Success, Through Failure.
This Month has been an emotional roller-coaster. I’m pretty sure I’m not manic, and so I guess this is a part of owning your own business. All of the emotions are that much stronger, because as a business owner, your brand, and business identity, are essentially pieces of yourself.
I’ve experienced both the ultimate, heart sinking low of my greatest failure, and the highest of highs, in some landmark successes for my business all in one month. I have cried my eyes out and I have squealed with joy.
Through my failure, a huge photo shoot with multiple complaints, I learned a few important lessons. This was the first time, I’ve ever had a customer complain, it was like taking a punch in the gut, I hated it. What was worse, I had to continue working with the clients over an extended period to resolve the problems, because that was the right thing to do. Overall an embarrassing and humbling experience, what should have made me money ended up losing me tons of cash in travel/shipping costs. In the end through many tears, I took away one resounding lesson that I will always heed: Listen to your gut. I knew this photo-shoot was a bad idea from day one, but my bank account made me do it. Trying to do jobs I know I’m mediocre at is a disaster before the first exposure.
“I’ve experienced both the ultimate, heart sinking low of my greatest failure, and the highest of highs, in some landmark successes for my business all in one month. “
Although the month started out with my questioning myself, and my abilities as a photographer, it seems to be ending with a bounce in my step, and a renewed confidence in my professional identity. What is most important to me and why I do “this photography thing” are relationships. Human relationships fascinate and enthrall me. Nothing makes me happier than finishing a job, and having people tell me how emotional and how special their photos were to them, that’s it. Game. Set. Match. All of my work for the remainder of this month achieved that goal, and that feels great.
“Nothing makes me happier than finishing a job, and having people tell me how emotional and how special their photos were to them, that’s it. Game. Set. Match.”
I’ve been trying to expand and offer more professional albums, and slideshow presentations to display at weddings. These things are so very scary- when you’re trying something new, you never want to be doing it for the first time on the most important day of someone’s life. I just got my first album back and after investing several hundred dollars into it, I was scared to even open the box. The wedding was in two days!!! My worries were for nothing, it was perfect. The feeling I got, in seeing my beautiful work honored on those carefully assembled pages was one of complete success, enough so to wash away the troubles of my failure, and inspire me to have confidence in my photography, once again.
Winston Salem Wedding Photography by Winston Salem Photographer, Shanna Duffy
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