How to Know What and When to Delegate

Have you also noticed that as an entrepreneur and a mother we easily get caught up in doing the same things over and over? We often let our old responsibilities become so engrained in our minds as what “needs to get done” that we just get into a routine to accomplish them.

Unfortunately, over time it can become more evident that you are outgrowing some of those responsibilities or chores. Some of the things you have always done become a waste of time and resources that can easily be delegated to others. Delegation is a skill set that a hear a lot my clients say they don’t think they can efficiently do. They have a fear of losing the control of their work quality and having to trust someone else to do something that they can do and do it as well as they would have.

Many of my clients have told me in the past that they simply don’t believe a leadership comes naturally to them. And, though this is a very understandable concern, it’s also one that proves consistently to be a non-issue. Of course, there are coaches out there (like me) that can and will happily help you to feel confident to grow into a leadership role.

You Already Know How to Lead

But what most of my clients fail to recognize or give themselves proper credit for is that as a mother, you are already a leader! You already successfully delegate things that need to get done to your spouse, your family, and your children. Chores that need done around the house like yard work, laundry, dinner planning and preparation are (hopefully) passed out evenly amongst the others around the house. As a mom, it probably just makes no sense to do everything on your own while everyone else sits watching TV. As as true as this is for your home, it is absolutely just as true for your business.

In order to reach the next level of productivity in your business you really need to consider reaching out and asking for the help you need. Once you determine what you need someone to do, it is also critical to ensure that you organize yourself and your needs so the help you do hire can be as effective as possible for you.

The beauty of having someone who wants to help you is you can rely on them to really step up and step in, just taking some of the easier tasks off your plate that are time consuming. And, as a bonus, just think about how much time delegation will actually give you to spend with your children (or friends, or sleeping).

Baby Steps to Delegation

And remember you don’t have to think on a enormous scale here, either. Think about simply hiring a part-time, capable virtual assistant. VAs can help with so much because of the blessing of new technology. Simple tasks that you spend considerable time on or busy work (think social media, bookkeeping, marketing or even just simple sales follow up for your webinars and program participants). In the long run, it takes so much less money to pay someone who is proficient and professional, particularly if you calculate how much time you spend on the tasks plus your hourly rate.

The fall season is a great time to take a step back and start considering some business areas where you can use some help. You still have time to get organized to implement and hire that out in 2017 and take some of your own time back! Not sure where to start? I can help you! Contact me today for your free Discovery Session.

Continue Reading

Permission Granted: You Don’t Have to Make Your Passion Your Job

Guess what you get today? You get my permission (not that you really ever needed it). Ready? Permission granted. You are granted permission to free yourself from “shoulds”, the “woulds” and the “coulds” that can be thrown at us by our daily lives and the media. These things tend to have an uncanny power to stress us out and make us unhappy.

When you set goals for yourself, you probably create an action plan and get going right on it don’t you? I know you do! And sometimes, you find yourself doing it all right, following the plan & meeting the goals and yet you are missing something. There is some element missing from the equation that would’ve made that goal truly fulfilling and satisfying for you. Unfortunately, sometimes it can be nearly impossible to figure out what or why that is for you. The reality is things can always change mid-plan. So many different things can happen in the time frame that you are so focused on your plan that you are distracted and don’t even notice. Then, you wind up reaching your goals & benchmarks and realizing that you are still feeling unhappy.

Sometimes, I think a large part of this can be the alignment or misalignment with your purpose and your passion. Good jobs are financially stable, offer a predictable routine,  and have benefits like sick days, time off and insurance. But, what if you have a “good job” but your true passion is something completely different? What if you are a nurse who loves public speaking, a waitress who feels inspiration in writing short stories or a paralegal who thrives through her photography? All of the sudden it has become a very common theme that if someone is not doing work that they love, there is something wrong. Or worse, that you better feel a burning passion for what you do—or quit and search until you find it. There is a crazy pressure to measure yourself and your success based on whether you truly love your work or not.

Well I’m here to say it is not one thing at the expense of all else. There are certain passions or hobbies that will never make good money. There I said it. Some things were just never meant to be a profit-turning venture. You can enjoy your passions your off time, while also keeping you fulfilling, stable job. I say go for it.

Happiness and fulfillment aren’t always in the same package. I can’t feel right coaching someone starting a business doing something they love, but also isn’t necessarily something that will ever be a profitable, sensible business. Or if it could, it would no longer be any fun anymore. Starting a business means wearing many hats, of which have nothing to do with the thing you are passionate about—like bookkeeping, paying bills, keeping schedules, appointments, managing people, and budgets.

You do not have to leave your job, take off and quit just because your job isn’t fulfilling you. If your job is providing you with things that you value and need for your priorities, you can usually find some other way to use, develop or enjoy your passion. This will still allow you to leave the mark or legacy that matters to you—that’s how I would do it.

I’m lucky to be passionate about being a coach, but I also don’t have to be a breadwinner. I don’t have a weight on my shoulders to support my family financially. I chose this path so I could spend more time with my kids and family while also doing what I love. If I wanted to build a huge business and wanted to define success in terms of extreme growth and profitability, I could do that. But it would also cause a major cosmic shift in our family dynamics, which is most certainly not something I want—at least not right now. I like the time I am around to spend with my kids, responding to emergencies and being here for them while still getting to enjoy my business. When my kids are older, I may shift that to a more growth and profit driven model, but only when it doesn’t affect my ability to spend my time with my family.

So, you’re welcome. Stop listening to the media and getting pushed around that you are some sort of failure if you are just doing a job that suits you and your priorities right now. You are not a failure. You can do a job that serves your family and find ways to fulfill your passions elsewhere in your life. You get to be happy and successful on your terms.

Continue Reading

Defining Your Values is the Key to Your Success

Today we are going to talk about one of my most vibrant, creative clients. I mean inspiration and creativity just oozes out of her and she would love to be able to dedicate herself to helping others find imagination & fulfillment in their lives the way she has in hers. Sounds absolutely wonderful, right? Well, of course! But, there is just one big, burning question. Can she create a successful, happy business from this ideas and be successful on her own terms?

Her values & priorities are things like: being fulfilled, having a creative outlet, doing meaningful work, leaving her mark on the world & creating a legacy she can be proud of. Those are the major, important things to her as well as her family and financial security, of course.

Now, let me just tell you, she has a great business idea. Absolutely so great that I feel honored to be able to help her achieve that and think people will love it! But, she needs to be the one to define what it means to her to consider this a successful business.

Thinking through questions like:

  • Is she looking to quit her job and do this business full time?
  • Does she intend to scale to the point that she can entirely replace her full time, primary source of income?
  • What if it only makes a little money? Will it feel successful and fulfilling at any level of success or does she have a benchmark?
  • Or do you NEED to make enough to replace your income?

Once she has answered those questions, she will need to consider business models that can help you accomplish that. There are many different models and things to consider. One of those things to consider is the investment into your business. Investment will affect your “salary” from your business, which is not something you will be used to after being paid from an outside employer. When working for an employer, you have a salary for your position, but you also don’t pay any of the money required to make your job happen. You don’t have the overhead and expenses that you have as a business and as an entrepreneur. Do not neglect to think about costs to make your salary possible or any team members you need to reach your goals.

Bottom line is if you want to do something that fulfills your purpose and passion, do it. But, in order for it to be a viable, profitable business then it takes some hardcore thinking about things.

Sometimes, the business model that will yield the most success will often create more work than you ever thought you wanted to do. And that work will commonly be far and away from your passions, products or services offerings. Be sure to understand your values and choose a business model that you can keep up with and that aligns with you and will provide success and balance.

Continue Reading

Why Striving for Work/Life Balance is Stupid

Did my title get your attention? Great! Now, I will admit it was a little bit misleading because it may seem very contradictory with my mission when you first hear it. You all know that I am a business coach especially for mother entrepreneurs, so when you hear me say striving for work life balance is stupid you may be like “wait, what?” But just hear me out!

In this blog, we’re going to revisit my humble beginnings in business and in motherhood. I like to refer to this time in my life as my “perfect storm”. I started out becoming both a business owner/coach and a mother at the same time. I know, right? Hello, stress! I went from just a person one day to so very much more in such a short time. And you guessed it: I struggled. Just like you probably have as well.

I have very high standards for my business as well as my family life. I had a business coach of my very own at the time kept and she kept noticing my unhealthy relationship my work/life balance. She noticed that I wasn’t living it. She noticed I complained for being unable to accept new clients by spending too much time on my baby. Yet, caring for my baby and living up to my own standards as a mother had become all encompassing for me.

My coach did something for me at that time that I will never forget and that has continued to help me grow even to this day. She forced me to have a terrible coaching call one day that ended in tears, and I thank her for that immensely. See, she knew my unhealthy attempt at balancing my life, so she scheduled a coaching session with me while I took my baby to the public pool. I thought she was crazy, but I obliged after much urging. That call was an absolute mess that I was constantly pausing trying to focus on both baby at the pool and the session at the same time. I wound up, unsurprisingly, in puddle of tears

I had been so heavily compartmentalizing my life and she could see that. I was trying desperately to keep my work life and my parenting life entirely separate and if they ever collided I got very upset. I felt like I couldn’t handle anything fully. I learned that day and every day since that life isn’t about balance. It isn’t about giving your best to both your business and your parenting at the same time and balancing them together. It’s about integration.

Focus on your priorities. I have 4 of my own. They are my well being, my marriage, my family, and my business. Rather than trying to evenly split myself between those 4 things, I integrate them together. It’s impossible to have precise balance between all your priorities.

What I mean is this: recently I had a speaking engagement in Las Vegas that happened to fall on the weekend of my wedding anniversary. So, instead of feeling the need to choose between a work engagement and my marriage/husband, I integrated them together. My husband came out with me to Las Vegas for the entire weekend before my speaking engagement on Monday. We spent the weekend together and made a mini-vacation out of the experience. Not to mention, we hiked and explored outside in the beautiful area outside of Las Vegas. In just that weekend, I integrated together my husband/marriage, my business and my wellbeing. All at the same time. And I loved every minute of it! Similarly, when I go for runs from home, I will often invite my son to run with me. This integrates my wellbeing and my family.

Instead of striving for balance, strive to integrate your priorities together. I promise you will feel more relaxed, fulfilled and you will have more time to truly devote to each one, individually and together.

Continue Reading

Doing What You Want to Do on Your Own Terms

I have noticed a pattern in some of my coaching recently. I have been working a lot with clients on defining how to live their lives on their own terms. Helping them to gather the skills and confidence required to really getting to the core of their why and how they want their life to feel.

I have a client who recently suffered great loss. Both her mother and father passed on close together. In her eulogy, she was sharing that there were some great parts of life and love, but there were also some parts of her father’s life that she cannot forgive.

She has worked so hard to live life on her own terms and making choices for herself everyday. And I really challenge you to do the same. What can you do in order to make sure that when you pass on, you are satisfied, fulfilled and happy? By living a life on your own terms and having done what you really wanted to and what really mattered to you.

It is all too simple to sometimes feel like your whole life revolves around your obligations. It can feel like all you do is worry about what your kids need, spouse needs, house needs, what your business wants and needs from you. These are and absolutely should be priorities. But at the end of the day, are there parts of your life that you are forgetting about or not fully fulfilling that really matter deep down to you?

Living life according to your most basic values can be so rewarding and yet so much more difficult than it seems it should be.

There was a woman who wrote a about entitled Top 5 Regrets of the Dying, she was a nurse who spent a lot time caring for those at the end of their time. In this book, written by a nurse, individuals talk about getting caught up in daily life and the needs and expectations of others, and letting life pass you by. It can be hard to get around to what truly matters most to you when you have so many things pulling you in different directions. In her book, she says that most people regret working too much, and expressing their thoughts or feelings too little. It’s easy to fall into work and become a workaholic or fall into the rabbit hole of always seeking more money or success, but at the end of the day, that’s not what is most important for us.

Most everyone has a family member or a friendship in our lives that needs our attention and nurturing, but that can be hard to keep up with if you are distracted consistently. It should be important to spend time connecting with that person or making time for them.

Mindset can be a very powerful thing as well. It is common for people to sometimes feel like they don’t deserve something, or are getting too much. It is normal to have a lot of inner voices in your head, but at the end of the day they can convince you that you shouldn’t try, or make the effort because there is no point. But that can easily breed regret in the future.

Considering instead of reasoning or making excuses, trying to ask yourself if, doing something, will make you happy. Make it less complicated and just ask yourself “Will trying this make me happy?” It can feel foreign, but it can really produce a more authentic response.

Have you ever felt the friction in your life, of putting someone else’s expectations of you, above your own values? Do you think when it is your turn to be in the hospital, talking to the nurse, that you will feel fulfilled? Spend some time this week evaluating your to do list and find those things that really matter. If there’s nothing on that list for you, it’s time to clean it up!

Continue Reading

Oh Crap. Now What? I Hate This.

Sometimes, being an entrepreneur can be very trying and difficult on all of us and we will begin to feel like we have made a mess that we will never be able to fix. Have you ever felt a loss of control or disheartened and frustrated in your business? Have you felt like your business somewhere along the way just got away from you and your initial plans?

I hate to hear when someone I’m working with feels disenchanted with their work because something isn’t going the way they think it should be. They jumped in because they really believed in something and thought they could create a business around themselves and their families, but it hasn’t gone as smoothly as they were hoping. They were sick of being the “grunt worker” and wanted to start bringing home some of the lion’s share, some of the pride and acknowledgment as well as some of the profits.

These are all great reasons to start a business. But unfortunately, more often than not, I wind up talking to people who feel like things grow out of their control and don’t know where to go from here. In the beginning, they felt like they owned their business and now it feels like their business owns them.

Are you feeling hated on or bossed around by your business a little bit?

Now, honestly, all of us feel a little unmotivated some days. Sometimes you get up and your business just doesn’t fire you up like usual and you can’t put your finger on exactly why that may be. Sometimes, it just means other external or internal factors are in the way of your normal go-getter entrepreneurial spirit. It absolutely does not always that you need to be done with your business and wipe your hands of the process. It doesn’t always mean that your business has run it’s course and is done, sometimes it’s just a phase.

But what do you do when you really realize you are over it and don’t like the way that it is going? You decided that it’s not an attitude issue or a phase and you feel like your business has grown away from you? You find yourself considering a big change like going back to work, changing major business plans or finding new clients or a new niche. Whoa there, slow down!

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this is a normal cycle and a normal growth pattern for an entrepreneur. Sometimes your business will grow in a way that doesn’t necessarily align with you or your original plans or ideas and you will need to learn how to handle when this happens.

One of the first things to do when you are feeling miserable in your business is to take a step back. Look objectively at the situation and consider if there are things you dislike but are doing anyway out of a feeling of obligation? A first major step towards helping your situation is taking ownership of the fact that under no circumstances do you HAVE to do anything you do not want to do in your business. It feels like you HAVE to do things a lot in business, but it’s just untrue. you are making a choice.

You have to set very clear boundaries in your business or you can get lost on your vision. In the hustle and bustle of being an entrepreneur, you have forgotten about your initial boundaries when you started your business.

You slide into bad habits and you never feel strong and confident enough to be direct with clients to help them to realize and abide by those boundaries. Do not fear being perceived as rude. Your clients can’t abide by rules and boundaries that you never tell them are there. You can be direct and strong while also being careful, gentle and respectful. Simply telling your clients gently about your boundaries can help shift the dynamics back to what you do and why. Cut out the excess. Let your clients know that you value both their and your time and need to focus on the task at hand.

Are you feeling burnt out on your business? Chances are you need to check back in with your priorities and ensure they are setup to support you in your business. Could your priorities have possibly shifted? You may be experiencing this pain and difficulty because your priorities have evolved and you need to recognize. It’s important to consistently re-evaluate your business to ensure that as much as you work for it, it also works for you.

Continue Reading

Setting Goals for 2016 – What Do You Want to Get Done?

It’s here. The end of 2015. Is it just me or does it feel like it just got here?

Last week we talked about acknowledging and appreciating your ground covered and things accomplished this year. We also talked about taking the time necessary to reflect as to why you maybe didn’t accomplish some different things you had initially set out to do? Did you struggle to find the motivation or inspiration to push yourself just the little bit further? Did you learn something from your audience or market and decide to switch gears to some new, different goals?

The holiday season is usually the time that I sink in and slow down just a little. I don’t take on new crazy goal setting or new challenges. I slow down and enjoy family, food and some time to just breathe and reflect. So this week, we are just going to do an exercise with thinking, no pen or paper required.

Things to consider really thinking about:

  • Why you do your business?
  • What knowledge and skills you have acquired so far in your career?
  • How is that going to affect your life and business next year?
  • How is your life going to change next year?
  • Is it going to be the same?
  • Are you expecting a new baby?
  • Have kids leaving for college?
  • Are you going through separation or divorce?
  • Moving states or cities?
  • Job change for your partner or spouse?

Your lifestyle is absolutely going to impact your business and the goals that you set for yourself. Help yourself by consider your life and the changes you will experience before setting any goals for 2016. Considering your life and any changes can help you make your goals more realistic and achievable.

Are you hoping / planning for growth in your business in 2016? In what manner? Is this finally your year for scaling up? Considering some new employees or a new partner? How about a new passive income stream or branching out your services by offer a new live event or presentation? Could you benefit from a new marketing strategy?

This is not putting pen to paper. This is just about really thinking on your goals and hopes for 2016. Time for reflection on 2015 and projection for 2016. What most fires you up and gets you most excited? These are what will help you bring new business and profits. It feels great to acknowledge yourself and the work you put in to yield your results. Productivity makes us feel powerful and good. Stressed out and overwhelmed happens when we are stretched too thin.

Think about what you want your life to be like in 2016. Not goals. Separate. Just what you want your life to be like in 2016. Is your business too demanding for you right now? Is it taking over your home life? Your marriage and time with your children? Are you taking care of yourself and your mind, body and spirit? Taking care of family and life and business can be too much sometimes. Acknowledging when it’s too much is a powerful thing.

How do you want to FEEL at the end of 2016?

We will talk in January about how to make that happen for you and your business. We will discuss how to create an action plan to get you there. But for now, Happy Holidays and thank you so much for listening / reading along with me in 2015!

When I resume podcasting in January, I will officially have been podcasting for 7 years. Holy cow! I think that is a huge accomplishment and maybe deserves a celebration! I am bad at thinking of that stuff though, so please let me a comment with any ideas you may have!

And also, if you have any questions or have a big decision to make this year, I’d love to help you. Find out more about working with me.

Continue Reading

Conditions of Satisfaction—How, When, and Why to Say No

We mompreneurs, as we’re working hard to grow and develop our businesses, can sometimes slip into a pattern of saying yes to things that really don’t serve or work for us. In fact, we may even find ourselves signing clients or accepting projects that flat-out stress, drain, or overwhelm us… which can’t be good for us or our businesses! We say yes to these things for many reasons, many based on fear: fear that we may miss out on an opportunity, fear that no one else may ever hire us again, fear that we won’t have enough money, or fear that if we don’t say yes to absolutely everything our businesses will fail to grow. Well, let me tell you, ladies—fear is no way to grow a business!

So today I want to talk about the benefits of learning how, when, and why to say no. My hope for you is that you won’t operate out of fear, but from a place of strength, power, and worth, and it’s my belief that saying no, when appropriate, is an amazing tool to help you do just that.

It’s really all about what I call “conditions of satisfaction.” These are the things that bring you fulfillment, that make or break this business for you, that work for you, and that ultimately bring you satisfaction in your business, home, and life in general. These are your non-negotiables when it comes to what makes you happy, and these are what should drive your decision to say yes or no when an opportunity comes knocking at your door.

Here are some examples of how your conditions of satisfaction can help you know when to say no:

  • If working from home so you can be with your children and not have to put them in daycare is one of your conditions of satisfaction, it will be easy to say no when a job will require you to travel or work from a remote location.
  • If working with other mom entrepreneurs is one of your conditions of satisfaction, it will be easy to say no when a job will require you to work primarily with businessmen in corporate America.
  • If doing work that is meaningful and stimulating is one of your conditions of satisfaction, it will be easy to say no when a job that bores you or conflicts with your conscience comes up.
  • If working only Monday through Friday during business hours is one of your conditions of satisfaction, it will be easy to say no when a project requires that you be available evenings or weekends.

Take time to nail down your conditions of satisfaction. They are different for everyone. There are no right or wrong answers here. But the point is: you get to choose what brings you satisfaction! You get to decide what is important to you, what you’re passionate about, and what makes you happy to be doing what you do. Those are the things by which to live your life, work your business, and help you decide when to say yes to the opportunities that move you in that direction and no to those that don’t.

Continue Reading

Put Happy in Your Business Plan

happybizplan

I have two questions for you today. I don’t want you to think too much about them—rather go with your gut. These are simple yes or no questions, but the answers will tell you A LOT.

Question 1: Are you successful?

Question 2: Are you happy?

Why does it seem so often that we have different answers for these two questions? Well, no more. Today I’m giving you permission to include happiness in your definition of success. And, as you work toward your goals for this year, I hope you have happiness written into that equation. It will be so much easier for you to get up and go go go every day if you are fulfilled in every area, not just in your business.

Success doesn’t have to look a particular way. I give you permission to make it look however you want it to look. You have permission to design the life that works for you and demand that your priorities matter. You have permission to create your business plan with “happy” in mind, goals that match and support your life stage, grow your company and your career at a rate that works with your personal agenda, and keeps your health, relationships, and personal fulfillment at the center of everything.

Because what’s the point of a definition of success that doesn’t include your happiness?!

Speaking of happiness, have you signed up for my newsletters yet? I send them twice a month and they are another great opporunity to get some coaching with me along with worksheets and other goodies. The next one comes out on the 30th, so sign up today!

Continue Reading

How To Build Customer Loyalty Without Losing Yourself

Customer-satisfaction-is

 

The value of customer loyalty is indeed priceless.  And it’s not so much that customer satisfaction in and of itself is worthless but that the difference between the two is HUGE.  For mompreneurs, shifting our focus from one to the other can be the deciding factor in whether we are perceived as a kind of Girl Friday, “everything to everybody” type of person or smart, skilled, professionals offering valuable products and services.  There is a delicate balance in satisfying our customers and meeting the needs of our business.  How do we serve our clients and stay aligned with our strengths, our skills and our style?  How do we build customer loyalty without losing ourselves in the process?

 

Today I want to help you find some ways to build customer satisfaction and customer loyalty by going that extra mile, by delighting your clients but without compromising yourself because I don’t want you to be everything to everybody and I bet you don’t want to be that either.  Let’s take a look at how we can do that.

 

  1. Are you a people pleaser?  You know what I mean by that.  I think as moms, this is something we’re pretty used to.  We’re used to taking care of everybody in our lives and it can cross over very easily to our business and become kind of a detrimental habit.  That’s not your job.  You don’t need to do that.  There is a difference between providing great customer satisfaction and going the extra mile and actually kind of sacrificing your own wants and needs when it comes to pleasing someone else.

 

  1. Just say “no.”  I have had countless MomBiz owners admit to me that their first time saying “no” to a client who asked them to do something they didn’t want to do was awkward and scary.  Remember when you were first learning how to ride a bicycle?  Remember how wobbly and crazy and sometimes painful it was at first?  But remember that amazing feeling of freedom that came with the hard work of practice?  You will have that feeling of freedom in saying “no” too!  I promise!  You don’t have to please everyone. You don’t have to do everything your clients ask.  Stay true to you.

 

  1. Stick to your guns.  Your job as a business owner is to plan a business that is successful on your terms and sustainable by your decisions.  Your choices drive this business—not your clients.  You know those business plans and product funnels we talk about so often?  It’s really important for you to create these invaluable tools and then keep them posted in front of you to remind yourself when a client asks you if you can do something else, whether or not an opportunity fits into your plan.

 

All things considered, your customers know you care about them by how well you stay connected, you listen to them, and you offer amazing products and services.  You are building that loyalty that is so critical and you don’t have to lose yourself to please them.

 

 

Continue Reading