The face of the business
Seeking out partnerships, hunting for new business, conducting the shoot and putting on workshops. Elements like these all require putting your best foot forward and being the focus of attention. Being the face of the business, the front of house person does not always come naturally to many people and it definitely requires a certain mindset. Even for those happy and confident in that role.
If you are a one-man-band then there is no hiding from the fact that you are indeed the face of the business and represent everything there is about it. After all, you’ll no doubt live and breathe the business. If there are two of you then the burden can be shared unless one is more attuned to it than the other, in which case the roles will become clear in that partnership. It should fall naturally, and any ego should be forgotten.
Your personality will inform your company, your brand and there is no point in trying to be anything other than yourself.
Your personality will inform your company, your brand and there is no point in trying to be anything other than yourself. The energy of trying to keep up a different personality for your business and one for your personal life is exacting and counterproductive. There are exceptions to this rule of course. Particularly when it comes to creating marketing that plays on comedy or character. But there should be a clear distinction and as long as your quality of work remains consistently high then all good.
Developing trust in your company and services is the forerunner to sustained business and building the foundations to a solid customer base. This comes about through the quality of your output and products. Crucially this also comes through in your dealings with people and how you come across. If people perceive confidence and assurance, this will reflect on everything the company represents and buying your products becomes a much simpler decision.
Trust applies across everything too, not just your customers. Your suppliers, employees and partners, engendering trust amongst all these aspects will make for a much easier ride.
The familiarity with your company brand is a crucial step to being part of the fabric of a normal trading environment. Many businesses when starting out just want to be accepted as part of the business community and become known for a particular service or product. Being the face of the business means being recognised as the conduit and personality. Instant recognition means being part of the fabric. Accepted. Normal.
Maybe you are not happy in this role and that can be overcome through good marketing. Creating marketing that makes your brand iconic and your company is known for high-quality production is key. You will still have to represent the company but being responsible for great work, representing that, makes your role as the face a whole lot easier.
Strengths and weaknesses
Your strengths may be in great photography or post-production, or the ability to spot great imagery and marry it up to a great product presentation. Your weaknesses may be engaging with potential customers or poor negotiation tactics with suppliers and printers. Regardless, be transparent about that and learn how to upskill and improve on the areas you are not so good at. Always be learning from your experiences with customers and from those who are good at public-facing roles.
A thick skin
Setting up a business from scratch demands a thick skin. Whether that’s from people telling you what is not possible or being told something is not good enough by a customer. It is not a case of barrelling on through regardless but pushing on firmly, taking a little from each of these interactions as motivation or advice. There will be something to learn from everything but your role as the face means sticking to your guns whilst making adjustments as you move forward.
Challenging though it may be, you being the face of the business comes with being a business owner. So stand up and be counted. Relish the opportunity which you have to run, control and have full accountability for you own business. It’s exciting!