“I don’t want to be doing all this business stuff, I’m just wanting to help people”
If I had 10 euros for every time I’ve heard this, I could easily go on holiday to Iceland on the proceeds. It usually also comes just before someone says they would love to work with me, but can’t afford it right now. Which means they can’t do what they want to do with me. Which means they can’t earn more. Which means they can’t afford it later either. #viciouscyclealert
In this article you’ll read why wanting to help people isn’t enough, why it does pay to do the business stuff, what benefits this brings and how this makes your life a whole lot easier.
Wanting to help people is a wonderful thing.
If you’re a people person, like a coach, trainer, or healer, you care about people and what happens to them. You want them to feel happier, healthier, stronger, more able to take action/stick up for themselves. You want them to experience a result that you feel is possible, while they are doubting they can ever get there.
It’s a big responsibility and a beautiful thing. Is there any moment as sweet as seeing someone get it and interact with life in a different way? (didn’t think so)
Business feels hard
On the other hand, business feels like hard work. It’s all about structure and routines and putting yourself in the foreground. These things are often the opposite of how you’d like to be working, when you’re just wanting to help people.
We tend to choose work that plays to our strengths. As a coach, trainer, or healer, your strengths are going to be things like:
- The ability to listen, see or sense deeply
- The ability to stay open to possibilities
- Belief in what you do
- Belief in people’s inbuilt ability to heal and grow
- The ability to draw information from subtle (and not so subtle) signals
Let’s face it, these can feel alien to how you run your business.
Business sounds like exploitation
This is also something I’ve heard regularly, that healers and coaches in particular shy away from even the word business, because it conjures up images of space-travelling, ego-driven billionaires trampling over people.
I’m not going to try to change your mind about the ego-led crowd, because yes business could make choices based on other criteria than just profit. Absolutely.
What I am going to do is to question the link you’ve made between any business and exploitation.
Does every business exploit? Nope. In fact, there are lots of businesses which also want to make the world a better place.
Is profit bad?
If a business exploits others, then it follows that making profit is bad, doesn’t it? Well, if I were to believe some coaches and healers, you might think so.
Let’s have a look at this idea.
What does profit mean for your business? Well, to start with it means security, because you can have some money in the bank after you’ve spent what you need to live on. That’s great, because you could go on holiday for a couple of weeks without worrying, or rest if you get sick. That’s healthy.
It also means that you can invest without worrying. That money in the bank can also be used to take a course (and if there’s one thing I’ve learned about trainers, coaches, and healers, apart from wanting to help people, it’s that you really love learning and taking courses #growthisinyourdna). Or use it to hire someone to do a job that makes the hair on the back of your neck stick up.
Profit means choices. You get to choose good things for you and your environment.
How do you get more profit?
Well, if you think back to school you probably learned that income – costs = profit. So, if you want more profit, you can either increase your income or decrease your costs or both. It’s that simple.
How to decrease your costs
To be honest, there’s a bottom limit on decreasing costs.
- You need a website right?
- You need to be able to communicate with people.
- You need a way for people to find out more about you and make appointments with you.
- You need to have a way and place to work.
- You need to be able to accept and make payments and do your accounts.
These things are your absolute minimum in order to do what you do.
Use the project management triangle to make your decisions
I used to be a project manager in IT and we would talk about the triangle when we were making decisions. These are the aspects you can play with when you’re considering buying something:
If you decrease one, you can increase the other. For example, say you decide you want to save some time and increase the quality of your copy. Using this model, that’s possible, but will mean spending more on it by hiring a copywriter or a copy coach.
Alternatively, if you decrease the time you spend on something and spend less or nothing on it, don’t be surprised if your copy’s meh-squared.
So, what you can’t expect is top quality in no time and at no costs. That just doesn’t exist (even though there are plenty of people who think it should and will try to convince you of that).
How to decide if you need to increase your costs
If you look at the triangle again, you’ll see that increasing your costs should mean spending less time on it or creating higher quality. And that’s a good way to judge any new cost you’re thinking about making.
So ask yourself this: Will hiring someone or joining a membership or signing up for an event lead to me spending less time on this? Will I get where I want to go quicker? Will it make my life easier? How many new clients could it help bring in? Or will it lead to a higher quality of service for my clients? If so, this could well be a good moment and place to invest.
How to increase your income
The other side of the coin is increasing your income. You can do this in 2 ways:
- Increase your rates
- Increase your number of clients
Any time you offer more quality for your clients, your rates should increase to reflect that.
[Now I know what you may be thinking here. Not everyone can afford me if I raise my rates. That is true. Keep reading, because I have a few things to say about that]
You can increase your number of clients in several ways:
- You can work more hours and see more clients
- You can reduce the time you spend with each client, so you see more clients per day
- You can work with groups or with online products
How could you increase the number of clients you work with? If you’re at your max, it’s time to put your thinking cap on.
Talking about earning more, check out this blog by clicking on the link.
Is it ok to not work with some people?
As someone who loves helping people, you love helping people. #duhlynn.
That’s a beautiful thing. But it’s also ok to think about yourself and your needs. After all, to be able to help people you need to be able to take care of yourself first. Like the oxygen mask in the plane. Parents have to put theirs on before their children’s. Because what happens to your children if you run out of oxygen? It’s the same for your clients.
So, yes, it’s absolutely ok to not work with some people. Here are some people I would suggest you think twice about working with:
- People who are looking for someone to blame (trust me, it’s going to be you later)
- People who complain and don’t take action (see point 1)
- People who don’t make working with you a priority (they don’t achieve the results you know they could)
What if people can’t afford to work with me?
Notice I haven’t said anything yet about people who can’t afford to work with you. If they are incredibly positive people, you could think of a way to help them out (payment plan, staggering sessions over a longer period, lowering prices for them, exchanging services).
But please, don’t agree to charging less for people who aren’t positive. That will cost you time, energy, and the chance to work with someone more positive. To be honest, if people come looking for a discount, it usually doesn’t work out. People who come with a proposal is a different matter.
And ultimately, you already know that people can’t be helped unless they want to be helped. Encouragement, sure, motivation from time to time, of course. But, why would you work with someone who doesn’t appreciate you? (emotional blocks are a bitch and your business is going to kindly point out all of them to you 😉)
What’s this all got to do with business?
Glad you asked 😉 EV-ER-Y-THING. How your practice or business is doing is a reflection of the decisions you’ve made in the past and how you’ve implemented them. So, if you’re constantly overdrawn or checking out the reduced price section in the supermarket, it’s time to rethink your business decisions.
I know that you’re wanting to help people, so how does this situation affect your ability to do that?
And if you’ve never thought about any of this? Well, you’re probably not taking the right decisions, however well your intuition works.
You need more than intuition
There are some big time coaches who talk a lot about their intuition or getting a download. They always seem to always come up with something great. (I often wonder just how that download process works. White light? Whispering from their guides? Do they just mean sudden inspiration like mere mortals have ? )
If you’re not careful, these coaches could make you doubt your intuitive abilities. So, listen up.
Intuitive ability is not enough. You also need business knowledge to turn a download into a success.
Turns out a lot of these intuitive coaches have a business background, so they can automatically apply that to their download and come up with a great offer. I can personally think of an ex-lawyer, ex-accountant, ex-management accountant and ex-marketing exec who regularly talk about downloads.
So, however powerful your intuition is, you’ll also need to think about your business. We all do.
Time to take more care of your business?
Take a look at the Epic Copy Seekers membership. You’ll be growing your business along with your copy and your confidence in a warm, supportive group of people like you, so you can focus on enjoyiing what you love to do.