This week at the Thrivetime Show business coaching program I saw the power of the law of sowing and reaping. It is not easy to take the time and effort to plant the seeds of success, tend to the seeds as they grow to be able to then reap the works of your efforts. To reap the harvest of time and financial freedom that a successful business can bring requires time and diligence. The time previously spent on things not related to or profitable for the business is traded for the time spent on the same repeatable tasks every day until you reach your goals. Most people starting a business or who have been in business a few years do not diligently toil in their business long enough to reap the benefits a solvent business can bring. In fact, Inc.com says that “96% of businesses fail within 10 years.” According to the New York Times, American adults watch over 5 hours of television per day. Clay Clark is a great example of what a diligent doer is. Clay used to spend all of his time in his business DJConnections.com. Clay would personally DJ weddings as well as manage his team of DJs.
There is a path to success, the path involves trade-offs.
Clay would personally make each and every playlist for each and every bride. Now, this was back before Spotify and iTunes or even YouTube, Clay had to go out and buy every single song at the store so that he could create a mix for the bride and groom. This requires hours of dedicated prep time before each wedding as well as the hours DJing during the wedding. In order to make DJ Connection, a solvent business Clay had to invest time diligently marketing his company as well as booking the leads to turn them into clients and then perform at the weddings. Once DJConnections had a steady stream of leads coming in and Clay had hired a team of DJ’s, he had to create systems and diligently keep the systems in place. Once the systems were in place Clay could spend time out of the business and work on the business. When Clay sold DJConnection to be a business coach, the company had performed four thousand weddings a year.
There is a path to success, the path involves trade-offs. For every goal you want your business to hit, there are things taking your time that must be let go of. For starters, take the time to create or provide a product or service that people want or are in need of. Once you have a marketable commodity make the marketing something people will get excited about! Clay teaches about the three-legged business coach marketing stool. In order to market your business, there is no need to overextend you or your team with a thousand different marketing routes, choose three marketing tools to apply every day.
Next implement a sales conversion system, which means creating a path from the time a lead comes into who is talking to the lead, what the person talking to the lead is saying (using a script), and then booking the lead. The sales conversion is how many no’s does it take to achieve the yes and convert your leads into clients.
Third, determine what the customer acquisition costs of acquiring leads are. In order to stay out of bankruptcy and keep earning a profit from your business, you must know how much you can afford to spend on bringing potential customers in. You must also know how much each customer costs to bring in the door and raise your prices accordingly.
Finally, bring out the whiteboard or chalkboard and write out the systems and nomenclature you want your team to use. Providing repeatable systems & processes will create a calm environment, as well as produce fewer mistakes and allow for quicker turnaround times (because people aren’t spending extra time looking for items or files). You will notice that there is less crazy in your business once people are all following the same path. Your clients will notice the improved service because you’ve now got a checklist reminding the team exactly how to interact with the clients.
All of these steps will set you on the path to time and financial freedom to do the things you want to do with your life. The time you spend doing the hard things now will make life easier in the future. Time and financial freedom require diligent focus and time on the path to success. What are you currently spending or not spending time on that is holding your business back? Be honest with yourself; if you are not diligently sowing time on your business then take a step back and apply the above steps to get you back on the path to success. Thank you to Jonathan Kelly and Clay Clark.