The fourth area to consider is: The Community and Support:
What is support? The people, the teaching materials available to you to answer your questions and to grow your business is support. What is community? The community is the pool/group of supporters available to you.
When you are the “new guy” in a W-2 brick and mortar company – you are introduced and welcomed in to the company by your new co-workers. The coworkers help you feel less overwhelmed while learning the ropes.
So who shows you the “ropes” in an online business?
Community local meetings, online meetings or phone meetings or in person [face to face training seminars and conventions], makes you feel less isolated as you are beginning to work as well as continuing to expand your business.
- When I was beginning to learn about being an entrepreneur and starting my first business I had many questions. Some are technical, some are related to how the steps fit into the “big picture” etc. It helped to have contact with others who were experienced and succeeding in their business.
- It is easy to feel overwhelmed by so many new and exciting things. A good sequential training program supplemented by a good support system makes the plan and goals feel lots more doable.
- The beginner as well as the more experienced person appreciates having someone to talk to who can relate to the learning curve and help get answers to questions. The folks who are more experienced or higher up in the company are your support in any type of business and can help you learn the ropes online.
Who are these folks that are your support and how do they support you?
- Who: How long have they been in this company and doing work online and how are they doing? Are they writing books, articles? Are they experts or are working closely with experts?
- Who: Do they listen to you when you ask a question or just send you links to FAQ sections of the home web site? If this is their idea of good support, keep looking!
- How: Are these folks easy access folks? Do you have to wait more than 24 hours for an email response or 48 hours for a personal problem solving phone call? If so keep looking!
- How: Are they available through phone calls, email, live chat, problem solving meetings, scheduled training seminars? The greater the variety of support options the more likely you are to reach out for help and get it.
- How: Are they patient in answering questions and providing support information to help you succeed? Are they easy to talk to or do they use techno-babble? Are they patient or give you the impression that this is the 100th time they have answered that question today? Patience and clear language used are excellent qualities.
- How: Do they just give you a “must do list” and that is that? Or do they get your input while putting together your “action plan”. Remember you are an individual looking to grow your business a business that stands out among others. So a cookbook coaching method will be less than helpful.
- How: Does your support/coach “hold you accountable” for agreed upon action plan? Or, does he/she just say do this and it will work. Being held accountable for follow though is the type of coaching support that will help you take your business seriously and grow.
We all need support to grow and in turn need to support others in their growth for any company or business to succeed. A good online business has the support to help you understand and plan.
The best support person is one who meets you where you are right now and provides assistance to get you where you want to go.