Is Your Business Model Holding You Back?
Aug 20, 2018
When we first set out on our own, all we really want to do is get paid for doing work that we love.
We want to use our skills and see what we can create with them to help people. We want to carve out a better life for ourselves and our family; have more freedom; happiness and fulfilment.
We have a Vision for our business that feels ambitious but achievable. To be honest, for most of us, we start off hoping that we can replicate the wage we earned in our old employed 'job-job’ (or our last contract). We dare to hope that if things go well we can earn a little more perhaps.
Then after a slow (but steady) start things begin to take off... suddenly you have so much to do! The work is coming in, and you certainly don't want to turn it away, but your dream of having a less stressed, better life, with more time for family and friends begins to seem as far away as ever!
Then one day you wake up and you feel like you’re dreading going to work!
But what can you do about it?
How can you change things? If you don’t do the work you’re not earning…
You’re stuck in that ‘trading for time for money trap’ that you hear people taking about!
It’s become like 'you own your own job’!
You see other businesses getting bigger; but you can’t work out how to do it with your business. What you’re doing wrong...
How do I know all this?
Because I’ve been there myself!
It happens to us all.
In the 1990’s I created a consultancy business where I was an expert in my field. One of a handful in the UK.
I’d worked for a company who wrote the software for a major NHS initiative. I’d been one of a very small group of people who not only tested the software but also trained people in how to use it. So when I decided to go it alone and create my own business, to capitalise on my knowledge, I simply secured myself a couple of contracts with General Practices initially. That brought me in slightly more money than my previous contract, and took up 40 hours of my time each week.
Over time the business grew; more Practices started to ask for my help and I managed to fit in some additional small monthly support roles; local Colleges and Universities asked me to speak to their students and other Healthcare Commissioning organisations wanted my help.
I was in my thirties; I was working over 60 hours a week, but I was doing a job I loved. It was a successful business. It continued very successfully for me until my specialist area was in effect ‘abolished’ in 1999 by new incoming Government.
So, given that success, why did my accountant spend time every time we met through-out the 1990’s telling me that my business model was all wrong?
It took me until I started my Limited Company in 2005 to work it out. In the 1990’s I had created a business with a glass ceiling. My business model didn’t allow me to scale my business at all… and my hourly rate was drastically less than it should have been so I wasn’t able to really step up my earnings.
In 2005 when I created my Limited Company I registered for VAT from day one and started with a much more realistic pricing structure and a clear plan of how I would increase my prices as my business grew - my Accountant was thrilled with me!
My business grew very quickly, from week one!
Over the next couple of years I built a year-on-year six-figure profit business!
In time though I realised that yet again I had created a successful business but with a model that didn’t allow me to achieve my real ambitions.
I was once again an expert in my field; but if I wasn’t client facing, or producing work for my clients myself, I couldn’t earn money. I had created another business where I was in effect ’trading my time for money’; charging an hourly rate for my time.
My conscious choice not to ‘employ’ staff and to persist with a consultation-based business model left me unable to scale my business. Extremely successful though it was, I had once again created myself a ‘job’.
It took me until 2014 to reach the point when I knew things had to change, and I realised what sort of business model I needed to get me to where I really wanted to be.
This time I wanted to create a seven-figure business; to do what I loved and share my knowledge and skills with as many people as possible; and to do it on my own terms. In addition, I wanted to move my business; to live by the sea, in a while new country!
And so began my ‘quest’ to get to grips with how to scale my business and market my services in this digital era.
Finally, I understood that I needed to fully leverage my knowledge and expertise. To stop focusing on working 1:1 and constantly creating bespoke programmes and find ways to be able to create proper business assets and deliver my services 1:Many.
Since then I have learned many, many lessons and my journey towards growing a seven-figure business is unfolding every day!
So, this week my questions to you have to be:
* Does your business model fit your ambition?
* Do you know how you plan to scale your business?
* Have you got the right Business Model?
It's never too late to reassess your position and revise your business model!
Until next week!
If you’re ready to scale your business; to become a business owner rather than a self-employed person why not join us at our September Business Bootcamps: Master Your Business Owner Mindset or The Fours Steps to Scaling Your Business.
Tickets are on sale now, follow the link to secure your seat now: