she was able to strip everything back to the beginning, back to basics. “I’m now so clear on what I want to accomplish for my business and what I need to do to get there.” explains Sarah.
And she’s not doing it alone. She’s clear she wants to grow a team that’ll work together to deliver the best for her patients, and a team who she can work alongside to contribute to the overall success of the business.
“In addition to growing my team, in 2021 I’m working towards creating an app with advice and daily mobility that will help in recovery but also to keep people moving. I want to have workshops and open evenings with talks on specific topics.“
Breakthrough workshops take place regularly. To be a part of the next one, get in touch by telling us more about your business through our short interactive form.
For extra reading, check out our previous blog on ‘What makes a start-up business financially viable?’