Hello, amazing creative! This week, we’ll dive in on who you should be getting advice from for your creative business and who you should be avoiding like the plague!

Not all advice and not all advice-givers are created equal. It’s really important that we don’t go seeking advice and support willy-nilly in our networks because it might not be the best advice and it might not be the best support for you as a creative in business.Β 

So who should you avoid getting advice from?

πŸ’‘#1 : ARMCHAIR CRITICS

These are people who have the most amazing ideas and theories, but actually don’t run their own business. Either they’ve never tried, or there are a million excuses why their business never succeeded.

They have got all the ideas but actually don’t have skin in the game. I would stay away from them because it’s all theory and opinion.

πŸ’‘#2 : Corporate People

Surprisingly enough you should be wary of people that work a job, or work in corporate. They’re probably not the best people to get business advice from. This is because when you work a job, when you’re in corporate, you come at it from a very different perspective than a small business owner.

Generally, when working in corporate, no matter how high they are up in the C-suite, no matter what their internal status, it’s a very different business structure. They have a job description,Β  a pre-determined structure underneath them and around them that they didn’t have to create.

There is a runway and a pathway to success in a job, generally. And when you run your own business, it’s not so clear-cut. So do be aware of getting advice from people in corporate because their experience is miles apart from yours, so the advice they give you from a corporate perspective may not work for a creative or a small business owner.Β 

πŸ’‘#3 : Friends and family

Avoiding getting advice from your friends, family, spouse, or your best mate. Although you might think they’ve got your best interests at heart, sometimes they don’t understand or even fully support what you do. Plus, they might not be running their own business.

They don’t know what you need to know. They don’t have that experience. Also when you’re asking friends or family for advice, they’re coming at it from the perspective of being your family member or as your friend.

Therefore, there’s a whole history behind you that might cloud or colour their advice for you, which is why. their advice might not be the most objective. And sometimes, our friends and our family might mean very well, but they might want to keep us small or keep us safe. So their advice might have a negative slant to it or thet might want to keep you small, to stay as they recognise you in their own minds.

Of course, this is a blanket statement and many creatives get tremendous support and encouragement from loved ones, but don’t assume that friends and family are a great place to get advice from.

πŸ’‘#4 : Crowdsourcing

Finally, I would avoid crowdsourcing advice. That means going into big Facebook groups or into large online communities.

If a business group is too broad with a vast array of experiences, business levels, models and industries, you might get a real mishmash of advice, which can really mess with your decision making.

Don’t forget that on the internet or social media, everybody’s got an opinion. So asking pot-shot advice in large groups, you’re going to get random opinions that may have absolutely no bearing on what you actually need. It’s because they don’t know you and don’t understand you. Or they just want to get something off their chest and your post becomes their space to vent, make snarky comments or push their own agendas.

πŸ’‘So who should you take advice from?

People who are in the arena – people like you and me who are getting our butts kicked, getting muddy in the field, actually working in their own business every day. Those who understand what it’s like on the ground; growing and building their own businesses.

In addition, you can ask advice from:
πŸ‘‰ creatives in business who are a few steps ahead of you. People who are where you want to be.
πŸ‘‰ past clients whom you have a solid relationship with.
πŸ‘‰ current clients or collaborators.
πŸ‘‰ people who have worked with you in the business; either investors, team members or staff.
πŸ‘‰ people that have a vested interest in you personally; who really understand what you do and what your goals are.

Of course, getting a trusted mentor is a fabulous place to get business advice from especially as a creative.

It might seem that I am selling my own creative business membership here, and in a way, I am because for many years I had fabulous mentors and coaches for my businesses. But there was always something missing. They were generalist business coaches, or they were in another industry totally unrelated to mine.

They were not creatives, so it was only so far that their advice could take me.

There was always THAT missing puzzle piece, so that’s why I started The Creative Business HubΒ : to fill a gap that I noticed myself. If I was looking for creative mentorship all those years ago, there’s going to be people out there – possibly YOU – looking for a creative mentor who has real experience and runs on the board. I still have my own design business, so I’m really walking my talk with this.

So, I would definitely find a mentor whether it’s me or somebody else, it doesn’t matter. Just find someone who has walked your path, who really understands what you’re trying to do and maybe has already achieved what you are trying to achieve.

I hope that has shed some light on who you should get advice from and who you should avoid like the plague.

If you are looking for a creative business mentor, I would love for you to join The Creative Business Hub and the beautiful community of creatives we already have in there.