Episode #107:
Become Masterful at Business Strategy, Part 2

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In the second installment of Caterina’s two-part Business Strategy series, she continues the conversation on questions that we, as entrepreneurs, can ask ourselves to master business strategy even more. Caterina takes us step-by-step through forming a plan that aligns with the five pillars of our business, the importance of building a team, and ways to improve our sales close ratio. Don’t miss this two-episode series to help you improve your processes, grow your revenue, and bliss in your business!

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Expand Your Fempire Podcast #107 Transcript

 

Become Masterful at Business Strategy, Part 2

Welcome to Expand your Fempire with Caterina Rando, the podcast for women in business on a mission. Sharing ideas to support you to grow and thrive. Now here’s your host, Caterina Rando.

[00:00:00] Caterina Rando: This is Caterina Rando, host of Expand your Fempire Podcast and I am blissing to have you back with me for another discussion on strategy. Now you may not think strategy is sexy. I wanna tell you it is super sexy, super exciting, super fabulous for shining a spotlight because strategy informs your plans. It informs your actions and it allows you to be proactive in your business versus reactive.

[00:01:06] I already did another episode on this recently. Hopefully, you’ve listened to that because there are so many places in your business where strategy is essential. Now, from my perspective, strategy is the plan that you create after you make decisions.

[00:01:27] And of course, decision-making is the first step of strategy. You decide, then you make a plan, then you implement. But there’s all kinds of things that inform not only good strategy, but you getting better and better and more masterful at strategy.

[00:01:53] Because I want you to bliss in your business. I want you to get better and better at strategy. When you do that, it’s gonna improve your bottom line, you’re gonna grow your revenue, also you are gonna be enjoying your work and your business even more.

[00:02:13] Part of what I want you to give strategy to, let’s start here, is what do you want your business to look like related to what you want your life to look like? Your business is a part of your life. How do you wanna interact with your business in your life?

[00:02:36] I talked to a lady today. She’s very happy being a, a virtual she calls – I, I really don’t like the term nomad. They say business nomad, which means you don’t have a home base. I like to say location independent is what I like to call it. Same thing. Means you can do your business from anywhere. That is a lifestyle choice that will have to be supported by smart business strategy.

[00:03:09] Now you could say, I wanna be at home six months a year. I wanna be traveling the world six months a year. Great. Or simply like one of my friends. She has her home base, but every month she goes a week somewhere else and works from somewhere else. Because she has friends all over. How do you want your business to be a part of your life? That is strategy.

[00:03:38] Another important thing around strategy that is another foundation is to start to ask yourself this very important strategy question, “who can help me with this?” Because as you’ve heard me say many times, there are five things that are your job in your business. Speaking in the broad sense of the word, selling unless you have a sales team, strategy we’re discussing today, serving your clients of course, and self-care.

[00:04:16] Now I want you to have strategy around all these things. The point I want you to hear right now is that these are your jobs not fooling around with Canva for hours, not watching a video to try to figure out how to do search engine optimization, not learning how to update your own website and doing all of that. Not doing your own books, not doing all your own admin. Not doing your own shipping, like getting support. Because you want to do what not only makes you bliss, which is probably under those five categories, but also you have to not only do these five things, it’s your job to master these five things.

[00:05:04] And every hour you spend doing what’s not your job, you’re pushing off mastery in the areas that are your job, because they’re not getting attention that they need. Strategy, an important strategy I invite you to embrace in your business is only focus on the five pillars of building your Fempire. Only focus on the five pillars that are your job as the leader of your Fempire.

[00:05:36] That means, therefore, this important question, strategy question “who can help me with this?” is key and essential. This relates to building your team.

[00:05:50] Now here’s where entrepreneurs say to me, “Caterina, can’t afford it, can’t afford a VA, can’t afford a bookkeeper, can’t afford any of these people.”

[00:06:00] Sweetheart. You wanna run your business like a business. You can’t grow, you can’t thrive if you’re doing everything. Because guess what, I’m gonna tell you. I’ve been in business almost 30 years and for many, many years, probably the last 25, if not more, I have had a team and I have focused most of the time on these five pillars. And I wanna tell you, even though I’m not doing everything, you know what, I’m still not getting through my to-do list. Because your brilliant idea syndrome will kick in. As soon as it gets low.

[00:06:43] Let me back up though and say, I don’t have a to-do list. I put all my to-dos on my calendar, which is really important and is a very important strategy that I want you to embrace.

[00:06:56] Also recognize that when you have a good team that is freeing you up to focus on the speaking, the selling, the serving, the strategy, the self- care, you’re gonna generate more revenue and that’s gonna help you pay for your team- because you’re gonna become more and more masterful at the speaking, the selling, the serving, the strategy, and the self care.

[00:07:24] You cannot burn the candle at both ends and do that on a sustained basis, right? You’ve got to master your self care as well. Okay. We’ll talk about that too.

[00:07:37] I talked to a wonderful gal yesterday. She’s a, a coach helping people grow their business her focus is really helping people eliminate their limiting beliefs and getting their mindset right. And, you know, she was saying to me, “well, Catarina, I really don’t like to set goals because I wanna do my business. I don’t wanna think about the, the money part of it. I wanna think about the service part of it.”

[00:08:03] And you know what? I love that. I’m here to be of service. The thing is we can’t give from an empty cup and the beautiful thing about paying attention to the numbers in our business is that the numbers don’t lie.

[00:08:18] If you bring in $5,000 a month, you know that. If you bring in $50,000 a month, you know that when you look at the numbers. And by looking at the numbers, you could also determine, well, if I have a coaching package that’s $1,500. If I sell 10 of those in a month, that is $15,000.

[00:08:43] You want to know what the numbers are and how the numbers add up. And then you wanna take that number well if I want to sell 10 coaching packages to make $15,000, then I’m gonna suggest my friend that you talk to 40 people.

[00:08:59] Now you say, “Caterina, that’s way too many.” Actually it’s not, it’s only 10 people a week. Some of them will be an insta-yes. Some of them will talk to you next month. Some of them will talk to you in two years or become clients in two years. The point is the more people you talk to, the more you sell.

[00:09:17] You need a target though, because, and again, this is the strategy. You need a target because you need to see – if I talk to 40 people in a month, do I in fact, sell 15 coaching packages? Or do I sell 10? Or do I sell 20? You want to know the truth about your business.

[00:09:40] Now you say, “well, Caterina that’s one month and the next month might be different.” Yeah. The next month is probably gonna be better because the more you do it, the better you get and the more you move towards mastery, which is gonna mean that you close ratio is going to improve.

[00:09:56] Do you know the truth about your business in terms of the numbers related to your revenue and your sales conversations? And to be strategic about it, you want to know those numbers and that’s why you want to pay attention to them.

[00:10:16] I also wanna remind you here about the difference between sales and marketing. I talked to another gal today, not a client, and she’s telling me, well, Caterina, I’m writing this course and I’m building my list and I’m being this brand ambassador for this group. And, and another thing she’s doing, and another thing she’s doing, and another thing she’s doing, and I said, great, how many people have you asked to be your client this month?

[00:10:50] And the answer was none. And of course she wants more clients and she wants more revenue. My friends, marketing is letting the world know you exist, letting them know you have value to bring, letting your potential clients know you have value. That’s marketing – sales is when you invite someone to be your client and I see so many entrepreneurs putting so much time and money into marketing, but zero for sales. Zero time and I’m laughing because it sounds ridiculous to me, zero time for sales. And in terms of money sale, to ask somebody to be your client just costs you time. Now I say, ask them to be your client. Of course, you’re gonna have a conversation.

[00:11:43] You’re gonna see if there’s a good match. You’re hopefully gonna invite them to your workshop or give them some other way of figuring out that you have massive value to bring with other things that you might give them – videos, having them listen to podcasts, having them read your book, whatever it is. You probably don’t have as many clients as you want if that’s the case, because you haven’t put any attention on the sales strategy and the strategy is simply asking yourself, how many clients or revenue you want this month, whatever number that is of new clients, timing that by four, making time for those conversations and booking those conversations.

[00:12:35] And of course, some people will be a insta-yes. Some people will not even show up for their call. Some people you’ll have to track down and reschedule. Then you have to ask yourself if you even want them as a client because if people make it very difficult for you to connect with them, they’re probably not gonna make it easy for you to work with them.

[00:12:56] But that’s of course, for you to decide on a case by case basis.  I wanna ask you, are you putting enough attention on sales strategy? Now here’s where you might say no. And you might also say “Caterina, why all this talk about sales, sales, sales?” Because sales drives revenue.

[00:13:20] It creates financial stability for you. It creates surplus for you. It creates the opportunity for you to project into the future based on what you’ve already sold, what your revenue in the door is gonna be in the coming months. And that allows you to be more strategic in your business, but most importantly, it allows you to feel financially secure in your business, which will allow you to bliss every day more. And that’s of course what I want for you when you’re stressing about finances in your business, or you feel constricted by finances because you don’t have surplus and you don’t have a lot of sales, then your creativity is squashed. And the other thing to I’m sure you know about your business is that your business is your artist canvas.

[00:14:24] You are a creative person when you’re an entrepreneur and you have so many things you wanna do in your business. So many ideas. And of course you have to manage that brilliant idea syndrome, which is an important strategy to embrace. But you can’t do all the things you wanna do if you are financially restricted.

[00:14:48] And of course you also know that I want you to embrace giving in your business philanthropy. You can’t do that when you are not having sales either or having much sales. That’s why I’m an advocate and a messenger for master your sales before you master much else, because that will give you the clients to master everything else and the revenue to get help in your business.

[00:15:24] We said one of the strategy questions is, “who can help me with this?” another strategy question is, “do I really need to do this right now? Or can this be an initiative for my business, for the future?”

[00:15:39] One of the things that some entrepreneurs do is they try to pack too much into every quarter. And that creates a lot of stress. I know you want it all done yesterday. If you’re like me, I certainly do. Plus though. It’s important to look at the strategic side of it.

[00:16:03] And is it gonna tax you, tax your team, tax your budget too much? If you are trying to do all these things at once. So please make that a strategy question – “do I need to do this now? Or is there another quarter that this is gonna be our primary initiative?”

[00:16:24] This is something to look at. If you’re thinking about launching your podcast or launching your retreat or your workshop. We, as I mentioned previously, we’ve just built a new client portal. That was one of our initiatives. Q4 of last year, o ur initiative was to get our app done, our Expand Your Fempire App.

[00:16:45] And if you haven’t downloaded that and put it on your phone, please do there’s a lot of great stuff there to support you to grow your business. Of course, it’s free.

[00:16:53] Now, sometimes you make an initiative like an example of our app. You think it’s gonna take you a quarter. It took us about a year to complete the whole thing. And that’s the other thing to know about calendaring in your business. A lot of things take longer than we anticipate. And that’s why it’s important for you to have support, to move things along and also to have time on your calendar .

[00:17:22] For example, I’m going to Italy very soon. I’m leaving on a Monday. On the Friday before, the whole day is blocked out for catch-up. Just no appointments, no nothing on there. No, to-dos on there. Catch up because there will be things to accomplish that I cannot anticipate now. And of course, I don’t wanna be doing it on the weekend when I’m getting ready to go away.

[00:17:51] Some people suggest that you have a day every month called “catch up” for those projects that you’re not getting to, that you wanna be getting to, that are taking a long time to accomplish because they keep getting pushed down on your list.

[00:18:08] Now, by the way, another strategy question we said, “who can help me with this?” But the thing is start to pay attention to what’s not getting done week after week after week, that is something for you to ask yourself.

[00:18:25] Another question is, “do I really need to do this, or can I not do it?” I’ve been trying to write a grant for a few weeks. Now, because of the nature of the grant, I don’t see how I can get someone to easily help me with it. I’ve been doing it, working on it a little bit for three weeks. It’s not getting done.

[00:18:48] I’m gonna simply forget about it because it’s taking a lot of time for not necessarily guaranteed return and I could spend my time better elsewhere.

[00:19:00] Very important for you to start to pay attention to what can you simply let go of? You don’t have to do everything.

[00:19:09] Another aspect of strategy that I want to encourage you to embrace, if you haven’t already, is creating criteria. The more criteria you have, the more making decisions and implementing strategy will be easy for you.

[00:19:28] Now, for example, you have criteria for who are your ideal clients? Hopefully you have a criteria for who are your ideal team members. Hopefully you have a criteria for when you say yes to a speech. And when you say thank you very much, this is not the right match for me. You hopefully have a criteria for your vendors.

[00:19:56] All of these criteria help you streamline decision making in your business and they help you have things move more smoothly because you don’t have to make new decisions all the time. You make the decision, which is the criteria once. And then you reevaluate it at the end of the year to see if you wanna keep the same criteria next year, and that supports you to move forward quickly because the criteria has been decided once and you use it rather than having to decide every single time.

[00:20:34] For example, I get asked many times during a year to make donations. I have two sets of criteria for, that’s right, you can have two sets for something to be a yes for a donation. If a client asks me for a donation, I’m an insta-yes. If someone who’s not a client asks me for a donation, then it has to meet the criteria of being around girls’ empowerment. Women’s empowerment. Girls’ education. Entrepreneurship training for women or girls, then I’m a yes.

[00:21:11] Now that’s my criteria. You create your own criteria based on what you care about, what you wanna support. Otherwise you’re gonna be having to make a hundred decisions a year about is this charity the right match for me? Well, you make the decision once, create your criteria and you’re gonna streamline and save a ton of time.

[00:21:34] My friend, there are so many more things we could talk about here under strategy. I think I’ve given you a lot to reflect on in your own business to support you to be more strategic.

[00:21:46] Part of the value of strategy is to support you to be more proactive versus reactive in your business. Implement some of these ideas we’ve discussed. Let me know how it goes.

[00:21:59] By the way, if you have not checked caterinarando.com/links there, you will see my many free resources for you and a link to our next free workshop. Our Blissing in Your Business Checklist. Our Business Check-Up Checklist, all kinds of other free resources for you. I wanna support you to bliss and thrive more in your business because the more you thrive in your business, the more you can uplift lives. And I know that’s what you’re all about. Sending you lots of love.

[00:22:39] Can’t wait to be with you on the next episode of Expand Your Fempire. Listen to the hundred-plus episodes we’ve already recorded so that you will be uplifted, empowered, inspired, and thriving. Even more, more love to you. This is Caterina encouraging you to expand your Fempire.

We hope you enjoyed this episode of Expand Your Fempire with Caterina Rando.

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