What turning one has taught me, by Nikki Bentley

Perfect Tribe is ONE. A milestone that for the most part would have gone unnoticed had it not been burned onto my radar by other business owners in my entrepreneur support groups. “Just get through the first year” they said, “everything gets easier after that”.

So I turned one, and waited - for a day or so - for it to get easier.

Now it might have been because I wasn’t quite sure what ‘easier’ would look like that I completely missed its arrival, and pretty speedy departure! Or it might just be that there is always a new normal when running a business. I’ve learnt buckets in a year, yet still feel like I’ve barely started.

So I wanted to share five ‘little milestones’ from the first 12 months of Perfect Tribe. A few small moments of seemingly random enlightenment that make me appreciate just how much can happen in a business year. 

1. The office is where the WIFI is.

Those of you who know me well will know that I am a champion of the remote working office model. If your business is your passion, you must be able to take your passion with you wherever you go. I’ve spent a year working from different countries, connecting with new, unique talent and far-flung brands. And it’s invigorating. All you need is WIFI, and coffee.

2. Projects get cancelled and it’s nobody’s fault.

Don’t bank on anything until it’s in the bank. I learnt, again, that there are so many levels and layers to businesses. Be realistic and always ask the difficult questions. I was so eager to hear a ‘yes’ in the first few months of business, that it sometimes stopped me from asking the questions that might actually have lead me to a ‘maybe’ or a ‘not now’.

3. If you work with great people, great people will work with you.

I founded Perfect Tribe to work with amazingly talented people who love doing, and are brilliant at, what they do. This is even more ingrained in our values and our WHY after the first year, and I am so grateful and honoured to have worked with so many amazing, skilled people in the tribe.

4. Celebrate the wins

Whether it’s a new client, a new partnership, winning your first gold award at the PromaxBDA Global Excellence Awards in New York in June (yikes!) or just finishing a great piece of work. Celebrate it. With your clients, your partners, your family, your friends. It all matters. All of it.

5. You will never know it all.

There is no point at which you go ‘Yeah, I’ve got this nailed now’. Once I'd accepted this as my new reality, it was rather liberating. Tomorrow is not yesterday and today is just today - all new, terrifying and wildly exciting.

There’s a t-shirt some of you may have seen, which as an African I just love. It reads Africa. Only for the Brave. I think new businesses are a lot like Africa.


If you’ve landed some interesting milestones in your first year of business, or can share what to expect for year two, please reach out! I'd love to hear your thoughts: nikki.bentley@perfecttribe.com