Diary of a Business Accelerator: 6 of 6
Session #6 was all about the sales process. We spent some quality time checking that our core offering was crystal clear: what do we sell (products, services, packages) and at what prices. Every time I do this exercise I come up with a new insight into what exactly I’m selling and how I could package it up and price it. We also looked again at our target customers and then our ‘marketing collateral’ – all the different assets, methods and channels we use for marketing. Not for the first time, Andrew recommended the Prince’s Trust business plan template: https://www.princes-trust.org.uk/help-for-young-people/tools-resources/business-tools/business-plans We also looked at how we acquire our clients and customers and what we could do differently to acquire our ideal customers, which I always find to be a useful exercise.
Andrew produced another rabbit out of the TH 01 hat with our final session #7 on ‘your numbers’. I’ve done accounts as part of an MBA but never have I understood accounting as clearly as Andrew explained it. He shared some simple but very powerful revenue tracking methods using rolling averages to help us understand what is going on with our numbers. Andrew’s one page model showing how money flows through a business, by linking the Balance Sheet with the Income Statement (P&L) and the Cash Flow Statement, is a world class insight for analysing any business. The accountants in the room were in raptures! Andrew’s son Daniel (of Key Person of Influence fame) rounded off the programme with his presentation that ‘growth sucks!’ Actually he called it, ‘Rules for Fun’ but it’s ‘growth sucks’ that stuck in my mind: growth sucks cash, energy, weekends and so on. Daniel described the hope that business can be fun as a ‘fantasy’, however, and here is the paradox, if we accept this then it can be fun! Hence his strapline, ‘Be brave, have fun, make a Dent.’
Another feature of the programme was the FB group, which many of us used and are still using for mutual support, asking for help and sharing our learning and insights. One particular gem (I think it was Ash Taylor but please forgive me if someone else should be given the credit!) was to mention the book, ‘Profit First’ by Mike Michalowicz. I bought the book and it was a no brainer – I implemented profit first accounting and it’s no exaggeration to say it has transformed how I feel about my business – and how much money I make from my business. As the book subtitle says, it is, ‘A Simple System to Transform any Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine’. Outside of the great content from TH 01, this is my top tip for all business owners and self-employed professionals. I recommend the ‘Profit First’ approach to all my business clients and they are loving it!
I’ve gained a lot from Threshold Accelerator. It forced me to address my own issues, the very things that have been holding me back, and also helped me to work through them by holding me to account and by providing me with support when I needed it – all I had to do was ask. Every business owner has to work through this stuff for themselves – Threshold Accelerator has been more effective at helping me do this than other business training I’ve undertaken. I don’t know whether it’s a coincidence or a direct consequence of TH 01 however I’ve doubled the number of active clients I have as well as my monthly revenues. Without TH 01, I would not have achieved the alignment I now have with my business: I’m now leading with my career and life coaching brand rather than my business mentoring and consulting brand and I’ve put myself out there to my target market in a way I’ve never done before. This is bringing in new clients and it feels right. I’m now recommending Threshold Accelerator to others in my network – ‘nuff said!
I’d be pleased to connect with other ‘Thresholders’ on Linkedin, FB, Twitter and so on to continue this learning journey J
Business mentor, consultant and coach