What Really Happened In My Business While I Was On Vacation?

If you’ve been following the podcast, you’ll remember in Episode 21: How Will My Team Manage Without Me?, that I recently went on a trip to Australia for almost 3 weeks. We promised a follow-up of what really happened–and there was a lot to talk about, so we recorded the conversation in today’s podcast.

While I was gone, my managers, Emily and Christina, had to manage the studios, create our August sales goals, keep the team motivated, and … hire a new employee. They did all this without me! How did they do it?

Since we already had a hiring process in place (learn more about it here), it wasn’t difficult for them to follow it and find success hiring someone. Creating systems for your business is really important and this scenario clearly demonstrates why.

If you went out of town on an epic vacation and needed to hire someone while you were one, could your team do it? Do you have a hiring process in place?

Listen to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify and 7 other platforms.

Follow me on Instagram and see what I’m working on in my business each day @shesonhertoes

I’m super-passionate about leading and managing my hardworking team.  Check out my courses How To Hire A Rockstar Team and 5 Days to Time Freedom to keep developing your leadership skills.

Podcast Episode 17: Is it possible to find more time each day? Part 2

Last week, we talked about how doing lots of things, doesn’t necessarily mean your business is benefiting.  In fact, you might be doing your business more harm than good by doing everything yourself and not delegating work to others.

This week, we finish the conversation (We talked so much that we split the episode into two parts!) by talking more about how to delegate effectively.  We even share some of our delegating fails, what we learned, and why we’ll never repeat those mistakes again.

Processed with VSCO with g3 preset

And finally, we share how we create our ideal day–the ultimate goal of the 5 Days to Time Freedom Course.  What would your ideal day look like?

5 Days to Time Freedom.JPG

Get your ideal day by checking out the course: 5 Days to Time Freedom.

And follow me on Instagram @shesonhertoes for even more insights on the podcast and what’s going on in the business … there might be an occasional bulldog pic too!

Podcast Episode 16: Is it possible to find more time each day? Part 1

As business owners, we wear a lot of hats—CEO, Director of Marketing, Scheduler, Head Janitor, Costco Supply Shopper—the list goes on.  But seriously, can someone please let me retire from IT Specialist?!

Do you find yourself exhausted at the end of each day … but haven’t made a dent in your to-do list? Does it seem like you’re working just to pay American Express?  Are you on the verge of massive burnout?  #beenthere

Oftentimes, as busy business owners, we are so focused on the day-to-day and getting our massive to-do lists complete that we fail to recognize if all this work we’re doing is really moving our businesses forward.

What do I mean by that? Well … if you’re doing lots of things, that doesn’t necessarily mean your business is benefiting.  In fact, you might be doing your business more harm than good by doing everything yourself and not delegating work to others.

Yep.  It’s time to take a cold, hard look at how you can find time freedom.  I’ve created a new course called 5 Days to Time Freedom. In as little as 5 days and you’ll determine where your time is being spent and whether it’s time to outsource or hire an employee to help you take your business to the next level.

Check out the course, 5 Days to Time Freedom

 

Podcast Episode 13: The Power of Saying “No”

So, how’s it going? How are you?

I’m so busy!  I’ve been so busy, it’s just insane.

And so starts the beginning of just about every conversation in today’s modern age.  And … it’s so f-ing boring, sometimes I can’t even stand it.

Why are we sooo busy? Are we actually doing more … or are we overscheduled and overworked with the wrong things, ensuring we don’t have any time to get anything important done?

I’m going to go out on a limb and say most of this being busy is more about doing the wrong things than prioritizing what’s most important.  And frankly, that’s sad.

When was the last time you said “No” to someone?  Why is saying “No” so hard?

The big problem with refusing to say “No” to things you don’t have time for, or don’t want to do, is that they take a huge toll on the remaining time you have for the things you need … and like to do.  The lesson here is the more you say “No,” the more you can say “Yes.”

Listen to the She’s On Her Toes Podcast here.

She's On Her Toes

Podcast Episode 10: THE Thing Successful People Do

It turns out that what you do every day really does matter.  The most successful individuals on this planet have daily rituals to keep them at the top of their game.  And, overwhelmingly, the most successful and wealthy, read books.  Like, actual books.  Every single day.

She's On Her Toes

Ok, ok.  Some of them listen to books AND podcasts.  But reading the written word directly correlates to higher education and thus higher income.  Studies have shown that reading 7 or more books per year makes you 122% more likely to be a millionaire.  Why is that?

Maybe it’s because reading expands the mind and encourages creativity.  Maybe it’s because so many of us don’t read, that this type of continuous learning gives regular readers a huge advantage in business and in life.

Today, we’ll talk about all that AND share our favorite books and podcasts to help you develop a strong habit of reading.

Listen as we discuss why we all read, why reading is critical to developing a life of learning and curiosity, and our favorite books that had a profound impact on our lives.  We also share what we’re reading and listening to now … and of course some fun, beach reads.

Check out the She’s On Her Toes Podcast on Apple Podcasts and iTunes.  Click here.

As promised, here’s the list of what we’re reading and listening to …

Harry Potter Complete Book Series ($61.14) If you listened to the podcast, you know that these are the books that turned Emily into an avid reader.  And, even though I kind of made fun of her for being obsessed with this series, it makes complete sense that she loves this whimsical, fantastical series because she’s super creative.

Baby-Sitter’s Club Box Set ($29.16) – So … I’m a little older than both Emily and Christina.  I was in college when the first Harry Potter book was published, so I never got into that series.  But … I absolutely loved the Baby-Sitter’s Club when I was in grade school.  I could rip through like five of these books in a day.  This is a series about a group of girls that start their own business baby-sitting … hummm … seems fitting.

The Body Book: The Law of Hunger, the Science of Strength, and Other Ways to Love Your Amazing Body ($5.80) – Christina shared that this book, written by Cameron Diaz, was really important to her after college because it helped her embrace healthy habits like working out and eating healthy, and really respecting her body and a balanced life.  It sounded like a great read, so I just ordered it myself.

Other books that have been important to us in life and work …

Never Lose A Customer Again: Turn Any Sale into Lifelong Loyalty in 100 Days ($17.32) 

How to Make Friends and Influence People ($9.60)

The Compound Effect ($10.71)

All of Malcolm Gladwell’s books … The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make A Big Difference ($12.67)Outliers: The Story of Success ($12.29) David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants ($10.71) Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking ($8.98)

The Checklist Manifesto ($11.37)

Think And Grow Rich ($7.99)

Think And Grow Rich for Women ($13.60)

The Road Less Stupid ($18.56)

Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World’s Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself ($7.67)

Unprocessed: How to Achieve Vibrant Health and Your Ideal Weight ($15.24)

Fun books we recommend …

Jillian Flynn’s books … Gone Girl ($10.69) Sharp Objects ($8.99)Dark Places ($9.16)

Girls in the Garden ($9.54)

The Girl Before ($10.04)

Big Little Lies ($13.71)

What Alice Forgot ($9.80)

Podcasts we love to listen to …

Goal Digger Podcast

Side Hustle School

MFCEO Project

TED Radio Hour

How I Built This

Mind Body Green

Rich Roll Podcast

Serial

Up and Vanished

Whew!  That should keep you busy reading and listening for a while.  We’d love to hear if any of these books or podcasts helped you find clarity in your business or in life … or just helped you chill out on the beach!  Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Ordering books from Amazon is super easy, but click here to get everything for your Kindle or Kindle App for your iPad.  You can also get audio books and magazines.

Or try Audible to listen to your books in the car, in the gym, or wherever you are.  They currently have a promotion to get 2 books free when you try it out.  Click here.

My Employees Don’t Need Me Anymore. What’s Next?

Yesterday, I walked into one of my studios and my manager told me she was working on our August schedule.  Great.  I sat down expecting to be asked a question about how to do something or to help her out with a problem.  Instead, she told me she didn’t need me to work that much in the studio or to teach.  I was immediately filled with mixed emotions.  I was so happy that she had things under control, but I was also a little sad.  My business has taken a lot of my time and energy—ok, almost all of my time and energy since I opened my first location.  What am I supposed to do now?

I’ve been asking myself “What’s next?” a lot recently.  My business turned 5.  I wrote a book and am anxiously awaiting the final steps in the publishing process—so close, about a week left until the book is available for sale!  I’ve hired a great manager and now an assistant manager, and will be focusing on training them to run the studios on a day-to-day basis.  So, what am I going to do now?  How will I occupy all this new-found time?

While I’ll always be involved in my studios to some degree, I’m thinking about starting another business and entering the ranks of serial entrepreneurs.  I’m still in the discovery phase and not ready to announce what I’m planning, but when you are your own boss, it’s important to diversify your revenue and protect yourself financially.  So, if starting a business is risky, why would owning multiple businesses be better than owning one?

You Won’t Be Starting from Scratch

If you started one business, find a second that complements your existing business, so you won’t be starting from scratch trying to build a brand-new client base—sell to your existing list. My next potential business endeavor is very complementary to my Pure Barre studios.  In fact, it’s the same business model of working to get every client on a membership to earn reoccurring, predictable revenue each month.  That’s what I know how to do—create a sales process that works to convert first-time clients into members and create an environment that people want to keep coming back to visit day-after-day, week-after-week, and in a lot of cases year-after-year.

My clients will also be very interested in this potential business idea and will most likely want to try it out (just an FYI, it’s not fitness).  Starting any business is difficult and challenging, but if you already know who your client is, where they live, where they hang out, and that they already support your existing business, chances are they’ll be interested in checking out your next business, which means you won’t have to build an entirely new client base from scratch.

Diversifying Revenue Protects You Financially

Financial advisors are always telling investors to diversify their holdings, meaning don’t put all your money in one investment, especially don’t put all your investment savings in the company you work for.  The same is true for businesses—if you can start one business, get it established and find a trusted manager and rock star team to help you run it, starting another business will help diversify your income like you’ve been advised to diversify your investment portfolio.

There are two ways to diversify one’s income, active and passive.  You can actively start another business or get a second job to earn income.  Or you can earn income passively, by renting real estate, selling a book, or adding dividend-earning stocks to your portfolio—you’re not actively working towards earning the money, this income is just showing up into your bank account.  Earning both active and passive income is a great way to diversify and protect yourself financially, especially if your business is cyclical.

You’ll Never Be Bored

By starting another business, you’ll get to learn new skills, solve new problems, and expand your capabilities as an entrepreneur.  With all these new challenges in store, you’ll never be bored and will always be learning.  Besides the obvious personal and leadership development, starting another business can also expand your network and possibly lead to other opportunities to serve in your community.  All exciting!

I don’t know about you, but the more I have going on, the more I can get accomplished.  Since I have a great manager and rock star team to help me run my studios each day, it’s time to start looking at my next opportunity.  I mean, when your employees tell you they don’t need you anymore, I guess you have no other choice but to listen!  But they’ll always need me to sign their paychecks …

I’ve been reading several of Tony Robbins’ books, so I’ll give you a run-down on them in my post on Thursday.  I might even have another update for my own book.  Eek!

And on Friday, the start of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, I’ll share some of my top picks for Fall boots—because it’s never too early to make your Fall boot purchases.

Until then, stay on your toes!

Unpredictability = Creativity

When running a business, it’s important to apply the fundamentals like, hiring a great team, motivating them and leading them to success, investing in your own leadership and management training, keeping an eye (or two) on cash flow, managing inventory, and a whole host of other activities to ensure success and profitability.  This type of management leads to creating processes and following procedures documented in manuals.  There’s not necessarily a lot of creative thinking involved.  In fact, there is great focus on eliminating randomness and unforeseen events while activities are standardized.  Since humans crave predictability and stability, this is great.  But herein lies a problem.  Unpredictability = Creativity.  If you’re running a business that relies on creativity and innovation, how to you embrace this paradox and still find success?

At my Pure Barre studios, a lot of creative thinking takes place each day.  My teachers are planning their classes and constantly innovating their cues and presentation of the workout to clients.  My manager and I are thinking up our “next steps” and planning events and programming to keep clients engaged.  Front desk associates are merchandising and creating a pleasant environment for our clients.  But there is also a lot of work that is pretty standardized—like our sales process, creating the work schedule, and cleaning—all critical to our daily operations.  How can we keep everyone thinking creatively yet still take care of our less creative administrative work?

I recently finished a great book called Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming The Unseen Forces That Stand In The Way Of True Inspiration, written by Ed Catmull, President of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation.  Throughout the book, Catmull discusses the challenges that creative businesses face specifically, working with the paradox that humans crave stability and predictability, yet the creative process pretty much ensures instability and unpredictability.

Catmull says: “Here’s what we all know, deep down, even though we might wish it weren’t true: Change is going to happen, whether we like it or not.  Some people see random, unforeseen events as something to fear.  I am not one of those people.  To my mind, randomness is not just inevitable; it is part of the beauty of life.  Acknowledging it and appreciating it helps us respond constructively when we are surprised.  Fear makes people reach for certainty and stability, neither of which guarantee the safety they imply.  I take a different approach.  Rather than fear randomness, I believe we can make choices to see it for it is and to let it work for us.  The unpredictable is the ground on which creativity occurs.”

As the owner, it’s your job to be the inspirer-in-chief to your employees and create a working environment that encourages their creative thinking yet doesn’t ignore the basic human need for seeking comfort in the familiar and stable.  It’s a fine line.  And leads me into the topic for Thursday’s post, why I’m stepping back from my business and giving my employees more responsibility.  I’ll definitely get back to this idea of being the inspirer-in-chief to your employees especially now that I’m transitioning myself into a new role of supporting them while they support our clients.

Until then, stay on your toes!

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming The Unseen Forces That Stand In The Way Of True Inspiration, Ed Catmull

3 Ways to Get Unstuck in Business

It happens to the best of us.  Eventually you get to a point in your business where you’re just not sure what to do next.  You feel stuck.  Frustrated.  Unsure of your path or even your qualifications to be a boss to your employees.  And getting stuck can happen just when you least expect it.  You can be moving along thinking: “Everything in my business is awesome.  I’m so lucky to be doing this well.”  And then, BAM!  You’re stuck.  And you’re asking yourself, “How the heck did that happen?  I was just on top a few days ago.”  Below are my top 3 ways to get unstuck in business and jumpstart you and your team to get to that elusive next level.

Make Small Changes

If you do one thing for yourself as a business owner, buy a copy of Darren Hardy’s The Compound Effect.  Seriously, it’s like $10.20 on Amazon.  Use some Amex points.  This book literally changed my life.  My business coach, Mary Ann, gave me a copy to read before one of our first meetings.  Since reading the book, I cancelled my cable, started reading every day, enacted a strict budget both for my personal spending and business spending, and stopped going to Starbucks every day for coffee (I still drink coffee.  And sometimes go to Starbucks.  Seriously, that would be terrible to have to give up coffee.  But I learned how to make a latte at home—that tastes just like Starbucks.  Check out a previous post on how to make amazing coffee.  It’s really easy and I only had to spend $40 to get the right tools.)  Anyways, back to The Compound Effect…this book is all about making small changes that “compound” to effect bigger more amazing changes.  And it really works.  If you are in the fitness industry you can attest, like I can, that just making one change to work out on a regular basis leads to making other smarter choices about eating healthy food and drinking.  Then all of a sudden, you’ve lost weight and people are commenting about how good you look.  Anyways, get this book immediately, if not sooner.  Read it.  Implement just one suggestion—after all it’s called The Compound Effect.  See what happens—I bet you get unstuck.

Start Writing Lists

Making small changes inevitably leads to writing lists.  For instance, if your goal is to save money and you start by not spending money on lattes every day, you’ll eventually get to the point where you’ll start asking yourself, “How can I painlessly save money on other things I use on a daily basis?”  And … you’ll get a pen and some paper and hammer out some lists.  As an FYI, I realized after I made the coffee change that I could compound my savings by ordering the same brand of dog food online at www.chewy.com, switched to buying laundry detergent and gas at Costco, and started meal planning to avoid wasting or spoiling food.  Making those changes and a few others has literally saved me $1,000 a month—kind of incredible!  But writing lists is a great habit to get into because it shifts your mentality and turns you into someone who is always looking for the possibilities.  Once you start writing lists, your brain starts to shift into “how can I make this happen mode” instead of “oh, sorry, don’t have enough (time/money/etc.) mode.”  Still not convinced?  Check out this great blog post from James Altucher called How to Have Great Ideas.

Rearrange the Furniture

I mean this literally.  Anytime I feel stuck in my business, I know I need to shake things up to get a new perspective and the best way to do that is to move around the furniture in our retail area.  All of our fixtures are modular, so we’ll just move the desk to the other side of the room or move the clothing racks around in a new display formation.  This also shakes our clients up and forces them to see the studio in a different light.  Some of them get really freaked out about it—cue the evil laughter!  Because what’s the point of owning your own business if you can’t make a few people uncomfortable.  Just kidding.

Do you find yourself stuck in business?  Or are you struggling with how to solve an important problem?  Try making some small changes, start writing some lists, and rearrange your furniture to get a new perspective.  These things are so simple and easy to implement, they just might work!

Sorry this post is so late on Thursday evening.  I got back from spending some time at the beach and you know how it goes … went into the studios for what were supposed to be quick, easy tasks.  Somehow they turned into hours-long activities.  Tomorrow, I’ll have a more timely post sharing my favorite under-eye treatments—because it’s important to at least look well-rested even if you aren’t.

Until then, stay on your toes!

 

The Compound Effect, Darren Hardy

How to Have Great Ideas, James Altucher