Burning Money

Before I started my Guru Detox a few years back, I found myself sitting in California at yet another pitch fest with 250 of my fellow entrepreneurs.

I felt so lucky to have gotten a VIP ticket for only $147 for this 3-day event. What a steal!

In hindsight, I know that the stealing had already begun.

I had just moved to New York City a few weeks before. I was exhausted. And jet lagged.

And disappointed by a $13,000 letdown I had with the event host a few weeks earlier. (Remind me to tell you about that another time. Aye!)

I took a LOT of notes over those three days. There was a lot of good info, although a bit confusing because it was presented in a way that was hard to make sense of how it all fit together.

And I met some really cool people. A guy from the UK who knows a thing or two about evolutionary psychology. A woman who’s become a business celebrity since we met. And a colleague I was excited to finally meet in person.

After the offer was made for the host’s $25,000 MasterMind and the appropriate amount of time had passed to swoop up as many sales as possible (I’ll tell you about the Guru Event Formula someday too), there were a series of guest speakers who did 90-minute talks and made a pitch for a program they were offering.

And

I found myself

in a trance

in the back of the room

pulling out my

credit card

to buy a

$1500 program

that I have never used.

I may as well have burned the money.

And the story doesn’t end there.

I bought a $1000 program that weekend too.

Which I did implement about a year later. It brought in no additional revenue over previous launches. And demolished my relationship with my community in a matter of 4 weeks. More on that another time. Sigh.

You might have done the math and wonder why I didn’t name this “my $2,647-plus-travel-and-hotel mistake?”

Hell, we could call it my $17,500 mistake. My $500 mistake. My $10K mistake. Take your pick.

It’s because I knew the event would be carefully designed for me to buy stuff. And I had no business spending a dime on a DIY program that wouldn’t immediately generate sales for me. And I mean PRONTO because I had just moved to a city that doubled my cost of living!

What can you learn from my mistakes?

1. Know the game going in. 

Most (not all) events are designed to sell you something. If you justify that the cheap-o event is a networking and learning opportunity, but you walk away without a new client or an actionable plan to make money in your business without having to spend more money, was it really worth your time?

I don’t need to tell you that it’s not okay to not make money in your business. Or do I?

2. Tune in to how you learn best. 

That program sitting on my shelf might have saved me tens of thousands of dollars or rescued me from certain doom if I could only get myself to implement it. But. I. Hate. Self. Study. Programs. I don’t buy them anymore because I recognize I’m a people person and I want direct access to the coach or creator of the program. Give it to me live, baby!

3. Own your decisions. 

Was it their fault I bought their stuff and bombed it? Hell no! Bravo that they can sell so effectively from the stage!

Was it my fault I bought their stuff? Abso-flipping-lutely.

Learning from other people’s mistakes is a LOT less expensive – so if I can open your eyes in a way that keeps you from screwing up royally like I have along the way – I can live with my mistakes.

🙂

If’ you have a limited budget and learn best in an interactive environment, check out the one-day, pitch-free true. event on November 7 in NYC. We’ll create an actionable plan for you to sell more of a program, package or service you currently (or want) to offer. Let’s rebuild that nest egg, Sister. Save your seat here:  http://thetrueevent.com

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We spent last Tuesday morning on my patio shooting some video to announce my live event coming to NYC this fall. I thought you’d enjoy behind-the-scenes blooper reel that my video guys put together from our shoot.

If there’s one thing that’s present in everything I do, it’s having fun. Since fun is my #1 value, it shows up naturally in everything I do – whether I’m working with a client, colleague or vendor. You’ll see that in the 25-second clip below.

Stay tuned for the “real reel” when early bird tickets go on sale in a few weeks. In the meantime, put yourself on the wait list so you’ll be in the know before everyone else.

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When I was a kid, I dreaded bath time because I knew that the “comb routine” afterward was a painful process with my long hair…. It would get all tangled up and so I spent many, many tearful nights having Mom battle running a comb through my hair.

And then one day, she put J&J No More Tears Detangler in my hair and the agony was gone. It was sooooo simple. Keep in mind that I’m the youngest of 5 and money was tiiiiiight but Mom found it worth the investment because she probably disliked that routine more than I did.

This is how I see so many women running their service based businesses. There’s so much to sort through that it gets all messed up. And hairy. And painful. You’re tangling with all sorts of complexities that could be smoothed out with the right solution… so to speak.

Unfortunately, there’s not a single bottle of tonic you can buy at your corner drugstore for $1.99 that’ll make all of your pain go away. 

But there are 5 things you MUST do if you want to avoid getting caught in hairy biz mistakes:

  1. Stop mimicking other people’s bis model. Create an intentional plan for how to set up your business to support your personal goals
  2. Stop sounding like everyone else and regurgitating what you learn from your coaches. Learn how to develop yourself as a thought leader so you’re the voice, not the echo.
  3. Stop believing that email marketing is the only way to build your business. Response to email marketing is on the decline. Create marketing strategies to find and meet more of your perfect peeps.
  4. Stop treating sales so casually. Create a sales conversation strategy that converts more of your prospects to paying clients.
  5. Stop wasting your time on inconsequential crap. Get ruthless when it comes to prioritizing your goals, as well as managing your time and mindset.

If you feel like you’re tangled up in your business despite the coaching you’ve gotten (or not) and you’re not making the progress you’d expected, check out my Evolve Accelerator program where I walk up to 6 women through each of these keys over 6 months that brings you clarity, clients and cash.

Visit this intro page and apply now:

http://www.evolveaccelerator.com/

This is the program I wish I’d had when I started my business but it didn’t exist. I’m a biz vet who’s played a hand in the launch of over 100 businesses and trained thousands of entrepreneurs over the past 10+ years in business and I want to help you.

So complete the short application using the link at the bottom of http://www.evolveaccelerator.com/. I’ll personally review your app and schedule an interview to determine if we’re a fit for each other.

So let’s talk. I’d love to help you.

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There is only one you.

My friend Matthew Goldfarb says, “It’s OK to fit in, but it’s better to stand out.”

Yet there are so many days I feel like I’m smack dab in the middle of an echo chamber.

For example, even though I don’t follow a particular marketing coach (I’ll call her Sally), I always know what Sally is teaching her Platinum Mastermind clients because I still get their emails.

It’s amusing.

I can read the subject line and first paragraph of 2-3 of her client’s emails and will know that Sally’s been talking about “profit”. 

Then a few months later, I’ll notice they’re all being “vulnerable” and sharing their deepest, darkest fears and secrets.

And I loved it when they all started writing about “truth”. Really, I did. You can’t have too much truth!

But in an effort to fit in, too many entrepreneurs become the echo, not the voice.

We stop thinking for ourselves. We try to please others by following rules, guidelines and social norms so that we can fit in. Or do what Sally is doing.

And we lose ourselves in the process.

The alternative is to be dangerously you.

  • What if you were a thought leader, rather than a follower?
  • What if you spoke your truth, instead of filtering yourself?
  • What if you said what’s really on your mind, versus being polite?

Feels risky, doesn’t it?

Yes. But I’d much rather be “dangerously me” by being my absolute, true, authentic self and piss a few people off along the way.

And I’m willing to take that risk because I know I can’t be all things to all people. And neither can you.

Think for yourself. Speak for yourself. Be yourself.

Learn more about HOW to think (not WHAT to think) to position yourself as a thought leader. This is just one of the things I’ll cover on my brand new webinar that’s happening tomorrow, September 12th:

Your Speedway to Success

5 Crucial Keys to Shorten Your Learning Curve and Accelerate Your Earning Curve 

Register here: http://thebiztruth.com/accelerate

And remember…

Dare to be dangerously you.

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It ain’t always easy.

When I saw my parents walking down the sidewalk holding hands on Sunday, I couldn’t help but consider of what great roles models they are for us as entrepreneurs.

They’ve been married for almost 56 years. Raised 5 kids. Moved four times. Undergone countless surgeries. Belong to different churches. Disagree on plenty of topics. And dealt with their share of challenges and adversity over the past 5+ decades.

Despite the challenges that life presents, they still hold hands every now and then.

So I asked them what one word they would use to describe what it’s taken to make things work.

They both replied “commitment”.

Interestingly, I talk to plenty of entrepreneurs who don’t have that same commitment to their business.

So I have a suggestion for when the going gets tough.

Commit to your goals (not your business).

Achieving your goals is what will bring you satisfaction. Your business is simply a vehicle to help you get there.Mom and Dad holding hands

If your biz isn’t set up to allow you to reach them, you need to do one of two things:

  1. Change your business model to support your goals
  2. Change your goals to endure your business model

And then commit to the path you choose.

My parents have changed their “marriage model” multiple times to support their shifting goals over the past 50+ years. They have the stories to prove it’s not always pretty, but are still holding hands as evidence that it works when you stay committed.

If your business isn’t supporting…

Why you started in the first place; helping you earn the 

Income you want; enjoying the 

Lifestyle you want and creating the

Legacy you’d like…

Explore the W.I.L.L. Formula™  further to whip things into shape.

Dare to commit.

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Life is short and business can be tricky.  

Not so long ago, I was in a meeting with about a dozen of my peers and everyone around me was talking about how great things are in their lives and businesses. 

Kumba-frickin’-ya.

When it was my turn to speak I said, “I dare entrepreneurs to live their truth, but I don’t feel like I’m fully living mine.”

You see, I’d spent much of three years working to master the secrets to success in the online world so that I could make millions while I sleep. I had some wins, but never felt like I really connected with people using these tactics because they didn’t feel true to me.

For example, earlier this year I followed a big-name guru’s blueprint for doing a launch and it was a disaster. I didn’t increase enrollments over past launches, and what’s worse is that I burned my relationship with my online community. In fact, my open rates are now HALF of what they were before I followed her advice. (Please forgive me for the error of my ways!) I knew her system didn’t feel right, but promised myself to follow it to the letter because it works for her. BIG mistake. 

The truth is that I’m an accelerator. An activator. An artisan. 

And I haven’t found an authentic way for those things to translate online. (At least not using other people’s methods.)

The truth is what really feeds me is giving others my full, undivided attention through conversation.

Not copy or complicated email campaigns. 

Yes, good old fashioned conversation. 

The truth is that I’ll continue to use the internet and email as tools to teach, start conversation and spread the word. But the greatest impact I have on entrepreneurs is listening… really listening to what’s going on and helping you find solutions to your problems. 

As an entrepreneur, you must find and live YOUR truth. 

Don’t let anyone shoehorn you into doing something that’s “proven” to work if it doesn’t feel true to you.

Here’s the catch… 

The critical distinction is knowing the difference between your truth and your fear. 

Your truth is what’s deep inside of you. A knowing.

Fear is your ego playing games with you and your truth. It can force you to hide behind excuses.

When you’re resistant to doing something, go deep within yourself to distinguish what’s stopping you. Are you fearful of trying something new? Failure? Success? Looking bad? Or do you have a knowing that’s inside of you… that this action doesn’t support you and your people.

If it’s fear, go take the action. (We’ve all heard the famous quote, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.”)

If it’s the knowing, then follow your truth.

The truth is that pure magic happens when I connect through conversation with entrepreneurs because as an activator, accelerator and artisan… I’m able to inspire, motivate and problem-solve in ways that can’t happen in a mass email campaign. 

Dare to find and live your truth.

What’s your truth?

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Hope isn’t a business strategy. 

As an entrepreneur, your success isn’t guaranteed.

Unfortunately, far too many people cheat themselves out of success by taking chances with their time, money and opportunities. They do this by patching together a series of well-intentioned advice and “hope” it all works out in the end.

To vastly improve your odds for enjoying success, you must establish these 6 keys to grow your business with confidence: 

1. A sound, simple business model. You’ll get stuck and struggle needlessly until you package and price your services to support your clients AND you every step of the way.

2. A point of view. You can be a thought leader or a follower. Which do you think potential clients value most?

3. A marketing strategy. Based on your business model and what (and who) you stand for, what are the BEST ways for you to elevate your profile to attract clients? 

4. A sales strategy. I know you hate this part, but without it, you’ll never have a successful business. The good news is there are ways for you to get clients without the dread you probably feel now. 

5. The ability to identify and manage priorities. Far too many entrepreneurs admit to chasing far too many shiny objects, only to abandon them to chase the next shiny object. Knowing your priorities allows you to pursue what matters most.

6. Money management. This is my least favorite (to my retired banker dad’s chagrin). I love to make it and I love to spend it, but I don’t like to manage it. It is, however, a key to improving your profitability.

Once you have these building blocks in place, the odds that your venture will succeed are far greater than skipping past these steps.

If you’re an entrepreneur who started a business based on your desire to serve others in a big way, but don’t necessarily know the ropes when it comes to creating business success and would like to learn from someone who’s played a hand in the launch of over 100 businesses, I encourage you to visit us here.

Dare to CHART, not chance your success.

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There will always be “what ifs.”

When I talk with entrepreneurs who are starting out, they have a lot of “what ifs” that weigh them down and stop them from moving forward.

What if I don’t know what to do?

What if I make a mistake?

What if they don’t like it?

What if it doesn’t work?

What if I run out of runway?

Imagine if you were to “what if” yourself UP, instead of “what iffing” yourself down. 

What if you replace your fears and doubts with faith?

What if you trust that you’ll succeed instead of fail?

What if you look for reasons to say yes, rather than look for reasons to say no? 

What if you do what it takes to realize your dreams, rather than stay stuck in inaction and indecision?

What if?

Dare to “what if” yourself UP vs. down. 

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Mistakes are inevitable.

A common refrain among many of the entrepreneurs is, “I can’t afford to make a mistake.”

I wholeheartedly disagree!

The reality is that you can’t NOT afford to make mistakes.

Sure, it sounds logical when you consider that money is tight, time is at a premium and morale is waning.

What do mistakes really tell you?

Mistakes are our turn signals. They’re indicators that we need to change course. If you take action and learn from your mistakes – you’ll get to your destination more quickly.

The alternative is to allow your fear of making mistakes to paralyze you. 

What gets done when you’re not taking action?

Nothing.

Worse yet, you backslide because you feel so awful about not making forward progress.

What’s the worst that can happen if you make a mistake?

You have to answer this one for yourself. 

I can tell you that in my 10+ years as an entrepreneur, I’ve never come up with an awful enough reason to stop me from taking a leap of faith on a decision – big or small. And believe it or not, one of my worst-that-can-happen-scenarios was that I might have to sleep on a park bench if I couldn’t make it in NYC! 

Start with small things (send the email, pick up the phone, ask for an intro, submit a speaker proposal) and the bigger actions will become easier (hosting your own event, launching a bigger program, moving to Thailand).

So take a breath. Don’t belabor the decision. And take action.

Dare to do.

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Life is full of choices.

When faced with a myriad of choices, how do you make the “right” decision?

Teddy Roosevelt said, “In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.”

Sure, you’ll make some decisions along the way that don’t work out. I’ve made plenty!

The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision. – Maimonides

But…what’s worse?

Making a wrong decision every so often? Risking ego? Financial risk? Relationships?

Or living in terror of f*ing up, making NO decisions and living up to a fraction of what you’re capable of accomplishing in this world?

As Paul Tillich said, “Decision is a risk rooted in the courage of being free.”

You won’t find me in “indecision prison”. My missteps are what have guided me to to some of my greatest accomplishments.

Give me freedom!

And I’ll accept the failures that come with that freedom.

Dare to decide.

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