Many of our meetings involve discussions of strategies and struggles. We offer each other camaraderie, support, advice, and feedback on the daily work of being in business. This month, we got into something a bit bigger - what happens when you feel called to make a bigger change?
Sometimes business growth is fairly straightforward; you know what you need to do, and you just need to get on with it. But occasionally, you'll hit a wall. Patiently putting one foot in front of the other is failing to produce the results you want, or need. You're frustrated, and stuck.
Signs it's time for major change:
- You're not bringing in enough money to support your personal or business goals, and your current strategies aren't getting you there fast enough
- Things feel too hard - you don't have any more patience or effort to give, and are feeling burnt out, or overwhelmed
- There is something about your work that you dread, and keep avoiding
- Your personal goals or needs have changed
- You're no longer feeling passionate or inspired by your work
Transformation in business is challenging, because it often involves giving up something, and sometimes we are really attached to whatever it is we're afraid to give up, or to give up on. And it can get even harder and more complicated when money is on the line. Some tips for navigating change that came up during our discussion:
- Look at what is thriving in your business. Find ways to amplify those aspects. (for help in figuring that out, remember the Pareto Principal, a.k.a. the 80/20 rule)
- Find something you can stop doing. Delegate something you hate, or that isn't in line with your biggest strengths. Discontinue a product or service that drains a lot of your energy, but doesn't add enough to your bottom line
- Ask your peers for help - sometimes they can see truths that you can't yet
Commit to transformation
Allowing yourself to struggle through necessary change can be kinder than keeping yourself safe in stagnation. Give yourself permission to take bigger risks, and permission to possibly fail.
For discussion in a group
- What wall or ceiling are you hitting?
- Where do you feel the most constrained by your current business model?
- What are you unwilling to give up? What would you love to give up?
- What do you want more of? Less of?
- What has impressed you about big changes you've seen other businesses or people make?
Let us know what big changes you are making! If you already made a big change, what felt true before the change that doesn't feel true now? What do you wish you had known?
The CBL met last night for a regular monthly meeting. We had three topics for the evening that sparked some good thoughts and discussion.
Topic #1: Group critiques
Every once in a while we have a critique session where members bring something that they would like feedback on, such as a new page for their website, a design for a catalog, or a new product design. Not everyone brings something every time, but we all take a few moments to consider the object and provide some thoughtful feedback. Last night we spent some time drooling a little bit over two new earring designs by Marja Germans Gard.
Topic #2: Mini Business Growth Goals
We start every meeting by giving each CBL member 5 minutes to report on the past month's goings on and what we have coming up on the horizon. It's easy to get wrapped up in the things that aren't going so well, or in a list of things you need to do to maintain your business this month. Last night we took time to specifically call out one thing each person will be doing this month to GROW their business. It was a challenge to think of one small, step towards growth that is achievable within a month. Do you know what your next growth step is? (Hint: it's not filling your current orders)
Topic #3: Money Monday
Along the theme for growth, Alyson posed the idea of dedicating one day a week to focusing on growth activities for her business. On Money Monday (yes, the alliteration is required) she will be doing ONLY activities that bring in more dollar-dollar-bills. I think we all jumped on board with the idea pretty quickly- having a designated day to work on money projects puts business growth directly in the cross-hairs. What things should you be doing on Monday Monday?