A lifestyle business offers a ridiculous amount of freedom… once it’s set up that is.
To get there, you need to do 3 big things:
3. Systematize everything
You need to put these things in place to be able to actually make money in your business and then to scale up.
When I first started out with my own business, I literally sold in the morning and went home in the afternoon and did all of the work myself.
Long story short, I wasted way too much time trying to do everything myself. I also didn’t make as much money as I could have.
If you sell, outsource, and scale, you will be able to create a successful lifestyle business in a very short amount of time.
Even better, you’ll be able to create your own semi-automatic business.
Sell, Sell, Sell
Because you need money to achieve your dream lifestyle, you need to sell.
Don’t freak out. Everybody seems to have a problem with that word but we all sell every day.
Kids sell when they scream to get what they want. Teenagers sell when they’re trying to get the girl (or boy) to go out with them. And so on. We all sell.
The only difference is now you’re selling your own products or services in order to make money in order to live life exactly the way you want to. Plus, it’s providing real value to your client or customer. If you want the dream life, get comfortable with selling.
The next step is to get your first sale. This is key. This is proof that your business works.
If one person (besides your mom) bought your product/service, chances are good more will want it too. Also, once you hold that first check in your hand, it makes your belief system shoot through the roof.
You’ve got to get out and network. Let everyone know what you’re doing. Talk to everyone. Work hard to make that first sale.
After your first sale, the goal then is to get your next sale as fast as possible. This keeps up your momentum and just plain makes you better at the sales process.
Big tip – make sure you’re over delivering on everything you sell!
Be good at what you do and really deliver the value that your customer or client paid you for.
I’m a big believer in karma – what goes around comes around. By over delivering, you’ll make a name for yourself and your business will grow through referrals. It takes time to get into the flow but go as fast as you can.
How to Outsource Effectively
With some solid sales coming in, you need to get a team to do the work for you.
In order to scale up, you’ll want to start outsourcing as soon as possible. You’ve got to think like a business owner and not a business doer. Make sense?
Start as soon as you can to put a team in place that can help you do the everyday tasks. Start by getting the production side of things done first. Then, once you feel you have a good team going, you can start to outsource the sales with a competitive commission structure.
If you have a product-based business, get the order fulfillment and sales outsourced as soon as possible. Be sure to keep an eye on quality control however.
It’s the business owner’s primary duty to bring in revenue. You’ve got to make sales! But once you’ve got a system in place, you can start to scale up and replace yourself with key people. This allows you to be ON your business and not IN it.
Where you actually find people to replace you changes from industry to industry.
For online businesses for example, Odesk or Elance are perfect places. In fact, you can even hire someone to find you all of the right people! This is a big task actually and worth considering.
By the way, outsourcing doesn’t necessarily mean hiring someone in India. You can get someone from your neighborhood to help you out if you want to. Outsourcing just means getting people to do the work so that you don’t have to personally.
You can hire employees if you wish but in my experience, that becomes a full time job in and of itself.
The following is a list that I followed myself to scale up my own business through effectively outsourcing.
Step #1 – Make a list of all the tasks you do every day
Step #2 – Identify all of the tasks you enjoy doing and also all of the tasks you don’t enjoy doing
Step #3 – Take all of the tasks you don’t enjoy doing and then put them into a separate list (this is what you need to outsource)
Step #4 – Go through each task and write down every step involved (or do a screen capture using something like Camtasia or ScreenFlow)
Step #5 – Set up all of the steps in a system like Asana
Step #6 – Create a job posting with specific details in a place like Odesk, Craigslist, etc
Step #7 – Filter the candidates based on their response time, qualifications, attention to detail, etc
Step #8 – Contract the top candidate on a trial basis of 90 days
Step #9 – Have them start doing the work you set up giving them more and more over time
Step #10 – Do this for every aspect of your business until you’re no longer working!
How to Create a System – Project Management
Regardless of what kind of business you have, you’ll want to set up certain processes or a system for each part of your business.
This includes the sales process, client/customer communication, product fulfillment, services, and more.
I actually already listed this as Step #5 in how to outsource.
How you actually document everything is up to you. Some people are big spreadsheet users. Personally, I like checklist and Asana is my platform of choice.
Whatever you choose to do is up to you but you’ve got to be organized in order to grow!
Your homework is to make your first sales. This is proof your business works.
From there, work hard to systematize everything you do. This will become your operational manual for your team.
Find good people on Odesk or Craigslist or wherever to do the actual work.
Set up your system using Asana, Basecamp, or whatever.