For years, I've held connection calls where I hop on zoom for 20-30 minutes to get to know a new networking connection. Invariably, a business question pops up and most of the time I can spot a solution to their issue before the end of the call.
In many of these cases, I was able to help them see a way to open up a new income stream, refine a system or process, or just make their business easier in a matter of minutes. Not long ago, I was talking with a guy and by the end of the call we'd mapped out a new approach to one of his existing offers.
That new approach landed him a $15,000 deal later that same day.
I know that might sound a bit unbelievable, but I have receipts. This was both a blessing and a curse for me. A blessing, because I've been able to help hundreds of people over the years. A curse because, for years, I didn't really know how I was doing it.
So, I finally sat down and spent time examining how my brain works... the questions I was asking in order to get those kinds of results for total strangers.
I'm excited to announce that we've re-opened the doors to this popular workshop and I'll be hosting it again this month!
The Cashflow Creator Workshop is designed for entrepreneurs and business owners who want to create a business that reflects their personality, voice, and style and connects with more of their ideal clients and customers with greater ease. More money, more time to enjoy it. A business that works for how you're wired to work.
Whether you're just starting out or looking to rebrand and redesign your business, this workshop will provide you with the guidance and support you need to succeed. By the end of the workshop series, you'll have a personalized roadmap for building or refining your business, based on your unique lifestyle and goals.
This 5-day workshop series, running from April 17-21, will provide you with the tools and guidance you need to design a business model that works for how you're wired to work. Each day, we'll focus on one part of the Creative Freedom Business Model Equation. By the end of the workshop, you'll have a comprehensive understanding of what is and isn't working in your business and how to fix it.
Day one of the workshop will focus on the first part of the Equation: You. We'll dive deep into what really matters for you, including your values, personal context, and the mission/vision for your business. We'll look at how those things play together and what your non-negotiables are to actually feel successful. At the end of the day, you'll be able to communicate clearly the strengths that you bring to the table through your company, and what's most important for you - both personally and professionally - so that you can have a business that supports you to have more of what you want and less of what you don't!
On Day 2, we'll dive deep into the "why" of your business. Not YOUR personal "why" - although that's important, too. Instead, we'll explore why you're in this line of work, what motivates and inspires you, and what makes you uniquely qualified to do what you do. We'll also examine the core purpose of your business, the change you want to see in the world, and the impact you want to have on your customers or clients. By the end of the day, you'll have a clear understanding of the driving force behind your business, which will help you create a brand message that resonates with your ideal audience and sets you apart from the competition.
On Day 3, we'll dive into the "who" of your business model equation. We'll take a deep dive into your ideal clients from a different angle - those who already resonate with your "you" and "why" elements. Instead of trying to conjure up some niche market out of thin air, we want to connect more deeply with people who already resonate with who you are and why you do what you do. We'll explore who your ideal customers are, where they hang out, what they want and need, and how your business can best serve them. By the end of the day, you'll have a clear picture of who your business is for, and how to speak directly to their needs and desires.
On day four, we'll dive into the "what" element of your business model. We'll explore the transformation your offer provides for your clients or customers and identify any gaps or areas for improvement in your current offers. This day is all about fine-tuning your offers so they are aligned with your unique value proposition and the needs of your ideal clients or customers.
Day five will be dedicated to the "how" of your business model. You can deliver the same "what" in different ways - different "how's". A book, a course, and a video, for example are different ways to delivery the same "what". We'll examine the delivery and pricing of your offers, as well as your marketing strategy. By the end of this day, you'll have a solid understanding of how to package and promote your offers in a way that resonates with your ideal clients or customers, and generates the cash flow you need to sustain and grow your business.
This is one of my favorite testimonials from our workshop last year:
"This workshop is POWERFUL! And Lisa Robbin Young is a MASTER at the concepts and practices she teaches - not to mention a great coach. I got a level of clarity of purpose and strategy for going forward that had been missing for me. And it's a strategy that EXCITES me and had me saying 'YES! That's ME! I can do that!' Thanks Lisa!"
Teresa Romain - Founder of Access Abundance
Other attendees said they also experienced:
So if you're serious about having a business that works for how you're wider to work, get your buns over to my info page and register for the CashFlow Creator Workshop series and take the first step towards a fulfilling and sustainable business.
I'm capping registration at 20 people. If financial accessibility is an issue for you, please reach out. Partial scholarships or grants may be available.
This week I successfully completed all my planning for January! Woo hoo! I know many entrepreneurs who are still shuffling papers and won't solidify their plans until sometime in the middle of the month - after they've given up on more than half their New Year's resolutions. I've been that person, and over the last couple of years, I've finally managed to hammer out a process for planning that works for me.
That's part of the struggle if you're a creative entrepreneur. There's no one plan that seems to cover everything. If you're a personality-based business owner, it's even harder. You've got to include your personal plans with your business plans, because they tend to overlap. Short of my own Dreamblazing program, I've yet to see a planning system that does that well, if at all.
Yes, finding a groove and getting the planning process down is a hurdle, but once you've got that process down, there are still a few mistakes I consistently see entrepreneurs make when planning their new year. I've even done them myself! Here are five of the big ones:
In my Dreamblazing program, I talk about "pumpkin" goals and "radish" goals. Pumpkins take all year to mature, while radishes only take 20-40 day. Having all your harvest come in at the end of the year makes it difficult to manage - and you can starve the rest of the year. Radish-sized goals give you some bite-sized results that you can manage throughout the year. Those radish goals can be milestones toward your bigger pumpkin goals, too.
Just be sure you don't have (more…)
I'm not one for social commentary or deep philosophical discussions, so consider this the "light version" of any meaningful conversation about the nexus of technology and society. This isn't a commentary about technology, though. It's more about what's unwittingly happened to people as we've become more "connected" to the world.
The Industrial Age gave us cookie-cutter, assembly line techniques for being efficient and crafting a uniformly effective offering.
That's awesome in a survival-based world, where cranking out quality stuff in quantity is important.
But that's not the world we live in anymore. On the whole, we are wealthier and healthier than we've ever been as human beings. Yes. there are exceptions to the rule, but most of those folks aren't reading this anyway, so it doesn't apply to them.
This applies to you. You, the person that's been cramming yourself into the same cookie-cutter mold for decades (or railing against it), because that's all there was.
I've been pretty lucky to "grow up" in the digital age. I'm technically not a Millenial, but I'm on the cusp. I built one of the first e-commerce websites back when animated gifts were all the rage (the first time), and video wasn't even a glimmer in the Internet's eye.
In that time, there've been lots of "game changers" - which is almost silly to say. The advent of the Internet is like watching an infant grow into a toddler and then a teen - everything is new, thus everything is a "game changer". But the one commonality I've witnessed over the last 20 years is the growing ease with which people can access, use, and contribute to this technology - and how this new-found ease impacts their work.
10 years ago, the idea of watching your favorite TV show or a feature-length film on your stylish CaseFace phone was insane. Now, mobile and "third screen" viewing has eclipsed television, and will likely continue to do for the foreseeable future. The ability to take your media with you has relegated newsprint to the birdcage, and magazines I loved reading as a kid have gotten thinner and more ad-laden.
Less content, more commercials. A sure-fire end to most anything.
One look at Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs will show you that we've done a great job (on the whole) of getting those basic needs met. As I said before, we're wealthier and healthier than we've ever been in human history.
Here's another great example from Chip Conley, which condenses the pyramid into three layers (particularly the "employee" pyramid, which he's condensed to "money", "recognition", and "meaning").
Maslow's theory is that we work our way up the pyramid, once we've assured ourselves that our more basic needs are met. Once we've handled the basics like, food, shelter, clothing, saftey, and a paycheck, we can concern ourselves with "higher" issues like love, a sense of belonging, or recognition. Ultimately, once those things are handled, we can search for "self-actualization" or the meaning of life, if you will.
Here's the problem in a nutshell. We've been pushed up the pyramid, whether we like it or not. Computers have "connected" us, and made things incredibly easy, yet so many of us weren't ready for the shift.
Now, building a career can happen remotely. For my last job, I applied, interviewed, and was hired digitally. I worked from my Michigan home, and the company was thousands of miles away on the west coast. All my contact and interaction was digital: email, skype, webcam. No handshakes, no eye contact, just pixels.
Love and belonging (at least on some level) are just a facebook post away. When I'm feeling blue, I can post a simple "Hugs please" on Facebook, and my friends come out of the woodwork to encourage me. I never got that kind of instant gratification & encouragement before the Internet! So work, networking, and even relationships have gotten more efficient, thanks to technology.
We've got all this time on our hands, and yet we're stuck.
We're stuck because, now that the basics and middle-ground issues are being "handled," we have to look to ourselves and find meaning - something that takes time and can't be short-cut.
"Why am I here? What makes me valuable if a computer can do my old job in half the time? What real value do I bring to the world?"
We didn't have time to deal with these questions before. We had work to do, dammit, and that had to come first, so we could eat - so we could SURVIVE! But now, with all this time on our hands, we're having to face these questions - and some of us have a boatload of anxiety, depression, fear, or ambivalence toward it.
To make matters worse, we've been taught that thinking of ourselves is selfish and inconsiderate, and we are, therefore "BAD" for behaving that way.
No wonder our culture sometimes feels like it's on a downward spiral.
The truth is, you've been doing it since you were born. You "took" your first breath, and it's been downhill ever since. In reality, you can't NOT put yourself first. It's just that our culture has made it out to be some sort of a crime because there are those among us who would take it to the far extreme. Putting yourself ahead of everyone else - at all costs - is a kind of selfishness that often comes from a place of fear.
Self-care is not selfish - including in your work. (tweet this)
More and more employees are jumping ship to work for themselves. I'm meeting more entrepreneurs who left corporate America after only a few years of being disillusioned about their prospects with their employers. I'm also meeting entrepreneurs that are carving out a name for themselves by defining success on their own terms. They're creating businesses and offers that take into account how they like to work, who they like to work with, and what they want their life to be like so that they can experience success now - not in 35 years. They see that there's no pot at the end of the rainbow, that "someday" doesn't come with a big red ribbon, and they're deciding what they really want and going for it now.
To "older folks" entrenched in the ancient ways of the Industrial Age, it feels a bit like treason. It's definitely shaking up their snowglobes - the idea that they can give themselves permission to walk away from something they don't love and do something that brings them joy - and get paid to do it -still strikes fear into many of my older family members. They grew up in Depression-era America, where you got one job and stuck with it until you were old enough to retire, take the watch and the pension, and then go have a REAL life - if you lived that long. I know many employees of the assembly line factories who literally gave their lives to their work, dropping dead within a few days of retirement.
I've said before that now is the best time for you to create a business (and a life) that works for you. Of course, that means getting clear on who you really are and what's really important to you. It means doing the work at the top of the pyramid, and finding the meaning that matters...
... to YOU.
For some folks, this might seem foreign, or scary, but there are countless people in the world doing it. In fact, I'm launching a new series next year that spotlights these folks (more on that in a later post). They are becoming the norm. Gone are the days of three television networks and multi-national conglomerates that corner the market. Now is the time of what I call the "experience economy" - and creating a life for yourself that matters. It's reaching smaller, tighter markets and making a big impact. It's happening now.
On Monday, I'll be leading a free teleclass called "Success Your Way: How to have a profitable, sustainable business that works for you in 2015... and beyond." If you're at all interested in riding this wave of business with meaning, I invite you to join me. You'll learn more about this crazy "pyramid scheme" called business, as well as how to figure out which stage of growth your business is in and how to shape it to this new experience economy... which might sound more technical than it really is.
In short, we'll talk about how YOU can create a business that works for you, based on how you define success. And if you're not sure how to define success, we'll talk about that, too.
How are you dealing with the way technology has pushed you up the pyramid? What has been a blessing (or a curse) for you because of it? Share your comments below.