This business coaching series will help you see that nearly every business goes and grows through a very predictable pathway.Sign Up to Watch
Sharita: Hello Thrivers. We are back, Sharita Bent and Clay Clark, the world's best business coach. We're talking about your newest book Start Here. Clay: Hello. Sharita: It's been broken down into little segments that are digestible and very informative. We're in 3.6 today, which is Foreseeable Milestones. Clay: Yes. Sharita: And you start out talking, if we were in your shoe. You say you wear a size 13, Johnston & Murphy dress shoes if you want to walk in Clay's shoes. Clay: Every time. Sharita: Yes, every time. Very predictable. You're talking about the pathways that your business has to take in order to make a profit. And at the beginning you're kind of talking about entrepreneurs who are like pounding energy drinks, they're doing their accounting, they're doing their marketing, they're the manager, they're doing PR. They're trying to do it all while keeping their sanity. Clay: Yes. Sharita: Talk to us about how they get into that position. Clay: What happens is as an entrepreneur you have to wear multiple hats when you start. And there's all these books about, you know what you want to do is you want to delegate the work. You just want to focus on your highest best use. You want to delegate the work that's not the highest and best. You go, hey, hey, hey, hey. Hey, real quick captain or business coach guy. I would love to do that but I also need to pay my bills. And they go, oh. Then eventually you get to a point where you can pay your bills just fine, and now you can start to delegate. What we're talking about, specifically, as an entrepreneur you have a lot of hats that you're wearing. But there are some foreseeable milestones. There's some things that I've been doing this so long, and I've been coaching businesses for so many years, that I know for sure that you're going to run into these same predictable problems, these same predictable seasons of the business growth. And so we have some foreseeable milestones I want you to set your sights on. And I kind of look at it like, if you're in the fog and there are lampposts that are in the fog. And there's just enough of them where you can't see the way to get there, but you know that I'm here. And you see a lamppost through the fog that's maybe 100 yards away. But you can see just enough light that you can get to it. Once you get to that one then you can see the next one. That's these predictable milestones we're talking about. Sharita: And I love that you're saying that they're predictable, meaning you're not going to get around this. This is a part of the process. Is that correct? Clay: Absolutely. These are things that you are going to for sure run into. We've been there. That's the value of the Thrive15 platform is when you're stuck, you could literally just pick up the phone, or you can email us, and we'll help you through these. And I want to just give you an example. Sharita: Yes. Clay: When you're building a business, once you're the owner, once you commit to systemizing your business, once you've-- I'm telling you predictable milestones here. The first milestone that you should celebrate is when you have committed to building your business. It's a duplicable way. A way that's going to allow you to consistently making a profit, while producing a product you're proud of that doesn't involve you. Once you get to the point where you can commit and say, I do believe that it's possible to make a profit, consistently using a system that's going to allow me to do it without me. Once you get to that mindset that is the first milestone that in my mind should be really cheered for. Because a lot of people they never get there. If I want to make a good profit I have to personally do it. Sharita: Wow! Clay: They say, if I want to make a good profit I have to personally do it. If I want it to be a good quality, I have to do it myself. If you want it done right, you have to do it yourself. Once you get to the point where you say, I don't need to personally do everything for it to be great. I can make a profit without me doing it. There's a system that can do it better than me. Sharita: Wow! Clay: Once you understand that the product thing should be produced better without you. Once you build a system so good that it no longer involves you, that's one of those next milestones. But you've got to get to a point where you do believe, I can build a system that's going to work without me as good as me without me. Sharita: Wow! That was just like business coaching church right there. I felt the fire on that one. I have a question though. Clay: Yes. Sharita: Why can you not start out a business with your duplicable processes already in place? Clay: Let me get really, really specific. Sharita: Yes. Clay: If you own a bakery right now, you have to make the cookies that are so good that people are willing to pay for them. Sharita: Yes. Clay: That's what you have to do, right. And you don't know if they're going to be good or not. I work with a company, a great company, called BarbieCookies.com; Barbie Cookies. Sharita: Those are good cookies. Clay: And Cat Barbie, that's her name Cat, Catherine or Cat. She started Barbie Cookies and her daughter, you mean not a professional chef. No, her daughter said "Mom, I have an idea. I believe that if I can combine a cinnamon roll flavor with a cookie, with a texture of a cinnamon roll but a cookie, and then kind of weave it together". Sharita: I have had that cookie and I saw the Lord. I was like, Jesus thank you. Clay: It was so good. Sharita: Good. It's so good. Clay: She said "I think if I can do it it's going to change the game". Now, you can't delegate that kind of innovation. This is mom and daughter just trying to make good cookies. But once they made it, it was a hit. And they realized--whoa. People were like, hey. It's getting kind of weird. Friends are going; can we have some more of those cookies? Sharita: Yes. And they're so big too. That's what I love about them. Clay: And people were like, hey. Hey, could you make me a couple. This was just a mom and a daughter. Sharita: Nice. Clay: And they're saying, could you make me some more? It starts there. Sharita: Okay. Clay: Well, then pretty soon the daughter is like, I can't make any more mom, I'm going to go to college. I'm going to college. And the mom said, I can't make any more. I'm selling them but I can't make any more than x amount of dollars per week unless I teach someone else to make these cookies. Now you have to create a what? A recipe. That's the first system. Sharita: Okay. Clay: It doesn't feel like a big system, but it's a system. Sharita: But it is. Clay: How does the company make the cookies without you the owner personally making them? Then the next system is, a customer comes in, the door opens bing, bing. Well, the system was putting the bing, bing, because before she'd be in the back making cookies and she wouldn't know if you walked in. Then the next system is, hey people walk in and we want the right overhead music to be played. Because I-- Sharita: You can't have hardcore like rock going or something. Clay: Yes. If you just hired me today, and let's say that I love what we were just talking about the Weekend, the R&B artist. If I love that and I'm just playing, I can't feel my face when I'm with you, but I love it. And you walk in as the owner. And you play that song 45 times in a row. What's wrong with you? I love it, it's the hit. Sharita: Yes. Clay: Well, now you have to build a system for the music you play. What music is acceptable? She had to sit down and go, what music do I want? That's another system. The first system, again, was how do I make the cookies? The next is a system to alert me when the door opens. The third system is the music. Sharita: Got you. Clay: Then the fourth system is how much money should we make every time we sell a cookie? Sharita: Okay. Clay: Well, she used to sell those cookies for about $1.00 dollar. Sharita: The big one. Clay: For about a $1.00 dollar. Sharita: You're kidding me. Clay: You'd kind of say its small, about a $1.00 dollar. Sharita: Wow! Clay: What happens is the people start to say, can I have those cookies? Pretty soon you're making a ton of cookies but not making any money. Sharita: Right. Clay: Now the system is how much money should you charge? How much should you price it for that's going to allow you to feel good about the prices you're charging? Don't feel like you're ripping people off, but it's going to allow you to make enough profit to achieve her financial goals. Sharita: Yes. Clay: Now there's a system there. And now you're making enough profit, but now you're going to grow more I have to hire more people. And now I can't make the cookies at all. Sharita: Got you. Clay: Well, how am I going to be able to afford to pay myself and pay my team? I need to probably get into a better price. And then I'm just giving you one more, and then menus. Sharita: Yes, I love it. Clay: People start to say, well what kind of cookies do you have? And I'm like; oh I can do anything kind of cookie. I can do this, that, and that. Pretty soon the front desk person starts coming up and going, hey how much do we charge for this kind of cookie? How much do we charge for this kind? If someone wants to get 12 in 1? What if someone's having a birthday? And pretty soon the owner has these Got a Minute meetings, where they're constantly being asked, do you have a minute? Do you have a minute? And they're the only one who knows the answer to how to price. Now you've got to make a pricing system, a menu. And the reason why they can't do it all first, Sharita, is one you have to make a viable product. Sharita: Right, first. Clay: We have thrivers who are on our website right now who have a hypothesis that people will like their cookies. And the only way to do it is to actually make them. Sharita: Make the cookie. Clay: And try to sell them. If the world would buy them, then you have something. Sharita: Okay. So this is a system that you're going through, really, when you're starting a business. You may not realize it, but it's like you start out with your idea. You have to hustle, you grime, you work, and then you hit up against something that should force you to make a system. Even that is an organic process, is that correct? Clay: Yes. If you're not intentional, you begin to get stuck and you think that's normal. Sharita: Wow! Clay: The four step process is you define what you think is going to happen, then you act Number two, then you measure is it working, and then you refine. It’s define, act, measure, refine. Define, act, measure, refine, those four. Sharita: Okay. Clay: Over and over and over. And any time you feel stuck you stop and say, how can I build a system that will allow me to do this in a better way than I can personally do it without my involvement? Sharita: Right. Clay: And don't delegate until you build a system that allows it. Nathan, who I always give a hard time to. Sharita: We love Nathan. Clay: He's in there. And I'll tell you this. He is editing the Thrive videos better than I could do it. And I did not feel that way when we first delegated to Nathan, because the system-- And Nathan you can probably tell me even though we can't hear your audio, but you can just thumbs up. The system wasn't very good that we gave you at first, because we didn't have anything written down. Well, poor Dan Knicks who is your mentor, we weren't given a system. I said "Dan, make good videos." And Dan is like, I'm making the best videos I can. And I go, make them better, make them faster, lower the cost. And Dan's like, okay. Well, to do that I need new cameras, I need a checklist, I need a system. And I'm like, well, go faster. Then Dan built a system, he was able to delegate this system to somebody who could now do the job as good, or better, than he could do it, and now Nathan is making the systems better and better, and then it just keeps happening, and that's how you do it, so it's a neat cycle once you can get into that cycle of delegating. Sharita: I love that and thank you for explaining it, because I think some people tend to think "I'm just going to work on the systems before I get started. I'm going to get everything, so I already have my duplicable system." Clay: I hate to burst anyone's bubble. Certain products shouldn't be made. Sharita: What do you mean? Clay: I'm just saying I love R&B music, so specifically, I love Luther Vandross live from Radio City, and one of the albums, he nails it, but he sings that song "Excuse me, miss, what's your name? Where are you from?" It's a great song, and he sings it-- anyway, I was at a DJ show at the DoubleTree hotel, and this guy has incredible hulk gloves on, and he's a dark-skinned fellow, he's got longer hair with gloves on, and I'm hauling in equipment. He goes "Hey, man, can I catch a ride?" I'm going-- Sharita: He was wearing the gloves? Clay: They were hawk gloves. I said "Where do you want to go?" He goes "I just need to go to the gas station or something, I'm in town here for the weekend." I said "Why do you have those gloves on?" He's like "Oh, man, it's a weird story, but I'm touring right now and all the guys, before the big show, we do." I said "Who do you tour with?" We're driving a quick trip to gas station. True story. If you get the Luther Vandross CD, it's called Excuse me, miss, I think, the song title. Sharita: I love that you let him in your car with the hawk gloves, and you-- Clay: True story. I take him to the gas station and I'm talking to the guy, and I said "What do you do?" He goes "Oh, I write music." I said "For who?" He goes "You know this song Excuse me, miss, with Luther. I wrote that." Sharita: Shut up. Shut up. Clay: He goes "No, that's my talent." I say "You wrote it?" He goes "Yes, I'm on the album. Look." We're talking and I'm like, "No way," because I used to have the CDs, so we're in the car, the song's playing, it's awesome. He's singing and he's like "Excuse me, miss, what's your name? Where are you from?" I'm, like, singing, but he is singing. Sharita: He's singing. He's not singing, he's singing. Does he still have the gloves on? Clay: He does. He is bringing it. Sharita: He's tearing it up. Clay: He's not even really into it, he just is so good. I shut up. I stop and he goes "You're making me all nervous. It's kind of weird, I don't do one-on-one concerts." I remember him saying "Dude, you're making me all nervous." I go "You perform it for 20,000." He's like "I don't perform it in front of a white dude in a van. Can you--" Anyway, all I'm saying is, the product that shouldn't be made, is a Clay Clark R&B album. I love R&B and I know good R&B, and I know how to sing on key, and I know pitch, and I know melody, and I know these things. I know what harmony should sound like, but I can't produce it in a way that people should be willing to pay for. Sharita: Stating you're lame, you have to know your strengths. Clay: I'm aware of that. I see entrepreneurs who are like "I made these cookies" and you go "I chipped my tooth on that thing and it tastes like wood." They're like "Actually, the flavor I was going for, was more of a buffalo meet," and you're like "Cookie?" Have you ever seen those, what is that weird-- it's going to come to me. It's like meat-flavored ice-cream where these weird-- Sharita: I don't do that. Clay: You know what I mean, there's like these weird flavor combinations. Sharita: That's wrong. Clay: The sucker that tastes like meat, have you seen that? There's a sucker out there-- Sharita: It's wrong. I'm with you. Clay: All I'm saying is that it shouldn't be made. A meat-flavored sucker, and I see entrepreneurs who are running around with their meat-flavored sucker and their terrible R&B album, and they're like "Hey, I don't understand why it's not selling." I feel bad. We used to have a guy who used to DJ for us who was the worst singer ever, and he made a whole album. He's like "I don't understand why it's not selling. Can you help me refine my systems? I want a wider market." I was just like "Dude, you have got to put that T-Pain effect done, you have got to pitch-correct that thing like your name's Drake, and you better just never let the world hear your natural voice, because--" and I feel horrible, but I had to tell him. Sharita: At least you told him the truth. Clay: I think he still hates me, but whatever. Sharita: You told him the truth. Clay: We move on. Sharita: Yes, we move on. All of this to say you have to commit to systematizing your business-- Clay: Every part of the way. Sharita: Every single part of it, non-negotiable. Has to happen. Clay: Right now, I'd say how crazy I am. Right now I'm in the process of systemizing how we do a grand opening for the elephant in the room, because we are in the process of doing so many of them. I never thought I would make a system, a checklist for how to open up the stores, but we're opening up a third one right now, and we have plans to open the fourth one very soon. Abigail was like "No offense, but I need a checklist of how to do that." It was in my head and I just thought "We'd never be opening up enough stores that I would need to make a checklist for how to do it." I'm planning on not actually attending the grand opening at all. Sharita: It'll just-- Clay: We're here recording. Sharita: Duplicable systems, great. Clay: There it is.
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