Specialist Studio Practice 3 – External meeting: Mentoring

9th March 2016

I spoke with and secured a Mentor in local business owner Adam Carver of Little Daisy’s, Shipley. Him and his wife Faye Carver birthed the business in October 2012 and it has been running well ever since. He offered that we meet up to talk about my business and setting it off the ground etc so we arranged to meet up and did on 9th March 2016. We spoke about everything to do with business. He asked me about my own business that I’m planning to properly launch when I leave Uni. He spoke from experience of setting up his own business too. We went through the hours I do and literally worked out how much time I put into, for example, each Wedding. We worked out that I should be charging at least double of what I’ve been charging previously, because of all the hours I put in in meeting up with the couple beforehand, planning, visiting venues, engagement shoots, the actual photographing on the day and all the editing afterwards. We also calculated the amount I have spent on equipment and software towards my business. After working this out he taught me about profit and how to run a business efficiently and not just ‘doing photography jobs’; as I want this to thrive long term, and I have to think about/cover my future costs as well as the ones I have currently. We also brain stormed some ideas towards my business e.g offers I could do to gain business and different package ideas. He spoke from his own experience of having a photographer photograph his wedding too and how their photographer worked afterwards and how they got to choose their images for the album etc.

This was an incredible opportunity for me and really helped having an outside perspective on my business, someone who wasn’t emotionally invested in it and who could see it from their side: of setting up and running a successful long term business, knowing what works and what doesn’t.

Throughout/at the end of the session I had written a lot of notes (see folder) and had a few specific tasks that I knew I needed to do to set the foundations for my business. Such as create a contract between my client and I, work out what packages I could provide, create an official price list, get my logo and business cards made (by Matt @ Graphically Gifted) which are priority because the majority of work that I get is through word of mouth, then get my website properly made as that’s a bigger/longer job etc. I felt so much clearer about everything once I had spoken to Adam.

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