A lot has been written recently about introvert business success. So many expert opinions telling us how we should do business like it’s a one size fits all situation.
As life rapidly changes around us, we need to be resilient and find ways to adapt and succeed. The old business models are becoming outdated quicker than you can say “sign on the dotted line.” And people are looking for more transparency and more heart in their business transactions.
I’ve always used business collaboration as a tool for success in my introvert business, and in this post, I will share how it can work for your business too.
Using a collaborative business model allows your business to stay buoyant in our new economy. I’ve always run businesses with collaboration at the core, and this approach has resulted in ongoing success. To me, bringing others on the journey is the most impactful and satisfying way to run a business.
The benefits of prioritising business collaboration
There are many benefits to running a collaborative business, here are a few of my favourites:
Reaching new markets
The success of your introvert business lies in how many people you can reach. It makes sense then, to widen your market, something easily achieved through business collaboration.
Choosing to work with people who can add benefit to your clientele is terrific, but having them open their network to you is priceless.
If you focus on mutual benefit, your collaboration will open you to new markets, while lifting the quality of service to your existing market.
Generating new ideas
Being in business can be hard work. If you’re the sole person responsible for new ideas and strategies, you can burn out pretty quickly.
But having someone else to point out new opportunities or to strategise with can bring much needed fresh ideas and new ways of approaching old problems.
Working to your strengths
Did you know that introverts work better in a collaborative model?
Research has shown that introverted leaders are more likely to listen to a colleague’s ideas and allow others to shine. Because of our quieter nature, we don’t crave accolades. We are comfortable with letting others display their skills, particularly in areas where we aren’t confident.
Choosing a collaborative introvert business model will allow you to work to your strengths, and enable others to add value to your business.
Avoiding burn out
One of the biggest dangers of being an introvert in business is the threat of burnout.
But collaborating with other people is a way to excel in business without becoming overwhelmed. Letting others shine at what they do best gives you time to rest out of the spotlight.
Creating a community
Running a business can be a lonely endeavour, particularly in the early stages. There are so many hats to wear and tasks to complete. But a collaborative business model means you have a community of people that you can call on for advice or listen as you vent.
My newest business is a perfect example of how the collaborative business model works.
I’ve created a digital magazine full of strategies and inspiration on living a simpler life. I have contributors from all over the world who write articles on their own experiences in simplifying their lives. I collaborate with my contributors, who provide me with the most inspiring stories and advice.
In return, I pay them a share of the subscription fees generated from our community of readers. In effect, the whole cycle is collaboration.
- I collaborate with contributors to inspire our community of readers.
- Our readers collaborate with our contributors by paying them for their insight and advice.
It’s a win/win situation.
If you would like to become a part of our community, you can join us here.
How to find the right collaborative partners for your introvert business
If you would like to start your own collaborative business, here’s how to find the right partners:
Do they have a skill set that can benefit your business?
It’s helpful that your new collaboration partner has a different skill set to you, but one that complements your business offering.
Ask yourself: Will your clients benefit from their skill set?
How can you help them?
Collaboration is a two-way street.
Ask yourself: What will your future collaboration partner gain from collaborating with you?
Does their work have a similar ethos to your own?
If you’re collaborating with someone, even if it’s a once-off, you need to have a similar ethos. There’s no point in working together if; for example; you believe in climate change and they don’t.
How to instigate business collaborations
Once you’ve found a business or person that you’d like to collaborate with, it’s time to contact them.
The way you approach a business at the beginning will set the tone for your entire collaboration. Get this part right and you will always hear “yes please”.
My suggestion is to contact prospective collaborators via email.
People are busy, and the ability to read your proposal and then investigate your business further, at their own pace, will be welcomed. Cold calling is not always appreciated.
Here are a few tips on how to structure your email:
Get to the point
People who run businesses are always busy. Be concise but polite. Get to the invitation quickly and explain why you think your businesses would work well together.
Be clear on what you’re offering
As I mentioned earlier, collaboration is a two-way street. When you invite your prospective collaborator to work with you, be clear on how your collaboration will help them.
Invite them to look you up.
Share your social media and website links so they can immediately see that you’re not a pesky spammer.
Always use your business email. It gives you the professional edge you need to be taken seriously.
If you don’t have one I strongly recommend you invest in one. Nothing says “just playing around with being in business” more than a generic Gmail account.
The power of business collaboration in your introvert business
I hope this post helps you to look at a collaborative business model in a new light.
Working with others brings a rich sense of satisfaction and allows you to achieve so much more.
Navigating the new world we live in will be easier with collaborative partners, and will create resilience in your introvert business.
So tell me, do you use collaboration as part of your business strategy? Leave a comment below and let me know.