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Are you a seasoned business owner that’s making six figures and struggling to get to the next level? If you are, I’ve got a solution to your problem. Don’t worry, it’s very common and many business owners suffer from it. That’s why there are so many folks stuck at certain income levels. This is the blog that will help you move forward and get to the next level.
Let’s talk about people that are at the six-figure income mark who are doing at a minimum $8500 a month gross revenue. Where most people tend to stall out is at $8500 to $15,000 per month, then they find their business doesn’t really scale any more. You’ll hear people talk frequently about the fact that they are unable to grow past a certain point.
It is very, very hard to go from $0 to $100K per year. Congrats for breaking that barrier. Most folks never break it. Now, it is even harder to go from $100K per year to a million dollars in revenue and this is why. Once you get to a certain level, the business has to have systems, processes and employees.
Yes, I said the “E” word. You’ve got to have employees to grow. Many entrepreneurs who may be brilliant at what they do are not necessarily good managers. I’m going to give you an example of some stuff I am currently going through.
Recently, I’ve been growing one of my businesses and I’m also helping a client grow their business. I’ve made some very bad hiring decisions. Let me give you a little background.
I’ve hired well over 150 people for various companies that I’ve created and worked for over the years, with my last hiring decisions being about ten years ago. Things have changed drastically. I don’t really understand how to deal with millennials.
In the past few months, I’ve hired five people and I had to fire three. That is not a good ratio. Right now, I suck at hiring. So, what I did is reach out to a friend who is a recruiter and one of my “good hires” that the people are going to be working with in the business. Now, they are both doing the interviews. We’ve also established a better filtering process to correct the problem.
I’ll solve that problem of not being able to hire because it is that important. What many people will do is walk away from it or continue to try to scale their business by themselves or by using freelancers. That solution will work for only a few people in certain businesses.
If you’re selling physical products or services, it’s not going to work as well as it does for companies selling digital products. I sell both. I sell digital products and consulting services.
Right now, my consulting service is growing very fast in comparison to the digital products business. I need to do something a little different. I’ve changed tactics and because of that I need to hire people. As rough as it is, I have to do it.
When you hire people, you have to create standard operating procedures (SOPs) and processes. What is a process? One of the people we are going to hire is a customer service representative for my clients. The person is going to have scripts to use on the phone. They are going to have stuff taped to their desk about how to perform in any given situation.
That is a system. It automates the work flow and empowers the customer service representative to make decisions to help the customer without having to put them “on hold” while they discuss it over with management. Sometimes there will be an unusual situation where this will happen, but on a day-to-day basis, that shouldn’t be the case.
You can become very rich without systems and processes, but it’s stressful. Once you get the systems and processes together, it is easier to scale. This allows the business owner the freedom to stay out of the day to day operations to work on growing the business.
I’m going to recommend this book. It’s called, Rework, by Jason Fried. You should get that book and read it.
You should do every job in your company, briefly. You need to have a clue about what each job entails. I’ll give you an example. One of the people that I had to fire was a graphic artist. Since I have an art background, I had a point of reference about how long it should take to produce art work.
I was able to do comparable art work faster than this person who was hired to take that workload off of me. But since I knew the specifics about the work required, I could communicate with the person. If you have no insights into that job, it can be challenging to hire a person and manage them effectively. This means the employee is in a position where they can really bamboozle you if they are inclined.
I’m not suggesting that you spend years in each position. A few good weeks will work. The experience you gain will be invaluable as you hire and manage people in the future.
You have got to have systems and processes in any type of business you have. You can have a window washing business with systems and processes. Even unsophisticated businesses benefit greatly from systems in place.
Recently, I had my carpet cleaned. The guy who came out really impressed me because it was obvious he had systems in place. When he came in, he explained what he would do. He assessed the work area and asked me questions. Then he looked for the rough spots and pre-treated the area. It worked out well. I will definitely use him again.
The fact that he came in and explained his process instilled confidence. Confidence generates referrals. Any business can do a few simple things to cultivate future business. There is always room for systems and processes.
One of the main reasons systems and processes are so important is for hiring and training purposes. They should be simple and easy to understand. By establishing processes, a new employee can be trained quickly and gain the confidence they need to do a good job.
You need to sit down and write job descriptions. It’s very important. Then, you need to create the systems and processes necessary for them to do their job efficiently.
One of the great joys of being a business owner is that you can set up your business any way you want. You can set it up around your personality. If you want to have dogs in the office, then you set the policy for that.
It is pivotal to the growth of your company that you start to establish processes and systems as soon as possible.
We’ll be talking about that stuff and a lot more on this blog and on YouTube.
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