A little help from my friends: 8 ways to help your friends help your business
My sister and I are lucky to have a great community of family and friends who assist with events, engage with our brand on social media and are a strong support system when the going gets tough. As business owners, we often make requests from our friends above and beyond the call of duty. There’s a few things we’ve learnt along the way about getting a little help from our friends:
- Be a good friend: This one should be easy! I love my friends and I enjoy helping out with their special moments in life from moving house to helping plan a wedding to organising a hang out for everyone. I have fun doing these things because I love them and I find myself energised when we have a laugh. This makes it a lot easier for them to come through and show up for Cultureville. They want me to succeed just like I want of all them to find happiness and success!
- Make it as easy as possible: There are various reasons why a friend may be unable to help and it’s important you are prepared to take steps to reduce any burdens on them. If they are driving, offer to pay for their parking. If they’ll be assisting for a few hours, ensure you feed them or take them to dinner afterwards. If they are a creative person e.g. getting started in photography, make sure you attribute any content they create for you to help them to increase their profile. These make it more likely they will help next time because there is much less to worry about.
- Ensure you spread the love: Don’t ask the same friend over and over again! It may create a relationship whereby you simply call to make requests. Ask various friends for various events so it doesn’t become too onerous for the same friend. We aim to space out our requests to friends and most of all, our friendship comes first!
- Make it fun: Take time to hang out between any stressful parts of the event. We often get invited to carnivals, festivals and fashion shows. These are great events and we ensure after we are all set up, we get our friends to soak in the atmosphere and enjoy being involved from tasting different cuisines to enjoying walking in a show to taking pictures so they remember the event for the right reasons.
- Know their strengths and weaknesses: Being aware of what your friends like and are good at is important. Certain people have a skill set which would be perfect for a sales event whereas others are more creative and would enjoy a photo shoot more. Understand your friends and you’ll have a better outcome for the business and your relationship.
- Don’t take rejections personally: Your business is your baby and it can be difficult to separate the business from yourself when you’re working all hours of day and night. It is important to understand the fact that your friends love you even when they are unable to help out. In addition, it’s important your friends can be honest with you when they are unable to help and this will be more difficult if they feel you’ll take it personally!
- Be considerate: Have a good understanding of what’s going on in their lives and when it may be more inconvenient for them to assist. It may be that they have a lot going on at work or they are travelling often. Ensure you consider these external factors and you show care for them by asking about what’s going on with them before jumping ahead to making any requests.
- Keep your friendship first: Having a strong support system of good, honest and open friends and family that love you is important. Value your relationship first and foremost and you’ll find that there’s usually a hand raised to come through and help on the days you need them.
We hope these 8 tips make it easier for you to get a little help from your friends
Written By: Adeola Adelakun