Episode 84 - Why Your Business Needs to be Sustainable
We start out just working hard to get clients. Then, there are so many things to get done for the clients that the working on our own businesses get pushed off. At some point, if all is going “well”, our business can’t function without us there all the time so we bring a laptop on vacation. Your business is not sustainable. For your health, your sanity, and your family’s happiness you can’t keep going like this.
It’s not about a certain amount of money or a certain team size. It's about making it sustainable and profitable. You need to be able to go on vacation. You need to know that nobody on your team can take you hostage by being irreplaceable.
I’m evangelical about this. You need to build things that don’t break. You need to build a thing that makes money for you and that doesn’t break if you get a sniffle. I’ve seen enough good hard-working people get dragged down by working 12 hour days.
Many people rely on my business. My family, and me team, for the income. My clients for the services. So I need to make that work in case I get sick or just need a break, and so do you.
Today's podcast is being sponsored by the Get Your Agency Together group coaching program. This is a program I built for online service providers who either want to start an agency or to grow their agency so that it's organized, sustainable and profitable. Over five months, you'll be working with me and the rest of your cohort to break down and rebuild different parts of your business so that they align with the life you really want to build. The modules include systems you'll need offers you'll make the team you'll need to build and the journey your clients will take. Most importantly, you'll have to look at all of these things through the lens of the goals and the values you bring to the table. For more details, go to Reynolds opm.com and join the waitlist, you'll be the first to know when the program opens. See you there.
Hello, everyone, and welcome to episode 84. So I want to start by saying today that I am recording this podcast while they are cutting a tree down my street. And my dog is barking at the people cutting down the tree. So if you can hear any of that, I apologize. And cutting down trees is like the worst sound ever to wake up to. It's just like, to me, it's like the saddest thing. So that's, that's my day today. So in our businesses, we usually start out just hoping to get clients, right? We're just so excited. Someone says yes, and they paid us money. And then we kind of just keep making it up as we go along. We've got these things going. We don't really know what we're doing. And we're just hoping people keep saying yes, as we go, there are so many things that need to get done for clients, that our own businesses kind of get pushed off to the side. So common, right, we are out there hustling, trying to figure out the work. And we can grow our business later. Right? I mean, if we're busy, that's great. So we don't really need to work on our marketing, which is wrong. But that's what we think. We don't have time for our own businesses, we don't have time for ourselves. This happens to small business owners, and especially women, especially moms, right, we always put everyone ahead of ourselves. But at some point, if all is going, I'm air quotes, well, here, we get overwhelmed. And our businesses cannot function without us for any amount of time, we are doing all the things, we are the people with the laptop on vacation, we cannot leave, it's all wrapped around us. That means that your business is not sustainable. You can't keep this up for a lot of reasons, mostly your health, your sanity, and your family's happiness, right? If we're working all the time, and we're so stressed out, and we're freaking out all the time, because we have all this stuff to do, we can't get it done, and we're overwhelmed. That is not good for our health, our sanity, or our marriages, we don't see our kids. And it's not the reason we got into this business. I'm gonna say this, pretty confidently that 99% of you, I'm gonna say 100 100% of you did not get into business to be overwhelmed, stressed out. So over the last six months, I have been doing this really big, deep dive into my business and also into what agencies need, in particular, to be successful. Because I'm trying to make my group coaching program the best it can be, as we've gone through this first beat around, and we've been testing things and I'm asking a lot of questions. And I'm also looking at my own business and saying, Okay, what is working and what's not what can make this so much better, right? And the thing is, it's not about being six figures, or a certain team size like that's not what makes it successful. That's what a lot of people are going to tell you, you need to have six figures or you know, half a million dollars or whatever it is, or you need to have a team of 5, 10, or 20. Those are not the things that make your team successful. The thing that makes your business or your agency successful is that it is sustainable, and it is profitable. So there is money coming in more than the money goes out. And that can keep going. And those things seem really simple. But it is the most important thing that's happening. It is not all the other things that you hear about it is the fact that it can keep going and be profitable. Many people rely on my business, Reynolds OBM is the reason that I can pay my bills. It is the reason that my team can pay their bills, right? We both knew that for income. My clients rely on our services. So I need to make that work in case I get sick or I just want to go on vacation without the laptop. So what do I mean when I say that this like a business isn't sustainable? Think of all the things in your business that can't work. Because you're not there. That's the reason we don't want to go on vacation without our laptops or the reason that we work at 10 o'clock at night because we're the only ones who can do all the things. That's not sustainable. What if you get sick? What if it's just like, a little cold and you're down for the count for a day does everything fall apart? Now there's frustration at not being able to find things. Because it's chaos. There are no back-end systems, there are no folders to find things, and you need a link to something and you can't find it. And it takes you 20 minutes to figure out where the photo is, or what all those things, all those little things that seemed like it would take five minutes to find. But you can't and now you spent 20 minutes doing it, and then that's bumped everything in your day, 20 minutes, that's not sustainable, especially if you're the only one who could find that thing. If no one else can find it, then you have to be there, or the business can't run. say about this, when you bring on help, and you have no training at all setup or any kind of process for onboarding, it becomes a huge time commitment becomes a time suck, frankly, right? You end up sitting there training someone personally, every minute of the day, they have 1000 questions, there's nowhere for them to go to learn anything or find anything. So they come to you. So now your day and their day is all wrapped up in these little things that you were trying to delegate. That's not sustainable, right? You still have to be there, the business cannot run? Well, because there are no systems there. What about feeling trapped by a team member? Who is the only person who knows all the things? We all know this person, there are lots of businesses, right? Like they're the right-hand person who knows how to get everything done. They are the assistant who knows, you know, where all the stuff is, they are the tech person who's the only one who knows how to update the website in this specific way. Because it's coded all those little things, you get trapped, because they are the only ones who know how to do the thing. And then the business can't run if they are not standing there. What about worrying at night, this is something that's kept me up in the past. And I know it is a thing for some of my clients, my coaching clients worrying about a team member quitting, and you will have no idea what's happening with that client that they're handling or the work that they're working on. That can keep you up at night, right? You're supposed to be responsible for this work, because you're the boss. And yet this person may quit and you have no idea what's going on? And what are you going to do? Are you going to jump in and make yourself more in the middle of it? What do you do? That is a freaky thing that will freak you out a lot? And what about the fact that you just want to be the CEO of your business? But you end up being stuck in the implementing, or the constant managing of a team and you never get to the things you're supposed to do. Right? Like you're supposed to be, you know, casting this vision and doing all these CEO things. And, you know, making sure the marketing is what you want, and the messaging and all that kind of stuff. But you have no time for that because you are managing a team. I have seen people with businesses and teams where all they do all day is manage other people. That drives me nuts. By the way, I could never live like that. That is not sustainable. You can't get your own work done because you're helping everyone else get their work done, which means no one's getting any work done. Your business is not sustainable. So these are all things that make an agency mess to run. It is why they fail. It is not because they didn't hit seven figures it is because their businesses were not sustainable. Your Business seems to be sustainable and profitable to keep going. That's it. And that's gonna mean different things for any of you. But those are the big things you need to have to happen. There are a lot of people out there that don't like the agency model. They've said they've tried it and it's failed. It's a mess. It's too hard. And I want to say to them, that they probably built an agency that wasn't sustainable. They made sure everything was wrapped around one person. They didn't have any systems in place. They had a team structure that was set up so that everything was micromanaged and revolved around them instead of being systematized. They never got to be the CEO and their business to run it well because they were always stuck in the mess of all the other things. And that is why agencies fail and that's why people usually don't like agencies. And it is also why sustainability is such a huge focus in the Get Your Agency Together group program that I have. We need to build businesses that can keep going. Even if we take a day off, if our team takes a day off, if things break businesses, we are not micromanaging businesses that don't keep us up at night worrying about all the things. This has become like a crusade, this is my new mission statement for the business is to help online service providers grow profitable and sustainable agencies. That is our mission here. Because it has become so clear to me that that's where we mess up, we get so overwhelmed, we are miserable because we are not creating sustainable, profitable businesses. This is obviously getting all worked up here. Because I'm on this crusade now. Like I have seen enough people, good hardworking people get dragged down with a business that they can't keep going without like working 12 hours a day. This has become such a focus on my coaching, and my agency side as well. That we are helping agencies to be sustainable, through systems through coaching, whatever it is, is our new mission. And if you need to Get Your Agency Together, the waitlist is now open for the next round of the group coaching program. We are starting May 1, I'm super excited about this. This podcast is going to go live right before the cart opens being on the waitlist, we'll make sure that you are the first to know all the details if that is something you are interested in. And even if you're not growing an agency and you just like to hear me talk business, which yay, glad you're here. I'm really, really passionate about this. I have been hearing a lot of gurus lately, talk about what you need in your business. And I am going to put it on the line here. I think it's just sustainability and profitability. You can build all 1000 things out of that. But you don't need a certain number or certain team size or, you know, the number of employees you hire. I don't think any of those things are what makes you successful. I think it's building whatever the business is you want and making it sustainable and profitable. So now that I've gotten off my soapbox, DME, with any questions you have on anything, I guess we got some other awesome things coming on down the pike. So let me know if you have any questions. And I will see you next week.
Thank you so much for joining me this week. If you have an agency or want to create one, come join my Facebook community. Get Your Agency Together, where we talk all the things growing and scaling your agency for show notes and more info on all the things head over to Reynolds obm.com Follow me on Instagram and Facebook at Reynolds OBM. And finally, if you enjoy this podcast, I would love for you to give us a review on iTunes.