Create your business model and stop recreating it
It starts harmlessly enough.
There you are. Being your passionate, idea-driven, in-the-moment self.
And you meet someone.
Maybe it’s at a networking event. Maybe it’s a friend of a client.
Either way, she finds out what you do. She lights up. And she says that she needs something just a little bit different from what you offer, and could you possibly do this one other different thing for her because hey, she’s heard good things about you?
And hell, who are you to turn down a little extra money in your business, right?
So even though the thing she wants is something you don’t love doing, you create kind of a contorted customized package just for this person and you hunker down and do the work.
Well, not much later, someone hears about this thing you did, and says hey we were thinking about something just like that only a little different for our group and do you do group things like this?
Well, as a matter of fact, you DON’T do group things like that. But hell, you could learn right? That’s how you’ve done everything, right?
So, you make it up on the fly and don’t sleep a whole lot and yeah, you ignore your other clients for a bit but you pull it off and get paid…
And then another person comes along and says, “Wow. That’s almost exactly what we need, except for…”
…and pretty soon, you’ve got a big problem.
The big problem is not that you aren’t skilled enough to make these things happen. You are.
The big problem is not that you can’t think on your feet and pull it off. You’re doing just that.
The big problem isn’t even about the services themselves. Hey, you may even like doing some of them.
The big problem is that you’ve reacted a business model.
And at some point, you discover that, holyshit, you’re all twisted up and contorted with no sense of exactly what you do and no idea of exactly who you serve.
I meet this person all the time. Her business feels like abstract art. Like a Picasso. Only, instead of two noses, three eyes or a limb poised at an impossible angle, there are services strewn around here and there, programs off in the distance, and no sense of center or direction. She’s playing Picasso in her business with no end in sight.
Why does this happen?
Well, mostly because it can. Entrepreneurs are idea people. You can think on your feet and pull pretty much anything out your ass.
So, why is it so hard to break the pattern?
Well, that’d be where fear has taken over.
From fear’s perspective, it’s a lot easier to be “at effect” in your business than “at cause.”
After all, what if the thing you want to do doesn’t work?
And this is a key turning point.
Many business owners reach this point and think the problem is the WHAT of their business. (As in, “I gotta go find something else to do. I’m just not passionate about this work anymore.”)
But usually, it’s not the WHAT that’s the problem. It’s the HOW.
And this is when you must get in the driver’s seat. You must create your business model and stop recreating your business model. You have to take your abstract art and turn into something less confusing.
Start by asking (and answering) yourself three key questions:
1. What is my superpower?
(This is the thing you know you are best at, you know you love to do and you spend most of the day doing it and love your life.)
2. Exactly which activities am I doing that take way too much time because I am not the best person to be doing them?
(Make a list. Do a brain dump. Don’t hold back.)
3. If I could only offer three services (or products), what would they be and how would I price them so I make even more income than I make now?
Yes, it can be this simple.
Don’t believe me? Then fight me in the comments below. 🙂
Or just take it from Steve Jobs:
“Simple can be harder than complex. You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end, because once you get there, you can move mountains.”
Now, I’d love to hear what your business model looks like, or any stuck spots your encountering when answering the key questions above. Share with me in the comments below!