Drowning in client work?

​When we get on the phone with agency owners we almost always hear things like…

  • I’m drowning in client work and don’t have any time for my personal life
  • I’m having some big months but it’s not sustainable unless I fix fulfillment
  • I’m working myself to death
  • I’m stuck the day -to day operations and I’m going crazy with all the fire fighting.    

​If that’s you something needs to change.

​That’s why I put together this video breaking down 7 tips you can apply to your business starting today.

​Watch now.

​Let me know which one you’ll focus on first.


​Transcript / MP3

If you're drowning in client work and you don't even really have the time or feel like you have the time to fulfill on the work that you have, then this video is for you. Cause I'm gonna break down seven tips of things that you should be doing right now to start to free up your capacity. So you can actually grow your business. Let's get it going. ...

[inaudible]

What's going on, guys. Greg Hickman here from all [email protected] And like I said, in this video, I want to break down some things that you can be thinking about and applying in your business right now, if you've been saying things like I'm drowning in client work and don't have time for my personal life, or maybe you're saying things like I'm working myself to death, which we really don't want you to be doing because business should be fun, right? Or maybe you felt like you've been having big months, but you know, that growth isn't sustainable. Unless you fix something in your fulfillment or delivery process. Maybe you're like most agency owners that we talk to and you are stuck in the day to day operations and you are fighting fire after fire, which is not the way that we really want to feel. And lastly, maybe you're in a position where you feel like you can't properly scale due to the lack of systems in your business.

Maybe everything's manual, uh, maybe a lot of things that are custom and not repeatable. And that's actually prevented you from taking your business to the next level. Well, if that's you, you're in the right place because we're going to break down seven tips. Like I said, that I think you should be applying to your business. Now, if you're new here welcome, um, our channel has been growing. And so thank you to all of those that have been participating. Comment. Leave me a comment. Tell me what you do, where you're from. I'd love to see, you know, where you're at in the world as our channel continues to grow. And if you're not already subscribed, I definitely recommend clicking that subscribe button and wherever it is and the notification bell, so that you hear about every new episode that we released. Cause we release episodes weekly.

Now, before I jump into the seven tips, uh, just a quick reminder, we do coach agency owners and freelancers and service providers on how to really grow their business through systems automation and by adding more profitable revenue streams that aren't tied to labor. So if that is you and after listening to this video and these seven tips, you're like, Oh my God, I would love to do those things. Look in the comments below. There is a link to schedule a call with our team and also some free, additional training that will help you kind of get a better picture of how we might actually help you start to transform how you currently do business. Tip. Number one is to organize how you work. Now when we get new clients coming in, one of the first things that we have to work on with them is this exercise.

We call the perfect work week. The perfect workweek is really at its essence about being with how you structure your days and your weeks so that you have time to work on the things that matter most for you to grow your business more often than not. Unfortunately, uh, as an agency owner or a service provider, you spend most of your day in a reactionary state and you're kind of fielding requests as they come, which really makes your calendar look like a piece of Swiss cheese. And there's like these little pockets of opportunity for you to actually be productive. And you're not because you're jumping around from task to task. We find that if you just organize your week in a way where you have designated time for fulfillment and interacting with clients designated time for sales, designated time for marketing your own business, that not only will you be more productive, but you'll actually get to work on things in your business that are going to help you grow, not just your clients and your clients will still have, you know, the results that they need and the support that they need because you've structured it in an intentional way.

And when you do this, we found that our clients have been able to free up instantaneously just from de restructuring their work week, anywhere from five to 15 hours a week, that they get back, that they can now put towards growing their own business. No more cobbler's kids have no shoes story. It's time to actually be intentional and grow your business by design instead of by default, because by default the business ain't growing tip number two is charge more like we've heard this, everyone's been telling you this. I almost didn't include it in the list because it's so obvious. But more times than I'd like to say, I see clients come in and they are charging way too little and they're already maxed out at capacity. And so you can't take on any more clients, but you're not making enough money per client. In fact, in sometimes if you actually do the math, which we help our clients do, they're losing money on existing clients.

They like the fact that they have recurring revenue because they sold that two to $3,000 a month retainer yet with the amount of hours that they're applying to each client and the time, not just an execution of the work, but the time that you spend in between your two years here, thinking about your client's work, you're not spending time on your own business. And so fundamentally if you raise your rates, you will one make more money, which will actually lead to you, having a better fulfillment for your client, because you'll have more to work with. You'll have the ability to save money, uh, have profit and deliver again, deliver a really a better experience for your clients and for yourself. Because if you're spread too thin each and every client that you add, you're only getting spread more thin, which makes it worse for all of the clients that you have, unless you're hiring more people.

But if you're like most of the people we speak with you, aren't hiring more people because you don't charge enough and there's not enough money left over to even profit for yourself to hire the help that you actually need or worse. You're hiring the help that you need. And there's still no money left over for you. And even adding new clients, doesn't help you. The owner make more money. So if you're not charging enough, you might just need to charge more. As one of the steps, then it'll allow you to deliver a better experience, which will allow you to live a better lifestyle because you can afford to hire the people and afford to pay yourself. Because again, if you're not doing profit first, you're probably paying out all the help and taking what's left, which is next to nothing. Tip number three is to streamline sales.

Now a lot of this comes down to knowing what you sell and having a simple, clear, and compelling and irresistible offer if you will, which means you can't just sell whatever the client needs, which usually tends to lead into the custom work. But even if you are doing a done for you service, you can still streamline your sales process so that every time you have a sales conversation, it's set up the same. You ask the same questions, you're talking to the same type of person and it's repeatable. Your process in and of itself will be predictable, which will allow you to really have more conversations because you, you will have a go to documented process for how you conduct a sales conversation and how you move someone from a prospect to a client. If you make it up on the fly every single time. And it's unique to every single client, you're going to be wasting a lot of time, energy, and effort and money in that sales process.

So you're going to start off your client relationship almost already in the negative, because you had 12 different sessions. Uh, you went back and forth on proposal edits. All of the things that we see time and time again, because you just don't have a consistent, reliable and repeatable sales process. So if you whittle that down and say, here's how we're going to conduct this, and it's this five step process you can really start to benefit from having systems and automation, where again, you walk into the office every day. And if you have a sales calls, it's like clockwork. Having those conversations again, you'll have more calls because you're more efficient and you actually will be more profitable because you're kicking off the relationship from a positive place, not in the hole. Number four is really a part of this process of sales is really filtering for the right clients.

Now, oftentimes I see that, you know, you take anybody that you can get and you hop on the call because you don't know where the next client is coming from. So you'll talk to just about anybody and you end up having a lot of sales calls with people that really don't know what you do. They're just trying to look to, to learn a little bit more. And you're not even sure if you can actually help them. So you have a lot of calls, but most of the clients aren't the right fit. So my suggestion to you is put in some filters, make these people jump through a little bit of hoops, make them apply for a conversation, make them fill out a questionnaire or a survey where you then get to review that prior to the call and determine if it's actually the best use of your time to speak with this person.

We have all of our clients, um, our prospects fill out a questionnaire before we ever get on the phone with them. Our clients now do the same. They're having fewer calls, but the calls are with the right people. And so they're actually making more money in less time because they're not spending countless hours talking to the wrong people. So not only do you need to streamline your process, but you need to make sure you're only getting on the call with people that are qualified and people that are the right fit for what you can do, that you can help. And that would be qualified to invest in your services. Tip number five is to train your clients while onboarding them. Can't tell you how many times and we've did this ourselves. So we were guilty too, of the client gives you the first payment and you just schedule a kickoff call.

And that call is made up on the fly. Even if you have a little bit of a script, the client shows up, they're not ready. They're not really sure what to expect. And the relationship kind of gets off to a weird shaky start. What I've found to be true is that one of the most important moments in getting started with a client is the gap between when they gave you the money and when they actually start doing meaningful work. And in that time, you can actually be teaching, educating, and training your client on your process. Maybe even getting them to start doing some of the work so that when you have that kickoff call or you have that initial launch, that your clients already in momentum, they're already like on the same page, in the same book versus, you know, showing up to the call, having no idea what's happening next and you making stuff up on the fly.

So by choreographing this and training them how to be a good client, how to set expectations, all of that stuff, you will have a better, more profitable client fulfillment experience, which leads me to number six, six is to identify the fulfillment bottlenecks in your process. One of the things we help our clients do is create a roadmap of the client journey. Like what happens once from a client when they pay you to, when they get the result that they came to you for and mapping that out on a visual chart. And when, when you look at that visual chart and you kind of identify what are the steps that you and your team need to take internally to get your client? The result you'll start to see which of the pieces of your process are the heaviest are require the most work or require the most team or support.

And you can start to design around that. Knowing where the bottlenecks are, it helps you in hiring. If you know, step five of your nine step process is the heaviest and you can hire one or two people to make that go from a three week process to a three day process. I mean, you're going to see massive amounts of efficiencies. You'll be able to serve more clients in a given time timeframe, which will make you more profitable. So we really need to start identifying the bottlenecks inside of the fulfillment experience, to know where we need to create change, know where we need to fix things, know who we need to hire next. Now tip number seven is probably my favorite is adding a leverage revenue stream. Most agencies, service providers, maybe you, if you're watching have only one revenue stream, and that is in the form of selling your time or in this case capacity.

Um, and maybe you have a retainer, but it's really just a retainer of bundled hours that are, uh, it's just like blocks of hours, which is really just a retainer of capacity. And if you only have one revenue stream and that one revenue stream is labor, I think you're at a severe disadvantage. Uh, and you're also leaving a lot of money and opportunity on the table for you to grow. And when times like the things we've experienced recently with COVID-19, um, or any sort of recession, historically, one of the first things to get, let go is labor. And so if all of your revenue is dependent upon labor and services, where it's really just you providing capacity for your client, you're exposed. So one of the things we help our clients do is add on an additional revenue stream. And it really in the longterm play, you want to have two to three revenue streams inside of your agency.

Something that's like your core service done for you, work something that's more leveraged and scalable like done with you, which could be in the form of training or workshops or coaching and consulting, which is, you know, some of the things we help our clients launch and even into more of a DIY, uh, experience where maybe it's like an online course or, um, you know, an online training that is, you know, lower value, but doesn't involve you and, or your team in a fulfillment experience, pure just training. So we help our clients add that on. Now, if you're in a position where you can't take on more clients and done for you, but you can package up your process and find clients that are willing to go through that process with you within a very short time, sometimes 30, 30 days, sometimes 90 days with our clients, you can add on this new revenue stream, that whether you have one client or 20, it'll take you, you know, three to five hours of fulfillment a week that still helps your clients get results.

Uh, and sometimes it's the same prospect. Sometimes it's a slightly different prospect, but now gives you a whole new revenue stream that you can serve to a type of person that maybe you weren't able to sell to before, because they couldn't afford your done for you, or maybe they actually had certain pieces in house and they didn't need all of your labor. They needed certain parts, but you didn't have a way to sell that. Well, now you can, if you package it up the correct way. And so we've seen clients come in and literally have had next to no capacity on fulfillment, but added on this new revenue stream. And we're able to bring on new clients with very limited amount of fulfillment hours. And whether they had three clients come in or 10 or 20, it was still the same amount of fulfillment. So imagine if you could add 10, 20 clients and your cost of fulfillment, didn't really change within that window of number of new clients.

Well, that's what we call scalability. And we want that for you. And also that means more revenue to come into your business, to create a better experience for clients that isn't just tied to labor. So that's my last tip. So I hope you guys enjoyed this episode. If you are looking to do one of these seven and apply one of these seven in your business, check out the link below in the, in the, in the description area and schedule a call with our team. We'd be happy to chat about how we might be able to help you in your business and really apply one of these seven principles to get you your time back. So you're not drowning in client work. If you are watching this and you're like, Oh my God, I'm going to be implementing these right away. I want you to comment below which one of these tips is going to be the first thing you're going to implement. I want to see it in the comments. Let me know if you have any questions. I hope you guys enjoy this one. [inaudible].

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