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Featured SBDC Consultant Annie Olds on the Business Balancing Act


Business Owner Balancing Acts

There are a lot of things that drive business owners nuts when all they want to do is do what they're good at. Whether it's handcrafting furniture, fine tuning recipes to create masterpiece dishes, farm or grow food for their loyal customers, provide lessons, take pictures, produce and package products, you name it… these are the types of reasons that drive business owners to go into business in the first place. They do it because they have a special skill and they want to share it with the world around them.

I hear it time and time again, "I just want to do what I'm good at. I don't have time to do all of this other stuff." But the reality is, all of that other stuff is a necessary evil to owning and operating your own small business. Like it or not, there's red tape, there are employees to manage (good ones and bad ones, all with their own bag of tricks and life experiences), insurance policies to sort through, book work to be done, balance sheets to interpret (huh?), taxes and bills to be paid, money to collect, snow to be shoveled, email and phone messages to be returned, equipment to fix, a website to be built or refreshed, unexpected weather to be dealt with, meetings to attend, finding people to help with all of this stuff, and somehow get the kids dropped off to school on time let alone pick them back up in the afternoon. Yikes! This is the daily plight facing many small business owners when all they want to do is do what they're good at it. It's a frustration we hear day in and day out. Some have mastered the fine art of finding balance between their businesses, family, and friends, often by trial and error no doubt. Others have not. But it’s one of the most critical aspects of running a business and not burning out while doing so. We all struggle with it, business owner or otherwise; but, it’s important to find some form of balance in as many little ways possible for your own sanity-sake and the future of your business.

About the Consultant

Annie Olds has been with the Michigan SBDC as a Small Business Consultant for three years in the Northwest Region of the state, but has been a part of the Northwest Michigan Council of Governments for nearly eight years in various capacities. Annie works with business owners of various stages of operation from start up to growth and everything in between. Having grown up in a family-owned farm and business and being largely connected with the region’s agribusiness community, she serves as the region’s Agricultural Specialist specializing in value-added production, overall management, and business planning. Additionally, Annie is an adjunct instructor for Baker College’s Agricultural Technology degree program in Cadillac.


Related Info:  Small Business Development Center - Northwest Michigan




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