How to Stay Innovative When You’re A One Man Operation

With the economy down and unemployment numbers high, many have chosen to take the opportunity to start their own business as a one man operation.

This is an exciting step, but it comes with some challenges. How do you motivate yourself daily to work from home? And who do you turn to when you need to brainstorm your next business move?

Here are 5 tips to help the one man operation stay innovative and leading edge:

1.  Get out and network

It can be tempting to stay at home doing what you know how to do best, but it’s easy to fall into a rut. Break away from the comfort zone of your desk and computer, and get out in the world to meet new people. It will give you fresh inspiration and a new mindset when you go to work the next morning.

2. Take advantage of your existing network

People like to express their opinions. Don’t be shy about approaching your network of family and friends to bounce ideas around or ask their opinion about what you should do next. Many times, they will welcome the idea and be flattered you were interested in what they had to offer.

3. Use online forums

Online forums are a great way to see what people in your industry are saying and keep atop of the latest innovations. By being active in these forums, you also get an opportunity to promote your business and make new connections.

4. Talk to past co-workers

You used to work with your colleagues on a professional basis, so most of them will be ready to continue discussing with you professionally. It is a good time to develop on that trust they have in you as a professional and promote your new business. Just because you are no longer with that company does not mean you cannot extend an olive branch and work with past co-workers in other ways.

5. Break outside the box

Don’t limit yourself to only talking about business with people inside your industry. By learning about other industries you may find ideas you had never thought possible and bring some fresh insight into your industry with new approaches and communications.

Make it easy for people to share and even easier for you to store these ideas with online collaboration tools. By storing information in the cloud, your new connections, existing network or past colleagues can give you their two cents whenever it is convenient for them, making you more likely to receive feedback. Likewise, their ideas are automatically stored for you online so you can access them anytime and anywhere.

Networking Online, One Man Operation