Naturally, when an entrepreneur gets started, it is a one-man show. They are doing everything. The next logical step would likely be to have administrative support. Or get into buying marketing, or perhaps sales. At first, it will feel good. But quite soon, it becomes a bit messy. Things start to break. Stuff slips through the cracks. Leads aren't getting called. The help desk is overwhelmed. You've got people coming and going. Tasks start to build up i.e., customers to attend to, chargebacks, and something changes with one of the ad platforms.
You reach a certain level of growth and then these things start to hit pressure points and they start to break, right? What needs to happen at that point is it needs to become a game of simplicity. Most of the time we think added addition is what causes things to grow. It's subtraction, it's reduction. Simple scales, complex sales. The way you do that is you do with protocols, playbooks, SOPs, and technology. Find an efficient process so everything runs well.
When considering these pitfalls to avoid also lean into this key principle - the worst number in business is one. There is so much value in redundancy. Redundancy helps me sleep better at night. One time we had all our ads running through Facebook and we had a glitch. We had the ad account shut down or the business manager. When that happened, my wife almost needed to put me away!
Everything in the business was on this one Pogo stick. It cracked. Everything shut down. Now, hindsight's 20-20, right? It was no big deal. I had a coach at the time, and she's like, “Oh, Paul, it's OK. Don't worry about it. And we were good to go.” So today, we have multiple platforms.
Same thing with salespeople. One salesperson is horrible. If God forbid, something terrible happened to that salesperson or just left for whatever reasons, the whole thing stops. That’s why I'd prefer to have two part-time people running operations for example than one full-time. Now for sales and the like, we want full-time people. But again, not just one.
The idea of redundancy is just as applicable to merchant accounts. We currently have three merchant accounts that we rotate through, multiple ways to collect payments, and multiple bank accounts.
These are all practical ways that you can apply to building a team and keeping a smooth operation. Ultimately the system that will work the best will be based on the entrepreneur’s inherent skill sets or preferences or leanings, that is what will show up in the business.
An example from my experience is when I first got started, my strength was I could run ads because I built a seven-figure e-comm business. But I didn't really like doing the sales. What would happen then is that I would run ads and try to hire people for sales. Now, what suffered was the conversion rate, which should have been, so you should have like 30%, 35%. My conversions for my sales team were like 15%.
I had to step back and realize that this is overbuilt here because this is my strength and I like this. This is underbuilt here because this thing I really don't like it. And that was my underbuilt for a long time. In all honesty, sales leadership was something I didn't like to do. When we were doing, about 200, 300 grand a month, I sat back and I'm like, we need to upgrade this sales leadership system and team and protocols.
I hired a coach, a phenomenal guy. When I entered this thing it was like, what the heck that I get myself into? He wanted us to make beginning-of-day calls, every single day with the team, middle-of-day calls, and at the end of the day. If I'd done that, I could have made an additional $300,000 profit per month. I'm not exaggerating. I know it's kind of hard to believe. If I had done that, I would have made that much more money.
But here's the balance. That was not my talent. That was not my skill set and I just despised it. So, I had to decide. Do I optimize for how God built me? Or do I optimize for this coach’s protocol? What do you think I did? I hired somebody.
In the area that isn’t a strength, there is always going to be a little bit of volatility. You will quickly see that section underperforming without support because you won’t have the desire to put the energy into it that you could. Instead, you put people into that position.
And while developing a leader, I let them suffer a little bit and I let them figure it out and I'm okay with that. I exercise or even weaponize patience. And that allows me to come alongside them, support them, love them, encourage them, and let them figure stuff out. It's how you learn the best.
I remember reading a story about a mom whose son was blind. She was walking along with her son and there was a curb. He tripped and he fell, and she didn't help him. And there was a bystander who's like, what’s the matter with you lady? Don't you love your kid? And she replied, “It's because I love my kid that I let him stumble because I'm not going to be here with him at all times.” And so that's a principle that we deploy.
Sometimes it works better than others. But again, I want to work in my areas of talent. I believe it's a form of worship, and I believe I need to stay away from the things that I'm not good at. And then we hire people that we believe, and again, we've made mistakes. As long as you have somebody with integrity, character, and talent to a degree then we're comfortable moving them around to try to find a spot. If we can't, we're comfortable parting ways and helping them launch into the next best thing for them. So those are some principles that are helpful, that have been important, that you utilize.
There are three critical things that I've learned over my twenty-plus years, evaluating over one hundred and fifty different business models as a Christian entrepreneur.
I've put together my observations and these three keys (I learned the hard way) into a Christian Entrepreneur Manifesto, along with some step-by-step walk-throughs and demonstrations.
There is no opt-in required.
It walks through my favorite model, the Finders model.
It might be interesting for a Christian looking to start something new or for the first time to escape the "business running them vs. them running their business" or the nine to five and not to have to work for themselves or someone else until the age of eighty.
Check it out here:
I hope it helps!
PS: God is a big God.
He gives us above and beyond what we can ask or think.
We must ask big.
We must think big.
And if we don't, it's not His fault if we live limited.
Work hard, pray harder, and never ever ever ever quit.
You've got this!
PPS: Whenever You’re Ready... Here's How I Can Help You Generate An Additional $5 to $10k Per Month Or More:
- Check Out Our Christian Entrepreneurship Manifesto
Learn why some "make it" and others don't
- Access More Articles Like This
Sharpen your Mindset, Model, and get Mentored
- Watch Our Christian Business Incubator Training
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Make sure you read the Manifesto and review the Training first and then let's hop on a call and get all your questions answered about the Christian Startup Business Incubator