Why do you need a “niche”?
They say that “variety is the spice of life” on one hand and then every bloody thing you read on creating a business is that you need a niche!
I can’t tell you the heartache I’ve felt about all of this, I thought I was flaky and flighty and got really bothered by other people who did multiple things! Why couldn’t I just decide on one thing? Like a ‘normal person’ (here we go again with the 'normal person' myth).
Gosh, and the 'feedback' I’ve received about how I am totally destined to fail because I am trying to do too many things.
Just do one thing.
Stop faffing about with the businesses that don’t make money and pour all your energy into the ones that do!
But I’ve got so many passions, how can I choose just one?!
My arguments for niching...
Probably make it easier to sell stuff, as people know you for the one problem you solve.
Life would probably be bit more simple.
You would have a rinse and repeat business model.
The answer to “what do you do?” wouldn’t involve a 30 min conversation over a cuppa / glass of wine.
You’d probably make more money being the person who solves the XYZ problem.
Easier to become a “known human” in a niche.
We like to categorise people into boxes, because takes up too much brain power when people are doing a bunch of different things. It confuses people if you're un-categorisable! (And apparently that’s a bad thing?)
It’s the advice every ‘business guru’ trots out… get a niche.
My arguments against niching...
It would get a little repetitive and dull doing the same thing all day every day.
What if you thrive on variety and novelty?
What if you have lots of different passions?
What if you want to help a bunch of different people?
What if you niched and there were loads of people who needed my help and I couldn't help them as they were not in my niche?
What if you can solve loads of different types of problems?
What if you liked to do (and were good at) loads of different things?
What if you don’t want to be put in a box?
What if you would rather be thought of as a useful person, who can help other people solve problems (or know the exact person you need to solve your problem).
It’s the same as the pressure I felt to have my one unique “Why”, yeah thanks Simon Sinek for all the extra baggage I was carrying around about not having my one true life purpose!
I was in a workshop with Tara Mohr, she was talking about “Callings”. Someone in the group asked about the difference between knowing your “Why” and having “Callings”. She said something along the lines of… surely most people have the same why/purpose… to bring love and light into the world, callings are those things that we feel drawn to do, they could be our callings for years, or just a weekend and YOU CAN HAVE MORE THAN ONE CALLING (Tara didn’t shout this… I’m shouting this. Because this was a real game-changer for me!) I could breathe knowing it’s ok to be drawn to do different things, to want to help different people in different ways.
Then I was invited to a book launch and got to see Marie Forleo talk about her passions - business, dance, marketing, spirituality, etc. And she said the magic words… “Multipassionate Entrepreneur.”
It’s all about following your passions!
What are you passionate about, Michelle?
At the core, I help people solve their own problems.
To illustrate this, I made a couple of diagrams.
What I do:
And where I get to do these things:
What the companies do:
I’m a multipassionate human.
I like variety and novelty.
The companies exist to appeal to different audiences, but I fundamentally do the same jobs:
I couldn't choose to do only one of these things, I love them all and have space in my life for them all - could you imagine asking a mum to choose which one of her kids to put all her love and attention into?
I also love speaking to people, making friends, learning new things, creating programmes, workbooks, diagrams (and websites) and courses, facilitating conversations and have seem to have recently unlocked my love of writing (I have a cool idea for a fictional novel!).
Watch this space!
Some Cool Resources:
Tara Mohr on callings - https://www.taramohr.com/tools-and-inspiration-for-playing-bigger/how-to-recognize-your-calling/
Marie Forleo explaining how to thrive as a Multipassionate Entrepreneur (MPE) - https://www.marieforleo.com/2020/11/multipassionate/
Marie talking about how not to look flaky as an Multipassionate Entrepreneur - https://www.marieforleo.com/2016/07/multipassionate-without-looking-flaky/
Some examples of Multipassionate Entrepreneurs - https://www.katjahunter.com/blog-1/multipassionate-entrepreneurs