by Jennifer Lee,
Ladies Who Launch Incubator leader, San Francisco Bay Area
Illustration by Barbara Hranilovich
Do words like “business plan” or “profit and loss statement” make your skin crawl? Do numbers numb you out? Would you rather draw, write, and create than organize, budget, and plan?
If so, then you’re probably what I call a “musepreneur.” A musepreneur is a creative entrepreneur who uses her right-brain intuition and inspiration to launch and grow a business. Sure, maybe your feathers get ruffled when you hear the letters ROI, but that doesn’t mean you can’t artfully run a business.
The key to being a successful musepreneur is to fully embrace your creative nature. Your artistic gifts can actually help you find fresh solutions to your business challenges and enable your ventures to grow in ways you would’ve never dreamed possible.
Here are 10 creative tips to help you do just that:
1. Enlist your imagination. Use your creative intuition to paint the biggest picture of your business success (literally or figuratively). Spend some time envisioning where you want to be a year from now and have fun with it. When you’re in touch with your vision, it’s easier for the details to follow.
2. Create a Right-Brain Business Plan. Your business plan doesn’t have to look like a traditional plan. What’s key is that you’re clear about your goals and that you have them on paper. My Right-Brain Business Plan is a collaged accordion book. The front has inspiring images to connect me with my big vision. The back holds details like financial targets, milestone dates, and marketing goals.
3. Play with the Post-it Note project plan. If detailed project plans overwhelm you, try planning with Post-it Notes instead. Write each task on a Post-it Note. Use different colors to categorize. Then begin arranging them on a large piece of paper attached to a wall. You can draw rows on the paper to show weeks or months and start sequencing the notes on a timeline. The cool thing is your plan isn’t set in stone. You can easily move the notes around as you gain more clarity about what’s next.
4. Track your progress (with flair, of course). When you’re juggling many creative projects (as most musepreneurs do), it can feel like you’re not getting anything done. Rather than getting frustrated, acknowledge that you’re moving forward even if it’s one baby step at a time. A great way to do this is to find a beautiful bowl, and each time you complete something from any of your projects, drop a bead into the bowl. Before you know it your bowl will runneth over!
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