Founder and #girlboss, Kelli Jones has been on a start-up crash course for the last 2 years while she’s launched her DIY repair patch business. While she’s leaned on experts in business, manufacturing, marketing and finance and others who did it before her, she has plenty of tips of her own to give out.

ONE. Make your plan out of rubber. Write a plan (even if it’s on a napkin) but understand it will change. If you get lost, it’s a map you can go back to. If you got lost because you followed the map, change the course. Flexibility is one way I got NoSo Patches off the ground.

TWO. Counting Beans. Learn how to read financial statements and understand the basics. A few reports to learn:

  • Income Statement aka Profit & Loss
  • Balance Sheet
  • Cash Flow
  • Budget

If you decide to do your own accounting, take a class. It will save you money and a very big headache in the long run.

THREE. Make a list. Check it twice. There are hundreds of tasks in business that are rote. I call mine “Protocols” and protocols are dope. They’ll save you time and brain damage later when you hire 3 people at once and you just have to get the patches out the door.

FOUR. Clean up your scene. If you have a omnichannel biz, consult an accountant right away, so your Chart of Accounts (COA) is set up properly. It’ll help you can keep your finances neat and tidy.

Kelli in Outside Magazine

Jones getting ready for a close-up.

FIVE. No one else knows what they’re doing either. Set goals, be resilient, and stay the course. Think long term and try to not sweat the details…too much. You’ll notice the tiny mistakes, missteps or shouldawouldcouldas, but no one else will bat an eye.

SIX. Working the puzzle. Running a biz is just solving problems, so don’t take everything so seriously. There are a gajillion answers to every problem. If it’s meant to be and you have the passion to make it happen, it will happen. I’ll leave you with a quote from Mary Poppins: “In ev’ry job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun and snap! the job’s a game.”

Are you a start-upper? What are your tips? Want to start something up? What are you dying to know? Leave a comment and let us know.

Watch for Part Deux of this blog post in June when Kelli gives you tips on how to tell your story and stay sane doing it.

XO Team NoSo