It might be cliche; but it’s truly amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it. A huge part of Quiet Power Strategy is knowing what to focus on and taking action on those things and those things alone.
I knew Stacey Howe-Lott, the founder of Stellar Scores, was making progress on the plan she had created during Quiet Power Strategy. But it wasn’t until a few months ago that I happened to see something truly extraordinary.
Scrolling through my Facebook stream, I noticed a post from her saying she’d just done 500% better in July 2014 over July 2013. And, in fact, that while July was normally her slowest month of the year as an SAT tutor, July 2014 was her highest grossing month ever in business.
I had to know what shifted for her.
The first thing was complete focus on her new identity in business: CEO. She isn’t a technician anymore, she’s the powerhouse behind an SAT strategy revolution. Instead of going client to client, she’s seeing her business and how she plans for it in a whole new light.
The second thing was focus on her own special sauce: strategy. For Stacey, tutoring the SAT is about identifying strengths and playing to them. (Really, it’s a beautiful metaphor of the whole theme behind 10ThousandFeet.) When her special sauce became evident, the ideas for scale and leverage became unrelentingly apparent.
What’s more, she hasn’t even had digital products on the market very long. Just knowing her special sauce and repositioning her business around it has kept a steady stream of clients coming in, even in the off months, ready to pay higher prices than Stacey ever dreamed of charging.
Stacey’s new focus has helped her create a plan that will grow with her, products that will introduce whole new markets to her methodology, and positioning that puts her on the top of her industry. But enough from me, let’s hear it from Stacey:
Stacey Howe-Lott’s Story
Since taking Quiet Power Strategy™, I’ve doubled my revenue in 7 months and am on track to triple it by 12 months.
I’ve completely become the CEO of my business–first recognizing it as a business, and then stepping into the CEO role. I am a teacher, so I was always focused on the kid in front of me instead of stepping back and looking at my business as a whole.
Tara dragged me, with me kicking and screaming the entire way, from being convinced that the only way I could serve is in 1:1 sessions which didn’t scale, to seeing how I can teach on a much broader scale.
I’ve figured out what I’m great at, what I’m terrible at, and how to leverage my strengths and manage others in order to accomplish my vision.
It was hard to break out of my old mindset. But being on the other side is so easy–I’m able to teach more kids, in less time and with less stress because of all the systems I have in place.
I love the fact that I’ve got a business plan to give my very-well-paid-computer-programmer husband a run for his money as to who can be the top earner in the family. On what planet do teachers ever out-perform computer programmers in income? I love the fact that I’m showing my daughter that she can dream up something out of nothing and make it happen. I love the fact that I am funding my daughter’s college education AND donating money to donorschoose.org to help fund educational projects for other schoolchildren as well.
But mostly I love the fact that I am able to help hundreds of more students learn more efficiently, more effectively, and accomplish their dreams.
That’s what focus can do for you. Less stress, more money, more impact, and action that gets results. You in?
Find out more about Stacey and Stellar Scores, click here.
“So, what I’m hearing you say is that I don’t need a big list to make money.”
One of my audience members realized that incredibly liberating fact on Friday during my CreativeLive course.
No, you don’t need a big list to make money. You don’t need a big list to release a great offer. You don’t need a big list to garner attention or leverage your true strengths.
Sure, list-building is a (perhaps, the) key marketing activity. But you can create a lot of success for yourself if you’re willing to sell while you’re building your list.
You can implement the Living Room strategy. The idea being that it’s a heckuva lot easier—and often much more rewarding both financially and energetically—to fill a living room instead of a stadium.
Bear with me. Imagine you’re a singer/songwriter. You’ve got a few backing instrumentalists and you’ve ready to start performing. Maybe you’ve already been performing for years.
What’s easier to sell 12 tickets to an exclusive, intimate performance in a living room? Or to sell 5,000 tickets to fill a stadium show?
The correct answer is the former. Yet, I see business owners aim to fill the stadium, stress about the logistics of such an endeavor, and then feel defeated when their efforts don’t match their expectations.
(This is an example of a Living Room Strategy I’m working on right now!)
Living Room strategy isn’t about playing small.
Click to tweet.
It’s about understanding how to get results now—and how those results set you up for Stadium-style success when and if you want it. If you follow my Facebook page you’ve started to see my writing on Quiet Power Strategy.
Quiet Power Strategy is all about perceiving, discerning, and focusing on what is going to create the greatest opportunity for service while allowing you to leverage both how you work best and what you want most.
When you choose to fill the Living Room instead of the Stadium, you can have more control over your outcomes, more money in your pocket, and more confidence in your mission. And at the same time, you’re setting yourself up to fill the Stadium later on. Soon, even.
So what does this look like in practice? Knowing you want to create a conference but creating an intimate salon first. Knowing you want to create a New York Times Bestseller but selling your methodology to corporations one at a time first. Knowing you want to create a product & idea empire but sitting with women in actual living rooms first.
You see, it’s not just entrepreneurs who want to serve small groups that leverage Quiet Power Strategy to fill Living Rooms first. It’s bona fide creative rock stars who were intentional about getting their ideas in the hands of the people who mattered most first, and then developing the infrastructure that could take their ideas to the masses.
It’s the confidence, control, and working capital that filling Living Rooms provides that allows for filling Stadiums later on. And that’s quietly powerful. It takes the perception to realize how you can be of service to a small group of incredibly committed customers, the discernment to know how your unique skills, strengths, and passion will create amazing experiences for them, and the focus to actually execute the plan.
The entrepreneurs who will be filling Stadiums in 2015 and beyond are filling Living Rooms today.
P.S. Due to popular demand, I actually created a Living Room Strategy training. Click here to find out more.
I have often been teased for being brainy and intellectualizing personal problems. I tend to think more than feel. I rationalize more than empathize. I am INTP.
I have never gone so far as to try to hide my smarts but I certainly have often seen it as a weakness instead of a strength. Like it’s something to be managed instead of something to be exploited.
This week in Quiet Power Strategy™: The Program, our clients completed Quiet Power Inventories. These begin with understanding your Onlyness. Onlyness is a concept from Nilofer Merchant’s book, 11 Rules for Creating Value in the Social Era, and she uses it to talk about the unique angle that each of us bring to the work that we do.
From my perspective, Onlyness also applies to brands–it’s a big part of where they draw their Quiet Power from. The most memorable brands get really good at using what makes them unique to deliver additional value to their customers. And this often means focusing on what has become a perceived weakness and turning it into a genuine asset.
Instead of hiding what could be the butt of jokes, great brands put it out in the open. They exploit it.
Merchant writes in a recent post:
Your brand is the exhaust created by the engine of your life. It is a by-product of what happens as you share what you are creating, and with whom you are creating.
So if your engine is running on something–no matter how quirky it might be–and that’s not a key piece of what you’re putting out into the world, what’s representing you, what’s acting as a channel for the value you’re creating, you’re missing a big opportunity.
Don’t try to engineer a brand. Reverse-engineer a brand (click to tweet!) that supports your unique way of creating value.
My brand leverages my habit of intellectualizing and rationalizing. It sets my brand apart from brands that leverage fun & glamor or spirituality & poeticism. But its these unique strengths that allow each of these brands to deliver more value than they would if they were traveling down the middle of the road. And they are each things that could be perceived as weaknesses if not blatantly built into the very core of each business.
There’s a perception that there are certain “right” ways to create a brand or build the persona of your business. Whether you’ve bought into an image that ultra-professional, glam, corporate, spiritual, new age, or quirky, if the image of your business doesn’t spring from what you’re bringing to the table through your business’s unique skills, strengths, and passions, the resulting disconnect can drain you dry. Financially and energetically.
Your Onlyness helps you build a business model that really works. It informs your sales copy, your company culture, and your sales process. But, bottom line, it helps you & your business do what it does best.
As I mentioned earlier, often that thing that businesses are trying to hide, manage, or battle is the key to infusing Onlyness into their brand, business model, and sales process. It’s the thing they assume is keeping them from doing more, when that couldn’t be further from the truth.
Stop fighting it, start leveraging it.
If you’ve be struggling with how to manage a certain aspect of your personality or something that your business doesn’t do as well as you think it should, what would happen if you decided to highlight it? Harness it?
If you have a particular weakness that’s been nagging you for awhile, my friend & client Bridget Pilloud does this for a living. She helped me recast my social anxiety as a strength–which I’ve sense incorporated into my work in a big way.