Hey Kessy’s Mansy Abesamis shares the lessons she’s learned about being a creative entrepreneur. Read on and follow her advice below. Who knows, you just might be able to pursue your artistic endeavors on a full-time basis the way she did!
Mansy here! To be honest, I’ve never had any formal training in business nor art, so most of the things I apply to my life as an artist and entrepreneur are what I’ve learned from my parents, being at the shop, and lastly, through watching movies—really good ones. In short, I just make do with where I am, what I have, and what I can. 🙂 So, here are 5 foolproof things you can do if you want to be the best at being a creative entrepreneur.
1 Don’t put yourself in a box.
As a creative entrepreneur, your position is as flexible and as all-encompassing as you want it to be. Don’t set boundaries and think that you can only be a certain type of person. You set your own limits. Before, I used to turn down speaking engagements because I only wanted to focus on being an artist. I thought that if I focused on being a speaker or an entrepreneur, I wouldn’t be able to be a good artist. It’s only now that I’ve realized that I just denied myself of reaching my full potential. Eventually, I learned that it’s okay to be all three and more! Wearing different hats has allowed me to meet more people and experience more things. I learned random things such as putting in the hours, running a business, and solving things in creative ways.
2 To be a good leader, you must also be a good follower.
The truth of the matter is that you can’t always be the one giving instructions or leading a team. Being the founder or owner doesn’t mean you just do the things CEOs do in movies—boss around people and just sit in your comfortable office chair, waiting for people to do their jobs. To get the job done, there are times when you have to take instructions from others as well—especially if it’s for the good of your project or business. For example, don’t think that just because you’re the boss, you shouldn’t go out to buy raw materials or wait overnight to meet with your building contractors. If your assigned people can’t do it, you must go and do it. Don’t wait, don’t complain. Do it and evaluate later on. Be willing to do everything, and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty.
3 Learn to delegate.
You can’t do everything. You can’t because you are finite. Though everything starts with just one person who dreams of an idea or vision, in order to make that idea more sustainable and bigger, that person needs others’ help. Eventually, you need to focus on the things that you do best and let others take care of the things they’re good at. When you focus on your forte, you can give it your best shot. And others can do what they do best—everything is not lukewarm or so-so. This is also a way for you to share with other people, to give them the opportunity to stand out and excel.
4 Stick to a schedule.
People think that creative people are free spirits and don’t follow a schedule. It’s important to follow a schedule especially if you work with other people and if you have a business. It’s much easier for you to get a clearer picture of your goals and plans. If you have a schedule, you see very clearly what needs to be done now. You don’t get distracted easily. Though it’s sometimes hard to follow a daily calendar, I try my best to maximize my waking hours, focus on one task at a time, and inject enough work and play activities throughout the week.
Every day, I wake up with a list. It’s good to put a lot of things on the list, but I make sure that I have my top 3 tasks for the day. They are the most important things to get done. Everything else is extra. If you have a lot of things on your list, you will just get used to crossing out the items, without giving much thought on whether or not the things you have are important. My Sundays are always devoted to a mini club I founded called “On Sundays We Skate.”
5 Accept who you are.
Before I started Hey Kessy, people were worried that I was “too emotional” and that I couldn’t run a business because I was too intense. I proved everyone wrong by staying true to how I felt and accepting the fact that I can’t change the core of who I am.
Hey Kessy will always be something I’m passionate about. My passion is the thing that takes me to another level and compels me not to give up. Logical people would have probably given up when their business didn’t become profitable, but in my case, I overcame those tough challenges because of my emotions. Yes, I’m still emotional and intense, but I don’t listen to others who see them as bad traits. I actually use it to my advantage. We can always choose what to do with what has been given to us.
What would you like Mansy to share about being a maker and an entrepreneur? Sound off in the comments below!