An image of two dragon statues; one has a thought bubble reading "FEAST!" and the other, "FAMINE?" The words "SMALL BIZ PROBLEMS, AMIRITE?" appear underneath the dragons.

Slaying Small Business Dragons: Feast or Famine Cycles

Evan Bivins + Alison Kendrick

Greetings, brave adventurers, and welcome to the realm of Bivins Brothers Creative! In this epic quest, we'll embark on a thrilling Dungeons & Dragons-inspired journey, where freelancers and small businesses face mighty dragons known as feast and famine seasons.

As a fellow small business, we understand how hard it is to control the ebb and flow of ideal prospects who become great clients. A high tide can cause all to rise but what do you do on the flip side of that, as the waters run dry? Here's what we've learned throughout our own client work feast and famine cycles.

Step 1. Embrace Your Entrepreneurial Spirit

This phase is inevitable, and panic will only add to your growing list of things to deal with. If you can, enjoy the off-cycle and tend to what's on your back burner. This can mean:

  • Indulge in downtime: Your creativity and productivity aren't intended to be constant! They require periods of rest to function properly. When was the last time you took a day or a week for yourself?
  • Level Up: What's a proficiency you've struggled with on prior adventures? Now would be a great time to brush up with some continuing education, including virtual classes or good old-fashioned YouTube tutorial videos.
  • Diversify your feats: Explore offerings that complement your core business. Adaptability is the shield that protects you during lean times.

Once you've taken a beat, it's time to…

Step 2. Prepare the Feast: Small Business, Big Success

What are some administrative and project management functionalities you've thought "I'll get to that later" about? Later is now here. Future You is gonna be mighty thankful for Today You, making their life better and more optimized! 

When—not if—your next feast season arrives, you'll be on the fast track to greatness if you use the time now to:

  • Assemble your party: Scale your team wisely, so you have a balanced group of skilled adventurers to tackle the increased workload.
  • Unleash your charisma: Woo clients with enchanting customer service. You've got the time, so make them your focus. (And of course, work out a way to keep this practice permanent throughout all your business' cycles and seasons.)
  • Brandish your legendary weapons: Showcase your unique strengths and magical talents in your marketing campaigns. Let the world know that your business wields powers they've never seen before.

You've rested, you've prepared, now you can…

Step 3. Build Your Network and Forge Alliances

Here's how to strengthen your party and conquer challenges together:

  • Attend the Grand Convention of Guilds: Venture forth to industry events and conferences, where you'll encounter fellow adventurers, potential clients, and legendary mentors.
  • Seek wisdom in the Scrolls of Online Communities: Join digital guilds, social media groups, and professional networks. Share your knowledge, seek guidance, and build relationships with fellow adventurers who share your entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Embark on epic quests with allies: Collaborate with other businesses that complement your skills, just like a diverse party with warriors, healers, and mages. Together, you can undertake heroic endeavors and conquer challenges that would be insurmountable alone.

Slay All Day, the Small but Mighty Business Way

Hail, valiant entrepreneurs, you have emerged victorious from this adventure! Armed with the knowledge to slay feast and famine dragons, you're ready to face any quest that comes your way.

May your dice rolls always be in your favor, and may your entrepreneurial journey be filled with countless triumphs and legendary loot!

Evan Bivins + Alison Kendrick
Evan Bivins + Alison Kendrick
Everyone's favorite dragon slayers. Right? RIGHT?!