The scent of pumpkin spice is in the air, and just like that, fall is here.
There's something about the fall that always gives me the urge to start fresh.
Maybe it's the kids going back to school, or the end of summer, that gets me started, but it's often October when I start planning relocations. Sometimes that means a vacation and sometimes, when in need of a bigger change, it's a move from one house to another, but for me, October is the time to plan for movement.
What are you working on moving this last quarter? This is your chance to end the year on a high note and ramp up for next year. So what does that mean for you?
If you were to change just one thing this October, what would it be? What would have the most impact?
I'm going to settle in with my pumpkin spice latte and pumpkin muffin, and plan my next move right now.
I hope your move this October is legendary.EDITOR IN CHIEF
FROM EMPLOYEE TO THRIVING ENTREPRENEUR
When I embarked on the path of self employment, I didn’t understand just how much I would need to change my habitual way of thinking and operating in my day to day life, to shift from employee to entrepreneur.
There are many resources to draw upon to guide you through the nuts and bolts of starting a business. But nobody talks about what you, as a person, will experience and some of the new realities you’ll face.
You have a newfound freedom, but with it comes a new level of personal responsibility You are now in charge of your world in a way that you may never have been
When you are intentional about the business you are creating, and develop the right mindset and habits, you set yourself up to become a thriving entrepreneur As an extension of you thriving, you’ll be able to build a business that also thrives
"When I embarked on the path of self employment, I didn’t understand just how much I would need to change my habitual way of thinking and operating in my day to day lifeLaura Valvasori Photo: Shannon Laliberte
Develop Your Self Image as a Business Owner
One of the most critical mindset shifts you’ll need to make in moving from employee to business owner, is in how you see yourself or your self image. Entrepreneurship requires you to take on a whole new identity, one that is very different.
Many women coming out of traditional employment, jump straight into doing everything their logical mind tells them is necessary to start building a business They try to bypass doing the internal work to shift their self image first. To see themselves as a successful business owner.
A more effective approach is to understand the way you’ll need to think about yourself in your new role, and then work on internalizing the new you. By doing the mindset work first, you’ll bring a different type of energy to the experience of creating your business.
Create a Dedicated, Inspiring Workspace
If you are new to working from home, the world of self employment can be a big adjustment While having a dedicated office is ideal, it is not an option for everyone What is important is to create a dedicated space that allows you to focus
Having a space that you specifically associate with work, helps you switch your mindset into work mode.
Our environment can also have an impact on our energy. When you are in a space that makes you feel good, it helps raise your vibration.
understand the way you’ll need to think about yourself in your new role, and then work on internalizing the new you. By doing the mindset work first, you’ll bring a different type of energy
"Laura Valvasori Photo: Shannon Laliberte Photo: Shannon Laliberte
Be Vocal and Visible About Your Business
Many new entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking that people know what they are up to. They may have shared a post or two about launching their business, and then they go silent, for fear of annoying their network.
One of the best habits you can form early on, is to regularly share about your business and continually connect with people. Don’t underestimate the value of having conversations with people in your network. These conversations can spark the word of mouth referrals that will be the most valuable source of business in your early days.
Laura Valvasori is a Marketing Foundations Strategist & Mentor for Entrepreneurs, and the Owner of Good to Grow Marketing. Through her experience of leaving her corporate job to pursue self employment, Laura has learned that you need to change and grow as a person when shifting from employee to entrepreneur Laura’s debut book, 'Good to Grow', empowers both new and seasoned entrepreneurs to cultivate the right mindset and habits to thrive and build a successful business, and life they love Laura runs her business from her “she shed” in Oakville, Ontario, where she lives with her husband and two teenagers Learn more at www.goodtogrowmarketing.ca.
"Don’t underestimate the value of having conversations with people in your network These conversations can spark the word of mouth referrals that will be the most valuable source of business in your early days."
Laura ValvasoriPhoto: Shannon Laliberte Photo: Shannon Laliberte
We offer free training and support for new women entrepreneurs in need. Applications are accepted only through our partner organizations. Apply to partner with us, and help women from your group build a better future for themselves and their families
Let’s get something out of the way from the get go people will try to push your boundaries. A host of presumptions arise when someone finds out that you’re in business for yourself. They assume you have more time than you do. They assume your flexibility means you can be flexible around their schedule, rather than your own. They assume you’re so eager for business that you’ll bend over backward to make sacrifices that serve their needs.
If you’ve struggled to set boundaries in the past because they feel hard to put up, this article is for you Leverage these tactics to give yourself breathing room to flourish in your business.
Create a Public Calendar
This might seem like an odd suggestion. After all, you shouldn’t have to advertise your every move, right? Agreed.
Still, having some transparency around your availability is a great way to let your clients know when to expect you to respond, and when they might need to wait for a response. If you’re a product based business, offering a calendar for when orders will ship is another great way to set expectations and avoid boundary pushing messages.
From a tool, such as Calendly or Acuity, to a simple page on your website, there are plenty of places where you can make your availability clear, known, and aligned with your brand By offering this clarity, you’re decreasing the
amount of confusion for your clients, and setting a clear boundary for your time that feels natural.
Try Saying No a Different Way Part of the ick factor, when it comes to setting boundaries, stems from having to say no. If you’re a natural people-pleaser, then you’re familiar with this feeling You don’t want to turn someone down If there’s
To help yourself feel better, and help the message you’re delivering be better received, try rephrasing how you protect your time. Rather than saying the word no, offer an alternative solution instead
For example, if a client is asking for you to meet after hours to finish up a project, offer to move the conversation to Voxer, and let them know the timeframe when you’ll respond If you have a product based business, rather than letting a customer know something isn’t available, offer to ship the product a few days ahead of schedule, just for them.
Switching up how we respond helps the other person know that we see them and acknowledge their request, without sacrificing our personal boundaries.
Avoid Over Explaining Yourself
There’s a temptation to over explain yourself when you get nervous. You want so badly for the person on the other side of the conversation to understand what you’re saying and why this matters.
Rather than diving straight into a rabbit hole of detailed reasoning, try inserting an uncomfortable pause immediately after you decline a request Then, hold that firm boundary Let it be a little bit awkward for a few seconds
Having some transparency around your availability is a great way to let your clients know when to expect you to respond, and when they might need to wait for a response. Kimberly Crossland
Chances are, you’re more squirmy about the pause than the other person. The person you’re speaking to is probably reconciling their options and thinking through how to respond. By continuing to push the issue, you’re not giving them the headspace to process and proceed gracefully, which can lead to more tense moments down the road for both of you
Being Clear is Kind
More often than not, boundary setting feels harder for the person who is putting up the barrier. For the other person, the opposite is actually true. It feels kind. When we’re clear with our expectations, protective of our personal space, and conscientious with how we present the boundary, the vast majority of people will respond favorably
MEET KIMBERLY CROSSLAND FOUNDER OF ROADPRENEUR AND CRUISIN’ + CAMPFIRES
Kimberly Crossland is the founder of Roadpreneur and Cruisin’ + Campfires, two companies designed to keep families together, and living in freedom through travel and entrepreneurship. In her free time, you can find her seeking new adventures with her boys.
Instagram : @roadpreneur Website : roadpreneur.com
THE KNOW, LIKE, AND TRUST FACTOR
SELLING WITH CONNECTION
You’ve probably heard of the ‘Know, Like and Trust Factor’ before, and it’s something that underpins your sales success, in the nicest possible way. It helps attract the clients who not only want your offering, but who feel sure that they can work with you too.
How do you build your 'Know Factor'?
Your clients can’t buy from you, unless you are visible to them, so think about where your clients (or referrers) hang out, and make sure you’re there too. The more our clients can connect with what makes us tick, our vibe, our language, the easier it is for them to make the decision to work with us, so sharing personal stories and speaking in our own voice help us build that connection. If you’re ex corporate, you were probably taught to ‘keep it professional’, so boundaries really help you open up in an authentic, but safe, way. For example, I share about my rescue hens and the kitten, but rarely about my husband or other family.
Wherever you decide to be visible, statistics tell us that you (and your offer) need to be seen at least seven times before someone buys from you, so keep at it!
The 'Like Factor'.
Sigh, anyone else feel like they’re back at school? I still sometimes feel like the little girl who felt like the outsider, on the outer edges of the action. Truth be known, being liked was actually quite a major thing for me, and, sadly, it meant that I behaved in ways that weren't totally aligned with my values (thank goodness for personal growth!).
What makes our offering unique, isn’t normally what we do; it’s the combination of what we do, our past experiences, how we express and apply our knowledge, how we share that with our clients, how we help our clients grow that is our unique thing. For some people I’m just not going to be their person, maybe my energy doesn’t match, or maybe the way I speak, the way I communicate, doesn’t resonate with them.
Truth is, other people liking us is not something we can control. However hard we try to be nice, we cannot expect to attract our ideal clients unless we stay authentic to ourselves, and what we want for our business, our families, and our lives. We need to concentrate on the ‘Know Factor’ and the ‘Trust Factor’.
The clients who stay with you will do so because they like your vibe, and your content.
The ’Like Factor’ has nothing to do with how good a friend you are, or how many people like you as a person, it just means that for the service that you are offering, you may or may not be the right person for them
The 'Trust Factor' Consistency matters, show up regularly whether you think someone’s watching or not. Many of us are lurkers, we watch, we’re curious, we listen, but we’re not necessarily engaging yet. Have you ever wondered where someone had gone, just when you were thinking about using their service?
When we’re making our offer, that pesky imposter syndrome can pop up; am I good enough? who am I to charge this amount? will they get the transformation? When you trust yourself, your vibration changes, and your clients feel it too. Just taking a second to bolster our energy, (and to remember our expertise and experience), will make a surprising difference to how your offer is received.
Do something every day to grow your ‘Know, Like and Trust Factor’, and you will attract clients
Truth is, other people liking us is not something we can control However hard we try to be nice, we cannot expect to attract our ideal clients "Becky Colwell
MEET BECKY COLWELL – FOUNDER OF HEART TO HEART SALES
Becky is on a mission to change the awful perception of sales. She believes that the only time that you notice ‘being sold to’ is when it’s done badly! When you’ve had a connected conversation with someone who is offering a product or a service that you want or need, you don’t notice ‘being sold to’, because you’re too busy buying!
Sales is just another business skill that supports your success, and Becky believes that everyone can sell with ease, stay aligned to their values, and connected with their clients
After a 15 year career in Sales, and as top salesperson in almost every organization that she worked in, the feeling of only ever being as good as her last month’s figures left its toll on Becky, and she changed direction to work in business improvement, eventually becoming a consultant for large corporates. At 50 she took the leap into entrepreneurship, and Heart to Heart Sales was founded to help coaches, healers and consultants sell more without ever feeling salesy.
If you ever feel uncomfortable about ‘selling’, then start with ‘5 ways to boost your sales without feeling salesy’.
READY TO RUN A RETREAT?
3 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN DOING RETREATS
So, you are thinking of a retreat
You’ve been to one, or you know people who have. Only you are thinking of doing one IN your business. And a million questions are coming up for you.
Can you make it work? How do you begin? Can it even work with my business model?
I remember how I felt when I had the first idea of doing a retreat. Honestly, I had more questions than answers. But I went with it, and just did it. And now after leading more than 20 retreats since 2017, I have found a process that works.
The truth is, there are things I wish I had known before I began Much of what I do now has been through a process of trial and error, following people who have been successful doing retreats, and learning as much as I can, on the go So I felt that sharing some perspective could be helpful for you if you are in the beginning stages of planning your first retreat
First, is this a realistic idea to pursue in business? Can you REALLY make money doing it and make it work?
You can ABSOLUTELY do retreats in your business.
Some questions I would ask would be: Do I want to add meaningful IN PERSON events as part of my business? Is this something I think my clients, or community, would enjoy and pay to be a part of? Is it in my skill set to do, or do I need to hire a retreat strategist, coach or event planner to help?
People are LONGING to be together IN PERSON I do not care what anyone says nothing can make up or substitute for the magic of being in real time together. The energy is different and the connections and experiences you create together are not things you can script or replicate on a screen.
What outcomes do you think you could deliver in your business with a retreat or event in person? Do they align with your mission, your purpose and what you do in general? If you are used to being online, or seeing someone through a screen being in person presents a different sort of thinking process. I would recommend you begin there and see how that resonates with you
I will suggest that people are looking for unique and different ways to experience transformation, growth, and connection with others and retreats check all three boxes, hands down. Not every business can do them but for the ones that can I believe it really gives you an opportunity to separate yourself from all the others in your space When you can create magic in an in person experience, it’s a game changer
I would also recommend that you work with someone to help you cover all your bases, if events and their creation are not in your wheelhouse. You can expend valuable time, energy and resources by trying to just ‘DIY’ or ‘figure it out’, not to mention losing hard earned money in your business. At the end of the day, your time should be in helping to put together your retreat program, and delivering it with excellence Get an expert to help you and protect your investment and energy one who has been where you are and can show you the ropes from crafting your message, to marketing and selling to your existing audience and, of course pricing it so you make your numbers work for you.
programs, and coaching containers out there that promise change and all the deliverables to go with it. Retreats allow you to connect with others, share in their energy and transformation plus it gives you an opportunity to bond and form lasting friendships Retreats work great if you are a coach, are in a service profession of some kind, where interaction is a big piece of your program, or even if you do any part of your business in person.
And here is a bonus thought: Retreats are an untapped market in MANY industries so I am betting you will see them offered more and more They are a wonderful program idea to learn a new skill, enjoy an experience, or provide comfort and respite in a busy post pandemic world
Next, are there businesses that are better ‘suited’ to put on retreats than others?
This can be a tricky one.
Obviously if you are in the business of delivering change in any form a retreat can present a unique opportunity for your clients. There are thousands of courses,
"At the end of the day, your time should be in helping to put together your retreat program, and delivering it with excellence." Alison K
Finally I would give yourself permission to begin, even if you think you don’t know it all. Imperfect action always trumps having the perfect plan and even if you have all the necessary things in place, you will find there is a lot you find out after the fact. Rest assured, that you will learn way more than you think by just allowing yourself some grace
If you do decide to embark on doing retreats in your business be sure you have support You can take advantage of my FREE mini Playbook it outlines my 5 step process I have adopted and use for all my retreats and events.
Finally what’s a good way to begin?
Honestly this depends on you Obviously, you want to talk to people who have done retreats, or who have experience doing them. If you have been a participant but not a retreat leader or facilitator it takes a certain skill set to change ‘hats’ so I would at the very least talk to several people who have done them to get their ‘lessons learned’. I remember what I felt like when I began doing retreats I knew what I knew, but I also didn’t know what I didn’t know
I would start small and keep things simple We often try to pack too much in thinking that for some reason unless many things are happening people won’t sign up. Less is more and it will give you more freedom to allow your participants to just be. Remember that change takes time and often people will need time to process what you teach.
MEET ALISON K
Alison helps to serve entrepreneurs in the fitness and health space to innovate and grow their offerings. As a retreat expert, Alison also offers training and programs to help business owners start their own retreats.
As a busy entrepreneur, she feels a calling to help serve her clients through customized fitness and self care programs online, and holds destination fitness retreat experiences in various locations
Tune in for her podcast ‘The Ultimate Journey of Self Care’ across most platforms.
Get your FREE Mini Retreat Playbook: https://thealisonk.com/mini playbook
The practical tools of health create a foundation Clean eating, exercising, meditation, journaling and many modalities all support health foundationally Growth requires a space in between, where you begin to let go and release This uplevel shifts your perspectives, bringing about a pause for clarity, which is the direct opposite of chaos.
Health in all forms, protects and supports your center of being, your intuition, receptivity, and connection to your vision. The physical act of moving, the mental act of intellectual stimulation, the emotional act of emotional intelligence, the energetic act of being in resonance, and vibration when in alignment, bring about growth, which transforms you.
In essence, each of these areas have a common thread of being natural, organic, and pure.
These concepts and ideologies shift the perspective of health being separate Instead of a stand alone health, it is all inclusive in your growth and uplevels
At the beginning of an idea, your capacity to imagine and believe creates inspiration, thought, and feeling This is the foundation of health and growth from your emotional pillar Here your role is to nourish and nurture this creative idea in simplicity, grounded into a safe space. This is accomplished in your vision. When you see your idea, you continue to hold thoughts and feelings that are aligned with your idea, and your vision.
This is the foundation before action. Nourish your health with emotions which support your body and your growth.
The physical aspect of health gets the most attention, the part of taking action Actions for health are designed to support you in creating physical habits, and rituals, the structures and systems for the health and growth, that is nourishing your body and life Your habits and rituals must connect into you, not to do, but rather to guide, support and feel. In this way it is supporting the belief in your vision
There is a life cycle for your actions. Every 3 6 months evaluate how these actions are working for you and making you feel. It’s normal to shift. Actions are not designed to be rigid, but rather a measurement in your energy. Are these actions supporting your energy? Are they building resilience, strength, focus, or even letting go of old patterns and habits. These qualities support growth, even when you can’t see them.
Nurturing mental health for growth is an exceptional skill set to embark on. Intellectual stimulation nudges mental thinking through new conversations. Mental health for growth clears and opens the current programming and environment you are in You are asking yourself to think differently, and become curious Your new health goals will require you to shift and transform your mindset, your mental programming around your actions, and your feelings It requires more time to be invested in your beliefs and ideas about health, shifting them to match the level of your journey to get there. In other words, you can’t bypass your beliefs and jump forward to results.
Nurturing and nourishing your mental health is healthy food for your mind. Books, podcasts, and trainings all support mental health. Learning to minimize, avoid, limit and stay clear of distractions from your new version of health is nurturing yourself, your health, your vision.
Don’t expect everyone to understand. Your vision and actions will ruffle feathers of those who are not able to relate to your vision. It is here that your capacity to step outside your current environments, and connect with the mental strength of like minded people, will help you reach your goals
Energetic health is a balance. When it comes to growth, it is a balance of action and receptivity. This dynamic dance is a natural order. Holding a vision, building systems, and doing the action steps with clarity and intention to support your health, are the first steps which gain momentum. You lead yourself.
Here in energetic health find the pause, gain clarity in what you have accomplished, your new level.
MEET MONICA HEIZ, NATIONAL AEROBIC CHAMPION
Through the power of physical, mental and emotional well being, Monica is grounded into a state of well being, where health and wealth find balance.
From learning to overcome, and manage the loss of her parents, her family, complete her college degree, becoming a top level Group Fitness Instructor in NYC, an elite level athlete, Monica made it her job to re define and re establish health and well being. “So much of the work comes from the mental and emotional components”, she says.
These aren’t skills you can learn in school or through a certification, they’re experiential You must experience them to teach them with emotional intelligence and intellectual stimulation You must have a context in how they feel, how to feel them, to relate to others.
The power in them is the ability to create change. Lifestyle is a series of choices and decisions There is no quick fix It takes practices, habits, re reinforcement and support
Monica has created a series of programs to support physical, mental and emotional well being and health. Confidence, courage, good boundaries, self esteem are all built through health and well being. Monica Holds a B.S. Degree in Nutrition and Fitness from Florida State University
YOUR WEBSITE - WHAT TO WATCH
Having a top notch website can take your company to new heights in many areas Among other things, it can increase brand awareness, establish your business as an authority in the industry, and boost overall sales However, there are many moving parts to a successful, high performing website And your job isn’t over when you’ve designed a great site
Monitoring your business site for server availability, function, page loading speed, and other elements will help keep your company growing Establishing the proper monitoring tools, and processes, will help reduce the risk of your site crashing, improve search rankings, increase conversion rates, and more
Knowing Which Metrics to Measure
First, you must know what to look for when monitoring your website There are many metrics to consider, but we’ll only mention two of the most important ones here You could measure the amount of time website visitors stay on your site. This metric is a good indicator of whether you have high quality or poor content throughout your pages. Also, you can track the transaction/conversion rate to see how many customers
are submitting information to the website or purchasing your products or services These data points and others will provide your team with the necessary insight for enhancing your online presence, brand awareness, and business overall
Aligning Your Site With Customer Expectations
Ideally, your website will exceed customer expectations But at the very least, it must meet expectations, and engage your customers enough to move them along the buyer's journey
One sure fire way to accomplish that, is to incorporate business process management (BPM) to automate workflows and tasks through data analysis. When administered effectively, BPM will produce valuable insights for re designing your site to optimize the user experience. We could discuss many tools and techniques in the context of BPM, but start by creating a solid framework, and religiously tracking its impact. As you monitor the framework, be sure to act on the insights, so you can maximize its output.
Protecting Sensitive Information
It seems that the digital space becomes more dangerous by the day. Cybercriminals are not limiting their reach to large corporations, but targeting smaller websites that are less likely to have the necessary systems and protocols in place
Website security is challenging, even when you have all the right tools. Your company might always be susceptible to vulnerability exploits, malicious scripts, and any number of other potential threats Regularly updating all areas of your website with the most recent security patches, and installing high quality defences, are essential
You will not know how to improve your website performance, unless you understand how it is currently performing. While many techniques can reveal key performance metrics, regular monitoring will provide you with the most reliable data.
Your site's performance will significantly influence your search rankings and the user experience. Consumers these days will leave your website in seconds, potentially giving their business to your competitors.
"Your company might always be susceptible to vulnerability exploits, malicious scripts, and any number of other potential threats
Regularly updating all areas of your website with the most recent security patches and installing high quality defenses are essential."Courtney Rosenfeld
Preventing Loss of Revenue
Finally, regularly monitoring your website can help your company prevent a significant loss of revenue. Your site has the potential to reach a wide audience. Many of these visitors are not willing to wait for very long for your web pages to load, and will quickly abandon your site if it’s difficult to navigate Don’t let that happen remember that every visitor is a potential customer Keep your website in service
Maintaining a stellar website will do wonders for your company's growth strategies and goals. Take time to learn about the various metrics worth measuring, and use BPM, and other disciplines, to better align your site to your target customers. And remember that website monitoring can boost your website's security and performance, while ultimately increasing your company's profitsMEET COURTNEY ROSENFELD
Courtney started Gig Spark to be a resource and the first step for people who are looking to join the gig economy, either to supplement their income or as a way to fulfill their dreams of becoming an entrepreneur "
Visit: https://www gigspark biz/
"Many of these visitors are not willing to wait for very long for your web pages to load and will quickly abandon your site if it’s difficult to navigate." - Courtney Rosenfeld