I’ve been having a lot of conversations lately about the concept of leverage and how we can use it to help us to create a Business that is bigger than us, that reaches many more people, and in doing so, have a positive impact on more of our Client’s lives.
The concept itself seems to be a simple one, but like many things, understanding the concept and putting it to work for you are two entirely different things!
What does Leverage actually mean? According to the Oxford English dictionary it is “to use something to maximum advantage” (there are a number of versions, but this is the one that is relevant to us)
What’s that got to do with a Coaching Business?
It’s all to do with how it is possible to make one person ie YOU achieve more, have a greater reach and impact, and make more money without working 12 hours days and burning yourself out
The traditional Coaching Business Model, is one where you work one-to-one with your clients, and typically charge them for the amount of time you spend with them. While it’s lovely working with your clients like that, it has its limitations in terms of growing your business.
You on your own, without leverage, only have so many hours in the day, can only speak to a limited number of people, and can only do so much before you run out of time and energy.
It exhausts you, limits your business and constrains you
You end up frustrated, overwhelmed, exhausted, working harder and harder, but not making the kind of progress you want to or growing your dream business.
The worst thing is that as you become more successful, attract more clients, and your business grows, the problem is exaggerated. The more clients you have, the more admin you have and the less time you have to market your business.
It gets harder to keep all the balls in the air. The plates stop spinning and start crashing to the ground and everything you worked so hard to build starts falling apart again
This is what is often referred to as being caught in the “Time for Money Trap”, and it seriously limits your business potential.
The Difference Leverage can make to Your Business
When you fully understand and apply the principles of leverage to every area of your business you can break free of the Time for Money Trap, and expand your business as far as you want to.
You can reach an unlimited number of people, you can get done – (note not do yourself) – an endless list of tasks, earn unlimited amounts of money and have all of the time freedom and energy to do with whatever you please, whether that be holidays, spending time with your children, or doing charity work.
These are the main areas that applying leverage will help you to grow a better business:
• Your Reach – you can have an impact on many more clients lives, and make a much bigger difference
• Your Efficiency – using leverage is like cloning yourself, time management is no longer an issue
• Your Sanity – well maybe not quite your sanity, but it certainly takes the strain off 🙂
• Your Income – when your income is not fully dependant on you delivering your coaching in person, you can earn it from wherever you are, whatever you are doing, and have as much as you choose.
Leverage in Practice
So what are the main things that you need to leverage or “use to maximum advantage” in your business, and how do you do it?
It’s all about making the most of your knowledge and expertise, and
Your knowledge and expertise are what your clients pay for, it’s the value that you bring, so it makes sense that you should offer this in more way than one.
Your time is arguably the most precious resource you have, and it is certainly in limited supply – you must value and make the best possible use of your time if you want a successful business.
Most of the ways you can use leverage in your business are designed to make the most of your time, and take you out of the day to day running of your business as possible.
The way to do that is to deploy the 3Ps of Leverage:
• Products & Packages
Products & Packages
I’m talking of course about Information Products which don’t include any of your time to deliver them.
This is an excellent way to leverage your knowledge, expertise and skills by creating them once, and then selling them over and over again!
The simplest way there is to leverage your time and your efforts is to package up your coaching system and offer it to groups of people.
So instead of taking individual clients through your coaching process to get to the result they want, package it as a set number of sessions which you then deliver to either one group of people at a time in a “real world” situation, or as an on-line programme which you can deliver to any number of groups.
Once you have created the programme, your clients access the bulk of it on-line, without you being there, and you only need to personally spend your time doing maybe a couple of group calls with them.
Now I know you have to spend the time initially creating the programme, but once you have done it you can deliver it over and over again, and get paid over and over again.
And in case you are wondering, you will need to spend as much time marketing to get one person to commit to 1:1 coaching as it will take to get 10 into a much more cost effective and convenient (for them) on-line programme.
You can, and should, leverage Technology and Systems to make things happen without any further input from you.
Use an email manager, such as Aweber to set up your ethical bribe so that when a potential client visits your website, they can sign up for it and have it delivered to them automatically.
Then create a series of auto-responder emails to be sent out at set intervals after they sign up to add further value and build your relationship with them, without the need for you to personally send them.
Set up your shopping cart and email manager to deliver your information products automatically, and follow up post sale the same as you do for your free offers.
This way your clients can get access to your products any time of the day or night, and you don’t need to think about sending out links manually or remembering to follow up. You can spend your time creating more products to sell while you are at the beach
Automate the sign up process and delivery of modules in your membership club using membership registration and auto-upgrade features that are readily available with cost effective software.
This way your new members can access your club and get the modules they are due, when they are due to and again, without the need for you to manually add them in or give them access to the next set of content.
In other words for anything that you can automate – set it up once then let the technology do it for you.
For things that you can’t completely automate using technology, create a process guide for what needs to happen when.
Having process guides make it much easier for you to get things done as you don’t have to remember each time how to do it, and you don’t waste time firefighting if you forget!!
To fully utilise leverage in your business, for everything that needs to be done detail the process and either let the technology do the heavy lifting or hand it over to someone else … which brings us nicely onto …
Using other people – in the nicest possible way!
If your business is going to grow into the business you want it to be, then you must leverage other people’s skills, expertise and time to get stuff done better, faster and cheaper.
Good processes make outsourcing much easier, effective and efficient.
It is well worth the effort of writing process guides which you can then give to a VA so that she knows what needs to be done, and how you want it done. You can then just hand off that particular task or set of tasks to her, knowing it will get done without any more input from you.
When to use Leverage
As with many other things, it is best to start out as you mean to go on.
It’s no good waiting until you are too busy working with clients to start thinking about leverage – do it now!.
Your next step is to create a product that you can sell over and over again.
But before you start putting it together, make sure you are creating something that people are going to want to buy!!