The long and short of it is, life happens. A lot of personal stuff became a huge focus for me over the past year and I was forced to prioritise fewer business/career ventures to get myself in a clearer headspace. To top it off, things with Top Bake were so fluctuant, I had very little time to document my business journey! I spent the the best part of six months firefighting damage to my website done by offshore developers (forget refunds and accountability).
Here’s a quick update.
Top Bake was almost completely ready to go live with several hundred bakers already signed up. Sadly, a website migration cost me almost ALL of my data. A team of developers who I hired to code the website, coded it in a way that made it extremely difficult for it to be modified in any way without losing my customisations. So after migrating it to a new server, almost all of my customisations completely disappeared – everything I had worked on for the past two years. Yes, I had back ups but the site was still incompatible with new theme updates and the old versions of my plugins were expiring -leaving me with an an empty shell of a website.
I pretty much shut my business down.
It’s one of the hardest things to accept when you’ve spent thousands of pounds and years of hard-work towards a project, that it might not ever launch. I hear over and over again about the past failures of successful entrepreneurs but none of those stories made it easier for me to accept my own failures.
My thoughts about the business over the past six months have included:
‘…maybe God wants me to do something else’
‘…maybe I will always start a business but never launch’
‘…maybe I’m supposed to do a job that I hate for the rest of my life’
In all honesty, I haven’t figured the answers to those questions above BUT I have learned two major things that might serve me well in future:
What I have learnt from these trials:
- Just launch with that you have- I’d been told this over and over again and I actually thought that’s what I was doing. But I wasn’t. I was still trying to look better than my competitors (who have already launched BTW).
- Build a good relationship with a developer or team of developers. A lot of damage is done when developers change hands – and the newer one blames the previous one for any damage or errors on the site. This wastes a lot of time and MONEY.
But despite business challenges, life has been pretty good! And focussing on personal stuff – has been worth every second. Especially now that we have a baby on board 🙂
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