You are going to change the world

A fantastic movie does something to our souls. It can make us feel joy, hope, happiness, sadness. I recently saw, Hidden Figures, based off the real-life story of African-American mathematician Katherine Johnson and her two colleagues, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson. I am not going to give the movie away, so it is ok to keep reading.

These amazing women worked with NASA to provide math calculations needed to launch the program’s first successful space missions.

I was blown away. The power and the impact these women had decades ago, in a time of segregation and a time when women in business, and leadership roles, wasn’t as common as it is today.

If these women could break through the many obstacles and challenges before them in the 1960s, what can we be doing as women in business in 2017? The opportunities we have before us are great.

No matter what industry you are in, you are making a difference and you are doing work that is needed. Keep going! I am behind you and there are millions of women entrepreneurs and business leaders on your side, too.

Just as these women’s calculations changed the course of history, our work changes the world, too.

Every time a client tells me, “They have grown their sales” or “They have stepped into their leadership and are leading a team” or “They have reached or surpassed their goals” or “They no longer have any more debt,” I know their lives are changed forever. And it makes me proud and honored to be a coach and do what I do.

You have changed plenty of lives. I’ve shared with you in the past, that’s it’s important to ask for testimonials and read them out loud to yourself, often. You are helping people to grow their businesses, save money, make money, look and feel beautiful, learn about nutrition, live with less stress – no matter what it might be.

 

You are making an impact in this world. You are a strong leader and in 2017, reflect on that positive power.

Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Do one thing everyday that scares you.”

I think that is perfect advice to leave you with this week. What are you going to do in 2017 to make a bigger impact in this world? Share with me on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page.

P.S.  I do recommend seeing Hidden Figures!

Who is the Boss in 2017?

2017 is here. It’s not coming. It’s not happening soon. It’s here. Be a boss, CEO, manager, director and leader this year. Take control. Get stuff done. Make money. Live your life. No excuses.

I’m changing things up and I’m starting newsletter number one of the new year off on a different note. I’m always here to inspire and motivate you. But I’m also here to push you. To make you uncomfortable and squirm a bit in your seat. When that happens, great things follow.

I want you to embrace leadership this year. You run a business. You’re a boss. Act that way. Even if you are a business of one, you need to step into the role you created for yourself. You are in charge. You determine what this year looks like for you.

Is it the year you crush your revenue goals? Or another year you make ‘just’ enough?

Is it the year you raise your prices to finally ask for what you’re worth? Or another year of being afraid of asking for your value?

Is it the year you hire a team, delegate tasks and focus on business development and sales? Or another year you continue to do it all yourself and stunt your own growth?

Be a boss, the CEO, the head honcho. I’m working on changes and developments in my business that scare the hell out of me. I’ll share everything with you in due time, but for now, know this. You can do it. You can do whatever you want. You can make this year different. You are never stuck. You always have a choice.

Be a boss. Start planning for a 2017 that blows you away. I worked on the boring end of year stuff last week. Filing, cleaning my desk, deleting emails. Then I took Thursday-yesterday off to spend time with my kids and my husband.

I rang in the new year with revolving guests in my home, averaging at 13, and then concluded the weekend with hosting a Rose Bowl party and supporting USC, Go Trojans!

USC won the game in the last 5 seconds, it is an article unto itself. They started off strong, took the lead and took control of the game. Then in the second half they were falling behind, the team stayed in the game, fighting for what was important to them… a win, led by a freshman quarterback, YES a young man still in his teens brought home the win in the last 5 seconds. What a game!

How did you close 2016 and what was your greatest accomplishment? Share with me on the SSC Facebook and LinkedIn page.

A Key Piece not to miss at year-end

IMG_6682There’s something you don’t do enough. You should do it. You think about doing it. But it isn’t always the first thing that comes to mind. Why is this important and why do I encourage you to join me in this?

You need to celebrate!

Seriously.

Every single time I make a sale, I celebrate.

If I sell a copy of my book, that’s $20. That’s a manicure. That’s a cause for celebration. It doesn’t always have to be the big sales that get our attention. Those little sales make a much bigger impact than you think.

Celebrating your success is a way to reflect and appreciate the fact that you are living your dream. You are running a business, bringing in an income and working every day to accomplish new goals.

Celebrations can mean many things. Maybe it’s a purchase, but sometimes it’s just a simple pleasure like spending an evening with your friend, or for me this past weekend, celebrating my husband Michael’s birthday and filling an entire weekend with fun. Or it’s taking the team to lunch or writing an email to your mentor.

We work hard! And we need to allow ourselves to enjoy it. No sale is too small to raise a glass in celebration. Whether it’s mulled wine, champagne or apple cider – whatever your fancy.

And celebrations don’t have to be major, either.

My team and I use various forms of communication and one of our channels is an app called Slack. It’s a great place to keep projects in check, but it’s also a fantastic place to share the good news of what’s happening in the business and send over congratulations and thanks.

Just tagging one another in the app and sending over a “super job” or “way to go,” boosts morale and keeps us motivated and moving toward the next chapter.

Celebrate! That’s my advice for this week and especially as you enter the new year. Share your celebrations with me on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page! I want to hear from you!

Why you should go…to that holiday party

Holiday parties on your calendar? Not feeling it. Would you rather go home after work, take off those heels, grab a book to read and head to bed? Hey, I feel you. But getting out there at this time of year is not just about the holiday party. It is a way to network with ease and joy and make true connections that will help your business, your career and your life. Read on.

And, it’s about FUN!

All year we work with our clients and our mentors and don’t get to spend as much quality time with them as we wish. I have so many clients, team members and colleagues that I just want to grab for a coffee on a Saturday and finish that conversation about their kids. Or take to my dance class with me to help them de-stress or invite them over for dinner so I can meet their family and introduce them to mine.

I have a genuine interest in people and their lives. Whether I was running my printing company, working with clients coaching or facilitating, I am a people person and I enjoy learning about others. It’s why I became a business coach. And any chance I get to spend a little extra time with my network is special.

Business relationships are great, but personal relationships and connections is what keeps it all together.

This is the time of year to get out there, mingle, have a glass of champagne or whatever your fancy and just talk. It’s not as stressful as a networking event where you feel like the focus has to be on business. Focus on life.

A friend and business colleague was just sharing with me some medical issues her mom is having and we chatted about it because my mom has had some, as well. Our moms are the same age… in their 80’s. Funny thing is, she needed to make some arrangements, needed a specialist and rehabilitation plans and who came to her rescue, someone from her networking group. They had a connection to a great doctor and she is in good hands.  

At holiday parties, if business talk happens to enter the conversation, fantastic. When you have a chance to just catch up over a glass of eggnog and cheer –  many wonderful business opportunities and expansions happen. Allow yourself to enjoy the art of networking. It doesn’t have to feel awkward or yucky. When it happens organically and you realize you can help someone solve a pain point they are facing in their business or vice versa, you find someone that can help you, it reiterates why networking is the best way to build your business.

With just a few weeks left in the year, make the most of it. Yes, it is a busy time of year, identify a few parties that you will be able to connect and reconnect with a bunch of people and say YES!  I have one tonight in my calendar and I am excited.   

Have a great networking story? I’d love to hear it. Share with me on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page.

Reflection Exercise

Reflections__free_photos___1402132_-_FreeImages_comI did some pretty amazing things in 2016 and I KNOW you did, too! During my time off last week, I took some quiet moments to really reflect and I encourage you to do the same.

We are coming into the last month of the year and I have a short exercise for you to do to help facilitate your reflection and give you action steps to move forward.

Take out a notepad and write these answers out, if you’re old school like me. Or type your answers. Whatever fits you best.

  1. What have I accomplished this year? List your top three.
  1. What was my biggest financial accomplishment?

For example: did you sign the biggest contract ever or meet a new revenue goal?

  1. What milestones did you reach in your business AND in your life?

For example: did you hire a support team member or pay in full for that family vacation?

  1. What event did you attend or hold that really worked, reaped the most benefits?

Now look at your answers.

#1 – How did you make those accomplishments happen? What actions did you take to reach those goals? Can you do the same things in 2017 and can you do them even better? For example: if you spent more time on social media and found you added new clients using that strategy, make sure your plans for 2017 include an even bigger online presence. If you found you speaking as a tool to move high quality clients through your pipeline, set up those speaking engagements for 2017. Find out what else you can be doing and decide who can help you.

#2 – Why was this your biggest financial accomplishment? Did you raise your prices? Did you ask for a retainer rather than an hourly fee? Was the client a more ideal one and it just worked better? How can you model all of your packages and pricing after this one for 2017? Review your current contracts and prices. What needs updated for the coming year? What action steps can you take to find more clients and more projects like this one? Use it as a model.

#3 – Celebrate!!! You know I’m big on this. Give yourself a break and get out there and enjoy this fantastic life you’ve created. It will pump you up for an even bigger 2017. If you hired your first support team member or your tenth, you deserve to celebrate that. Let everyone cut out of work early on a Friday and take them out for dinner before year-end and buy that pair of shoes you’ve been wanting. Celebrate the life milestones, too. Did you send your child off to college? Or finally get that in-ground pool put in? These moments happened because you worked hard to secure that income. Part of growth is realizing how far you’ve come in a year and letting that confidence and inspiration propel you to even greater heights.

#4 – Make sure you get this event on your calendar for 2017. Don’t just look at the first quarter and fill in where you want to be. Look at the entire year and make sure the time is set aside to attend training, workshops, retreats, masterminds, speaking engagements. And also schedule time for your own events. If you know the date NOW, you are way ahead of the game.

Another bonus question would be what didn’t work? Don’t focus on the negative. Use the experiences to move forward.

Reflect.

Get those calendars out and after you’ve added in the work events, get those family and vacation events on there. If you do all of this before the calendar turns to Jan. 1, you just set yourself up for one amazing new year.

If you want to share any of your answers on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn pages, please do! I want to know how your year went and what you’re ready to accomplish in 2017. If you want to chat with me further, you can always reach out to support@slatersuccesscoaching.com

Practice Gratitude Every Day

IMG_6606I’m in the country, surrounded by family and friends, ready to celebrate Thanksgiving Day. It’s one of my most favorite places. It’s hard to describe the peace and calm that take over when I’m here. Out in the middle of nature, away from the everyday hustle and bustle, even for just a week is truly inspiring.

I know you are thinking about what you are grateful for this week.
I’d like to share what I’m thankful for and one thing I do, not only at Thanksgiving but throughout the entire year, to help me remember.

Every day, I take a few minutes and write down something I am grateful for. I do it at all different times of the day, when the moment strikes me. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and it’s a beautiful sunny day and I take a walk and I come back and write down how thankful I am to have my health, the opportunity to get outside and exercise.

Sometimes it’s the afternoon and I’m stressed out, wondering how I’m going to get everything done. Then one of my team members cheers me up with a cup of my favorite coffee or a funny story about their weekend and I write down how thankful I am for my team, the wonderful support I know is right there with me through it all.

Sometimes I’m on vacation, spending worry free days sightseeing, swimming or hanging out with my husband and my kids and I write down how thankful I am to have people in my life  I love and who love me just as much. And that I get to spend quality time with them and make memories to cherish.

How often do you take pause and actually write down what you are thankful for, truly practice gratitude?

I invite you to try it.

I use a gratitude journal app on my phone to easily make notes and if you search the app store, you will find tons of options. Some are free, some are paid, but believe me, it doesn’t matter which one you choose. Just pick one and use it. That is the key.

And if you’d rather put pen to paper, by all means, just using a simple notebook has the same amazing results.

I believe that gratitude and abundance are two halves of a whole. When I practice gratitude, I live in abundance.

I am thankful for you. I appreciate your support, your feedback, your comments. I am a better coach and a better woman because of you. Thank you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Share with me what you are grateful for on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page.

Do this every day…

I’m all about looking toward the big picture, putting plans in place to reach financial goals, sales goals, client goals. But the big picture isn’t available right in this moment. Not for you, not for me. Every day is a step, an opportunity to increase our chances of eventually securing that big picture.

Decide on three actions, just three, you will do every single day to move your business forward. They don’t have to be the same three things every day, you can change them up as often as you need to, say weekly.

For example, three actions you might take today would be:

  1. Making at least one sales call.
  2. Spending 30 minutes on marketing.
  3. Reviewing numbers and finances for one hour.

Create this list for yourself and don’t stray. You’re having a tough day and a sales call doesn’t seem like your favorite thing to do? Do it anyway. That call might turn into a client that changes your financial situation and brings you one step closer to your yearly goal. And suddenly, the tough day just turned around. If you never make the call, you never receive the result.

30 minutes on marketing might seem minimal. But if every day for a week, you spent time on it, what would you accomplish? You post in some of the Facebook groups in which you belong that you’ve been neglecting and suddenly you’ve connected, received access to a free training or found out about a really great networking event in your area.

Looking at your numbers forces you to make decisions. Looking at what is coming in, what is going out. Looking at what will change as a new season approaches, a new program launches, a new team member is added. You might find yourself planning ahead because you dedicated the time and since you weren’t rushed to figure it out quickly, you were able to make smarter decisions.

This is a simple exercise to practice when moving your business forward. And another tip, why not add a fourth action item every day specifically for you. A health and wellness action, a mind reset. A spin class, yoga with friends, happy hour. These are important actions to take to keep you moving, too.

What three actions will you commit to today? Share with me on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page. And if you want to talk further, reach out anytime to support@slatersuccesscoaching.com

Should I? Shouldn’t I?

gardenI had no idea where to move it.

It was driving me crazy.

This was going to be a huge change.

It took me an hour, but I finally made a decision.

I’m talking about my hydrangea bush! Not what you were expecting. I’m full of surprises.

You know I love gardening and I’m making some changes to the yard and moving that bush was honestly the hardest part for me. It might seem trivial, but where that bush goes determines the rest of my landscape needs and how the entire garden will look.

I wasn’t sure what spot I wanted it in, but I told myself…

“The seasons are changing. The ground is getting cold. Just pick a spot and move it already.”

So, I did.

Decisions have to happen or growth stops.

Business is full of decisions.

Hiring. Firing. Marketing. Budgeting. Networking. Pricing.

The list is endless and if you stay in indecision, you lose. You stunt your growth. You get stuck. And it’s tough to get unstuck.

My advice is simple. Take one action towards the ultimate decision and the next piece will be uncovered or revealed to you. It’s that easy.

For example, you aren’t sure you should sponsor an event in another state next year.

It’s pricey and you’ve never done it before.

Instead of deciding yes or no and that’s it, take an action.

Call or email three people you trust that you know have sponsored that same event in the past and ask them if it provided value. Their answers are going to mean a lot.

Or, look at the timing of the event and the state you’ll be in and determine if you can combine a few components of the trip and visit family or friends in that area or meet up with clients.

Taking one action uncovers the next. You don’t always have to look to the end. Just take it one step at a time. Try it!

If your next decision is reaching out to me, you can do that by emailing support@slatersuccesscoaching.com. And go you! That’s one awesome decision.

The scariest word in business

IMG_6449BOO! Hope you had a Happy Halloween. In talking to clients and colleagues, I’ve figured out what scares them the most in business. What gives them the ultimate chills. What spooks them and causes them to want to jump under the covers and stay there.

What scares my clients the most is….SALES.

Why? Because it’s an uncharted territory without a direct map and you’re doing it on your own.

Even if there was a sales “map,” it would need customized to each entrepreneur, because no two paths to a closed sale look alike.

People want a script. They want to know the right words to say. They want to know the tricks.

The answers are easy. You have what you need to say. It’s within you.

No costumes or make-up needed. There’s no dressing up and acting the part. It’s all about listening and being of service.

If you were trick-or-treating and saw someone drop their bag of candy, how would you solve their problem? Simple. Help them pick it up.

If someone popped a button on their Halloween costume, how would you fix it?

Simple. Sew on a new button.

Pain point to solution. That’s all you need to figure out to make a sale.

If someone is losing leads because they don’t have a good follow-up system, how would you solve their problem? Simple. Be the support they need by working with them on CRM systems or building a team or using email automation.

Pain point to solution.

Find out what is scaring your potential clients and tell them how you can help eliminate the fear. Give them the solutions in a conversation and show them how you bring the value they need to move forward.

Listen.

Listen well.

Listen further.

Take their fears away and yours disappear, too.

What scares you the most about sales? If you want to talk further, reach out to support@slatersuccesscoaching.com

Falling short when asking for your value?

IMG_6379Why do we too often fall short when asking for our value? What scares us so much? I speak to too many people who truly underestimate what they should be charging.

Does this sound like you?

Do you find yourself slashing prices because you’re afraid to charge what you deserve?

Have you signed a contract and instead of celebrating, felt defeated, because the work far exceeds the payoff?

I wish I could say this trend of undercharging is just with new business owners or entrepreneurs that lack experience, but that’s not true. In fact, I saw it last week with veterans in the field at a mastermind retreat with my coach in Washington D.C.

If you think I don’t practice what I preach, think again. I attend retreats and events as often as I can to continue learning and growing.

My coach gave us tons of homework in preparation and one of the things we had to do was look at our goals for next year and breakdown our price points on what we sell.

Many of us in the room were undervaluing ourselves. We spent a couple hours looking at our numbers and how to determine the right pricing.

Here is one major tip to asking for and earning your value:

  • The price you charge when you’re a service-based business is not based on YOU, rather on the results you get for your clients.

Example: When an attorney charges $1,000 to write a contract for you, protecting a client’s investment of $25,000, it makes total sense. That contract needs protected should anything go wrong. Sometimes a contract is used for many clients, so the value of the investment grows.

Example: If you’re a writer, designer, SEO specialist and your client celebrates a higher open rate, more clicks to their sales page and more opt-ins, more response from social media ads, etc. you have directly affected their bottom line. If your services helped them grow by 25% in one year, shouldn’t your value be recognized?

For the product-based businesses, there is more of a formula based on cost, overhead and markup on goods.

When a client invests in your business, they want value and quality. Figure out what that value is and put a dollar number on it that you deserve. Stay focused on the results your client attains from working with you. Identify and acknowledge the amount of time that goes into the transformation for your client. You know your numbers and your skills better than anyone, so don’t look at someone else’s pricing and compare yours.

Own your value.

I’ve invested heavily in marketing support for the results in growing SSC and these investments have paid off tremendously. Was it scary to do that? SURE. But when the results started coming in, I could sit back and smile, knowing I made the right choice.

I’ve also invested hundreds of thousands of dollars over the last eight plus years in coaches and speaker training and these investments have paid off, as well.

I look back and value the investments, even the large amounts, because the value I received enabled me to create the business I run today.

Now take a mirror and look back at yourself. Are you charging your worth and asking for your value in your pricing structure? Or, are you pulling numbers out of the air because you think it’s what someone can afford?

If you want support on making sure you ask for your value and charge what you’re worth, feel free to reach out to support@slatersuccesscoaching.com