What are you launching?

In business it often feels like if you’re not moving forward you going in reverse. The challenge is that there is always something to learn, build, refine and study – not to mention leads to attract, educate and nurture then clients to teach, inspire and support.

But I still have to ask: what are you launching?

It can feel a little awkward, right? Self-promotion has such negative connotations. Some people feel like they’re interrupting and being pushy. There’s the whole “compare despair” where someone else is always more talented, connected and beautiful.

So I’m going to break it down and make this really simple

Read Full Article »

Pretend this is a casual conversation over coffee, not a pitch contest.

So, what are you really passionate about?

Me: Coffee. And, even though this is totally nerdy, I love watching systems run. I love knowing that I’ll get the same sugar-free-hazelnut-soy-latte at every Starbucks I visit. I appreciate that Facebook never goes down. The Saturday Farmer’s Market. When events or processes work as they’re supposed to.

That probably makes me a bit of a control freak, right?

How do you help people or business or both?

Most people are overflowing in ideas and creativity. But as a “quick start” it becomes really tedious and difficult to finish. That’s the stuff I love and I partner with people who need that balance. But it’s not personal stuff like “I want to finish painting this room or get organized” – it’s all business related such as “I need to do that free report and follow up emails” or “I should figure out that automated billing thing… some day.”

Exactly how does that work?

I primarily work with private clients who want lots of personal attention and support around something like a business launch. But I’m really drawn to the start up entrepreneur who is struggling, frustrated, maybe cash strapped and wants, no needs, that kind of support and has been told over and over that it’s outside of her reach.

Or his – I work with a lot of cool dudes.

So for those people who can’t afford private, long term support, I created a really detailed and awesome launch program because it’s more cost effective and I can teach 10x as many people who really need the support.

Why does this matter to you?

I’ve been there, broke and frustrated and never again want to feel like I’m not worth someone’s time unless I had a load of cash to buy their attention and affection.

I hated it.

And even now I hate seeing talented people with passion and service to share with the world stifled.

So, what are you launching?

I’m teaching a live program about launching the assets currently in your business for online business owners. In fact, I’m going live on video in a few hours to share the secrets behind successful launches I’ve managed and how you can reach your own goals.

The training is free. And awesome. And will help you make more money when you launch yourself.

Do you want to get the training? Just let us know where to send it here.

Action Step: Now that I’ve modeled how the conversation can flow it’s your turn! Write, talk, dance it out and answer these questions for your own business:

Hey I’m curious, what are you really passionate about?
How do you help people or business or both?
Exactly how does that work?
Why does this matter to you?
So, what are you launching?

5 emails you can delete forever

I’m a big fan of email, especially when running an online business with international clients.

But wow, do we get way too many emails! How many do you think are sent worldwide in 24 hours? Think about it for a minute and I’ll tell you the answer in a moment.

If you’re like me the easy answer is “I get too many emails. Period.”

Read Full Article »

And there is nothing more satisfying than the elusive Inbox Zero. So here are 5 specific emails you can delete forever and if you don’t want to get them again don’t forget to hit “unsubscribe.”

5 Emails you can delete forever

1. You have a new follower! While it’s a nice little ego boost it’s much easier to track these numbers on a weekly basis whether you’re looking at Twitter followers or people joining your list.

Easy solution: set a rule to immediately archive all these emails from all sources

2 minute solution: go to the source and change your email preferences to stop these notifications.

While we’re on the subject of social media…

2. New RT! Message! Like! click here to read it. Listen, if you’re not already getting these on your smart phone I’d be surprised. The most effective way to engage with these notifications of personal interaction is to… get ready… be a person. Log in on a regular basis and say thanks, respond to messages, share links back. Besides, these just end up cluttering your inbox anyway.

solutions: same as #1, cut it off at the source or filter them out of your inbox.

3. Daily Deals. I’m not a big fan of daily sales pushes in my inbox but I know some people like them. So here’s the test, if you haven’t bought anything in the last 6 months and your business doesn’t rely on this information*, send it to the archives. You can always reference it when you have time or money to waste and you might just end up with fewer impulse buys.

*for example a designer or someone doing market research on the competition

Easy solution: Unsubscribe, remove the temptation

2 minute solution: Set up filters for all these sites and put the emails in a folder and “mark as read”

Speaking of regular emails that don’t get read…

4. Any newsletter you’re not excited to read. Listen, most of the time we sign up for things to get a freebie or listen to a call, to receive a discount… that doesn’t mean you’re committed to listening ’til death do you part. If you’re not excited about the content, get rid of it.

Here’s why: unread emails can become mental weight on your shoulders, instil a feeling of guilt and be time consuming to manage. Get rid of anything that doesn’t serve you. No guilt. No excuse needed.

Easy solution: search by email sender address, select all, delete (or archive)

2 minute solution: find the unsubscribe button and opt-out. You can always opt back in later.

For those newsletters that you do enjoy reading make some time for it. Whether it’s over your morning cup of coffee or 30 minutes on the calendar as you wind down your day, incorporate it into your schedule.

While you’re looking at your calendar…

5. Unnecessary or annoying calendar notifications. Do you really need a reminder that your ezine just went out? Or that it’s lunch time? (Don’t mock me, if I didn’t have a dinner reminder I would forget every other night!)

Go through your online calendars and remove recurring events that are unnecessary and update those notifications that get in the way of your work. At the very least simplify the ones in your inbox right now.

Easy solution: update calendar notifications so you get pop ups OR emails OR desktop notifications. Not all 3.

2 minute solution: select all the email notifications from the calendar in your inbox and archive them now. How many were there? 50? 250?

Email can be a powerful tool but we send way too much of it.

Reports estimate that we send 100 billion emails every. single. day.

100 billion.

Anyone else feel like they’re getting way more than their fair share?!

It’s time to request, read and manager fewer emails. For your sanity.

Need more help? Check out our free and easy to use course Conquering Email Chaos and get training videos and step-by-step help managing your inboxes.




The Badge of “Busy”

It seems that no matter who you talk to a simple inquiry like “how are you doing?” will return some variation of “busy!” I get it, we all have things to accomplish, relationships to build and nurture, laundry to do and work to be done. But there’s an insidious belief that without busy there will be no success.

What if instead of busy we were active? You know, able to relax and play by swimming without counting laps, playing catch at the park or running for the joy of it. There’s nothing wrong with activity, but busyness is a state of mind.

Read Full Article »

Actively working on goals, the boring things in life (hello laundry!) or managing your business is normal. Being overwhelmed by the sheer amount of crap that needs to get done so you’re not rested, taking care of yourself or stressed beyond belief may be normal but it’s not a good place to be.

Busy doesn’t allow for rest. Biologically we’re hard wired to rest – for up to a third of our days rest and sleep is required. When you’re so busy that all of those “should dos” encroach on your sleep then it’s a sign that change is needed. Having non-work downtime is important too, when was the last time you enjoyed a movie, dinner out, day of hiking or vacation without worrying about work? I know that as entrepreneurs we have big plans but too busy to relax is a dangerous state that can quickly lead to burn out.

Busy is different than focused. Are you trying to do too much? The studies are in and conclude that multi-tasking doesn’t actually save time and can make even simple tasks more stressful. When you can focus your time and energies on completing a task or project (big or small) you can accomplish more in less time.

We’re a country that loves10 quick tipsand YouTube videos under 2 minutes and yet, so many of our projects and problems require more research, attention to detail and time.

Cut down on busy by eliminating what’s unimportant

Systems breed familiarity and habits – which can be great – but unexamined it can be incredibly wasteful. For example, when my grandpa died in 2010 we took the chance to go through all the bills and audit them for grandma. And in doing so we found a surcharge on her phone bill for $10/month. For a phone rental. Because at some point in the 1990s the phone company sent them a “rental” ROTARY phone. And had been charging $120 a year ever since. Paying that charge was a habit but it wasn’t important. So maybe in your business that means looking at the marketing that isn’t working and stopping or fixing it. Or working with your team members that are just doing busy work and getting them effective work – or letting them go for now. It’s easy to say “I’m too busy” and push all the things you should be doing to the background but in life and business the badge of being busy is a shield to hide behind. Make time for the things that are important to you.

The Magic Pill

As a child you were told the story of a foolish boy named Jack who bought some magic beans. And while the results on that experiment were mixed, so many entrepreneurs never learned the lesson.

Instead, they traipse around the internet following guru after guru, always searching for the newest breakout star to follow and buying, for tens of thousands of dollars, some magic pills.

“Buy this product and you’ll have a 6-figure year!” they proclaim, the small print no where to be found.

“Hire me and all your problems will disappear!” they promise, funneling people into a group program which may or may not fit needs but does pad wallets.

There’s nothing wrong with making money or selling products, but let’s leave the magic pills & fairy dust to Disney.

Read Full Article »

Yes, those buying have this little thing called “personal responsibility” but to a large extent you have to understand that the online world is a different language.

In the beginning it feels like shopping with foreign currency in an unknown world – how much is this really worth? can I get it elsewhere cheaper? but they seem so nice! maybe I’ll just buy it here so I don’t have to keep looking…

This product really is magic! The seller proclaims, believing the hype they’ve built.

Maybe it does work, maybe you’ve got the “social proof” to say it does. But let’s look at WHY we believe such programs are so valuable.

“I’ll teach you everything I know!

is a recipe for disaster.

The best analogy I’ve heard for creating content is that your program, any program, is a container and I like to think of these offers like ingredients in a well stocked kitchen.

If you try to make your container as big as possible and fit everything inside then it’s going to be a jumbled mess that’s useless in the real world. Instead, be deliberate about what goes into the container, label it honestly and keep the ingredients fresh.

And please, please, please recognize that your product or service isn’t the only one we need to stock that kitchen so pricing your “essentials” out of budget isn’t going to increase sales.

The way I see it, everyone wants to be white truffles and no one wants to be white flour. To put it in perspective, everyone wants to be Seth Godin, no one wants to be “another VA.”

Do you really need the special fairy magic dust?

Because you could be offered the best deal in the world on webinar software but if your business shouldn’t be using webinars then it’s still a waste of money, effort and time.

This happens every few months when “the gurus” (conveniently the ones selling or affiliates for such services) are the ones telling you that you and every business ever needs teleseminars, webinars, animated videos, apps, video editing suites, or <insert gadget of the month here>.

None of these things are bad, but they are a distraction especially if your business doesn’t need them. And very few people are going to be truthful and say you don’t need their product.

You also need to understand the magic is very rarely within the pill itself…

it’s in the implementation of it. A book doesn’t change your life, applying the concepts from that book might. Owning a great product doesn’t propel your business forward any more than a car that stays in your garage gets you to the grocery store.

Don’t be an information hoarder

Because you’re never going to use everything you collect and it will be a stumbling block to your goals.

Like it or not, there are businesses out there that prey on your need to learn more. If you walk away from a sales page or pitch thinking “I don’t know enough” or “if I just learned a little more…” then they’ve accomplished a goal. Keeping clients stuck in planning mode is a great way to sell more products.

Because there will always be another book to read, another piece of software to learn, another master to study with before you feel ready.

In a world of passive income products there’s a premium on knowledge and under appreciation of implementation.

Knowing isn’t enough.

Information isn’t going to build your business.

Taking action and getting shit done is hard which is why most people would rather just create some products.

Just like in the fitness world, there is no magic pill for your online business. But there are people who will walk, jog or run with you to keep you motivated, on the right path and focused on your goals.


Set Boundaries in Your Business and Reinforce Them

The phone rings at midnight. It’s a client – do you answer it?

You have a carefully constructed program and packages and your clients are always asking for “just one thing” or extra time.

One of the hardest challenges you’re going to face in business is setting boundaries, especially around your time. And when you’re building a business in the beginning it’s not a big deal. Maybe you only have a handful of clients and want to prove yourself.

But those requests are like ants, once you allow one into your space the floodgates open and getting them to stop is much harder.