Uncategorized Archives - Tega Diegbe
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How to Run Your Business Without you IN It (1)

How to Run a Business Without You IN It

If you are a regular reader of this blog post, you will no doubt have noticed by now that there’s a bit of a theme developing as we create more content. And this theme is about you taking the steps to learn how to run a business without you in it. 

This current blog post “series” works as a means of solving your delegation problems, then trying to anticipate roadblocks you might run into and also give you possible solutions to those problems as you start delegating more in your business. This is especially true because many business owners want to work ON their business, not be trapped IN it. 

The first blog post talked about the WHO first method in which I gave an in-depth step-by-step guide on how to find and hire reliable virtual team members. You can use it for in person teams, but it’s primarily developed for working with virtual team members. 

Once you’ve gone through the process, hired them, got them on board, trained them, and built your platform agnostic systems, the next step in the process is starting to think in terms of removing yourself from the day-to-day of doing tasks in the business, so you can focus on growing the business. 

Removing yourself

Accomplishing this will be much more achievable at this stage as you should already have your virtual team AND you have the foundations of your Platform Agnostic System in place. 

REMOVING YOURSELF STARTS NOW

Once you have successfully brought on more team members, you’ll actively have to stop yourself from being the doer and work on becoming the manager in the business.

From my experience, I can say confidently that before you hired your virtual team member(s), you were the one planning, researching, writing and posting your social media posts. Now that you have your virtual team member, you can make them responsible for all those aforementioned tasks provided you’re supporting them with planning and strategizing. 

By this point, you have your WHO and you’re getting them to run things and complete tasks. And assuming you’ve followed everything I have written about on how to train them, they would now know how to find solutions themselves rather than coming to you with problems. 

You should have trust and the indescribable peace of mind that comes from giving them tasks and KNOWING that it will be completed to a high standard. 

So, when you are at this point, your thoughts will naturally start veering in the direction of removing from the day to day doing in the business, and it’s not removing yourself from the business so you can go lie on a beach sipping Mai Tais while your virtual team does the work (I personally wouldn’t advise that especially early on in the process). 

THE CORE 4

Before we start daydreaming about lying on the beach, we need to understand the Core 4 of a business, which is what we’ll be talking about in this section.

The Core 4

I’m calling it the Core 4 because whenever it comes to building a business and removing yourself, you have to understand the fundamentals of what you are trying to do. And understanding these fundamentals means whenever it’s time for you to actually take steps to either bring people in or amend what you’re doing, you know what you’re doing, and you can execute with full confidence. 

If you lack the foundational understanding, you may struggle removing yourself from the business. 

So what are the Core 4?

These are:

  • Lead generation
  • Lead Nurture
  • Lead Conversion
  • Service/product delivery

If you are looking to remove yourself from your business, one of these core areas is where you would want to start. Where you choose to start is completely down to you. 

Personally, where I would suggest that you look to get started would be in service delivery. 

Why?

This is because, if you think about it, the one thing that’s going to be consistent in your business is the thing that you are delivering to your customers. Everything else may experience changes as your business grows and evolves. 

If you can remove yourself from service delivery and plug somebody else to do that for you, that now frees up your time for you to work on the other cores of the business.

The point is you want to remove yourself from as many of these as possible. I’m not saying you’ll be able to remove yourself from all of them, but from as many as possible. You then become the person that manages the people that are in the day-to-day doing all the Core 4 instead of the person actually doing them.

HOW I CURRENTLY WORK ON THE BUSINESS

To make this applicable, I’m going to talk about the Core 4 in the business that I was able to remove myself from almost completely. 

I’m saying “almost” because I still actively keep an eye on what everybody is doing. If you know me, you’ll know I am a perfectionist of sorts and like to make sure that everything is up to my standards. And it is because of this reason that I still feel like I am working IN the business, even though I’m not doing any of the work.

Almost removing myself from the business

I’ll be giving an example using my podcast management side gig. 

I consider it a side gig because it never became a full-blown business, reason being there was no lead generation nor lead nurturing. Most of my leads came from friends and clients recommending people to me, thus I didn’t need to build any lead gen system and because I didn’t have any leads to convert, I didn’t have any to nurture.

Anyway, going back to the main point. For my podcast management business, currently I am in charge of lead conversion and my team is in charge of the service delivery. 

Naturally, I started out being in charge of the service delivery. I would personally speak to people that need help with their podcasts and don’t want to do XYZ anymore. I then tell them my price to do XYZ and I do everything myself. 

When there was enough money in the business, the first thing I did was to put somebody else in charge of doing the service delivery aka the thing we were selling. 

On my team, the people I put in charge of that were Mark and Kat. Mark still works with me, but Kat doesn’t anymore because she’s moved on to bigger and better things, but the point is that I had those guys doing the things that the client paid for.

I had to train them, obviously, I didn’t just find them on the street and say, “hey, go manage my podcast management side gig.” But the point stands that I put them in charge of service delivery, because at this point, my clients and customers were paying for something they didn’t want to do anymore. 

Once I had Mark and Kat in charge of service delivery, I then moved my attention to lead conversion and, in a way, lead generation. Again, there wasn’t really a need to nurture because the leads came from referrals. 

As you’ve seen from my experience, I was initially in charge of both service delivery and lead conversion. And eventually, slowly pulled myself away from service delivery so I can focus on more income-generating tasks for the business.

Obviously, how things work with my business will be different from yours, but the idea is still the same, which is to find one thing (or more) that you can actually hand off to your virtual team. 

WHERE DO YOU STAND IN THE CORE 4?

Now, in terms of removing yourself from the business so that you can work on the business, you will have to think of how the Core 4 applies to you.

The Core 4 will be the things that actually guide you and let you know if you are on the right track. You will need to make sure that each core is being taken care of properly rather than spreading yourself too thin handling each by yourself.

Where do you stand

Each core must have a strong foundation of its own. 

So for example, there’s no point worrying about service delivery or lead conversion if you haven’t got lead generation taken care of. You shouldn’t even be thinking about the service delivery or the lead conversion if you have got no leads.

This is the classic overthinker’s problem… 

You have a tree in front of you and instead of chopping down the tree, you start walking around this tree doing all kinds of different measurements looking for what’s around to decide where you actually want to cut the tree. 

You then mark where you want to cut the tree and then something happens. The weather changes or it gets windy enough to go back and recalculate everything. The situation would’ve been different if you just sharpened your axe and actually started going at it. You would be a lot further along if you took immediate action instead of trying to plan for the perfect outcome for chopping down the tree. 

So when it comes to running a business without you being in the business, I believe that the best place for you to start is to rate yourself on the Core 4.

Do you have your lead gen system in place? Is it consistently generating leads? If it isn’t, now you know where to start. If it is, you move on to nurturing the leads. 

How are you nurturing those leads? How are you working with those leads that you’re getting from your lead gen? And how are you introducing them or turning them into your customers? 

If you don’t have a lead nurture in place, then obviously you have to go away and work on that. 

And if you have a lead nurture in place, then the next thing for you to work on becomes your lead conversion. How many of those leads are you actually turning into clients? This one is relatively straightforward and if you’re not converting them, then there’s something broken in your sales process and you need to go fix that. 

And if you are turning them into clients, it then becomes a case of how effectively you are delivering what they paid for. 

Your business will not survive with a poor customer experience, but your business may be able to survive with a poor lead nurture system because you can go back and fix that simply with the customer experience.

The point I’m trying to make is that you need to ask those questions and scrutinise everything. 

It’s important to know where you stand in terms of all of these and realistically rate yourself. Look at what you can do better to actually improve how your business operates and once that’s good to go, it’ll be easier for you to remove yourself. 

Once you have assessed your Core 4 and you find that everything is working as it should, this is where the magic starts to happen. 

WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS

Because if you know your Core 4 and you have your virtual team member, then what you now have to do is to start looking at the things that you don’t like to do or don’t want to do anymore. And that’s where you want to plug in your virtual team members.

Where the magic happens

If you can plug in your virtual team members in every level of the Core 4, you have now removed yourself from the business and no longer have to be the one responsible for those components. 

By now, it should come as no surprise that in order to work towards that, you need to create (you guessed it) systems and processes. 

In terms of systemising the Core 4, let’s quickly walk through that.

To systemise your lead generation, it becomes a case of looking at things from an organic or a paid standpoint. They both have their pros and cons.

Organic can be very time intensive and research-heavy in order to do it extra successfully. 

Whereas with paid, you don’t really have to spend so much time finding leads, creating your offer, then creating ads. A point of note, because of the power of paid lead generations you will be spending your time monitoring the paid channels that you use, whether that’s going to be Google ads, Facebook ads, influencer marketing, etc. otherwise your costs are going to run silly high and your lead generation thing is not going to work anymore. 

For lead nurture, typically the way you do that is through content marketing or email marketing (which is still kinda content marketing). 

So for example, if you are on YouTube, content marketing means consistently making videos, putting them on your channel and promoting that video so that you get viewers to watch it. 

And then lead conversion which can be systemised by hiring appointment setters or hiring commissioned salespeople.

Finally, for service delivery, that’s where you plug your virtual team members into so that they can do what you’ve hired and trained them to do. 

ALL YOU NEED IS PATIENCE

It pays to understand that to remove yourself from your business, it’s not something that you’re going to get done in a week or two. Heck, not even 4 weeks, because setting these Core 4 takes time. 

It takes time because it’s quite an iterative process. You do something, you go back and assess if that thing is working or not. If it’s working, then cool, you keep doing more of that. 

If it’s not working, then basically you need to go back under the hood, figure out why it’s not working, come up with the things that you’re going to try to fix based on the assessment that you’ve done, and then try running it again to see if it works.

All you need is patience

Doing all that takes time. The reality is that you can’t cheat that time because you have to roll your sleeves up and do the work that you have to do to fix what it is that you are trying to fix. 

So yes, it will take time, but the time that it’s going to take is time that you save in the future. The time you spend setting things up now is the time that you get to have off when all of this is taken care of and you have systems and people working without having to pester you for solutions to questions that they have. 

This will all be possible because everything is systemised. Within your documentation and your systemisation, they have everything they need to do the job that you want them to do. 

And whenever you’ve invested that time to build a strong foundation, you find that after a certain point, you are working less IN the business and working more ON the business. 

And that is a quick overview of how to run your business without you in it. 

At this point, it is important to understand that there’s always going to be an element of you being in the business. You’re not going to be stuck in the business because you will have other people or systems or automation doing the things that you don’t want to do, or doing the things that free up your time so that you can focus on higher leverage activities. 

But you will have the luxury to do things for the business that you actually WANT to do instead of HAVE to do. And that, I believe, is where freedom as a business owner lies. 

See you in the next blog post.

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How to Train Your Virtual Team

How to Train Your Virtual Team

Once you’ve hired your first virtual team member, the challenges don’t end there. In today’s blog post, I want to talk about the next roadblock or “new devil” that you are likely to come across whenever you are trying to delegate more in your business and work with virtual team members. This is learning how to train your virtual team.

New Devil

If we think about all my blog posts as a series guiding you through the process of what you need to do, this would be the third installation in this series.

The first thing we touched upon was how to find and hire reliable virtual team members

And then when it comes to the continuation, which was working with the team members, we’ve talked about how to set up platform agnostic systems so that you’re not tied to one particular tool or software service whenever it comes to running your business. 

I then explained the dangers and risks of being tied to just one system. The second topic came in two blog posts because I took a deep dive into setting up these platform agnostic systems. 

The next roadblock that you will come up against is how to train your virtual team members. The reason I’m saying this, is speaking from experience, there will come a time or a task wherein your new team member won’t know how to do the thing, or you won’t know how to do the thing. 

Going Back to the WHO

If you remember back to the first blog post, I talked about the WHO First method. I was adamant about not focusing on the skills but instead focusing on the WHO aka who you work best with. 

So in this blog post, we will continue with the point I am trying to make by not really relying on skill when training your virtual team members.

Because of that, it means that we are kicking the ball. In this case, the ball is the problem of how to deal with the fact that the team members we hire may not have the skill that we need. 

This then means that in the future, we will inevitably have to train them because as the business grows and as tasks develop, there’s bound to be a point in time where no one in the team will know how to do something. 

To throw another spanner in the works, there will also come a time where you won’t know what to do because unconscious incompetence is real. Basically, you don’t know what you don’t know. 

Because you don’t know what you don’t know, somebody asking you what to do is likely to send you into a panic.

Panic mode

So, how do you know how to train your virtual team member in those situations? 

That presents, in my opinion, both good news and bad news…

Let’s start with the bad news. 

First off, if you don’t know what you don’t know, and your team member also doesn’t know, then it might seem like you’ve made a big mistake. Because you’ve hired this person to help you, but then the tables have turned and now they need your help. 

And if you don’t know what to say, this will likely cause some anxiety in you as the business owner. While time passes and you’re trying to figure this thing out, tasks could be piling up because your attention is now being taken away from where it needs to be. 

The bad news then compounds if the person is not the right person, in the sense that if you’ve hired somebody who is not resourceful and just wants to be spoon-fed, then the onus is going to be on you to actually solve the problem.

Alright, enough of the bad news. I wouldn’t want to scare you into not using the WHO First Method (in fact, this method is the solution to all of this). 

Now, there is a good side, especially if you’ve hired the right person aka the right WHO. This being someone who is a self-starter, resourceful and likes to think in terms of the solution first. If you do find someone like that, 7 out of 10 times, that person will go out of their way to try and find a solution to the problem and come back to you with solutions instead of coming back to you with problems. 

If you focus on the WHO First Method, then that kind of takes care of you not knowing what to do, because they’re going to find the solutions themselves. 

Going back to the first blog, one of the things I talked about was the importance of focusing on the WHO instead of focusing on the skill. And this is because this new virtual team member joins your team as a sort of blank slate for you to mould or grow into the best way that you know how to.

Do note that this only works if you find good people. If you get low-quality people who cut corners, then you’ll need to work extra hard to avoid that trickling down into your business. 

How I Train My Virtual Team

To kind of counter all of the bad news, I’m going to talk about how I train my team and what has been effective for us in the hopes that sharing that with you will give you insights into how you can think laterally about training your team and get more confidence whenever it comes to hiring someone. 

There will be three ways that you can go about training and I will walk through each of these one by one.

Training #1: Teaching From Experience

When it comes to training your team, the lowest hanging fruit is training your team from experience. Now, if you train your team based on the things that you do everyday, it then becomes a hell of a lot easier for you to train from experience. 

Teaching from experience

It’ll be much simpler if you already have SOPs and processes in place to show your new team members. That way, they know what to do and how to do it the way you want them to.

For situations wherein I already have standards in place, I use a tool called Loom which allows me to record myself going through the task while explaining what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. 

If they know why they’re doing it, when problems arise, they can come up with solutions that fit the ethos of what I’m trying to do. 

In other words, rather than them coming up with solutions that I don’t like or coming up with solutions that don’t support the end goal that we’re trying to achieve, they are more likely in the future to come up with solutions that fit that because they understand the what and the why. 

That’s why it’s important to create SOPs because these act as guides so that your team can replicate tasks in almost the same level that you complete them. 

Do note however that things won’t be perfect even if you have all of these SOPs in place. There’s always going to be teething problems and misunderstandings. And I use these situations as learning opportunities and feedback to fix anything in my systems and processes.

From my experience, as I create SOPs, I document my processes so that there is as detailed a guide as possible to show my team members what to do and how to complete the specific tasks that I need them to complete. 

Training #2: Courses

The second way is to use courses. When it comes to using courses to get them trained, I found that you can’t just buy a course and give it to your team members and say “go through this course and I want you to do what the course says to do.”

This is because with most courses (depending on the course, obviously), they are created for entrepreneur-minded people. This means that they could talk about big concepts, which in the context of training, would only serve to confuse your virtual team members.

When using courses, you actually have to put the time in to find a suitable course. And when I say find a suitable course, you need to avoid those that are filled with fluff and use big concepts. It’s a case of looking at the courses on the market and determining if you need the whole course or just segments of the course. 

You need to choose only relevant courses because the last thing you want to do when training them is to confuse them. And outside of confusing them, you want them to be able to work quickly.

Confusing your team

So there’s no point telling your team members to go through a 10-hour Facebook ads course if you want them to only set up Facebook ads and that Facebook ads course only has one lesson on how to set up a Facebook ad. In that instance, you want them to watch that particular lesson of how to set up a Facebook ad as opposed to going through the entire course.

Going through the entire course is not what you need them to help you with at that moment. 

Now I’m not saying that they should never go through entire courses, but be more discerning on what you tell them to go through because that is what will help you get them trained quickly and effectively.

Training #3: Get Help From An Expert

And then the final way that I’ve trained my team is to pay for a consultant. This is relatively simple. 

You’ll need to find an experienced practitioner whom you can pay for an hour or two of their time. And during that time, you want to make sure that you’re asking questions specific to the things that you or your team members don’t understand. You also want to make sure that the calls are recorded. 

Which Should You Pick?

So which method should you resort to in order to train your virtual team member? 

When your team member doesn’t know how to do something that you have the experience to, simply go with the first method and train them with the SOPs that you currently have. Then adjust and refine your processes if necessary.

When using courses, this is kind of like a hybrid, because this can be used in cases when you don’t know much and when your team member doesn’t know. And if you do have some experience, that’s where you have to use your experience and your knowledge to discern whether you’re going to give them the whole course or just particular segments. 

And then whenever it comes to training your team by paying for a time or consulting with an experienced practitioner, that’s to be used in a situation where your new team member doesn’t know and you also don’t know. 

This is the best solution for this case because paying someone for their time and paying for consulting basically shortcuts the process of you not knowing and you having to learn.

It also makes it easy for you to instruct your team because you’ll be instructing them from a place of knowledge. And it’s not just knowledge in that you read a book, but it’s going to be knowledge backed by somebody’s experience. 

That’s why I recommend an experienced practitioner because they have to have complete knowledge on what they’re teaching you because that is what they do.

And there you have it. Those are the three ways that you can train your virtual team member which you can resort to depending on what the situation calls for. Just remember that you don’t need to know EVERYTHING, and your virtual team member certainly doesn’t need to as well. 

If you haven’t gone to find your first great virtual team member yet, head over to my first blog in this series and work your way from there. 

Best of luck and I’ll see you in the next blog post.

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Building Platform Agnostic Systems for Your Business

In my last blog post, I briefly mentioned platform agnostic systems being a way to ensure your business and virtual team were working effectively. I also mentioned that systems and processes are the keys to your business freedom because they give you a way to tidy up your business house and run a tight ship.

In this blog post, I want to expand on what I call platform agnostic systems to show why I rate them so HIGHLY and in the hope that you get a few nuggets you can take away and apply in your own business. 

Putting together my systems has given me the confidence to delegate tasks to my team and more importantly, it’s allowed my team the freedom to do what they need to do, so long as they’re operating within the lines of what our processes and system say they need to be doing. 

Giving them that freedom in my opinion keeps them productive and it makes it easy for me to analyse and interpret what’s going on and find where there are roadblocks that need to be addressed.

Creating Platform Agnostic systems

Platform Agnostic Systems in Action

The idea of platform agnostic systems is you create processes and systems that work how YOU work and by that virtue, they free you from being tied to one specific platform. This usually means sitting down with a pen/pencil and paper and manually mapping out your system before it goes digital.

Why pen and paper? Simply because it allows you to think about WHAT needs to get done and HOW it gets done without the distraction you would get from starting with your favourite project management tool/software. In my case, I was reading and researching about systems and task management when a friend of mine showed me how he was using a super simple Kanban system to manage the tasks he had to do in his business.

After seeing how he used the Kanban system and how effective it was for him, I did a bit of research and I liked everything I saw during my research.

If you don’t know what a Kanban system is, it is basically three columns: one for “To Do”; another for “In Progress”; and the last for “Completed.”

kanban-project-management

When I show you how I’ve set things up, you’ll see that we follow the same basic premise, with a couple of adjustments that work for us. In each of those columns, you put the tasks you want your team to work on, and assign to it the relevant member/s of your team. 

The first project management software that I used was Trello, which I can’t really show you right now because I’ve shut down my Trello account. Trello was good because it was so easy to set-up your Kanban board and assign tasks. Currently, I’m on Teamwork.  

As far as setting up the system for communication, I mentioned in the previous blog post that I didn’t want to use email because I have had negative experiences in the past where conversation threads just get lost. Or sometimes important tasks slip through the cracks, because it’s sent via email, and it’s relatively easy to forget and or lose. 

The final thing is using automation to either trigger tasks or to send a message that triggers some form of action from the team. An example of an automation could be if we have a guest book a time for a podcast recording, we could do one of three things. 

  • One would be to set up a card in Teamwork to say when this interview is. That way, we are all aware that it’s coming down the line. 
  • Another thing we can do is we could set off a notification to get somebody to start doing some preliminary research on the guest. 
  • And then the final thing is we could set up automations to send SMS notifications either to me or to the person who’s requested to be a guest whenever it’s closer to the time to the podcast.

Don’t Rely on One Platform

The idea of this entire set-up is to have your systems mapped out in such a way that if you outgrow a tool or if a tool goes out of business, you don’t end up hamstrung because you’ve built your system and processes around ONE specific tool. 

If ever you do need to change tools, now you have to go and find another tool that does something similar or worse yet, you have to now build your entire system from the ground up on a completely new tool as well as learn how to use the tool.

One important bit to point out is that when I show you Teamwork and how we use it, you’ll probably notice that what I have there is a little bit of a Frankensystem, this is due to the fact that we are not necessarily using Teamwork the way it’s designers and developers intended for it to be used. What I did was I made sure that the tool is fit for MY purpose. 

This way, I am not swayed by any calls to upgrade or fancy new features. Provided my system is working and continues to work, there’s really no reason for me to be using any of the fancy additions or getting distracted by shiny objects that they add to the tool. Not to say that I wouldn’t use a feature that would enhance how we work, but I am far more judicious about using that new feature as it would cause friction in the early stages of implementation/integration

The reason I don’t need to listen to any new upgrades or features is again, because the way that my system has been built out is that it’s platform agnostic. If I want to use those fancy tools, I can. But if I don’t want to, then there’s no point and the tool continues to work as we need it to.

My Own Platform Agnostic Systems

It’s time for me to do some showing and telling. 

Project Management: Teamwork

The first thing is going to be Teamwork

Depending on when you are reading this blog post, the homepage might have changed simply because applications and tools online tend to change quite often. 

This is currently what Teamwork’s homepage looks like. 

Teamwork Homepage

You can sign up and try it for free. They have different solutions and different add ons that you can use. 

Teamwork Add Ons

For their add ons, I did try using their chat software when it was just new. It wasn’t as good as it could have been, which is why we ended up settling with Slack

But don’t get me wrong. Even in the early days, this chat feature was powerful because it integrates directly with the task management side of things. And anytime that you talk about something, you can just link to the task or you can link to the specific item that you’re talking about. 

Teamwork Features

They also have this thing called Spaces, which you basically use to manage your company documents. 

In terms of what Teamwork looks like for us in the team, this is what you see.

Teamwork Home

Again, I will preface this by saying that I signed up to Teamwork in the early days. So I’m on what’s called a legacy account. And kind of to drive the point home about shiny objects and getting distracted within the tool, there’s been some changes on Teamwork. 

They’re actually trying to get me to upgrade and pay for a different plan. I can ignore this. And I have no problem ignoring that just because of the way things are set up. 

This current set-up is what works for me. 

You can actually see what tasks need to be done on your homepage. But I find this view to be quite cumbersome in the sense that everything there’s just kind of laid out and is quite confusing(for me) because of the list format.

The way that we use Teamwork is we use their projects feature, and for the different things that we do we have different projects. 

So this dashboard that I have here is primarily where all the activity for the business takes place. 

Teamwork Projects Dashboard

The Client Hub is used as a project to hold information about our clients so that whenever we get new clients, their information is stored here. And if somebody from the team needs access, they can get access by requesting access from either me or my other team member. 

When it comes to Advertising, I wanted to remove it from this dashboard because it needs its own space just because there are so many different moving parts for what you have to do, and because I do a couple of different things, it needed it’s own space/project. 

Today, I’ll show you what my main project board looks like and then I’ll also walk through an example of how to set this up for yourself. 

As I mentioned, we have a variation of the Kanban system. Traditionally, the Kanban has only three columns. But you can see that ours is different.

Teamwork Columns

We have the following columns for the following purposes:

  • Tasks – for tasks that need to be done.
  • Podcast Tasks – this needed a separate column because at one point, there were so many podcast episodes being managed that we would’ve missed them if they were still in the Tasks column.
  • In Progress – for tasks that are currently being worked on.
  • Needs Review – this is where things that need to be reviewed by either me or the client manager to  make sure everything is as it should be.
  • Review Completed – this sends a signal to whoever is in charge that the task is done
  • Completed  – for once a task has been completed.

And that is our variation of a Kanban board.

Also, I just wanted to note that I don’t use any of the menu items on the top because everything we need to do can be done here from this board view.

I also mentioned S.M.A.R.T. tasks in the previous blog post. You’ll notice how certain tasks are named very specifically. Let’s take this card for example.

Teamwork Card

And when you open a card, you will see all the steps that need to take place for that task.

Teamwork Task Details

This makes the task measurable, because we can see what’s being done and what’s left to be done. And each thing that needs to be done is assigned to somebody or there is someone primarily responsible for doing that thing.

In terms of it being attainable, we have a documented process that lets us know that this task should take anywhere from two to three days. And the bulk of that time is primarily editing the podcast audio. 

The tasks are also realistic and timely because we have a due date that is reasonable. 

And that is an example of a S.M.A.R.T. task. 

In terms of using Teamwork to set all of this up, let me show you how. 

First step is to go to the Projects tab and click +Add Project.

Teamworm Add Projects

Then go and give your project a name, choose a company, and add a description.

Teamwork - Create Project

Next step is to add the people who are involved in the project (but I won’t actually do that because I don’t want to confuse anyone in my team).

Teamwork Add People to Projects

And then you have the advanced options where you can create a category for this project or create a tag.

Teamwork Confirm Project

And once you’re done with all the details, click on Create Project.

Now, when the project is first created, this is what you’ll see since it’s still a new project. There is absolutely nothing.

Teamwork New Project

What I’m going to do is go to the board view since that’s what I’m used to. And this is where you build the Kanban system.

Teamwork Board View

Go ahead and click Add a Column. 

From there, you can start with the basic Kanban system which is composed of the 3 columns.

Teamwork Kanban Board

We also started with this board, until the team grew and the number of things we’re working on grew as well. We had to add columns to represent those changes and make it applicable to us. 

To add a task, click +Add a Card.

To make it S.M.A.R.T., you would assign it to someone and add a due date. You can also choose the level of priority.

Teamwork Task Priority

For what I do with my team, generally the highest priority goes to things that we have to do for clients. This is in the sense that we have clients who are going to be paying us money and that money is important for the business, because that’s how I pay the team and pay the bills. 

Anything else that’s not client work and is related to my stuff usually gets medium priority. 

Other stuff such as creating process docs or creating process flows gets low priority, because we can work on that in the background when things are not quite as busy.

I don’t worry about progress, tags, or estimated time in the card options. But you can definitely use those features if you like. The reason I don’t worry about the estimated time is because we have our processes documented and we know roughly how long certain things should take. 

When things are taking too long, we can actually see that and either dive in and investigate why or grill the person responsible for the task to figure out why things are taking too long. 

When this happens, it either means someone has been lazy. Or it could be that there are a couple of steps missing in our documentation of the process, which is then slowing down the work that they have to do. 

And once the card is good to go, you can just move it to the next column whenever something has been completed. 

When I was talking about choosing a project management system, I mentioned the ability to create task templates. This is something that we can do with Teamwork, but you need to have the paid plan. 

Teamwork Templates

You have the option to go for a project template or a task template because everything we do is kind of at the task level. That’s why we have the different task templates as you can see in the image below.

Teamwork Task Templates

Whenever we have a podcast task, for example, having this task template means when it comes time for a new episode, I can set things up so that whenever somebody books a time to record, I can let the right team member know what the next steps are. 

And to remove any unnecessary communication, I use an automation program, Zapier, to send a message or create a task to a member of the team to say we just had a podcast begin, can you start XYZ on the template. 

The reason this is useful is because when it comes to creating this task, we can just create the new task from a template as opposed to having to create the task and then add all of the sub tasks, and then assign the sub tasks and then do all of that finicky stuff as as we are setting the tasks up. 

Teamwork Task Template Sample

And that’s it for task or project management. 

Communication: Slack

In terms of communication, I mentioned that we use Slack.

Slack Homepage

This is currently how my Slack’s homepage looks as of writing this.

Slack is a communication platform that allows you to set up different channels for the communication that you are going to be doing between you and your team members. 

Let me show you how Slack works.

On the left side, you have these things called channels, which are basically specific locations for discussing specific things.

Slack Channels

And you get to include only certain members of the team on each channel. 

Some of our channels includes one for #clients, where anytime we’re carrying out a task for a client, all communication happens in this channel. Now this is a private admin channel for myself and my “number two” where we talk about ways that we can improve the business. 

The #content channel is where the communication for our content plan goes. Anything from resources to communication to output is posted here.

We also have a #team-chat channel where we mainly give meeting notifications or anything else team-related, whether it be funny or serious. The idea here is this is an open channel for the team to communicate and share anything that they have.

One more channel I want to talk about is related to automations. I mentioned automations and notifications earlier so that people know when things need to be done. These can be found in the #notifications channel.

Most of the tasks here are from me because I use Zapier to send a notification or to just ping this channel every time something is done or added in Teamwork. The reason we did this was because there were times when tasks were being missed so I decided to automate the notification, instead of sending a message EVERYTIME a new task was created.

Slack Notifications

Automating this means that I don’t then have to go to Slack and manually send a private message or send a channel message to anybody on the team to let them know there is a new task in Teamwork. 

Setting-Up Automations

I’m going to show you how you can set this automation up in Zapier. 

Zapier is basically like a middleman or a middle monitoring mind that is constantly checking for what it calls “triggers.”

In the example I just showed you in Slack, the trigger for that notification channel would be a new task created in Teamwork. 

This is a very simple thing to set-up which consists of two steps. Whereby you have the trigger and the action. So in this case, the trigger is a new task in Teamwork and the action is to send a channel message in Slack.

Zapier

Naturally, you can have this tool do a whole bunch of different things. But because I was only trying to solve the issue of tasks being missed in Teamwork, this simple automation was all I needed. 

For now, let’s keep this tutorial simple as I don’t want you to get confused. In the future, I may do a simple Zapier tutorial so that you have a better idea on how to make the most of this tool.

Going back to this example, once the trigger is established, you need to choose the app & event, which is Teamwork. If it’s not connected, you’ll have to connect your programme usually through an API.

Zapier Trigger

Once that’s done and you have chosen your account, you can then test the trigger. This is basically sending Zapier to fetch a task and making sure that it can communicate with the programme. 

And then once that’s done, you then set up the action. This is similar to the previous step, but this time, you’re choosing the action instead of the trigger. 

Zapier Action

In this case, to set up the action, set the channel to #general in Slack (it’s currently named #notifications). Then you just need to set everything else up to instruct Zapier on what to do once this trigger is pulled.

Zapier Action Set-Up

You can see that I have other Zaps as well, which I turn off when things are quiet.

Zapier Agency Zaps

The New Client Gravitas Assist automation sends a notification anytime we have a new client for this service. Whenever a new client pays us, Zapier then creates a task in Teamwork to notify the right people to start the process.

In terms of getting information from the clients, there’s a page that the client is directed to after they’ve paid so that they can fill in all the necessary details. 

That way, we don’t have to play email tennis with that client to get all the information we need. 

This information is then stored in the Client Hub in Teamwork I showed you earlier. And anytime the team needs any details about the client, they can just pull the information from the Client Hub. 

Creating Your Foundations 

So that in all its glory is how I think about and have set up my platform agnostic system. I made sure everything is platform agnostic because things keep chopping and changing. But the three things that are stable are project or task management, communication channel, and then automation.

All in all, this is how I work with my virtual team. Everything that you see here today in this blog post is the result of years of practice, aka trial and error. 

To figure out what works for me, the core of it really comes down to this idea of the platform agnostic system and processes. And once you have established what your system is going to be, then you get to go out and look for the tools. 

The big benefit of deciding what your system is going to be before using the tools means that you don’t get dragged into the analysis paralysis stage of all the shiny objects that the tool offers. 

In my case, figuring out the Kanban system beforehand actually created a lot of freedom because it made it easy to work with Trello. And then when we outgrew Trello, it was easy to make the switch to Teamwork without having to get overwhelmed by any of Teamwork’s extra features. 

And that’s how to work with your virtual team through platform agnostic systems. Once you’ve taken the first step of actually using the WHO first method to go out and hire virtual team members, the next step is then figuring out how to work with your team.

If you haven’t read the first part of this blog post, be sure to check it out here.

I hope that this blog post helps you figure out the systems you need in order to have everything organised for both you and your team. 

Best of luck and I’ll see you in the next blog post.

 

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How to Work with Your Virtual Team

How to Work with Your Virtual Team

If you are reading this blog post, chances are you have read the previous blog post where I talked about and showed you how to find and hire reliable virtual team members. 

Now, when sitting down to think about what to write about, it was really easy for me to settle on writing about “how to find reliable virtual team members”. I mean, it was only the most sensible thing to write about, being that it is what people are paying me to do for them.

It wasn’t until I had a conversation with a friend of mine yesterday (at the time of my writing this, not when you’re reading it) that I realised that I have been doing you a disservice. And for that, forgive me. 

So what is this disservice?

That disservice is not addressing what generally happens AFTER you hire a virtual team member(s). 

If you’re reading this because you’ve read the previous blog post on how to find and hire reliable virtual team members, congratulations. I hope that the process has worked for you and that you found someone who is working up to your expectations. 

From my experience, I know that solving that issue of “How do I get more done without working to burnout” creates an entirely different set of Gremlins for you to deal with.

Like my friend Mike says…

New Levels, New Devils

When I had a conversation with my friend, we talked about this whole idea of “new levels, new devils.” And the concept of this is really simple. 

It is mostly referring to the problem-solution-problems cycle. Meaning every time you have a problem, and you figure out how to solve that problem, you ultimately end up exposing another problem. 

New Levels, New Devils

For example, let’s talk about hiring a virtual team member. 

Initially, you have the problem of having too much to do. So the solution is to hire a virtual team member to delegate some tasks to. 

When you’ve hired the virtual team member, another problem shows up, usually that is figuring out how to work with that team member, especially if this is your first time hiring help. 

In other words, one solution exposes the next problem down the line and the cycle continues until the day that we shuffle off this mortal coil. You’re on this path, and the path is laden with issues.

Issues ranging from things such as: 

  • How do you work with your new virtual team members? 
  • What tools do you use in the business to make sure your team members are working effectively? 
  • How do you pay them? 

These are issues that I went through myself for a little while until I figured it out. These are mostly little things that you should maybe consider that most people don’t, simply because they don’t know what they don’t know. 

To give you an example of that, when I started working with virtual team members from the Philippines, I had no idea what the concept of the 13th month was. So I had to figure that stuff out and figured it out by chatting with the guys I hired and to people who had been hiring from the Philippines for several years. 

True to the Problem-solution-problem dynamic, it now created the problem: how do I make sure there is enough to pay them from the business and how do I make it make sense to my accountant?

The Keys to Your Freedom

It should, I hope, come as no surprise when I say that when working with your virtual team, systems and processes are the Key to your success and freedom. They are the key to freedom because they give you a chance to organise your “house” 

This doesn’t literally mean actually tidying up your physical house in this instance, I am talking about tidying up your business house. 

Things like what are your naming conventions? What happens when you get a client? What happens when you lose a client? What happens when there is a mistake? There are so many things that can happen, especially if instructions aren’t clear.

After reading The E Myth by Michael Gerber, the one of the many things I took away from reading this was the idea that everything in the business has to be systemised. 

I personally agree with that up to a point. That point being if you operate from the place where everything in the business has to be systemised, then you’re always going to be stuck in the business because there’s always something to do, and you’ll be in admin hell trying to create or document all those things as and when they come up.

Emyth

When we talk about systems and processes, in my opinion it’s very important to think long and hard about what gets systemised and what does not get systemised. 

There are two things which most people don’t seem to talk about that you need to consider. These two things become the foundation on which your business is built. 

And if you lay those foundations properly (with freedom being your ultimate goal), you can eventually free yourself from your business to the point where there’s other people taking care of everything for you. This means you don’t need to be hands-on 24/7 anymore. 

These two key things, are:

  1. Task/project management – this gets everything that you do in the business in one place. It makes sure that everybody knows what they’re responsible for, what the deadlines are and what they should prioritise. 
  2. Communication – I find that having a completely separate channel for communication goes a long way to build culture in some form, especially if you’re working with a virtual team. You don’t want to be getting messages on WhatsApp, Telegram, Facebook Messenger, and Email all from one team. That’s the worst because things can get lost. Things can get lost in terms of what needs to be done, who said what, and when something was said, etc

When it comes to tasks/project management, the way that I find tends to work for me is I like to create and work with “platform agnostic systems”. And what I mean by that is I want a system that can be plugged into whichever tasks or project management tool there is out there and still be effective. 

For example, if I’m coming up with a system for task or project management, I want it to be flexible. I want it to be stable and flexible enough to be able to work in either Trello, Asana, ClickUp, Basecamp, etc. That way, you don’t get tied down to one particular tool. 

The reason you don’t want to get tied down to one particular tool is if your team grows or if your business grows, you tend to find that these platforms start to charge you on a per user basis. So, say you have a team of 10 and it costs you $25 per user to use this software, that operating expense is now going to shoot up because you’ve tied yourself to one particular platform. 

Another thing that you want to work on when it comes to task or project management is making sure you’re always using S.M.A.R.T tasks. 

If you have done any project management course, they tend to talk about S.M.A.R.T goals. I have just taken a step further or deeper if you will and applied the concept of S.M.A.R.T to our tasks.

S.M.A.R.T stand for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

So for example, you can’t ask someone to build you an e-commerce website in two days because that’s not Achievable and Realistic. 

One final thing that I like to consider whenever it comes to your task/project management system is the ability to set up and manage templates easily. This is important because when it comes to carrying out tasks or completing them, there are going to be things that are repetitive. Things such as upgrading a WordPress website. For us, there are certain steps we have to take that never really change. 

What we’ve done is we’ve set up a website update task template, whereby the web developer on the team can simply look at and already have a complete checklist on what needs to be completed and then mark the task as done. 

Having easy template setup and management also means that if the worst were to happen, such as my web developer disappearing on me, I can simply find somebody else to plug into the system. 

When it comes to communication, the other vital bit of the foundation needed that I mentioned earlier is having a dedicated communications channel. That makes sure that the communication is kept clear and cluster free. There’s no ambiguity in what’s being said and if there is something that’s unclear, you can communicate it right there and actually see how the conversation plays out. 

How I Manage My Virtual Team

In terms of what I do in my business, for tasks/project management, we use Teamwork. We originally started with Trello. But as my team grew, and I got more proficient in setting up thinking about how I wanted to use systems in my business, we eventually outgrew Trello. 

For communication, we use Slack. I used to communicate via email and Facebook Messenger, but things always got lost. Either lost in translation or tasks just kept disappearing because an email gets mistakenly. 

Business systems

One final thing that we also utilise is automations. This allows us to remove redundant communication and automatically create tasks, which frees you from the business. It can also let you automatically create notifications for people on the team or yourself to take action. 

Growing the Right Foundation for Your Business

Now everything that I’ve just said is just a brief and general overview of how I run things in the business so that we are more anti-fragile to whatever changes may come. Changes such as new team members or new tools.

At the end of the day, it’s the businesses that are flexible yet structured at the same time that can last a long, long time. 

I know I briefly mentioned “platform agnostic systems”, and how this is such an important step to take when setting up your systems and processes. So in my next blog post, I’m actually going to show you how all of these tie together to alleviate some of the day to day drudgery of running the business, and also explain the idea of “Platform Agnostic Systems.” 

I’ll see you in the next one. 

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How I Systemised My Content Creation

Content Content Content.

It seems as though EVERYONE and their cat is talking about content. When do I create it? How long does it have to be? What “tone” should I write in? What makes good content? Should it be written, audio or video? And on the questions go till you decide there is no point in doing anything because you can’t get a straight actionable answer when you ask those questions. This was way before I knew about systemising my content creation….

How do I know?

I know because that is exactly what I went through when I wanted to start creating content to highlight the skills and “expertise” I have picked up in my business owner journey thus far.

In this blogpost, I am going to walk you through how my team and I create content for my presence online. One thing that I really struggled with was “what happens AFTER the content is created?” You see, when creating content, depending on what you want to achieve, the creation is only half the battle because after you have created it, you have to figure out how to get it in front of people that will find use from it.

I talk about how we create and how we do light promotion of the content to get people reading and interacting with the content. So, without further ado, let’s get to it…

For me, when it comes to creating content, I view it as creating something that either educates, informs or entertains people. As I mentioned at the start of this blog post, there was a time when creating content was quite the struggle for me (which I’ll be talking about more later on). 

I use the term “creating content” loosely because creating content has become a term primarily used to describe people on YouTube that create videos and do brand deals and they are primarily doing this to become an “influencer.”

I'm not an influencer

Due to the way I am set up, it makes more sense for my content to fall in the aisles of educating and informing with a generous helping of entertainment to encourage consumption and implementation of the points the particular content piece is talking about. 

For me, when it comes to creating content, I look at content in the micro. This can mean a blog post, podcast, or video to show someone or a group of people how to do something. 

For business, especially business today, creating content is the foundation that a lot of first time entrepreneurs build upon. You have to write blog posts, you have to then promote those blog posts so that people can see or read what you’re talking about, and see if it interests them. 

My Battle with Content

You might say that I’m a little bit ashamed to admit this but for the longest time, I would not create any content. This is something that I’ve honestly struggled with.

When I’d try creating written content like blog posts or articles, I would turn on my computer, open Microsoft Word or Google Doc, and I would sit there, staring at the screen. It still happens to me now, but not as often anymore.

The reason it doesn’t happen as often anymore is because I’ve systemised the way that I create content and also leveraged a virtual team member (but this isn’t the point I’m trying to make at the moment).

The point is, for me personally, whenever it comes to creating content, I’ve always, always struggled.

I struggled because I was never sure what to post, when to post, how to post, or even something as simple as how long the copy should be. That’s my confession. Outside of an academic setting, I’ve never been comfortable just creating content for the sake of educating and informing people. 

My Battle with Content

But if you look at my website now, you would not know this because there are over 10 blog posts. And those blog posts are pretty in depth, talking about things that interest me and things that I’ve done. You can read about the things that I’ve tried and the results that I’ve got from trying those things. 

The truth is, I was a little bit scared of creating content and that fear stemmed from a whole raft of different reasons. 

What should I say? 

Who’s gonna read this? 

How do I make sure the person I’m writing it for gets to see it? 

How long does it have to be? 

Why should anybody listen to me? 

After all, I haven’t made a million pounds or dollars, I don’t have a Ferrari, I don’t have a private jet. So why should anybody listen to me? 

Those are the fears that I had. And it wasn’t until someone gave me a chance in holding my first guest expert session that I realised that I really had to get over myself. That meant I had to put aside the fears that I had about the content and just create it. 

To answer the question of who was going to read this, I decided that I want to create content for my past self. 

And in terms of not knowing what to write about, I worked my way around that as well. 

Anytime I’ve ever had a roadblock around a subject matter that I had no theoretical knowledge of, I figured a good way for me to get around that would just be to show myself doing the thing that I was trying to talk about. 

If you look on my website, you’ll see that I wrote some blog posts on how I made $2,000 while running a 5-day challenge. I also wrote a blog post on how to start a podcast, and another on how to hire virtual team members. 

All of those spawned from this idea of creating content for past me, i.e Tega 6 to 12 months ago. That gave me the freedom to explore the things I wanted to explore and actually create something that would be useful to somebody who wrote to me 6 to 12 months ago, struggling with that particular thing I’m writing about. 

Getting Over The Black Screen of Doom

Once I decided I had to get over myself and figured out the steps I would take, the next thing that I had to navigate personally was the fact that I don’t like starting with a blank screen. 

That realisation meant that I would have to come up with a way of creating written content which did not have me starting with a blank screen. Which ultimately led to what I am showing/talking about in this blog post. 

Getting Over The Black Screen of Doom

Once I got over some of my hurdles and accepted the fact that I’ll be creating simple, uncomplicated content for Tega from 6 to 12 months ago, what I needed next was leverage. This leverage should allow me to create content in a way that works for me, and allows it to be created consistently and relatively quickly. 

So the first thing I had to do was hire a content writer. That content writer was Gabbie, and we still work together and we actually just celebrated her 1 year anniversary of working with me. 

What she does is she takes the assets that I create, churns it through a machine that we both collaborated on, and then turns that one asset into another form of content, which inevitably ends up being the blog post (which you’re reading at this very moment).

Second part was after Gabbie was hired, she and I came up with a system for consistently creating the blogs to post on my website.

Now the beauty of this system that we’ve come up with is that should we desire, we can create more types of content from that ONE asset. Currently we’re just creating blog posts, but we can also create other things like short form, easy-to-consume content that drives people to the blog post as a way of promoting the blog post. 

However the current iteration of the system is primarily for blog posts. 

Once we had the idea for the system in place, then we had to build the machine, which I have rather crudely dubbed “The Repurpose engine.” 

The Repurpose Engine

The repurpose engine is relatively straightforward in the sense that we know what we have to create. What we then have to do is figure out a way to create this thing in a way that works for me and the entire team. 

Let me talk you through the repurpose engine.

The Repurpose Engine

Above is the repurpose engine that the team and I designed. The key thing that we have to do is create blog posts or “mega” blog posts as we’ve affectionately come to call them, because these things range in length from 2,500 words all the way up to 5,000 words. 

Because of the way I work and because of the fact that I tend to struggle with the black screen of doom, I had to think of a way for me to actually create the assets and then have the leverage point in place. The goal was to have the asset used by me or somebody else, in this case Gabbie, to create the mega blog. 

To make the process of creating the mega blog much faster, I usually record a video, strip out the audio, and upload it to a transcription service called Otter. This transcription is then converted into a blog post. 

Every single one of my blog posts on the website started out as a video. The mentality that I took with the video is that I was doing a guest expert session, whether actual or “pretend.” This means that I’d have to plan the video and make sure that everything flows and makes sense. 

The reason this is called the repurpose engine is because from the video, audio, or blog post, we can then proceed to create audiograms, image quotes, social media posts, blurbs and so much more. 

So in summary, I was able to create leverage through three things:

  1. Hire Gabbie
  2. Come up with a system for consistently creating mega blog posts
  3. Use the repurpose engine

The point of the repurpose engine is actually twofold.

The Point of the Repurpose Engine

So what is the point of all this? 

The first is to distribute the posts or the mega blog posts that we create. This creates a sort of omnipresence by posting on multiple platforms in various types of media. 

At the moment, we’re posting only on Facebook. That way, we can actually refine our processes and get clear on what we’re doing before we can roll it out. 

As you can see from the repurpose engine, all the content we put out on multiple platforms stems from one point. In my case, that point is the videos I record. Recording the video is just something that works for me but if you feel that you are a good talker and you just want to do audio, you can definitely do audio. 

Just bear in mind that creating audio (as opposed to video) will affect what you can do in terms of repurposing. Basically, you limit yourself in terms of what you can create if your asset is just an audio file.

To recap how this repurpose engine works, we are basically reverse engineering. You start from that one strong point that works for you, and then you break that down so that it’s sequential in what you can do until you arrive at the point where you can create your ultimate end goal. In our case, that ultimate end goal is the mega blog posts. 

To get to the mega blog posts, we need to have a mechanism and our mechanism just happens to be Otter. Otter makes it easy to take this original asset and turn it into the ultimate thing that we are trying to create through transcriptions. 

Tools We Use for Creating and Repurposing Content

There are a few tools that we use to help us identify and organise our repurposed content.

The first one was the Content Creators Planner. This was a tool that appeared to me on a  Facebook ad one day when I was scrolling Facebook. I like it because it allows me to plan my content from the macro view before I have to zoom into the micro view and figure out the things that actually need to be created. 

Then I’ve mentioned Otter, which is a transcription service that we use, where we upload the audio files from the videos that we record. We then take the transcript of those audios and use it to create the mega blog post. 

Google Docs is where we end up writing the article so that everybody on the team can review and make suggestions for changes. We can also see the complete blog post before it goes on the website. 

For basic SEO optimisation of the blog post, we use Yoast SEO. We don’t use advanced SEO methods because this kind of goes back to where I talked about no fancy gimmicks. We don’t do keyword research for articles but we just wanted to optimise enough so that Google knows what the blog post is about. This allows me to come out in the right searches. 

We record the videos using Streamyard which is one of these new video tools that popped up in the last year or two as streaming has grown in popularity. 

And then the final tool that we use is Canva. If you noticed in my blog posts, you’ll see that we have all these different images within the blog post to just break things up. Those images are created in Canva. The way it works is that we have these assets that we upload to Canva to then work with. 

The great thing about Canva is that it’s very easy to use and you don’t need to learn Photoshop. 

Focusing on Improvement

At the end of the day, the question that we have to ask is how can we make this better? 

In the current version of this repurpose engine, the goal is to create the mega blog post and then have it go out to all the different platforms. 

Now in the second version, which is something that we are going to be working on, we will focus on amplifying the blog posts. In simple terms, it means running paid traffic to the blog posts so that we can build a brand off of the hard work that we’ve done in creating these pieces of content. 

Because if you think about it, what good is creating the blog post if nobody sees it?

We actually already have a sort of amplification engine already since we’re posting to Facebook. And what we can do with this is we can increase the number of places that we post to or we can put money behind it to make sure it reaches more people on these platforms. 

At the moment, organic reach on Facebook is really bad. So it only makes sense that the next step is to amplify the work that we’re doing right now

Currently, this is what the blurb looks like. It’s basically a simple post about what the blog post on the website is about, followed by a call to action which sends them to the website.

Facebook Blurb

The power of what I have just shown/explained to you, is now responsible for winning me 2 clients. 

I was talking to a friend about this and how we use the ONE asset to create several bits of content to go on other platforms and drive traffic to my website, and I showed him an example, and he asked “how do I pay you to do that for me?”

The second client we got is actually someone like me who also strigged with the Black Screen of Doom and they had tried to solve this issue themselves SEVEN times but to no avail. I showed them what we do and they also offered to pay me/the team to handle it for them.

The one area where I am going to be shifting my focus over the next few months is to AMPLIFY the results we are getting. With this first iteration of the production and promotion, I am averaging 200 visits to my website every month. Where this is limited is that it is only people who KNOW me due to my privacy setting on Facebook (where we primarily promote). To expand that reach, I am researching how to run low budget campaigns to make the numbers “better”.

Our organic posts are currently driving traffic to the website. And because we have our tracking pixels installed, we have data being gathered to help us when we start doing paid traffic. 

So, to wrap this up and drive the point home…

  1. Figure out where your strength lies when it comes to content creation. Are you good on video, are you a talker or are you a writer?
  2. Plan the content you want to create.
  3. Use your strength. For me it was recording real or “pretend” guest expert sessions.
  4. Repurpose for the platform you are going to be sharing to. For example take the audio from a video and turn it into a podcastv(provided it makes sense).
  5. Promote the main piece of content.

And that ladies and gentlepeeps is how my team and I have systemised our content production and to a VERY basic level our content promotion. Go forth and create all your content with relative ease.

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Tasks That You Can Delegate to Your Virtual Team Members

After reading Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Workweek and Mike Michalowicz’ Clockwork, I became a  believer in the power of delegation. I admit I am nowhere near an expert and I still have much to learn, but from my own research and experience, I have found  that there are a myriad of tasks that you can delegate to your virtual team members, and with easier access to technology and the gig economy the possibilities are almost endless.

Unlike all the other articles you have probably seen online that give a list of these certain tasks, I want to be a little contrarian and talk about my personal experiences with delegating tasks to a virtual team and share  generally what I think about delegation instead. 

I’m not saying that lists are a bad thing and that everyone else is doing it wrong, but what I’m saying is that I figured that it would be better for you to understand the driving factors and the core foundations so that you can learn to delegate effectively on your own terms. 

If you remember the old tale of giving the man the fish or teaching him to fish, this is along the same lines. If you understand the idea of delegation, you will stop looking to posts and listicles on tasks you can hand over to a virtual team.

YOUR FIRST HURDLE

In the online world, you have literally thousands of virtual team members to choose from who possess different skill sets to meet the specific needs of your business. 

So the challenge isn’t really about deciding WHAT to delegate, but in my case, it was more about deciding HOW to delegate. 

Your First Hurdle

When my business reached the point wherein I had to outsource more aspects of my business, I needed to learn how to delegate, and a hurdle that I had to overcome was learning how to relinquish control. 

And it’s been a goal of mine to delegate more of the tasks effectively where I let the team know what needs to happen, and through creating proper documentation, they can just get on with the task with minimum to no supervision from me.

I also needed to know how to draw the line between knowing what to delegate and knowing what not to delegate. I realised that I shouldn’t be too rigid with  control which could result in not giving my team opportunities to get better at their craft. I have had to learn to trust my team to learn on the job, and yes, maybe even make mistakes along the way. 

But before we get into the foundations, let’s cover some other points that you may be curious to know as well.

SHOULD YOU DELEGATE TASKS YOU ENJOY? 

The beauty about delegation is that because every business is different, there is no set rule as to what you should delegate.

Deciding whether you want to delegate the tasks that you enjoy is really a matter of personal preference, and this will depend on where you stand among these 3 types of people:

  1. People who want to outsource everything in their business
  2. People who want to outsource only the things that they’re not good at
  3. People who want to outsource the things they don’t enjoy so that they can personally do the things they enjoy, even if some of these tasks are time consuming

This means that deciding how much you should delegate is completely up to YOU. I believe that outsourcing and delegation give people the freedom to decide what type of business model they want to run and how involved they want to be.

Should you delegate tasks you enjoy?

In other words, if you want to be the business owner that’s always doing stuff, you get people to do the things that you’re not good at and you keep doing the things that you enjoy doing. If you want to build a business that works for you, then you find and hire people to run the business for you, and all you have to do is give your strategic input and guidance and then they go and do everything. 

So, there is no straight yes or no answer to this. People are different and people have different motivations and different drivers as to why they choose to outsource, delegate, and start their business in the first place. 

In my case, there are times when I don’t want to do anything at all and I let the team do everything for me. Other times, there are certain things that I want to do myself so I let the team do the things that I don’t want to do and I go and do the things that I want to do. 

IS THERE SUCH A THING AS TOO MUCH OR TOO LITTLE DELEGATION?

This may be something that you’re asking yourself as well. 

Is it wrong to delegate E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G?

Is it wrong to delegate just one thing while you handle 90% of the business yourself?

Well, knowing the answer to this is really going to depend, and there are a few variables to take into consideration. 

The first variable is the human element of the person who has to delegate. In my other blog post where I talk about My Experiences in Managing a Virtual Team, I mentioned that I am a bit of a  control freak. 

This vice of mine is causing a little bit of an issue right now, because I am not able to identify whether I’m delegating too much. On the other hand, I recognise the symptoms when I am delegating too little because I become stressed, I feel like there aren’t enough hours in a day, I feel like I can’t take in more clients, and in some extreme cases, I feel like the team is useless (but that is not true because it is just a story I tell myself because I’m not delegating).

Everyone on the team has expressed that they are willing to help me out in whatever task so choosing to delegate isn’t really the issue, but it’s really just more of me relinquishing control over anything else. 

So this variable will vary from person to person and there may be some people who find it easier to delegate tasks than others.

The other variable that determines the degree to which you want to delegate will depend greatly on the confidence that you have in the team  working with you. 

If you don’t have confidence in your team, then you’re not going to feel as confident in giving them tasks to do because you feel like they’re going to make mistakes and you’re better off doing the tasks yourself. 

You need to give the team the opportunity to do better at things that you need them to do. And as the person who is the business owner and the person who is going to be delegating, you need to put those systems in place so that your team doesn’t have to constantly harass you for answers or for things to do.

To recap, being able to identify whether you are delegating too much or too little will depend on how comfortable you are with giving tasks to other people, and whether you are completely confident in those people to carry out the tasks for you. 

SHOULD YOU LEARN HOW TO DO A CERTAIN TASK BEFORE DELEGATING IT?

As a person who wants to make sure that everything is done right (hello, perfectionist Tega), I would much rather prefer to have knowledge over a certain task before delegating it to one of my team members.

And because I am naturally curious, I want to make sure that I know how to solve something, especially when my team needs answers.

Learn how to do a certain task

But don’t get me wrong. This does not mean that I (nor anyone else for that matter) have/has to be a complete master in a certain skill before delegating it. We aren’t Google and we can’t have the solution to every problem. 

There will be times when you will need to leverage other people’s systems — such as courses and templates — and then taking their systems and plugging it into your business so that these solutions get the results you and your team want to get. 

In my case, there are times where I pay people for consultation as well so that they can offer their solutions and help you fix the problem.

Now that we’ve covered some top-of-mind questions, let’s talk about what I feel are the foundations of delegation and get those wheels turning.

THE 3 TYPES OF TASKS YOU CAN DELEGATE

Delegate the Implementation

Whenever it comes to outsourcing tasks, the first thing that I prioritise is the implementation part of my business, whether it’s my own stuff or stuff for a client. 

Implementation is what takes the most time, and if it’s something that someone else can do and do just as well, if not better, with as little guidance from me as possible, it makes sense to outsource that. 

This is the reason why I believe that establishing systems, processes and documentation is so important. Once you have all of this in place, it’s easier for your team members to implement what you need them to do since everything is already in place. 

In the case of my podcast management agency, it took a while to outsource the implementation because I had to figure everything out myself first, but once I was able to outsource the implementation aspect, it became so easy to simply collect the payment from my client, and have my team take care of the next steps to deliver the service we sell/solution we provide — Podcast Management. 

Taking care of the entire process became second nature for my team because everything was documented and standardised.

This goes to show that outsourcing the implementation is a very solid first step, because you know what everyone else has to do, and everyone else knows what they have to do. Which cuts down on the scope of errors and me and that the team can just get on with the work we have to do.

Get to work

And as I mentioned in the previous section, having knowledge in what I needed to delegate mattered to me. I wanted to make sure that I would be able to answer my team members’ questions so that when the team members become stuck or if there was a roadblock, they would come to me to help them solve the problem. 

If they think that I wouldn’t be able to answer their questions, it could mean that they would have to go elsewhere. And it’s risky because the validity of where they get their answers from then comes into question. 

Not knowing where they get their sources from could lead to them developing bad habits or not properly implementing the things they need to do. 

But I do not want to take monopoly over the solving of all problems (however because of how my brain is wired, I more often than not want to figure out the solution myself). So I definitely give my team the freedom to find the solutions themselves and come back to me with some options so that we can choose the best solution together. 

Delegating the Admin

Admin is a great thing to delegate as well because it takes a chunk of your time and mostly consists of repetitive tasks.

Using the podcast management agency as an example again, what happens is that when the client pays, there’s a whole bunch of things that need to be settled before the actual implementation.

Things like:

  • Do they already have a podcast?
  • If they don’t have a podcast, do they have a preferred podcast host?
  • Do they plan on creating a website for their podcast?
  • Have they already started recording?
  • And a whole lot more…

If they do already have a podcast, it makes things a bit easier on your end because you’re just working with what they already have, including the systems that they have put into place.

And if they don’t have any systems yet, this is where having an understanding of the process becomes useful, because all you have to do is transplant your current system into their operations, depending on how malleable your system is.

 

Malleable in the sense that if they have a podcast and they don’t have processes in place yet, your processes can easily fit with what they do because all they need to do is record the episodes and you can handle everything else. 

Because admin tasks are mostly repetitive, it only makes sense to create proper systems and documentation for this. That way, everything from processing payments to handling any necessary “paperworks” is completely standardised and less prone to errors.

Delegating the Creation of Systems and Processes

I don’t know how many times I’ve mentioned “systems and processes” in this blog post, but you probably figured that it’s such an important part of delegation.

It only goes to show that creating these systems and processes should be delegated to your designated team members as well.

As your team members get more proficient in carrying out their tasks, eventually they start to have their own processes. These processes should be documented so that if they’re ill or take a leave, someone else on the team can pick that up because they just need to look at the processes and follow the steps. 

This is exactly what we’re doing for our team, and if there is someone new that comes on board, then that new team member simply has to follow the steps written down by a current team member. 

The creation of these documentations naturally has to be delegated because I myself do not know the ins and outs of the tasks that have been delegated. That’s why whenever I have a new team member onboard carrying out a completely new task, I eventually have that person create a step-by-step flow of how he/she does the work.

documentation

Documentation is so important in fact, that I have a separate folder in our Google Drive that holds all of the processes that we have put into place. 

FOCUSING ON THE WHO

We’ve pretty covered the foundations of delegation, but before you go and start applying this to your business, you need to understand that proper delegation is a two-way street. 

Through my own personal experiences, I realised that in order for me to properly delegate all of the tasks above, I need people who are self-starters. 

This means that my approach when it comes to hiring people is to take a WHO FIRST approach. And what I mean by that is I like to find people who I personally think I would work well with. I try to find people who are persistent, pay attention to detail and people who are also problem solvers like myself. 

Making sure that you work well with your team members and vice-versa is paramount to making sure that you can trust your team and that you can delegate the tasks with relative peace of mind that the delegated task will be completed to a high standard. 

To read more about finding the right virtual team members for your business, check out the full guide HERE.

So when you feel ready, go out there, find the right individuals, trust in yourself, and start delegating!

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How to Promote Your Podcast and Gain More Listeners

As podcasters, most of the time, we dedicate so much of our effort to producing the episodes. What this results in is the lack of preparation for the actual marketing learning how to promote your podcast.

When I started my podcast, my only goal was to share the experiences of fellow human beings with other fellow human beings. And it was through this selfless act that I started my own podcast.

You may have started on the same foot as well. 

But the problem with this is that you soon realize if you do not have a promotional strategy in place, then who you share your knowledge with will be extremely limited. 

I know that many of us don’t really care about the number of listeners, so long as we are happy with what we put out. But wouldn’t it be great if we could spread our message to even more people?

As your podcast grows, you will want to make sure it is worth your time. This means that you will need to grow your audience over time. The more listeners you have, the more chances of having great guests on your show, and the more sponsors who can help you keep the show running.

Once you’ve realized this, then comes the dreaded question…

How do people even discover podcasts? 

So, you then do your research and realize that there is one specific source where people discover podcasts. On your end as a podcaster, this means that there is NO ONE-SIZE-FITS ALL strategy for growing your audience. 

Here is why: People discover podcasts in different ways and podcasters promote in different ways.

The Podcast Discovery Problem

According to the Podcast Discovery Survey conducted by The Podcast Host, most people discover new podcasts through simply browsing across specific categories that they find interesting and choose what to listen to from there. Other people randomly search other unfamiliar categories to discover new shows. 

Because there are thousands of podcasts out there, it will be difficult to solely rely on the hope that people will be attracted to your show over others. There are only so many things you can do to stand out, right?

Not only that. The myriad of options you can choose from to promote your podcast can get overwhelming as well. 

This is why I have written this article. Rather than running around like a headless chicken and figuring out all the ways to promote your podcast, I have outlined them all here to give you a head start.

Will I find the EXACT Solution?

I don’t want you to get your hopes up too much. Unfortunately, I’m not a genie and can’t magically give you followers. 

Every podcast is different, and every audience is different too. This means that you need to discern which methods will work best for your podcast.

Ultimately, the purpose of this article is to guide you into crafting your own strategy without having to worry about the heavy research bit of the process, I’ve gladly done most of the research for you here. 

So, sit back, relax, and let’s take a deep dive into all the tips and tricks on how to promote your podcast.

promoting your podcast

BEFORE YOU START PROMOTING YOUR PODCAST, REMEMBER THESE…

Utilize Your Current Audience

From my own experience, it does help to have an audience beforehand. And by audience, I don’t mean “fans” or “followers.” It doesn’t have to be people who spent money to buy any of your products or services. 

Your audience can fall under the categories of Facebook friends (yes, family counts) or your current email list. Leverage on the people easily within your reach.

I make it a point to let my Facebook friends and email list know that I have a podcast so that if a certain episode piques their interest, they’d listen. So far, this method has been highly effective for me that I was able to get my first 100+ listeners organically. I didn’t spend on paid ads or pressure myself to promote my podcast to the entire world. 

If you have yet to publish your first few episodes, it can get quite discouraging if you don’t have any engagement at the start. So, don’t hesitate to promote your podcast with your current network! It worked wonders for me and I’m sure it will for you too. 

Create valuable content

Before you decide to promote anything, you need to make sure that you create valuable content. 

Why? 

Because marketing a bad product wouldn’t make sense at all. All the marketing effort in the world would not be able to sell a product that is not valuable, simply because no one will need that product.

The same goes for podcasts. Even if you spend hundreds and thousands of dollars on promoting your podcast, if it does not provide valuable content, then no one will want to listen.

Here are some quick tips to ensure that your content is valuable:

  1. Add a unique twist to the topic you have chosen – your podcast should stand out from others in the same industry. Yes, anyone can talk about a certain topic, but you have your own unique take on things. This is something you should capitalize on in your podcast to give people a new understanding of the topic you are talking about.
  2. Your podcast needs to be “sticky” – by sticky I mean that you need to capture the attention of your listeners all throughout the episode. If your listeners consume your content all the way to the end, then you know you’re doing things right. Try to study successful podcasts that are in the same industry as yours and see what you can apply to your own podcast to make it more interesting. 
  3. Be the problem solver – just like any successful business, if you can bridge the gap between the customer and the solution to their problems, then people are sure to listen. Think about what it is that your potential listeners want to know more about and see how you can meet this criterion. 
  4. Observe what’s trending in your niche – don’t focus on what’s trending in general, but rather explore what’s trending in your certain niche. This allows you to start a discussion on something that everyone else is talking about and gain more listeners from there.

So, remember that before you start putting all your resources out there to promote your content, focus first on creating valuable content for your listeners.

Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day

Rome wasn't built in a day

Once you have created highly valuable content, I want to remind you that it still won’t be an easy journey. Achieving success takes time, and that applies to your podcast as well.

It’s not that I’m purposefully raining on your parade, but you need to understand that it will take months (or years) before you start seeing life-changing results. The important thing is that you trust in the process and believe that you will experience success in your podcast with consistent effort.

All you need is the right content (which we have covered in the previous section) and the right channels to promote your podcast. It takes time to experiment and analyze which platforms and practices gain the best results, so let’s cover each of those next.

TOP TIPS ON HOW TO PROMOTE YOUR PODCAST

Release 3-5 Episodes When You Launch

Assuming you don’t have a podcast yet, one of the best practices to keep those listeners glued to your channel from day one is by uploading 3 or more episodes. 1 or 2 episodes will just keep them hanging, and they wouldn’t want to wait that long for another episode to get to know you more. 

Having more than 3 episodes will give them a good idea on what your podcast is about and whether this is something they would want to invest their time into.

Even online business coach Pat Flynn recommends this. 

According to Pat, “I once launched a podcast with a single episode and actually received negative reviews from people who had listened to the first episode and were upset that there was only one. When people love your stuff, they’re going to want more of it, so give them what they want”

I spoke about more tips before launching your podcast in my other article How to Start and Launch a Podcast to Build Your Brand.

Should You Limit Where You Upload Your Podcast?

With a myriad of podcast directories (or podcatchers if you want to sound cool) like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and a bunch more, you could end up having analysis paralysis.

I highly recommend you start with iTunes because it has the most listeners. But don’t limit yourself to just one podcatcher. 

Why submit to as many as possible when you can just choose iTunes? 

Well, each directory has different types of listeners so the more you submit to, the more exposure you can get. 

Eventually, you will be able to see which podcatchers get you the most followers and know where to focus your efforts from there.

According to Podcast Insights, these are the top 5 best podcatchers to help you get the most exposure:

  1. iTunes / Apple Podcasts
  2. Spotify
  3. Google Podcasts
  4. Stitcher
  5. TuneIn

For my podcast clients, I’ve been using Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and Amazon Music. The reason for this is because these platforms have a lot of listeners. If you have a budget for paid ads and these are successful, chances are that you will get more organic exposure in these major podcatchers. The more organic exposure you get, the higher the chances that people will encounter your podcast.

If you want to read more on how to submit your podcast to these directories through your RSS feed, check out my other article where I explain it all in detail.

Making the Most Out of iTunes

As I mentioned earlier, iTunes is the biggest podcatcher out there and so naturally, has the most listeners (70% of total podcast listeners to be exact). This means that you need to take extra care in making sure you get noticed on iTunes. 

The best section to be seen on is the New & Noteworthy section, which is the first thing people see when they access Apple Podcasts.

Unfortunately, there is no simple solution to being featured in this section, but we do know that you have about two months to get there before you aren’t considered “new” anymore. 

But no pressure. Here are some tips and tricks that give you a higher chance of landing a spot in the New & Noteworthy section:

  • Build an audience before you launch – this can be done by building your email list for outreach, focusing your efforts heavily on announcing your launch day, letting your friends and family know about your podcast, and promoting via social media.
  • Use attractive cover art for your podcast – make sure your podcast artwork clearly represents what your podcast is about, and this includes amazing visuals and copy that is understandable and visible even on small screens.
  • Produce high-quality episodes – you don’t need to invest in expensive equipment or edit your podcast until it is absolutely flawless. A minimum viable edit should be good enough for your listeners to have a great experience. I talk more about minimum viable edits here.
  • Focus on getting reviews – once you have built up an audience before and during the first few days of the launch, encourage them to subscribe and leave a review. This builds credibility and convinces other people to listen in as well.
  • Publish consistently– this doesn’t mean that you must publish every single day or every single week. By consistency, I mean that your podcast must have a consistent schedule to keep up with. This can mean daily, weekly, monthly, or even annually! That way, your listeners will know when to expect the next episode.

How Important is a Website in Promoting Your Podcast?

Although having a website for your podcast isn’t an absolute necessity or requirement, it will really help create more exposure for your podcast. The reason why a website is key is because of its benefits in SEO. 

There are some podcast hosts such as Buzzsprout and Podbean that help you build your own basic website, but for SEO purposes, that isn’t always enough. Your website needs to be optimized for better SEO.

The thing with the Google algorithm when detecting sites or content with good SEO is that it can only detect WRITTEN content. Since podcasts are purely audio, these are unfortunately overlooked by Google (though this could change in the near future).

Another good practice is to for your website is to include a trailer of your podcast and that it is updated with the most recent episodes.

It is going to take time and effort to build and maintain a website. In my opinion, if it will end up being a bottleneck for you at the start, this is something you can focus on later as your podcast grows.

If website development isn’t your forte, you can always hire a freelancer to do the work for you. In this article, I reveal my best practices in finding virtual team members to help you in your business.

Build Your Email List

Email marketing will take time and effort, but it allows you to build a personal connection with your audience outside of your podcast. Plus it is a great way to announce the release of new episodes for your avid listeners.

Not many podcasters put in the effort to do email marketing (I’m guilty of this), and so this method will go a long way to make you stand out among the rest.

According to Castos, “49% of consumers say they’re happy to receive promotional emails from the companies they like at least once a week.

To make matters even better, 73% of millennials say email is their preferred business communication platform, and it’s the preferred platform compared to post, social media, texting, or phone calls.”

I currently manage my own email list as well through ActiveCampaign. To be honest, I haven’t been emailing as frequently as I should, but I have experienced results regardless and will continue to utilize my email list as my podcast progresses.

If you want to know how you can build your own email list from scratch, I wrote a detailed guide about it HERE.

Cross-Promote on Different Platforms

The beauty of podcasts is that you can easily repurpose them on different platforms through various forms of content. Here are some examples:

  • Create square audiograms that you can post on Instagram and Facebook (sample below)
  • Create widescreen audiograms for YouTube
  • Select quotes from the podcast and make an image for it (sample below)
  • Transcribe the audio and post snippets of it on social media
  • Post part of the audio in Instagram Story

What’s even better is that if you have the capacity to record your podcast through video first, then you have even more content to repurpose. Check out my video interview with Joshua Koerpel here for a glimpse of podcasts recorded via video.

Creating a variety of content will help you become more active with your social media promotions. Social media is an effective tool for you to build a personal connection with your audience, so the more content you can repurpose, the better. 

Also, when promoting on social media, encourage a discussion among your listeners. Ask them for their opinions on a certain topic, or suggestions on what they want to hear about next in your podcast. This way, you don’t sound too spammy and it shows that you actually care about what your listeners think.

Customize Each Social Media Post

When posting on different platforms, I highly recommend that you customize each post. The reason for this is because each platform calls for a different type of “mood” for example:

  • Facebook is for more casual, long-form content paired off with attractive images
  • Instagram focuses more on the graphics and the captions should be shorter than Facebook
  • Twitter has a character limit and so the content must be even shorter and straight to the point
  • LinkedIn should have a more professional tone for both the copy and the images (I post memes on Facebook, but not on LinkedIn)

Your audience will be looking for different things on each platform, so take the time to create content that is relevant to the right people. 

Promoting Your Podcast on YouTube

There are two ways by which you can post your podcast episode on YouTube. It can either be via an audiogram, or the actual video of you recording the podcast. The latter will require you to video yourself when you record, which some people aren’t really comfortable with. So, this is completely up to you on which route you want to take.

To convert your audio into video, you don’t need any complicated software. Simply choose a stock image or stock video online via Videvo, Unsplash, or Freepik. Once you’ve done that, overlay the audio to the image/video via free tools like iMovie for Mac and Movie Maker for Windows. 

If you want slightly more advanced audiograms that include wavelengths, you can hire someone on Fiverr to create this for you. 

If your episodes exceed 45 minutes, you can even cut the podcast down into short clips to make it easier to consume for your listeners too. That way, you can attract both those who like listening to long-form content and those who prefer short-form content. 

Another reason why YouTube is such an effective platform is because it is virtually easy to share their content across other platforms like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

Publish New Episodes at Strategic Times

It may be difficult at the start to know when the best time is to publish new episodes. One way to identify this is by looking at similar podcasts and when they publish. Is it on a Friday? Over the weekend? Monday?

If you notice a trend, that would be a good gauge for you to follow at the start until you have your own data. Over time, you can experiment and study your podcast analytics to see when people usually listen to your episodes and adjust from there.

Personally, I release a new episode every Friday (though not as consistent as I should). I chose this day of the week because my thinking is that people think of Friday as a day to relax. Since my podcast involves casual conversations rather than formal, objective ones, it would only make sense that people would want to listen when they’re happily unwinding after a long week.

Don’t Forget Your Call to Action

Call to action

Just like any other sales page, a call to action on your podcast is a must as well. Even if you aren’t really selling anything, you want to make sure that your listeners take the necessary actions to support your podcast.

Some of you would probably think that asking your listeners to like, subscribe and review is selfish, but it’s not. It’s all about how you approach them about it. 

Be sincere in your call to action and let them know that the more support you get, the better your episodes can be. And as you grow your podcast, the more sponsors you get and the higher your chances of getting great guests to appear on your show — better guests mean even better content for your listeners!

Here are some other things you can do to encourage them to take action:

  • Shoutouts – Encourage your listeners to mention your podcast on social media and mention their name in your next episode. People would absolutely LOVE to hear their name mentioned!
  • Q&A on Social Media – Asking your listeners on what they want to know more about on your podcast shows that you care about them and makes your content even more valuable. 
  • Giveaways – You can encourage your audience to recommend your podcast to their friends by doing giveaways. They can enter the giveaways by recommending your podcast to their friends and having them follow you. Your giveaway should not give away too much but must be valuable and connected to your topic. Consultations or freebies from your brand are great examples.

By leveraging on your current audience, you will create a snowball effect through word-of-mouth, which is a very effective way to promote your podcast.

Mention Your Previous Episodes

Once you have plenty of podcast episodes under your roster, always take the opportunity to mention your previous episodes when you can. This shouldn’t feel forced and you don’t have to do it all the time. 

You can mention something along the lines of “I spoke about [topic] in further detail in my other episode on [episode title] so be sure to check it out.” If the listener enjoys your podcast, they’d be even more drawn to check out your other relevant episodes.

Be sure to link them to that episode in your show notes as well for easier navigation. 

Build Your Network

Finding your audience should not be limited to social media and YouTube posts. Find out where your audience is hanging out and add value there. This can either be done through actual, physical places or virtual places online. 

Checkout conferences, meetups, or local events in your area so you can meet people who may want to listen to your podcast. Be active in the community and spread the word about your podcast!

Virtually, there are several ways by which you can meet great connections online:

  • Forums – search for forums on websites like Quora or Reddit where people actively talk about your topic and create a discussion there. If your podcast can answer some of their questions, then that would be a great way to subtly promote your podcast. But be mindful that you don’t want to sound too spammy or no one will notice you. Add value and show that you care about their concerns more than promoting yourself.
  • Join interest groups – Take part in Facebook and Slack groups related to your topic. Your approach here must be the same as the previous point. You need to add value and be an active member of the group before you can promote your podcast. If you aren’t careful, you could be disbanded from these groups. 

Network with Other Podcasters

Not only is networking a great way to build your audience. If you really want to immerse yourself in the podcasting world, meet other podcasters.

Networking

Put in the effort to find forums and interest groups for podcasters. This is a great way to stay on top of new trends, ideas and techniques. 

Becoming friends with people in the industry can help you in so many ways. Building connections with other podcasters allows you to do cross-promotion (they mention you and you mention them) and exchange valuable ideas and tips you can’t get anywhere else.

And who knows? You may even find your next podcast guest here or even become a guest on other shows.

Become a Guest or Invite a Guest

By becoming a guest on other shows, not only does this build credibility but creates exposure for you as well. Focus on podcasts that are within your niche or complement your topic. 

To further add value to your podcast, you can invite guests so they can give a unique perspective to the topic hand. Another great benefit of having a guest on your show is that this person can also promote this episode on his/her channels.

It could be a challenge at the start to book guests for your show especially if you don’t have a big audience yet. Just make sure your podcast resonates with them and is something that they would love to expound on.

My podcast is full of amazing guests living interesting lives. And how was I able to find them? 

Believe it or not, I simply browsed through my Facebook friends list and looked for anyone I found interesting and invited them to have a conversation with me! It worked so well because the main purpose of my podcast was to have interesting conversations with interesting people and starting with my network was the perfect avenue to find these guests.

Don’t be pressured to invite well-known, famous experts. Most of the time, it’s the quality of the conversations that matter over the quality of the guests.

I recommend you schedule your recording session in advance because it involves both your time and theirs. And it also helps to establish a relationship with them beforehand to break the ice and make the conversation during the podcast more fluid and natural.

Contact People or Brands You Mentioned on Your Show

As you expound more on a certain topic, you may have to mention external sources like people or brands to support your claims. To make the most out of this, you can reach out to them to let them know that you highly recommended their brand (or product) to your listeners. 

More often than not, they’d be thrilled to know that they were mentioned on your show.

You can pull out that certain quote about their product and ask them to share it on social media. If they agree, you get more exposure through their audience.

Take note however, that this does not work all the time, and will only work if whatever you said was positive. 

Recommend them and they might just recommend you back!

Conduct an Audience Survey

For those who already have an established audience, conducting a survey is one of the best ways to get valuable insights to help grow your podcast.

Asking your listeners questions like where they found out about you or which podcatcher do they use the most will help you identify where to place your efforts moving forward.

You can also ask for suggestions on what topics you should discuss moving forward based on what they want to know. It wouldn’t hurt to get some guest recommendations as well.

There is so much you can take away from an audience survey.

Utilize Influencer Marketing 

Do your own research on relevant influencers who are within your reach and ask if they can promote your podcast in exchange for things like a shoutout, free products, or monetary compensation. 

When influencers recommend something, their audience usually trusts their judgment because of an established relationship these influencers have created through their content. So, if you find the right influencer that has the audience you need, then this type of marketing is going to help you grow your audience significantly. 

Paid ads

Paid ads

If you have the budget, paid ads are a fool-proof way to grow your audience. Through utilizing channels like Facebook Ads and Google Ads, you will be able to target your ads to those who are interested in your niche. 

You can either direct the ads to your podcast landing page, or to an individual episode. I recommend the latter because targeting is more specific, and thus, cheaper. 

As I mentioned earlier, I grew my audience organically, so I never found the need to use paid ads. However, based on what I have observed with podcasters using paid ads is that they focus more on their budget and reach to promote episodes starring prominent guests.

By leveraging well-known guests, people are more likely to click and listen to your episode. It’s a great way to attract new listeners to your show, who might end up checking out your other episodes from there. 

It’s all about being strategic with your paid ads and knowing where to allocate your budget. 

CONCLUSION

Finding the perfect system to promote your podcast takes patience and a good foundation. There really is no perfect solution to this because each podcast has its own unique needs. It will take some experimentation and good judgment from your end, but once you do it right, it will all be worth it.

So, to recall, remember that it all starts with creating valuable content that people will WANT to listen to. It is highly crucial that you track and measure your results so that you will know how to adjust accordingly. 

Once you have identified the methods that work for you, focus your energy there to gain maximum results.

All the tips that I have mentioned do not fall under a checklist wherein you have to do each and everything. It’s up to you to identify which approaches you are most comfortable with and build from there.

Don’t pressure yourself too much and if you feel like one method isn’t effective, then move on to the next! 

Best of luck.

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4 Business Books

The 4 Business Books That Have Left a Lasting Impact

For some unknown reason, I’ve always been attracted to reading business books. Even at a young age, I wasn’t really keen on reading fiction books, to be honest.

But when I picked up my first business book, I found that I couldn’t put it down because of how drawn I was to it. In fact, my current bookshelf is packed with business books and self-development books. 

And if you’re an avid reader like myself, whether it be with non-fiction or fiction books, have you ever come across a book that is so life-changing that it has impacted the way you carry yourself and lived your life after reading it? 

For me, the answer is yes. I’ve read heaps of books throughout the years, but there are 4 books to be exact that have impacted me greatly. 

The reason why they are so memorable is because the way I do things now can be traced back to all the learnings I have taken from these books.  

These books are: 

  1. The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea by Bob Burg 
  2. Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! by Robert Kiyosaki 
  3. The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferris 
  4. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber 

If you have not yet heard of any of these books, one thing I will tell you is that despite all the lessons I will outline here, your takeaways will still be different from mine. And so, these books could definitely leave a different level of impact on you. 

Why?  

Well, because we are all different people and the way we see and perceive things are different. 

Nevertheless, I hope the way I talk about these books will help shed some light on how they can help you in your own life. 

THE GO-GIVER

I heard about the Go-Giver in a Facebook Group, and this is the most recent one I have read about the 4 in this blog post. I read this book around 2015 or 2016 and it immediately caught my attention when I came across it.

Go Giver

And for a book, as small as it was, and as easy to digest as it was, it’s profoundness is what made it stick in my mind. 

Because unlike most business books that talk about earning profits and developing yourself, The Go-Giver stands out because it talks about the power of giving.  

And the key takeaway of this book for me was to give freely to the point where it doesn’t inconvenience you to give. So although it does encourage you to give without expecting anything in return, you need to make sure that you take care of yourself first above all else. 

This lesson really stuck with me because I’ve always been an helper, but I was more of a “selfish helper” more than a selfless one. Being a selfish helper meant that although I did love to help people, a toxic trait of mine was that I’d expect this person to do something for me as well when I have a favor to ask.

So because helping was already ingrained in my system, the Go-Giver completely changed my perspective of helping people and it all just made sense. I have learned to help people without expectation of a reward, because the mere act of helping them is a great way to build your network.

And you may be asking “But Tegs, how is giving related to business?”

Well, I understand that the idea to give with no expectation of reciprocity is really challenging when you try to apply it, especially in business. It took me a little while to get it and apply it too, however once I got it, things changed for my personal life and business.

If you have read my other articles, you are aware that I manage Coffee with Dan and Espresso with Dan, together with Dan Meredith. And it was through the lessons from the Go-Giver that I was able to land a partnership with him.

It was not an easy deal though. But that is a story I will save for another day. 

There is one other story that I want to share in this blog post…

Just recently, I got tagged in a Facebook post where someone was looking for a “video guy” to help with some video edits. 

I was tagged along with a bunch of other people who were more skilled and qualified than me. 

So I thought to myself ” ahh those guys have it covered” and I left a comment saying something along the lines “plenty of capable peeps tagged above but happy to help if still needed.” 

Around 20 or 30 minutes went by and the thread was getting a lot of traction. Thinking that my comment would not stand out in the post, I decided to slide into the dude’s DMs explaining that I believed I understood what he was looking for and if he gave me a video I would do it. 

He did give me the video and 24 hours later, I completed the task and sent the final video back to him. 

It was exactly what he was looking for! 

The simple act of sending him a DM (with no expectations) and offering to do the job for him allowed me to have a happy new client. I wasn’t really trying to hard-sell myself, and it was through that mindset that I stood out from the rest. 

With The Go-Giver, I valued the act of giving without holding any expectations or returns. My core takeaway after reading this book was to give give give and when I wasn’t quite sure to give some more. 

The idea of giving led to starting a business which ultimately led to “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.” So let us tackle that book next… 

RICH DAD POOR DAD

You probably have heard of Rich Dad Poor Dad before and this book is famous for good reason.

Personally, this book has entirely changed the way I think about business and how I manage my cashflow. 

Rich Dad Poor Dad

I was lucky enough to have discovered this book at a young age — 18-years old to be exact on a rainy afternoon in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland. It was a book my dad owned and it was lying around.

So I picked it up, and the story enticed and sucked me in. I loved learning about assets and liabilities and the excellent idea to use your assets to pay for your liabilities. It completely changed how I used to base my financial education, which was originally on trial and error. 

I had so many ideas spinning around my head while reading this, and just when I thought this book could not get any better, it did… 

The ultimate nugget revealed itself, and that nugget was 

The Cashflow Quadrant 

A square divided into equal quarters with the letters ESBI, where:

E = Employed 

S= Self Employed 

B= Business owner 

I= Investor 

Each element of the quadrant had different implications and effects on your wealth.

Cashflow Quadrant

Having the different financial stages you go through — explained and visualized so clearly — was an eye-opener and a thought transformer. 

The years that followed saw me using the quadrant as a compass to navigate and recognize where or what stage I was/am at in business. 

And it was through this book that I wanted to belong to the Business Owner or Investor box, so that I can operate at the highest point of leverage. This meant that as a business owner, you can have systems and people working for you to generate income. Whereas as an investor, you have money working for you to generate income. 

I also realised as I get older that while you can shoot to operate in a certain box (as a Business Owner, for example), there’s nothing stopping you from working in the Employee box or the Self-Employed box. This is especially enticing if you’re someone like me who likes to learn and do things. 

So yes, you can optimize all your systems up to the point whereby they don’t need you, but what do you do with all of your free time (if free time is the ultimate goal)?

Once I had the Cashflow Quadrant as a foundation, and I moved from E to S, I realized that I need to do more to make the jump to B.

That is when I found the next book on my list of 4… 

THE 4 HOUR WORK WEEK

If you tried working double shifts, running around like a headless chicken in a busy restaurant waiting tables, then a book titled The 4 Hour Workweek can seem like mana from the heavens… 

Alas, this is the situation I was in when I picked up the book. 

Rich Dad Poor Dad made me realize that I did not want to have a traditional job. I wanted to own a business, and yes, just work 4 hours a week. So when I saw a book that says you can work only 4 hours a week, you bet your extra hot Nando’s chicken that I picked it up. 

It wasn’t until I started reading the book that I learned I was looking at things the “wrong” way. 

The biggest lesson I picked up from the 4-Hour Workweek was that to grow a successful business, you cannot do it on your own. Even if you work all the hours under the sun, you will still not be able to get everything done. 

4 hour Workweek

And as much as I would like to think that I can do everything myself, I really can’t. 

It opened my mind to the wonders of outsourcing and the benefits of delegating the things you were not good at to someone who loved doing those things. This means that there will be tasks that will take me around 2-3 hours, but if I hire a specialist, it will only take that person 30 minutes. 

This is where the seed was planted that I could have freelancers or contractors who are skilled and experienced doing my work for me.  

My journey learning how to hire the right contractors and freelancers did pose some challenges and risks. You can read about my experience in managing a virtual team HERE.

And one thing I have learned that in order to effectively manage a virtual team, or any team for that matter, I needed to have the proper systems and documentation in place. This is where my next and final book comes in.

THE E-MYTH

This one I have read and reread a few times. 

The reason for this is because the first couple reads were quite difficult to digest. Primarily because try as I might, I just couldn’t see how to apply/implement what was being talked about. 

I persisted however and as my experience grew, so too did my capacity to understand what the book was talking about.

The old adage, “when the student is ready, the master appears” seems apt. 

At its core, in my opinion, the E-myth is about how to build a business and put systems in place, so that you do not become a prisoner of the business. 

Like most books, it is written with a view of getting you to explore how Michael Gerber and his company can help you implement what the book is talking about. And this consisted mostly of broad strokes and some general explanations of the concept of systems. 

Emyth 

What did I take away from the E-myth? 

I learned that the key to freedom, regardless of what that means for you my dear reader, is creating systems and establishing proper documentation of those systems. 

And before I read this book at the young age of 25, I was already into systems and processes, but what I was missing was documentation. It was through E-myth that I learned how important it is to document my systems, and was especially helpful when I started bringing on people to the team. 

This book was such a game-changer for me because it served as a bridge which connected the lessons I learned from Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and the 4-Hour Work Week.

The reason for this is because E-myth is the middle ground that people don’t really think about when it comes to growing a business and outsourcing. Everyone talks about outsourcing, but they rarely talk about the idea of abdication versus delegation, which I talk about HERE.

Typically, outsourcing is sold in a way that when you hire someone, you can just put them in, give them the tasks that they have to do, and then you don’t have to worry about them. 

But through my experience in outsourcing, I think a little bit differently from most people and my business is a bit different. It’s not unique, but it’s a bit different overall to how other people run their businesses. 

When I hire someone to run Facebook Ads, for example, I don’t simply hire that person and expect him/her to run the ads without any system in place. Because I know the importance of systems and proper documentation, I know that these need to be established so that when I bring someone in, they are aware of the things that they need to be aware of.

Some things that they need to be aware of (in my experience, at least) include market knowledge and customer knowledge. Anyone can train to be a FB Ads specialist, but knowing things specifically related to your business can only be taught by people experienced in the business. 

So, if you bring a specialist into the business without any proper documentation, they will still be able to do the job no doubt, but there are always going to be holes in what they do due to their lack of knowledge.

And that is why E-myth was the bridge that connected the Cashflow Quadrant in Rich Dad Poor Dad to how you find freedom through the 4-Hour Workweek. E-myth became the manual on how to build systems and document processes so that whenever I decide to outsource, I am able to outsource effectively.

But one thing that I found was missing in E-myth is the simplicity to explain things. Because I personally did find E-myth to be quite dense and overwhelming. 

I’d like to give an honorable mention to a book called Clockwork by Mike Michalowicz because it simplified a lot of the things that were covered in E-myth.

Clockwork enhanced my knowledge in creating systems and allowed me to give the right amount of freedom to my team to do the tasks their own way without stifling their creativity, but still following the general framework that I outlined for them.  

And because I value the creative freedom of my team, I was able to properly document the things that need to be documented so that they have a general framework and desired outcome to work towards without being too restricted or controlled.

CONCLUSION 

And there you have it. The 4 books that have left a lasting impact on my life. 

All of the lessons that I have learned in these 4 books can be seen all throughout the other blog posts I have written as well. The lessons here are what have created a strong foundation for me and my team, and we are still learning as we grow and scale.

If you decide to read any of these books, or have already read them, you will most likely have different key takeaways from me and have also applied these to your own life and business.

How about you? What impactful books have you read?

Open post
Start an Online Business

How to Start an Online Business

Picture this…

It’s 2020, the world is being RAVAGED by the Coronavirus.

Businesses are being classed as “essential” and “Non-Essential.” Non essential businesses are told to shut up shop in order to control the spread of the virus.

Employees are being put on government support furlow schemes, the UK government is printing money and making promises of support to the nation. All was well with the world.

Until october 2020 when The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, stated that “Re-skilling and re-training are key parts of our Covid recovery programme and digital skills will form a crucial part of that.” 

At the time that statement was aimed towards the Arts & Entertainment industry. Cue the anger of the people who felt they were being singled out by a government that didn’t care about them and the choices they made in their lives…

Personally, I don’t entirely agree with this because I believe that people who have skills that took them a lifetime to learn shouldn’t just discard these skills in order to appease someone else’s idea of how they should live their lives and contribute to society. 

Regardless, there is no point in arguing about whether Rishi was right or wrong about this (primarily because my opinion on if Rishi was right or not doesn’t offer a solution to the problem people are facing).

I believe however that learning a new skill is definitely a great way to pursue something new and with the right in demand skill, you can change your life and the life of your family.

I am writing this blog post to break down what it takes to start a business. I am writing this for those who want financial freedom, or have already started but are struggling. As almost everyone is working or studying from home nowadays, there hasn’t been a better time for you to start a side business or side hustle online.

And online, there are opportunities, they are almost endless, provided you are ready to roll your sleeves up and apply some elbow grease.

Endless Opportunities

 

There is A LOT of information online, most of them incomplete telling you WHAT you can do to “make money online” there’s things like Amazon FBA, Dropshipping, “Dropservicing”, being a Youtuber, starting a podcast… the list goes on 

I say “incomplete information” because they tell you WHAT is working right now, and then they sell you the HOW. The HOW is where things get interesting as there are SO MANY variables that affect the results you get.

Some examples of the HOW:

How do you set yourself apart?

How do you get your first client?

How do you know how much to charge?

Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera (you get the gist).

I am putting this blog post together to answer all these questions and everything else. What you’re reading right now is the ultimate guide to walk you through the steps you need to take to start a business and achieve financial agility.

I am going set the bar for “financial agility” at £5000 per month

WHY £5,000 PER MONTH? 

My take on this is that if you successfully arrive at the point where your business is making that amount of money per month, I believe you will be doing better than 70-80% of those who are trying to start a business online. 

If you follow all the steps that I reveal later on in this article, you put yourself in a very good position that opens up possibilities that will allow you to achieve more and it gives you room to maneuver and achieve greater results let’s say, £10,000 per month. 

And why should you listen to me in this regard?

Why Me?

See, recently, I had a conversation with one of my friends Dan, and while we were talking he broke down the steps on how to start a business that makes money. Funnily enough, as we spoke, I thought to myself, “Yo, these steps are almost identical to what I did to build my businesses.”

In short, I’m saying that the steps that I will share in this article are the steps that I have done to earn £5,000 per month (and more) for myself. Which means that everything here has been tried and tested by yours truly. 

One LAST thing though before you I tell you what these steps are, I want you to know that everything here is just an OUTLINE, and you do not need to follow everything that I did EXACTLY the way I did, because your needs are going to be different from mine, and your business is different from my business. 

Also, even though I have already successfully implemented the steps for myself, I am still a student in this process as well so do not think of me as Master Tega who can magically take you from A to Z through the steps down below. I am sure you will have your own way of implementing everything, and I trust that you will figure everything out along the way.

To prepare you for the long journey ahead (and for easy navigation), here is an outline of the steps you need to take in order to earn £5,000 per month through an online business, dear reader:

  • Learn a Skill
  • Do Outreach
  • Get Leads
  • Charge £1,000
  • Get 5 Clients
  • Learn to Play the Guitar
  • Hire and Train People
  • Scale to the Moon Like Doge
  • Repeat Ad Infinitum!

Let’s get to it…

LEARN A SKILL 

Earlier, I spoke about the fact that there are so many opportunities out there to earn money online and that a lot of people from various industries try to sell you on a certain business idea or opportunity. 

And because there are just so many options to choose from, you can get sucked into the analysis paralysis phase and never move forward.

Analysis Paralysis

In this section, I won’t be telling you exactly what business you should start or what skill you should learn. These are mere principles to help you decide based on what I will be sharing. And this I believe is more valuable over trying to convince you to follow a certain path when I know that your interests are different from mine. 

Here is my advice on what to focus on when choosing a skill:

Choose a skill that is in demand and that people will pay for.

Read that again.

Why? Because you need to make sure that the skill you’re learning is actually valuable and can help you earn money for your business.

“But Tega, shouldn’t I learn a skill that I have a natural inclination towards? Shouldn’t it be something that I think I will enjoy?”

That’s a great question dear reader.

But let me tell you something. 

I believe that there is no skill that you are going to learn that you will enjoy learning about. As a naturally curious person, you might think that I enjoyed learning about Facebook Ads, podcast management, recruitment and whatnot. But honestly, I DID NOT enjoy learning about these (though I do enjoy doing them now that I passed the learning stage). 

The reason why I believe the learning process is never really an enjoyable one is because when you are learning something new, you are making yourself vulnerable and putting yourself in a situation where you don’t really know what’s going on. Everything is alien to you and you have so much you have to take in.

Even if let’s say you pick a skill that you have a natural inclination towards, it would be unrealistic to think that learning it would be a walk in a park. Learning will always be challenging, but more often than not, rewarding in the end.

Learning is Hard

The key takeaway here is that when you learn a new skill, you need to take into account that there is a high chance you won’t enjoy learning about it, but you have to give yourself the chance to actually go through the learning process and see if it is something that you would grow to enjoy along the way. 

You will never know until you try. 

And we’re lucky to be born in this day and age where the internet has so many resources for us to learn almost anything. You have free options like YouTube to pocket-friendly ones like Udemy to teach you the skill that you wish to learn about. 

DO OUTREACH

Once you learn your skill, you will reach a place where you need to implement the HOW. In this case, the how is knowing how to sell your skill and make money.

This means finding people who have problems that you can solve with the skill that you learned, and then converting those people into leads. 

Outreach can mean different things from sending out emails, directly messaging people, or even running Facebook Ads. 

Personally, one of the best forms of outreach for me is leveraging what you have experienced when implementing the skill you have learned and sharing it in the right places. And when I mean sharing, don’t just share your successes. Share your failures as well and how you learned to overcome these. 

I believe that people look up to those who share not just the happy side of a story, but the struggles and the ugly bits as well. 

This doesn’t just involve sharing your results, but the journey you went through to get those results. The bottomline here is to document EVERYTHING.

And when you start sharing and people become aware of your skill, they will start asking you questions about it.

From all the people who are curious about your skill, 20% will want to hire you to do it for them, and 80% will want to do it themselves (maybe because they think they can’t afford you, or they want to learn how to do it before they outsource, or they genuinely want to learn how to do it).

Outreach

All you need to focus on is the 20% that want you to do it for them because these are the people that become your leads. 

And where to find this 20%? 

Figure out where your market is at. Fish where the fish are, not where the fisherman are.

This means you shouldn’t post your experiences on Facebook when your potential clients reside in, let’s say, Twitter. Do some research so you can find out where to share your experiences so that you get discovered by the right people.

You may then be wondering what experiences you can talk about, especially when you don’t even have paying clients in the first place. Here are 2 types of experiences that you can focus on and leverage from there:

  1. Your own experiences (this ties back to my other blog post on Being Your Own Client)
  2. Experiences from pro bono clients

Let’s cover each of these experiences.

Using Your Own Experiences

By implementing the skills you have learned to your own business, you gain so much. One benefit is that by becoming your own client, you gain valuable experiences and lessons which you can share with others.

Because let’s face it, why would people want to buy your products or skills when you haven’t even used it on yourself? Why would they trust you to take care of their businesses when you haven’t even tried and tested it on your own business? 

So let’s say if you decide to run Facebook Ads for other businesses, why would people choose you to run ads for them if you don’t even run ads for yourself? 

Which boils down to the second benefit of being your own client: you set yourself apart from others.

Experiencing firsthand what your skills can do for a business allows you to step into the shoes of other businesses and know exactly what they want. And knowing exactly what they want means knowing how you can help them succeed.

That is the most important aspect that you should possess in order to set yourself apart from others. It’s not all about the uniqueness of a skill, or how you package your business. 

Experiences from pro bono clients

I am a firm believer in the power of pro bono clients because even if you don’t benefit financially, there are so many other reasons why you should offer your services for free (to the select few).

In fact, the main reason why 2 of my businesses came into fruition is because I simply wanted to help a friend and I was curious to learn the skill that would solve my friend’s problem. 

If you want to read the stories on how I started both of my businesses, you may check them out here:

Or if you don’t want to go full pro bono, you can offer your services for a minimum fee for your first few clients and then take their results from there to share with other people (with the permission of your clients of course).

GET LEADS

Fortunately for me, getting leads wasn’t such a challenge because I am an admin of a 17,000-member Facebook group full of business owners. But don’t be deceived. 

Although it is now easy for me, it wasn’t always this way. In fact, it took me 5-6 years to get to where I am now. And the reason why it took that long is because I am an introvert and I wasn’t really comfortable sharing my experiences and actively getting leads. In fact, I share more about my introversion in another blog post.

So being able to reach the point where the leads come to you rather than the other way around, it will take time, and you can’t cheat the time that is required. 

And what does it take to plant the seeds so that leads will come naturally to you? 

It’s really all about leveraging the assets that you have, which includes all your experiences and the people that you personally know around you. Your personal network can be a great start for you to get leads or pro bono clients, and in my other article on Building Your Email List from Nothing, I talk about the 3Fs that you can outreach to:

  • Friends
  • Fans
  • Followers

The gist here is that when you’re building your network, you’re naturally going to connect with people that are doing the things that you want to do or the people that you look up to.

Make Friends, Get Leads

These people eventually become your friends, and as you continue to do good stuff and post about it, you start to gain fans and followers who look up to you as an authority and a go-to person for that thing. 

Gaining fans and followers takes time (and it especially took quite long for an introvert like me), but all you need is to consistently and shamelessly talk about what you do and how you do it. 

CHARGE £1,000

Let’s be real, charging £1,000 for your skill is not cheap. But it’s not impossible as well. The reason I stuck with this amount is because £1,000 is not too high that you restrict yourself from working with people, and it’s not too low that people have the wrong opinion of you and what you do.

But when I started, I didn’t charge £1,000 initially, because I needed to gain experience first and leverage from there. In fact, the first thing I sold online was for $7 (do note that this was YEARS ago), and slowly my prices increased.

Definitely you can start charging just a small amount for a start, but you will want to reach that point where you are comfortable with charging £1,000 for your services. You need to be sure that the value you deliver is worth that amount.

£1,000 does not have to be your price immediately after you launch your business. You can start small like me, or go pro bono. Earlier, I spoke about the benefits of pro bono clients and how these can provide long-term value for your business.

Charge £1,000

But there is a limit to pro bono clients.

I believe in doing stuff for free but only up to a point where you have enough assets that you can leverage and build your business from. You can’t offer your services for free indefinitely (because it defeats the purpose of why you’re reading this post, right?).

If the above point is not clear, if you offer your service for free indefinitely, you don’t have a business, you have a very expensive hobby.

And when you offer your services for free, don’t think that just because your client isn’t paying you, that you can take this partnership lightly. This means that whenever you make a mistake, don’t consider stopping and finding another pro bono client until you get the process right and deliver results. This is a mistake I made before and I don’t want you to do the same.

If you ever do make mistakes with a pro bono client, don’t quit. Find out what went wrong, stick with this client, and keep trying until you succeed. That way, when you share about this long and challenging experience, it would be an even more worthwhile read for your potential clients because it shows perseverance and ingenuity. 

Another thing you need to consider is the people that you sell your services to. Earlier, I mentioned that you need to sell your skills to the right people, and the right people are those that can actually afford your service. 

The amount you are charging must give them a positive return. For example, it makes no sense to charge £1,000 for a product that only sells at £500 because your client will be paying more than they are going to make, and as a result won’t get decent returns.

Once you are confident to charge £1,000 and you do better than the 70-80% of people who start an online business, you can then assess whether this amount is enough to make you reach the goals you have set for yourself.

So let’s say that your goal is to earn £10,000 per month, it is up to you whether you want to stick to charging £1,000 and getting 10 clients, or increasing your rate to £2,000 for just 5 clients. 

Determining the “math” side of your goals helps you figure out how much you want to charge down the line so that you don’t have to end up working for too many clients just to reach how much you want to earn monthly.

GET 5 CLIENTS

Naturally, if you decide to price your services at £1,000 per client and want to earn £5,000 monthly, you will need 5 clients to reach that goal.

This section is pretty straightforward, but it’s important for you to decide exactly how many clients you can work with monthly. Are you willing to work with more than 10 clients because you believe your services are worth less than £1,000? Or do you think that you can eventually grow a team so that you can get more clients? 

You need to determine how much freedom you want to do the things you want to do. That way, you are aware of how much bandwidth you have so that you will know how many clients you can take in at a time.

5 clients is just a number I set here, but I want to leave that decision up to you on whether you want to charge more and get less clients, or charge less and get more clients.

LEARN TO PLAY A GUITAR/LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE (OR WHATEVER YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR TIME)

This step is obviously not required (unless you really do want to learn the guitar or study a new language). 

But the essence of this step is that because you have reached a point in your business where you are earning enough to not have to worry about any financial burdens, you have the time to focus on other things in life. 

Just like Abraham Maslowe’s Hierarchy of Needs, because you have your basic needs covered, you don’t need to worry about things such as paying your mortgage, debts or whatnot.

Hierarchy of Needs

The point I am trying to make here is that you shouldn’t forget to live your life because life is meant to be lived. 

And this ties back to deciding what your financial goals are for yourself so that you will know how much you should charge and how many clients you should work with. Do the math for yourself and figure out how much you need to be making per month so that you have your basic needs taken cared of.

So again, you don’t actually need to learn to play the guitar (which is something that I’m doing right now), but I highly recommend that live your life and don’t work for money…let money work for you.

HIRE AND TRAIN PEOPLE

If this isn’t your first time reading my blog posts, you may be wondering why I haven’t mentioned anything about systems and processes yet.

Tada, hello systems and processes!

In this step of hiring and training people, it is crucial that before you do so, you need to have systems and processes in place so that when you do decide to hire people, you know that they can do the job the same way you would.

Documentation is also very important because as you get good at your skill, you’re going to develop your own processes based on the way you think and do stuff. 

Just remember that when you hire someone new, you can’t expect this person to learn the ropes right away. There will be an input delay at the start meaning that whenever you get a client, there will be a lag from your end because you still need to train that new person before he/she can get the desired results for your client.

Hiring and training someone will need time and effort from your end, but once you get past that point, you can have that person managing your clients without you.

Luckily, there are a bunch of project management tools right now such as Trello, Teamwork, Asana, or Monday.com that can help you train your new team member smoothly. And if you want to find awesome virtual team members, you can go to places such as Upwork, Fiverr, or Onlinejobs.ph.

For more details on how you can hire and train virtual team members to grow your business, check out the full guide here.

SCALE TO THE MOON LIKE DOGE 

Just like the Dogecoin, once you establish a strong financial foundation, you can get your money working for you and you have the option to scale and increase your value even more.

Doge Coin

Scaling can mean different things for different people. It can mean setting up an agency, raising your prices, or adding more people and it all depends on your personal goals.

And once you have reached the point that you can scale (assuming this means you grow your team and increase the price of your services), you have even more time to do the things you want to do or focus on more important aspects of the business. 

Personally, scaling is charging a premium for my services and putting a guarantee on the work that we do. By scaling, I can afford to work with fewer clients and focus on doing the things that I want to do.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t about the money. In fact, for me, it never was. I focus more on the experiences I provide for myself, my team, and my clients. Because for me, it’s more about the experience of doing the thing over making money doing the thing.

Yes, money is nice. But the reason why I want to earn more and have more personal time is because my goal is to make an impact through focus on more quality services to business owners. That way, I can really focus on helping my clients run profitable businesses.

And on the flipside, I can use the money that I earned to lift people up, such as the members of my team. 

But to reach that point, I’m focusing on creating even more systems and processes. That way, when I do focus on outreaching to more people and scaling my business, I am confident that I provide the right value at the right price.

JUST DO IT

If you have reached the end of this blog post, congratulations.

You have now reached the point where you are sure you want to start an online business, or already have an online business but want to scale to the moon (like doge), take the core ideas that I have shared here and implement them patiently and consistently.

Don’t worry about choosing the right tool to use, the right message to craft, or the right skill to learn. According to Shia Labeouf…

Just Do It

Just go out there and do stuff and the very act of doing stuff gets you moving. 

It doesn’t benefit you to sit and procrastinate to think about making everything perfect. Too much planning and overthinking will get you nowhere until you take the first step. 

Take that first step without worrying too much about the things that come down the road. And when you get down the road and do the actual steps, then you can start worrying about the next big thing from there. 

As quoted by Zig Ziglar, “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.”

So let that sit, digest it, and then go take action and help other people get what they want.  

See you at the moon…with doge.

Open post

My Experiences in Managing a Virtual Team

Thanks to the Rona and the “new normal, businesses and teams are going virtual quicker than you can say “I work from home.” Work will never be the same again, and this new normal has opened the eyes of everyone from across the globe to the possibilities of remote work, remote workforce and the importance of managing a virtual team.

Businesses that used to be in a traditional office setting are now finding ways to adapt and make the virtual space work for them, their teams and their organization. Thankfully, tools like Slack and Teamwork are making the virtual working space much more manageable.

Even after this pandemic is over and the much-awaited vaccine saves the world, it won’t be a surprise if many businesses choose to stick to this remote work arrangement. In my opinion, because this type of arrangement has been working for me, I’m sure other businesses have experienced positive outcomes from this set up as well and will choose to continue it.

Some people are still learning the ropes in this “new normal” working situation, while others like me, have been virtual for a little now. Matter of fact, we are so virtual, that some of us have built virtual businesses and we have been working this way for several years now.

What started out for me as an experiment (more on that later), soon became my “saving grace” ever since the pandemic shook the entire world. Looking back, starting a virtual team was one of the best decisions I have ever made because of how quickly I was able to adapt to this global phenomenon (together with my team as well).

Working remotely

And because managing my own virtual team was a puzzle that I wanted to solve, I had no idea that what I have achieved now was even possible through the people that I have hired. It’s amazing how I have grown my businesses into what they are today all by working with my virtual team members… no, you can’t have them, they are mine (however you can start building your team by following THIS). 

It’s no surprise that managing a virtual team is different from a physical one, but the core principles of leadership and management still stand. And I admit, I am no expert in this field as well, but I am lucky to be with team members who were willing to experiment with me along the way and learn what is the right way to manage the business with members from all around the globe. 

I have been working with my virtual team for about 6 years now, and learning how to manage everyone (including myself) is a never-ending process. One that I am going to share here in the hopes that you gain some nuggets of wisdom from my personal experiences and apply them to building and growing your own virtual team. 

In this blog post, I am going to talk about this experiment that ended up being something that’s changed my business forever. I will be sharing with you everything that I have encountered while growing and managing my own virtual team including the following:

  • The Idea That Started It All
  • My First Attempt at Outsourcing
  • Focusing on the Bigger Picture
  • The Challenges I/we have faced and how we overcame them
  • Lessons Learned Managing a Virtual Team
  • The Rise of the Tide

THE IDEA THAT STARTED IT ALL

I have always wanted to own a business. 

Back when I was a teenager, I remember coming across the Cashflow Quadrant in Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad, and I promised myself that when I “made it”, I would make it as a “Business Owner”.

I want to have leverage and I want to earn money without having to worry about taking a 2-week holiday not earning because I was on a holiday.

Cashflow Quadrant

But it’s interesting how my main reason for starting a business has changed as I grew older (maturity, perhaps?). Initially, I just wanted to earn more money so I could live a good life. But eventually, I realised that owning a business and earning money can mean so much more. It can mean making an impact as well and amplifying that impact through the business and the money it has made. 

So now with my business, along with the team, I am mostly driven by the fact that I want to make an impact on other people’s lives, mine, my team and our clients’.

Anyway, back to pre-Tega before all the making an impact mind shift happened.

Because I was fixated on becoming a business owner, I took it upon myself to learn how to start. I needed to figure out a way to create leverage so I could be an actual business owner.

And that is when I came across the idea of outsourcing. Whilst scrolling through Facebook and hearing about so many people’s experience with it and how it has helped them grow and scale their business, is what spoke to my curiosity and led me to actively seek out material that spoke about outsourcing and scaling, and read a few life-changing books like Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Work Week and Mike Michalowicz’ Clockwork.

I was curious to know what this outsourcing thing and what it could do for me. 

And thus began the experimentation.

MY FIRST ATTEMPTS AT OUTSOURCING

Before I was able to successfully hire my first virtual team member, Mark, I experienced a number of stumbles with less than stellar results.

My very first attempt at hiring a remote worker was for my friend. Let’s call him James (not his real name).

James was a web developer and needed an extra hand to help him with his work so he could add more clients to his business. Naturally, James needed another web developer to do this. And me, being the curious and helpful person that I am, thought that this would be a great way to see how this whole outsourcing thing works.

So, I made a job post on Upwork (formerly Elance-oDesk), received 3 candidates, chose the guy who responded first and immediately hired him. That’s all I did. And yes, if you read my other blog post on how to hire virtual assistants, you will KNOW that “process” sounds rather unlike the more experienced Tega now. 

What happened was because I never actually interviewed this person, I never got to assess whether he would be a good fit for James. And lo and behold, the two indeed weren’t a good fit and the partnership did not last very long. 

To make things worse, I had to refund James AND pay the web developer since James didn’t pay him. Bummer.

As unfortunate as it sounds, it was a reality check for me and had me think long and hard about what went wrong. 

A few months after that attempt, I decided to get back to my laboratory and find out what went wrong and how exactly to make things right. This is when I did even more research on outsourcing which included reading John Jonas’ blog.

I realised that I needed to have a proper system in place when hiring. This involved actually interviewing the candidates and finding out WHO they were to avoid any personality clashes just like with the whole James shenanigan.

Luckily enough, my friend Adil who owns a podcast also needed some help and I brought up the idea of bringing a virtual team member on board. Adil gladly agreed and offered to split the fee of the remote worker with me. 

And because this was such an enticing offer, I took it as a sign to start my outsourcing journey again equipped with all the new things I have learned and the processes I have put in place.

This was when I found Mark. 

I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly he was picking up the tasks I asked him to do (most of which he didn’t have experience with before), tasks included Digital Marketing, working with ClickFunnels, setting up Facebook Ads, and doing some video editing. Mark proved his competency and opened my eyes to how good outsourcing actually is when you get it right.

Here was a guy (living halfway around the world) who didn’t know tons of the things I asked him to do, but learned those things in a relatively short period of time.

VA from the Philippines

He was my first successful hire and this is when the gears in my head started turning.

But it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows after my first hire. I still had a lot to learn.

Unfortunately, the gears in my head turned so fast that I got overly excited and immediately sought my 2nd virtual team member a week after I hired Mark…without following the systems I used to hire Mark.

I got too confident in hiring an additional virtual team member that I never even considered if this person would even have enough work, to begin with! To top it all off, I didn’t even provide any training and I wasn’t in a place that I could actually afford to add another team member (I was still operating in the self-employed box during this time). This person didn’t stay very long, and this gave me another reality check that I still wasn’t as competent as I thought I was.

So, going back to the drawing board, I needed to fine-tune my systems, processes, SOPs, training modules and everything else even more before I swam deeper into the ocean of outsourcing and grow my team. 

It took several months and a few failed attempts (or learnings as I’d like to call them), before I was able to have the systems and processes in place I am using now to hire virtual team members for myself and my clients. 

Now that I have built up my experience, I realised that every virtual team member I wasn’t able to keep was just a guide that led me in the right direction to build the awesome team that I have today. And with my current team, I am able to focus on other aspects of the business that will help us scale, grow, and eventually make an impact on the people around me. 

FOCUSING ON THE BIGGER PICTURE

With all these testimonials online of entrepreneurs obtaining more freedom through outsourcing, it’s amusing how I never focused on this benefit when I started my own virtual team. 

I was never really set on experiencing the benefits of this outsourcing “hype” simply because people say they can work 4 hours a week and travel the world while other people did the work for them (though I was initially attracted to starting a business because of these same benefits). Living a life of freedom (the typical “entrepreneur” variety) wasn’t my main mission of starting a virtual team and growing a business. 

In fact, that barely crossed my mind because I was driven more by curiosity about the outsourcing practice than anything else.

Because I stepped up to the plate with the mindset of just “experimenting and seeing where it goes,” I never fully let go of the business so I could have more “me” time (in fact, I am still fully involved in the business and am rather busy myself). 

But this doesn’t mean that managing a virtual team hasn’t helped me significantly. In fact, I am now able to personally focus on bigger leverage tasks in the business such as looking for clients, creating a direction for the team and helping the team grow and change their perspectives. 

I now have more freedom mentally because I have team members that I can rely on to take care of all the nitty-gritty details. My virtual team has helped me get out of situations that would have required me to keep a close eye on because I have learned how to properly delegate everything. 

The systems and processes that I have established have allowed me to arrive at a place where I can trust my team members to do the work without me having to be a taskmaster. This has given me peace of mind and alleviated my “perfectionist disease” to some degree.

Inner control freak

Although I have no doubt that my competent virtual team members would be able to do their job, I doubt everything would go as smoothly as it does, if it wasn’t for the systems and processes in place. I realised how important it is to set up the playground before you can let your virtual team members freely do the things you need them to do and expect the results that you desire.

But even after everything is in place, managing a virtual team isn’t always a bed of roses…

CHALLENGES IN MANAGING A VIRTUAL TEAM

Each and every entrepreneur who is managing a virtual team has their own challenges for sure. 

Definitely one of my challenges during the early stages of this “experiment” was making sure that the person I hired has enough work to do. Not only that, you need to make sure that with the amount of work you are giving, you need to be able to afford the compensation.

I admit that I lost a virtual team member because I wasn’t able to pay her fairly since I couldn’t really afford it yet. Plus, she never communicated this to me so I assumed everything was fine until I realised that she was finding more clients behind my back…

So before you decide to hire someone, you need to be in a place where you can actually afford it and that the tasks you delegate justify the compensation you are giving.

And speaking of tasks, it took me a while to delegate these as well.

Earlier in this blog post, I mentioned that I am a bit of a control freak and have something I call the perfectionist disease. For someone who wants to make sure everything is under control, learning how to let go and delegate tasks to someone else can be quite difficult. 

I have this tendency of taking on most of the tasks instead of passing them on to the team, which kind of defeats the purpose of why I have a team in the first place, right? 

This continues to be a learning process for me and I am slowly fixing this by putting systems and processes in place to help open the lines of communication and automate and standardize the workflow. That way, things are done the way I want them to be done and we all know what comes after each step.

Systems and Processes

Using automation, I can streamline some processes in the business. For example, getting and onboarding a new client becomes much easier to manage because I can pass the baton to the next member of the team, without having to do it physically. The person responsible for a task is automatically made aware of what they have to do it and when they have to have it done. 

Another challenge for me was learning how to manage people and myself better. Having people work for you and knowing how to manage them can get quite challenging, especially if you don’t have the confidence.

One thing I found difficult was making sure that my team members were not taking on too much or too little work, and also communicating which tasks should be prioritized and accomplished first. It becomes especially challenging as the team grows and you start to manage more people.

Eventually, I learned that communication is key and constantly checking in on your team members ensures that everyone is managing the work well.

LESSONS I HAVE LEARNED MANAGING A VIRTUAL TEAM

Delegate, Don’t Abdicate 

I talked about this in my other blog post on How to Find Great Virtual Team Members. When people hire a virtual team member, they think that this person is going to be a mind-reader and know exactly what to do and will just get it done. 

From my experience, this is far from the truth. I used to get frustrated when someone new on the team wouldn’t get a task right after I had explained it the third time. I’d automatically default to thinking “that things would be much quicker if I did everything myself instead”. 

Eventually, I realised that what I was abdicating responsibility instead of delegating. With the former, you’re simply passing responsibility to someone else and expecting that they can instantly submit work that matches your standards.

That is something that you should not expect ESPECIALLY not at the start. Team members have to work to a point where there is enough trust for you to hand over responsibility.

Delegate, don't abdicate

Rather than abdicate, delegate instead. This means that you take the time and effort to manage and train this person so that eventually, he or she will get things done according to how you like them to be done. And yes, it does take time and effort, but in the long run, this will result in quality work and team members who choose to stay and buy in more to the business. 

And because you need to train them properly, you also need to be open to the idea that they will make mistakes along the way until they become proficient. 

Systemize, Systemize, Systemize

I am a firm believer in systems and processes, given the story of Rich Dad Poor Dad and my belief that to “Make it” I  gotta make it as a Business Owner.

When you bring someone else into the business, it’s very tempting to say,“Bob can you please do X?” and then expect Bob to know everything and remember the things he did. 

If you don’t have systems in place and then give them the same task a few weeks later, you can’t expect them to remember every single thing he did the first time. If you don’t document your processes, doing repetitive tasks becomes a headache in itself because you won’t have a standardized workflow and you will have team members constantly asking you how to complete their tasks. 

Learn to Trust Your Team

If you hire someone virtually, there is a very small chance that that person will be able to scam and take advantage of you. But what I find is that a majority of them won’t because they need a job and you have jobs that need to be done.

For those who are new to outsourcing, it can be difficult to pass on your tasks to someone you haven’t met and worked with personally. But you need to start the relationship off on the right foot by learning to trust your team.

And if your virtual team members forget something or makes a mistake, trust as well that there is no malicious intent on their end and it could be a result of the lack of experience or, in some rare cases, them not knowing how to communicate their problems with you.

For control freaks like me, you need to get comfortable with letting go and trusting that someone else will do the tasks for you.

THE RISING TIDE…

All around me, I see my entrepreneurial friends make the decision to start a virtual team when they realise they can’t run their businesses on their own anymore. And this isn’t just with my friends. In fact, according to ScienceDirect, “The emergence of COVID-19 has presented employees and employers new challenges as many employees and managers were forced to work in a remote environment for the first time.”

So it’s no surprise that we have witnessed a growth in the virtual workplace and people hiring virtual team members, and employees looking for online jobs.

But with the rise in popularity of remote teams also comes its challenges. Things like figuring out the process when hiring someone and knowing whether that someone fits the WHO you are looking for can be a challenge especially when you can’t meet that person physically.

Other challenges involve knowing what tools to use to track productivity, output, projects and other things that need to be tracked in order to know whether a team member is doing the work well.

You also have problems with time zone differences since outsourcing mostly involves hiring people from countries in Asia such as China, India or the Philippines. Having team members from all around the world pose a challenge when you need to set up team calls.

I am no exception from encountering these types of problems, but as I mentioned, I have learned a lot in these 6 years and am continuing to learn. 

I’ve had friends ask me how to find, train, and manage the right people for their business because I’ve been doing this for several years already. This was what made me decide to write a complete guide on How to Find Great Virtual Team Members, and this process has helped me, and other entrepreneurs successfully grow their virtual team.

Because at the end of the day, when you hire someone, you don’t hire for skill. Rather, you hire someone for their values because I found that 8 out of 10 times, if you don’t hire someone with the right personality, that person won’t stay long in the business and you’ll end up right back where you started.

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