10 Lessons From The Trenches (Part 3 of 3)
Today is the final part of the 3 part mini-series we’ve been sharing over the past few days.
We’ve been sharing the 10 biggest lessons, mistakes and things we’ve learned as a team/individuals over the course of the last 90 days.
We took you behind the scenes of our two day intensive for our coaching clients and today is the final part that we’re sharing.
If you haven’t watched/listened to the two previous episodes, go back and watch them so you can hear all 10.
Okay, let’s dive into the FINAL lessons.
Just follow the roadmap.
Transcript / MP3
You probably already know that adding an online education or a coaching arm to your existing agency would two to three X year your revenue and even profit, so why aren't you doing it yet? If you want to launch your first group coaching program that compliments your existing agency services and get your next five to 10 clients in the next 90 days, then visit system dot L Y forward slash foundations to learn a little bit more about our program and how we can walk you through a proven process that we've now taken over 150 agencies through to launch their group coaching program as an additional revenue stream that can really over time exceed and replace your done for you service revenue. If that sounds like something that you are interested in, visit us at system dot L Y for slash foundations. Schedule a call to talk to myself and or someone on the team to see how it can apply to you and your business.... Let's get into today's episode. Welcome back guys. This is the third part, part three of three of 10 lessons from the trenches where we had brought you behind the scenes at our last July intensive for our coaching clients. If you haven't checked out the last two episodes leading up to this, I highly recommend you check those out first because we've broken down those 10 lessons into three episodes and [inaudible] you're at part three. So this is the last batch of lessons that we personally learned from our business, from mistakes that we've made earlier this year leading up to our July intensive with our coaching clients. Hope you enjoy it. Last one, get real with yourself. We've kind of talked on this, um, you know, this is like reviewing your numbers from leads to recurring expenses. You know, what do we need to pay off like, um, for us, like when we, you know, kind of made some of these decisions, you know, 90 ish days ago or I guess earlier this year or coming into this year, like we ended up kind of having some credit card debt and we're like, all right, like how do we get out of this?
Like, like, well, we need to know where exactly we're at and where we want to go. You know, you've heard me say this multiple times yesterday, it's like I could be like, yeah, we want to do blah blah blah a month. And like if I never be like, all right, like where are we actually right now though? And like get real with where we're actually at. Like there's no way to bridge, create a plan to bridge that gap. Right. And so like again, we're not perfect, we're still working on certain things with like, you know, profit per customer. Like where's your band with? Like some of these transitions you're trying to make will be in those numbers. Right. And like it's unfortunately an, I will be the first to say this cause like I hate that stuff. Like I hate looking at numbers like his like literally put a gun to my head and pulled the trigger.
Like that is like, I'd rather do that like not really, but like that's how I kind of feel about it. But like that's also goes back to like my story with money. Like, Oh, like if I don't look like it's not there, it's not happening sort of thing. Like if you're going to keep growing your business, it's like those are some things are just gonna have to get real and honest with. And I think at least for myself, I'll throw myself under the bus. Like I was lying to myself. Like we have these ambitious goals but like didn't really know where we were at. And like that goal is just like opera. Like we're going, we're, we're going to do this, we're going to do this, we're going to do this. Like man, there's some probably some other milestones within there that we need to figure out first because this is where we're actually at. Um, which really the lesson for us is like, it made me think more of like what are the actual results we need to chase right now? Like what's, what is the top priority? And I mean that can align to some of those bigger goals. But like cool. Next 90 days, like that's the benchmark. Like that's what we got to get to. Cause if we can get to that then we'll be on track for the next thing. Right.
Cash flow. Yeah. Like and this is like, this is where Lisa came in big for us it's like, like as we starting to like shift money around it's like all right, well like we're expecting like 15 grand over the next course of the X days. Like go pay this off right now because it the bank account's going to be replenished in the next 15 days. It's like so like if your clients are paying you all on different days of the month or if they're all paying you at on in the beginning of the month. Like you might want to pay attention to like what the end of your month expenses look like. Right? Like cause if the timing of cashflow puts you in a in a tough position to make moves like you, it might be tough to get out. So like then you'd have to start figuring out strategies like how do we adjust cashflow timing. Maybe you go talk to your credit card company and see if you can remove the bill, the date, the due dates.
Like they will do that for you if you ask. So like, like starting to figure some of those things out. I don't know if you have anything to add to that, but like literally Lisa just like, alright, you're going to go put this on that credit card. You're going to go move this over here, you're going to pay for that now. And I'm like, wait, and then we're going to do it again this day. And it's just like, I'm just like in the bank accounts like click, click, send, click like, but it's been really helpful cause like you start to have a plan and you start to see the actual progress moving forward on some of these things you have to take care of.
Yeah, I mean I think to get real with yourself includes acknowledging and accepting the areas that you're not strong in it. Um, it actually took Greg a long time to bring me into the finances and even willing to review and discuss them with me. And once he was willing to do that, then we were able to start making debts and conversations. Cause I am a numbers person. I can look at the numbers and I can break stuff down and you know, totally clear it up for him, put it in words that he can understand without looking at all these numbers. Um, and also when you're planning, I mean that was one of the biggest things. It's like we could cover our expenses. Great, but then we'd want to hire Lacey and want to hire somebody else who would wanna do this and want to do that. Next thing you know, you've got another 10, 15,000 and well, how many sales is that going to take to make that happen? Um, and looking at the whole picture, not just small pieces of it. Yeah.
Um, all right. Finish strong here. We talked a lot about this yesterday, but just schedule thinking time. Um, if you're not spending time thinking because you think you're not working, like change your mindset around that that is working, especially, uh, especially as the owner. Um, if you feel like the team's kind of just, you know, waiting on your next command, like that's like they're not operating from a place of vision. Right. Um, you know the, those of you that are new to the 90 day sprint plan that we implemented last time. Look, it might take you three quarters to get that roll in and dialed in and, and feeling like the, the results from it. We've been doing it for awhile and like literally like the last two sprints have been like enormously different than all of the ones prior. And like we just constantly see improvement and like w communication is simpler.
Team meetings are three minutes instead of 60 minutes. It's like I know what they're working on. Like all of these things are as like a result of like having that time to go think, figure out what it is we should be working on. Giving it the ample time to put the appropriate plan in place and then communicating that to everybody. So like we all are moving in the same direction and there's less like, wait, what are you working on? Like, wait, is this, is this like a focal point right now that you should be spending your time on it? So, um, you know, plan that thinking time, like literally block it like it is working. I'd say do it as frequently as you can. Um, and then if you have a team, like I know Lisa talked about this, like we have once a month a visioneering meeting, which is me and her and is basically like Greg vomits future vision that is now more baked than it was when I first started this meeting.
Like, I'm letting things marinate for a lot longer than I did and like I'd come up with these ideas and in our vision early, you know, maybe like a year ago I'd be like sharing this idea and like Lisa would get mad at Greg and we'd, we'd fight and like it would be, it'd be ugly and now Greg holds back for a little longer and like marinates on some things and make sure he's a little more clear. Right? Like if you're the owner, you're probably the visionary in the business. I think we talked about at my table, like you could prematurely share your vision. Um, and so like if you have someone who's going to challenge your vision a that's good, but like make sure you have enough clear in your own mind before you start sharing it because it can cause caused more chaos than, than you think. Uh, and it will. Um, so yeah, please, please do.
So from my perspective, he would share ideas and I would ask clarify questions because I couldn't understand the idea that you just share it and he couldn't give me an answer. Um, because it was so fresh and so new to him, he was just like, well, it's cool. Okay, well how's that going to help us? And so my role is to kind of challenge them because being through set and make sure we're making the right decisions, um, and so it did cause a lot of tension and that tends to bleed over to other stuff. So it's important to, you guys have thinking time as well as, you know, you have thinking time scheduled with your team. So once you have a little bit more clarity of why you want something, um, that you guys can then as a team think on how to make it work right. And make it go out there.
Yeah. Yeah, totally. Um, I mean Megan, yeah. And look, I, and I don't, maybe you don't think maybe you think this, maybe you don't, but like, you know, sometimes I, when I hear it I'm like, man, it sounds like, like you know, me and Lisa have like this like effortless relationship. We collide a lot like Megan. So I don't know if Megan you had like we literally have a lot of collision and like it, like there's like white people walking away from the conversation for a little while. Like we come back, we apologize. Like it is not like a man, like Greg and Lisa got like this, this, this, this. That's like flow and so easy and effortless. Like we collide more than you could possibly imagine. And I don't know if Megan has like the outsider cause she kind of is more of the in between if sometimes like mom and dad and so, but like Lisa I know will agree with this, cause we've talked about a lot is like it's a very healthy collision, right?
Like it's uncomfortable. Most of us usually don't, like neither of us usually want to talk about some of these things because it makes us feel awkward or uncomfortable or vulnerable and but like if we didn't have those conversations, like we literally wouldn't move forward. Like we just like be gun shy, I'd keep it inside, then it blow up in some other way or vice versa. So like if you're like afraid of conflict, like internally with your team, like cause they might leave or they're unhappy or whatever. Like you need to get over that shit and just collide hard like, and, and the collisions will become productive. Like you have to like expose yourself, right? Like I am by no means like perfect at this. But like we co we collide a lot and like it's part of our progress. So if you're trying to avoid it, maybe don't,
we've gotten a lot better at it and I think it just comes from allowing the decision to happen. There was open honesty that like this is my role, this is your role. We need to find a way to work. Um, and that's where we find were able to I think reduced attention. Um, yeah, she's like, are they getting a divorce? Like what's happening? Like coming, I see a conversation like we'll take a lunch, you know, she's like, I just checked in but I'm checking out. But it's been a month since we've had any like real collision that has been,
yeah, there some, I mean we had our fair share I think to give us a few months off. I mean there was some, there was some, there was some good ones to yeah. And so like again, like I think if you have been prematurely sharing the vision or not sharing vision at all, when you start sharing vision, like just remember like, Hey, that might be overwhelming to the person that now all of a sudden you're like vomiting ideas onto, right? Like, so if you're the recipient of that idea of vomit, like, like bring it back, bring it back to them, challenge them, like, make sure, like, like, make sure that they're thinking things through, right. Even if you actually agree with the idea, like maybe just play devil's advocate for a minute and just like, make sure that this is the right idea, but like you have to schedule that time, um, innovate and iterate and again, like this is kind of come up in various ways like through putting in the reps and stuff.
Um, but like, Hey, like we had guys that we had many of you like not showing up to calls, like not even knowing the calls existed. Uh, even though they're prominently posted in a lot of different places, shared daily, uh, sent out individually. Uh, I mean, like, we're like, guys, I don't know how you don't know that this call exists. Like, we've messaged you privately, we sent you the link to the page where they're at on onboarding. We told you where they're at. We told you the schedule. They're in Facebook. Like they're like literally like they are surrounding you and you don't know. It's like, but, and then you don't come. So like, all right, like let's try something new. Like let's try to do that implementation day where like we just said, Hey, we're available all day. We're going to talk about some different topics, we're going to do breakout sessions and cover different topics.
Like we're iterating on like what we're seeing from you guys. Like, like we talked about like, Hey, if you're not coming to the calls, like we assume that you're kind of taking action and you're doing stuff and not just like stuck in this perpetual emotion, not moving like, well how do we need to rethink how we're supporting you to, to compliment that and move you guys forward. So like it kinda came up a couple times and you know, trying to solve problems that you don't have yet. Like look the ver, if you're in beta or you're in your version two, guess what? That's like version one or two have a lot more versions that are yet to come. Like don't feel like it. Like if you have the mentality that it's done, like you're going to lose, like always be asking yourself like, well how can we make this easier?
Like how, like look at what your clients are coming to you with. Like can I build a resource? Like can't, how can I make them get through that faster? We're like, how can we make sure that people know these calls exist on top of the way that we're already doing it? Like maybe we just delete the calls because nobody bringing comes from it. Like, you know, it's like, so don't be afraid to like continually iterate and based on your client feedback. But the innovation side of that too, like, um, and actually the iteration as well. Like they don't need to like innovation and iteration, like doesn't need to be this massive thing. Lisa was going to chime in on that if I didn't say that. Like they can be like very small, subtle tweaks and tests. Um, I'm looking at my notes to see if I'm missing anything. And Lisa, am I missing anything?
It's just the biggest thing is iteration. We hear from so many people, it's like they're afraid of it because it takes a lot of time, effort, a lot of work. Um, integration doesn't have to be that. I mean we added a menu bar, our member site and made so many members happy across both of our programs. It was a very simple iteration of it. Very little effort took thinking time to be like, what can we do? Why are people not finding this? Um, and so just iteration doesn't mean big and scary can be small and it can make a world of a huge impact. Oh, and to access quickly to, um, that wasn't something that like Greg had to, you're right. Right. Like there was something recent. I was all up.
They just told me about it yesterday. I was like, what menu bar? I'm like, I have no idea what you're talking about.
Yeah, just a little about it. We did it. We just had to remind him, you need to be reminded. So it's like, that's the part about empowering your team, right? Like when you feel that your team feels empowered, they will like start looking for things. It's like, alright, what can we fix? And it doesn't have to do it. You said like small changes can make a world of difference.
Yeah. The last thing I want to add on the innovation piece is like back to messaging, right? Like look if you feel like you're saying the same like while I'm saying the same thing over and over again like in my own mind like I'm like reiterating and innovating on how I'm trying to say it. Like that's a part of the process and like you know one thing that I remember happening like you know we had this, you know this first ad rocking and rolling and like got high got on the high horse. I'm like this is like this ad's been running for like eight months. Like all I've had to do is just spend more money and it works. It's like guess what happens? Like messaging fatigue, you know like if you're not innovating what the next messages like guess what and that message stops working.
Like the momentum that you need to build back up to get that messaging back on point is going to be hard. This is like, it goes back to like, you got to just keep doing the work of putting the reps like how can you say it differently? Like let me do a video, let me talk about it. Let me write it out in a different way. Let me try some different words. Like if you stop producing like, like you need to keep the production muscle going, right? And like, and just doing so like that is going to continue to be like a small form of, of innovation, right? Like how can, how you change the way the market perceives certain things. Like start thinking about how you can change that. Cause like I can tell you the market as a whole is going to crash soon.
Like, and like all of our businesses, we're gonna have to figure some shit out, right? So like, well there is an inevitable crash coming and like start thinking about how that might impact your, you know, your clients or how can you make sure that you're not in jeopardy. Like starting to think through some of those things, working those muscles. Like many of you have the message, you just don't practice using the muscle of getting the message out there. And like when like Tim, like once you start getting ads going, for example, and this applies to everybody, myself included, like if you stop writing ad copy and now you need to write ad copy, guess what's going to be hard writing ad copy. So like, are you writing things every day? Like are you, this is why like I'm constantly trying to post in the Facebook group.
It's like my forum to just work the muscle. Right? Um, so kind of, it's easy to neglect some of those, you know the practice, right? But like when it's come, when it's time to step up to the plate and like you haven't swung the bat in a while, like you're probably gonna strike out, you know, how'd you like that sports analogy? I know it's baseball, but all right. So I'm going to do what the last one and then we'll do some last uh, quick takeaways cause we're one minute over the last ones. Be aware of second and third order consequences. Um, so the, the story here is like, we get lost in our own day to day for sure, and like our own how our own projects and priorities. Like, Oh, like I can hold that off til tomorrow or I can wait until next week to do that. And like, it's very easy to, especially as you start delegating things to your team that like, well if you delay that by five days or whatever, like how does that impact the rest of the team?
Right? Like it's not just the consequence of like, Oh, you're not doing it when you said you were, but now they can do what they said they were going to do when you expected them to do it. And like it comes back to you. And so this happened, you know, and some of the organization that this event, um, you know, a couple of things that like, you know, one person didn't do and then that cascaded into like, now every, everyone else's stuff is like last minute and we're chasing it down. Um, and you know, if we're in our own head and we're only focused on what we need to do as a part of the process and forget how that one thing unlocks the next person to do their thing. Like you could literally delay and or miss like specific deadlines that you're looking to hit and then it would be easy to be like, well why didn't you hit this?
And it's like, well you deliver this five days late and it's like, Oh, right. Like I didn't think about the secondary and tertiary consequences of like me just not doing the thing that I said I was going to do when I did it. Right. Um, so as your team starts to grow, as you start delegating, like start thinking through like, all right, well if I Slack on this, like how is that going to impact everybody? And there's times where like Lisa has been like, look like if you like, you need to get this to me by this day or like, it's not going to be ready when you want it. And thus like we have to like, this is when it's going to be re like realistic to get it, you know, like it happens a lot. And so I dunno if you want to add to that.
I think it's important that you never think about it. Two grades kind of talking like high level down, but it goes the other way around too. Um, you know, starting at the bottom, you know, and working your way up. If we're, we get so sucked into our day to day of maybe taking care of clients or whatever project we're working on, everything that it's okay to let something slide. We have to think about the impact that might be for the other people moving up. Um, and it's just really be respectful of everybody's time as well as making sure that you're aware of priorities and goals and having conversations. Um, and then the last piece of it have making sure when you delegate a task that you express the priority and the importance of the task. Yeah. Um, because I, a lot of what we felt with this event and a few other things, um, really came down to it wasn't delegated properly. It wasn't clear what was expected and it wasn't clear how it would impact if it wasn't done on time on. Right. And I think every single one of us in the team of four, uh, made the same mistake at some point. And it is just the, we just had to remind ourselves, you know, we are a team and our actions impact other people.
Yeah. And don't assume because you think that it's clear that they actually get it. Like, like are you clear on this? Like what, like what are you hearing me say? Because again, like sometimes you could say say something in your mind, you're like, I totally delegated that like 10 dismount delegation and they're like, I was a two for me. Like I don't know what the hell what you just did. But like that's not what I was expecting to get. And I have no idea where to go from here. So like if you're the one delegating, be sure that the other person is like receiving the delegation in the way that you think you've delivered it. I would say if I give you five to 10 new clients, would you or your agency break if so, your current agency model is broken. I struggle with this too, until I found a better way. By adding online programs, training, and coaching to our agency, we doubled profits without adding more hours. If you want to work directly with me and my team to transform your agency, visit my scalable business.com to learn more.