I am here to help you with your business and to hopefully help provide you with strategy and support to help you turn your little ventures into a big business.
In case you have a burning business question or you have a bad case of the business blues – why not ask me a question. All you need to do is click on the pink button to your right which says be on the podcast. It’s like a voicemail and you can leave a message for me asking me your business question.
We are going to be kicking off today with a question from Hilda. Hilda is a Norwegian Life Coach and she has left me a message….
Hilda: I am so grateful you are giving me the opportunity to ask these business questions. My other this is I am still working in a corporate job and I kinda love that too but I love coaching more so I want to transition into coaching full time.
I have good stamina. I know how to use a lot of time getting things done. I prioritize my corporate job and my family in front of my coaching and my life doesn’t have more than 24 hours a day and more that 7 days a week.
I don’t want to overwhelm and drain myself again. I do want to live a life I can be happy with but at the same time I do want to get my business up and running. To get out and to let people know that I am there and that I can coach these women.
If you had 15 hours a week or something like that how would you prioritize those hours? What would be the most important things to focus on?
Now 15 hours does not sound like a lot of time but it is totally doable.
Firstly most of us start out business as a side project. Then once you get to a certain point thats when you can decide to ease out of the day job. It is very unusual to quite a full time job and plunge into a new business venture. You need to be able to pay the bills and your day job is what is doing that.
Actually when you don’t have a lot of time that is when you can be more productive and more focused. I don’t know about you but I find when I have a bit of pressure that is when I really crack on and get loads done.
Here are some tips to help get you started but the way you choose to spend your time will vary as the business grows.
There are 3 main areas that you need to focus on
- Serving your clients.
- Finding new clients.
- Doing admin
Automation and Systems
My tip #1 would be to automate where possible. I use something called avaza.com. It helps me manage my finance, invoicing and clients. It also helps with invoicing your clients on time and getting paid on time.
Another thing you can automate is scheduling. That way you are not to and froing with your clients.
You can automate your social media. It is important to get your foundations in place so as you grow your business you’re not overwhelmed.
For the things you don’t like doing or are not your strengths you just need to bring somebody in that can help you. Like Hilda if you are in a paying job and you are looking to save some time outsource some tasks to somebody who costs less that what you make at work. That way you are only focusing on the key tasks. You can hire virtual assistant.
You would be surprised how many people do not have their fundamentals in place. It is hard to find clients if you do not get clear on this stuff. Before you rush off and get clients you’ve got understand why someone is going to hire you. Things like….
- Who are you targeting?
- Why would someone hire you?
- Why are you different?
- What are you hoping to deliver for your people?
- Why would someone pay you their hard earned cash?
- What is it you are delivering to them and how are you going to change their life?
Basically I am saying get your house in order before you start. It will save you a lot of time down the road.
Hard working website
Make sure your package is exactly what people need and that you communicate effectively to your people. That is persuasive.
Make sure you website is up to scratch before you crack on growing your business. Your branding and photography needs to look professional. And your booking system needs to work.
You don’t what to spend hours talking to people on the phone. You want your website to do the work for you.
Have a sales process
When I first started I didn’t understand the importance of a sales process. All it is is having a list of people you have come in contact with. Don’t forget about them. Follow up. People like the fact you have not forgotten them. You’re not hounding them.
Use your software to keep track of your leads.
Don’t harass them on a daily basis but if you just show them they are on your radar and your interested in having them and when it comes time for them to need you. You will be front of line. It also helps you close a deal. Having these things planned out will help you run things smoothly.
Build a Sales Funnel
There are a lot of other things you can automate to save time. You can create freebie for potential leads. It helps build the know, like and trust. People opt in and you send them something of value. Follow the list and then you follow up with your people. This helps build your list. You can send out automated emails to build a relationship with people, automatically.
Focus on the things that you enjoy
There are so many possible things you could do to grow but do the thing you enjoy and it will come across. Don’t feel you have to do everything. Focus on the platforms that your people are going to see. Be where they are. It’s ok not to do everything and we can beat ourselves up and feel like we cant do what everyone else does.
Have a clear authentic message
If you talk from the heart about issues you feel strongly about that will come across in your work and the right people with resonate with that. They will come to you when they want you to help them with something.
You can waste so much time thinking that people are more successful than you. Only do what you want to do. Stop signing up for courses and programs.
Crack on with growing your business
Your main goal is to get some clients. You don’t need a constant stream of information that burying you alive.
Let go of being perfect
You don’t have to do everything perfectly. Good enough, is good enough.
Hi there and welcome to my podcast; Little Voice, Big Business. I’m Nadia Finer and I’m really happy you’ve tuned in!
This podcast has been a while in the making mainly because I didn’t actually have the balls to do it for many months, actually… make that years. The idea of just being a voice and putting myself out there gave me the heebie jeebies
I’ll be honest with you and the idea of embracing the fact that I have a small voice and I sound like I’m about 8 years old was even scarier.
Up until very recently in my business I actually hid. I hid behind a brand. I wrote rather than put myself visible out there.
A little bit about me.
I am a business coach, author and now podcaster! I work with my clients to help them grow their businesses. Most of my clients are female solopreneurs. I help them with their strategy, I help them come up with ideas that drive their businesses forward and I help them to get unstuck and take action!
How’s it going to work?
Over the coming months I am going to be answering questions in this podcast. In each episode I will be answering a specific question. Just like I do with my clients and with the members of my mastermind group, The Actionista Academy.
Before we kick off I want to tell you a little bit about myself. Just in the spirit of being open and honest and putting it all out there. So that you can see that actually connecting with what makes you special or different or slightly weird can be the thing that makes you stand out from everyone else in a good way.
When I was in primary school I remember being around 9 years old and my mum was talking to one of the other mums about sending me to some kind of elocutionist. Apparently there was something up with the way I spoke. I had no idea what it was. I have never heard myself on a recording. So I just ignored it.
Then I remember a few years later some kid asked me, “Why do you talk that?” “Why do sound funny?” and I really had no idea what they were talking about!
Then, a few years later at High School, we were in the language laboratory learning French. I listened back to a recording of my feeble efforts at speaking French and I couldn’t believe what I heard. It wasn’t the accent that shocked me, although it was pretty horrendous, but it was the sound of my voice. I couldn’t believe that was how I sounded. In fact at first I didn’t even recognize that it was me. It was really surprising to me and I thought ‘oh my God’ and from that moment I think made me self-conscious and aware that I sounded really young.
As I grew up sounding like you’re a kid is a bit odd. You get strange reactions!
I’m 37 now. When people ring up my house they sometimes ask to speak to my mum which is funny because in my house, I am the mum! I’m like “She doesn’t live here. I’m 37!” They are always kinda surprised especially if I am ringing up somewhere about something serious like my pension or someone calls to speak to you about something sensible and they think they need to speak to a grown-up when you answer the phone.
I’ve been told, particularly by men, that I am adorable; that I should do voice over work; that I could do the voice of one of the Simpsons. I kinda laugh it off but I do think, well it is a bit strange isn’t it that people you don’t know feel the need to make comments about something personal, something about your person. They feel able to comment on something so personal. It is a bit strange.
When I went to work, most companies I’ve worked for (I’ve worked in marketing and then in innovation) felt I lacked gravitas, particularly if I was going to be put in front of clients. So off I went, to elocution lessons. I thought wearing some crazy glasses would give me some gravitas but apparently not! So, I learned to breathe from my stomach. It still really didn’t make a difference but I didn’t want to have to think about 25 different things before I open my mouth each time I speak. So I sacked it off and said screw you I’m not doing it.
I started to feel that the voice I’ve got makes me me and I really didn’t want to change it.
However I hadn’t realized that all these comments over the years had had an impact.
When I was writing my first book, with my friend Emily; “There’s More To Life Than Shoes.” I had to ring up inspirational women to try and secure interviews with them.
This was the first time I had ever done something quite so scary. Well I know its not scary as in jumping off a mountain or climbing Everest but for me the idea of ringing up people over the phone voice only, trying to persuade them to be part of our program was immensely frightening.
A weird thing happened that perhaps sounding young, perhaps sounding cute on the phone worked to my advantage. My success rate was practically 100%. I’d be ringing up people. Famous scientist or business women or human rights campaigners. Somehow I was able to secure these interviews. It was unbelievable. Firstly I thought, awesome I’m embracing this thing and secondly that wasn’t quite so scary in the end. But, when it came to running my own business, things weren’t quite as straight forward.
I always shy away from the spotlight. The idea of doing talks and really putting myself out there in my business felt deeply uncomfortable. My MO was to create an amazing brand and then hide behind it like a curtain. I wouldn’t put photos on the website. I’d hardly talk about myself let alone speak or be on film which was crazy. It seemed why would I do that? Why would I put myself out there? People might judge me. They might laugh at me. They may think I sound funny. I don’t want to become some internet sensation where people are mocking me in how I sound so I just didn’t do it.
It wasn’t until recently that I started to come out of the closet so to speak. I really put myself into my business. It started by changing my website from some random domain to my name NadiaFiner.com. That was step one. Step two I had a photoshoot and got some decent pictures. (Up until that point I was literally using the same photo which I am ashamed to say was about 10 years old, because I wasn’t that keen on having my picture taken. I would definitely recommend having a good photoshoot. It made me feel a whole lot better. I think next time I will actually give her some branding direction… aside from make me look thin!)
I had my photos taken, had my website under my name and suddenly I have people connecting with me. They wanted to find out more about me. I’m the one who helps people grow their business not some big corporate machine. Its me. Its my name. It makes sense that I would use my name rather than a random brand.
The next step was to tell my story and talk openly about the challenges I’ve faced, the lack of confidence and how I’ve held my self back. I knew I was capable of doing great things and I am proud of the work that I do with my clients. Up until that point I just really didn’t want to go there.
I went to a cafe one day and drank lots of coffee and wrote my story. And you know it was really weirdly emotional. I’m British (aka very repressed!) and I don’t talk about my feelings often. To put that stuff down on paper it felt weird. I felt emotional. I felt relieved. I felt a bit naked, I suppose.
I wrote this stuff down and put it on my website and the moment I did I was shocked how people really connected to me.
That was a big step. From there I was on a bit of a roll. I finally got around to making a video. That’s gotten easier as I’ve done it. I’ve even done some Periscoping and now I am finally here with my podcast.
This is the first time I’ve got my mic out and worked out how to turn it on. I’m sitting here in my office just talking to you. I feel like putting my little voice out there. If I can do it you can do it too.
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