The first thing you probably thought when you read the blog title was 'you silly woman, you have it the wrong way around!', but no... it is the right way around!
I cannot take credit for that title as it was something that was said in a podcast episode I was listening to a couple of weeks ago (and have listened to about four times in total now because it really resonated with me). The podcast was episode 307 from Lori Harder's amazing podcast 'Earn Your Happy', titled 'The Secrets to Winning in Business and Life' with Winn Claybaugh.
I wanted to unpick the whole 'Ready, Fire, Aim!' thing because it really is genius! The problem with the traditional 'ready, aim, fire!' is that most of us aim and aim and aim for so long that we don't actually go for it, we don't 'fire' towards our goals soon enough, if at all.
I can talk about this from personal experience because the Lucy of old, the Lucy that dreamed of starting a stationery business years and years ago, and only spoke of it during that really inspired time we have around New Years Eve (where we feel unstoppable for all of five minutes), spent way too long aiming. My aiming was made up of endless, tedious 'research' of competitors websites and reading all the right books and listening to all the right podcasts; which is all valid, but what is not valid is the years it took me to leap, or 'fire'. The procrastination part is the part that stops most people from achieving their dreams, or at least trying to achieve them, because we so easily talk ourselves out of it or, during our extensive 'research' we then suffer from the dreaded 'comparison syndrome', which can be terminal to any new entrepreneur.
Now that I have the gift of hindsight I can say that Winn's re-ordering of the sentence to 'Ready, Fire, Aim!' is what we should all do, because let me tell you something, basically all the research I did meant nothing when I launched Leaf Lane Studio! I have learned to aim and re-aim since launching, because getting started is the only way to truly learn and be prepared.
Before I launched my business, I had the amazing opportunity to work with Gemma Sands, and having her as my business coach gave me a full on kick up the backside that I needed, because I genuinely think I would still be researching now, and I'm not even joking! Gemma took me through so many practical steps and I finally had to be accountable to someone other than myself, which clearly wasn't working was it! I laugh now, because I remember the amount of times Gemma said '...you just need to launch (fire) and then get the details sorted along the way (aim)...'. Knowing what a perfectionist she was dealing with poor old Gemma would always advise me to launch the brand/website as I had it, and to understand that as I worked with it 'live', so to speak, that I would naturally want to shift things around, telling me that I would have learnt so much and would intuitively 'know' what I needed to shift and, I hate to admit it, but she was right (you have it in writing Gem!).
Looking back it is all so obvious to me now, but before you launch something it just seems terrifying! How could I have possibly known exactly how I needed everything to work or look without actually testing it and just working with it for a while? Starting a business is tough and you do find yourself constantly wanting to re-work things, probably because the world is your oyster and, suddenly, you are your own boss who can do whatever you want, but take the advice; narrow right in on your ideal customer and, if you don't get it all set in stone, launch anyway and tweak it (aim) along the way!
For me, it is only now, just over a year in, that I am re-working my website; it's hard work, but I now know much more about what my clients need/want (through actually doing the work with them...gasp!). I can now see it far more clearly and have a lot more insight to use and work with, rather than guessing.
So the moral to this story is simply this: aim along the way, no-one will know that you haven't got it all sorted yet except you. Just launch the thing, whatever the thing is and work it out as you go; take it from me, I know this is the right way (now!). Leaf Lane Studio would probably be about five or six years old right now if I hadn't have taken so long to get myself together!
You simply cannot learn the bones of running a business without running the business!