What I’m Working On & What You Can Learn from It (Q1 ’17)
So, a lot is going on right now, for Different Hunger and for me. I wanted to give you some behind the scenes updates…
The beginning of this year, as it usually does, sparked some serious introspection about my current status, what I’m trying to do and what I need to do to get there. I wanted to share a few things I realized / am working on right now…
WANT TO PURSUE A PASSION PROJECT? MAKE SURE YOU’RE STABLE FINANCIALLY.
All the money I was making through my web design business was going into Different Hunger which wasn’t generating revenue for me. Even though I had made $ through DH in the past ($1K in August), I realized I needed to FIRST optimize my primary income stream (my web design business) BEFORE introducing new income streams.
Stefanie O’Connell shared some amazing insights about this in our interview together:
“What do you need to make financially to afford your cost of living? What are my savings goals? You must first answer these questions and meet your needs so that you have a solid foundation. Only then can you move on to pursuing your ambitions and passions…”
SECRET TO SCALE #1: DELEGATE
My friend Colin Andrews, CEO of IdeaBuyer which was recently named the 197th fastest growing company in North America, shared this zen piece of business advice with me:
“If you are the main cog in your business, you are the main clog.”
If you are your business, your business is going to be as big as you are. Despite your superhuman ambitions, you are in fact, human. Your ability to let go of the reins and delegate work is absolutely essential to grow. This advice has been given to me by countless uber-successful individuals (like Colin) so you know it’s DA TRUTH.
SECRET TO SCALE #2: SYSTEMIZE
Hustling can scale your business, yes. But the magic happens when you can combine hustle AND rock-solid repeatable systems. Systems come from being very deliberate with your tasks. Every task you perform in your business must be documented, step-by-step, broken down into steps so simple a 5-year old can implement them. Once you have your processes documented, you need to turn these processes into systems (process = do this; system = execute this process when this happens). My goal for Q1 is to systemize my entire web design business so that the business can run, regardless of whether or not I am involved. Which leads me to my next point…
SECRET TO SCALE #3: HIRE AMAZING PEOPLE
This internet is an amazing place. You can literally go from idea to execution of an idea, even when you need to hire someone else, within no time flat. Since I quit my job in March of last year, I have slowly been growing an amazing virtual team of assistants, designers, developers, project managers and more, at times working with more than 10 people. Not just people to work for me though, people to help me work better for myself. I’ve hired multiple strategists and consultants and the money I have invested into these people was a terrific investment, that again reminds me of the need to never stop investing in yourself and your self-education…
Everything mentioned above has allowed me to go from working on $500 worth of client work in April 2016, to more than $15,000+ worth of client work by October 2016. I’ve obviously hired some people that I would never hire again, but each time it’s a learning experience. Also, when you know where to look (and I am fortunate to have learned where to look) you can find top-notch work for cheaper than you can believe.
“If you want to 10x your business, 10x the capabilities of your people.”
More than that though, hiring and working with people is an amazing experience from a human perspective. You learn so much about yourself, and the experience in and of itself forces you to become a leader. At least that’s my goal – to become someone that treats my people with respect, and in turn, they want to do great work for me.
SECRET TO SCALE #4: MEASURE EVERYTHING
I’ve always been a creative / visionary type that has shied away from numbers and systematic processes. I’m practical, but I have a habit of not being granular. This needs to change in 2017, especially if I want to grow my web design business and Different Hunger to the scale. My latest hire, a business coach and consultant, is helping me with this very thing.
DON’T EVER OVERPROMISE, ESPECIALLY TO YOUR COMMUNITY
You may have been wondering, when the HELL is this interview series actually going to launch.The reason you don’t know when the interview series is because I don’t know when it’s launching. The last thing I want to do is tell you a date, then not be ready, or equally worse, execute a half-assed launch. It will be very soon, especially given the fact that I’m having my launch party in ~two weeks! However, my relationships with you and my community are one of the most important relationships in my life, and I would never want to damage the trust I have built with you. As you know I’m a big proponent of the READY FIRE AIM mentality, but when highly valuable relationships are on the line, I need to act tactfully. I just wanted to share this with you to remind you of this fact.
LIFE IS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW AND IT’S F*CKING AMAZING
Time moves fast, usually faster than we want it to. But newsflash, time is the same, it’s your perspective that needs to change. What sounds like a better use of your time? Sitting there and wishing for 26 hours in a day? Or figuring out how to better use the 24 hours you’re blessed with each day? Option two, of course. That said, holy sh*t! It’s already January 19th?! New years was just yesterday, it seems. My point in saying this is that I know better than anyone how badly you want to achieve massive, world changing things with your life. While it’s so easy to constantly grind and grind and hustle and hustle, it’s so important to take a step back, disconnect and just BE. The present moment is all that we have. Don’t ever forget this. Always celebrate your wins and don’t ever work too hard or damage your relationships. Tomorrow is never guaranteed. Being alive and being able to read this post is a big enough reason to celebrate.
Much love & talk soon.