Tag: beliefs

Self Employment

“If I don’t do it, it won’t get done right.”

This belief is a common constraining factor in many businesses’ growth.  There are variations of it, but the common thread is that you, the business operator, have to be central to the work being completed.

Only you can sell.  Only you can manage.  Only you can complete some complex task.

I organized a local business mastermind several years ago that included a smart fellow who ran an agency.  When we discussed his business model, he said that he had a team that provided services and that he would also occasionally do consulting work for their clients.  

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When to Hire

This brings us to my chicken or egg dilemma:

– I want to grow my business and get more clients but I feel like I need a bigger team to do so.

– I can’t find the courage to hire more and grow the team without enough business to support them.

The above was in a business forum where someone posted the question of when to hire the next employee for their branding agency?

This chicken and egg dilemma is a common early stage business challenge.

When I hired my first developer, I was maxed out on what I could do and still felt like I didn’t have enough money to pay someone else.

When I hired my first project manager (PM), I also felt stuck in a chicken or egg scenario where we didn’t have the revenue to support a PM, but I would forever be stuck in operations if I didn’t hire someone.

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The Inherent Power in Basics

I watched a webinar on the financial management of agencies last week. Over the course of an hour, a consultant took us through a byzantine spreadsheet that forecast profit based on how your agency was configured. It was filled with numbers, tables, highlighting and took up every millimeter of screen real estate.

Using the spreadsheet you could model changes to your business. What if you hired a new developer? What if you changed your pricing? What if you decreased time off? This impressive spreadsheet could tell you what the result would be.

At the end of the call, he asked for questions.

I asked, “What are the top changes that your clients come back to again and again?”

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Magic Reveals Your Limits

I sat in a dim conference room in a fancy hotel in Mexico City listening to Paul talk about his business. Around the table, other entrepreneurs listened carefully as he laid out his challenges. We were at a group discussion that preceded a business conference.

Paul shared that he was a solopreneur who was a remote version of a real estate agent. He would go through a specific process that took two months and would generate a predictable number of sales each time. He said that he was stuck and couldn’t grow because the process required his involvement and he had finite time and energy.

When he finished explaining his situation, everyone was silent as they thought about what they would do.

I asked Paul, “Do you think you have fully optimized this process?”

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