Reply To: I appreciate the tautoko here so much. Thank you.I’m anxious at the moment. I started this small biz and am working on building awareness about my brand and marketing some new products.  I’m new at this though.  I’m worried about whether I’m making the right decisions about where to invest my time and money to help my business grow in a sustainable way.  And that matters.  It really matters.  I can’t waste either of those things now. I watch similar businesses going real hard on marketing and being creative with how essential they are. No hate to them – we’ve all got bills and families. But it’s exacerbating that feeling of being behind the 8-ball, being left behind.  If I had more clarity on the best way forward for my business that would dampen the crazy noise which tbh is mostly someone yelling f***k, f**k, f**k in my head and running from action to action like a lunatic. Even having an updated strat and plan doesn’t help cos I wrote them.So I guess my question is, how can I find a mentor or people who can eyeball what I do, how I do it and what I think is a good strategy for growing my biz and tell me whether I’m on a good track or not?

Kia ora and thank you for responding. Currently I design and craft handmade goods for people and homes. I set up my website and built a good new following on Instagram. Scaling and biz sustainability is challenging with a handmade business so my planning for 2020 (pre-covid) had a phased introduction of items from other makers, potentially outsourcing some of the making as well as one product which isn’t in the market at the moment which I’m excited about but am in the very early stages of seeing if I can find anyone to produce it in NZ. I think it’s got potential to do well.

While my usual markets weren’t available during lockdown I brought forward my collaboration with other makers and as soon as we’re in level 3 will be able to release some limited runs of gift boxes to test the market. It’s also a way to tautoko other makers in this time. In lockdown I don’t have access to supplies which would mean I could outsource some of the making.

My website traffic isn’t huge being new and so I’ve got traffic building mahi happening concurrently.

So I’m making the goods, managing the collabs with other makers, building traffic, updating the website, managing social media/channels, building awareness, trying to figure out the best marketing campaign for the giftboxes, planning around access to supplies post lockdown 4 – I can operate fine with the conditions required in lockdown 3, deciding if I should be pursuing the new product sooner rather than later, etc etc.

Altogether it makes for wheelspinning through late nights and probably not great decisions about the most effective place to put my time and money. I love being productive. Love a late night doing mahi. But it’s clarity I’m missing over which plates need spinning now and which I can just eat my non-existent lockdown baking on.