Ways to Improve Your Team
This next question is absolutely a more creative question, we've kind of already addressed this, but what are the jobs within each of those teams? There wasn't some magical formula for social network development community development that I followed to come up with, like, member experience specialists. You know how I came up with that? I wrote a job description for it, and I asked myself what should I call this team member. (laughs) And that was like the third name that I came up with, it was definitely better than the other ones. It was creative process, right? I enjoyed exploring personally, what do I want this job to be responsible for, what do I want this team member to contribute to the organization. Yes, what are the responsibilities and tasks going to be, how are they gonna help us fulfill our ultimate vision, and what do I call them? So I started with the team, we knew we needed someone else, in this case, two other people to help us really create value and deliver value throug...
h our community, then I drilled down and thought how would this particular position best contribute in terms of responsibilities, and then I named it something. You guys have any ideas of what jobs might be missing in your business right now? Thinking about, yeah, Megan?
Yeah, I mean I think this is where we're kind of going, but yeah, I feel like I'm in every single one of these roles right now, and kind of using a similar, so definitely thinking about what your kind of zone of genius is, or where you, and I know, like you said you're not the only one who could do it, but where should you be focusing your time, and so thinking like sales and marketing, getting someone else who that's their zone of genius that could help in there, and even the delivery, like even though I feel very like that's all I do, like my entire business is taking what's in my brain and delivering it out, but like what a service to my clients if there was someone else who could also do that.
Exactly, what a service to your clients if someone else could do it.
Right, with a slightly different, with whatever their expertise is, or a slightly different spin, because we all know you hear something sometimes a different way or you read it in a book and all of the sudden it clicks for you, and so, yeah- I'm just drawing like blank lines.
Blank lines. (laughs)
Well, that's actually, I'm gonna skip that next question and get to exactly what you're saying, what's your ideal job? What's your ideal job? Right now I'm doing pretty close to my ideal job, my job is to be the visionary and to run our growth team. Eventually I will give that piece up, I actually really like marketing, Giada knows, you guys know, too. I really like marketing, so growth really makes sense to me, I love it, that doesn't drain me at all to be doing those things, so I'm pretty close to my ideal job right now. What is your ideal job? Sharon?
Mine is essentially value creation, I want to create the things.
And how does the leadership piece fall into that? Do you see yourself being in a leadership, or in that kind of part of the leadership team?
Yeah, I definitely like managing the overall project.
So, yeah, I would be very comfortable still being in control, I guess (laughs)
Cool, so it's maybe like, yeah, your job is twofold, it's the leadership piece and it's value creation.
Alright! Melissa, what's your idea job?
Definitely being the visionary, and value delivery and probably value creation as well.
Yeah, excellent. Aiella, what's your idea job?
Well, I think I'm getting a little stuck on the growth area as far as, like, for instance, in your business, would you consider things like your podcast part of value creation or growth, or both?
Yes, great question, no, it's growth.
So, for me, I'm similar because my community and my growth because I have these two are very similar to your structure, are one and the same in some ways, because part of the asset of the community is that they get special parts of the growth, if that makes sense, so part of the asset of being part of my membership community is they get more access to parts of my growth, what's the word, (laughs).
They're getting exclusive access to bonuses and stuff.
Yeah, exactly. So, like for instance, in the podcast that I have, everyone gets to listen to the podcast, but the members get exclusive access to the guests, and they get to ask them questions and discuss and go deeper with these people who are more experts or have specific experiences that they want to know about.
So things like that, so I am not going to be out of any of those three, I am definitely gonna have my hand in leadership, community and growth.
But it's definitely the F and A that I could take myself out of it would be nice.
Yeah, okay, so, in the community piece here, and since we do have similar business models, this is good. Members of co-commercial might find it surprising that I didn't first put myself on the community team, right? I am there, like, literally every day. I'm writing posts, I'm commenting on things, we say I'm a super user, right? I'm the founder and super user. Not founder and expert, not founder and guru in the community, I'm a super user. I just, I love the internet, that's the truth spot, okay? (group laughs) So, I could absolutely put myself on the community team as well, but in the capacity that you just said that, which is that create content for growth which becomes content, or a different level of content for co-commercial, but I don't own this, Shannon owns this, right?
So my job is to show up and be the super user, I don't have to own the responsibility of this.
Yeah, that makes sense to me, cool.
Well (group laughs) I'm waiting for shoes to drop, and they're like dropping slowly, slowly.
So, perhaps I should start with a question, which is, I know I'm building a thought leader company.
And I'm not sure what the components of that are yet, completely.
Which is why I'm not completely there, in terms of nailing down team members and growth chart and all that. Having said that, given your experience and your personal experience and what you know about the small business space where there are thought leader companies.
What are some typical roles that they perform in terms of this five part model and the leadership piece. Do the tend to hold on to the leadership piece because thought leadership does sort of drive the way you build out your company, and so that leadership role is you kind of keep that close always, and do they then then tend to farm out the finance and admin, and to some extent the growth part of it and keep the other parts a little closer.
Yeah, we used Sally Hogshead as an example earlier, and so she definitely has a thought leader style business.
Right, for sure.
To kinda go back to the visionary and integrator piece and not to necessarily use that language, her husband who is the president of the company is definitely, he's executing plans, or developing plans and making sure they're executed, he's managing projects, he's kinda managing the overall direction of the business. But she's still in charge of setting the vision, she's still in charge of, you know, making sure that what the company is creating is in line with her thought leadership, and where she sees her work going, and how she's developing new ideas and new concepts and all that good stuff.
I think in terms of smaller businesses starting off in a thought leadership model, honestly one of the first places people, I think, should look to bring on someone to own something is value delivery.
Not so much in terms of, like client services, necessarily, but making sure that customers are happy.
So, that could be answering questions, it could be almost like account managing, so like, if you have a one to one client service, maybe you're the one who's actually delivering value, but they're the ones saying, okay, your next meeting's with Maya, you're gonna do this, here's what you need to prepare, here's the homework she gave you from last time and kind of walking people through the process so you don't have to do that, and all you have to do is show up and be the thought leader, or be the coach, or be the consultant, or be the guide, maybe is the better way to say it in your case.
Obviously finance and admin tends to be an easy place that you can kind of release some responsibility from pretty quickly as well, the one thing I would say about that is don't give up the numbers because you hate numbers and don't want to deal with them. Have somebody else work on them, have someone else own them, but make sure you keep your fingers in that, too.
Because that serves you as a leader, if you don't know how the money is working in your business, then you're not really leading, I would say.
Yeah, exactly. If I could, just a quick followup to that, how, because I love marketing, too, it's been my whole life.
And it's been a hard one to let go of, as I have been on this journey, maybe share a little more about how your journey has been, or people like you have been, in terms of, like you have entered the role of small business owner, having loved marketing, but do you ever get to a point where you go, okay, it is time to let this go because I do need to serve the larger vision of my company.
Yeah, I can tell you a specific story just from this last year, and so, first of all, I did not start my business knowing that I loved marketing, I discovered that I loved marketing (laughs). Which is a brilliant discovery. (laughs)
But when we pivoted from the kinds of offers that we were offering pretty much for the last five years to really focusing 100% on co-commercial, I decided we actually needed to hire a growth advocate that wasn't me, and that was because my whole bandwidth was taken up with the leadership piece, and I had to, had to, had to put the time and energy and mental bandwidth into creating our community culture, or not creating it so much as codifying our community culture, and providing direction, setting goals, you know, figuring out the ins and outs of our platform and how we were gonna partner with different people and all of those things, and I needed to be full time in that position. Now, financially that was a bit of a strain for us as we pivoted, and we're all adults here, we know that pivoting can create some financial strain, right? And so, we knew from the beginning that was gonna be temporary, that we were gonna bring it internally or, as the case was, I took it back over, but that's what this year looked like, was me realizing, at this point, I have to be all in on the leadership piece, or this isn't gonna work, so I have to invest in that role now, and then I can alleviate that investment if I need to, and pull back on that so I can put investment elsewhere, which is what I did, or we could invest in it in a different way later on. Does that make sense? Cool. So, for now, I feel like now we're at a really good spot, and so I can actually balance my role in leadership and my role as growth advocate, but maybe in another six months I won't feel like that, or maybe I'll just be like financially, we don't need me to do this job anymore, I can give it to somebody else, and I can put even more time and attention into leadership. So, my next question to you is actually owning that ideal job, whether you, like me, are like owning leadership and growth, or whether you're owning leadership and value creation, you're owning whatever it is, what do you need to change in your business to allow you to spend more time actually doing your job and not everyone else's job? Amy.
I have an experience with that. I'm building a company that develops live shows, among other things, and four years ago I had a play going up in a little theater in New York, and so I cast 11 parts from 72 people over Skype from where I lived.
And I thought, wow, I'm pretty good at this casting thing. This time, one of the cast members from that show four years ago, I had another one going up in a festival in New York, he wanted to direct it, and I said, well, okay Cameron, that would be great, and he brought in a casting director named Helene, they had 389 people come out for the show.
called 40 of them, and cast the 10 parts so we had the top quarter of the top 10 percent of people coming out, so now I'm thinking am I good at casting, or should I
Let someone else own it, and so this is really resonating with let someone own what they do, so I may let Cameron and Helene own the value delivery
And stay out of their way.
I love it! That's amazing. (both laugh) that's such a great example, thank you for that. Shelly, you had a funny look on your face. (group laughs) how are you feeling?
Um, well it's funny because we just talked about this, you know what can you do to spend more time doing your work and I had an opportunity come up this fall to be an in-house staff photographer for a corporation.
And I had really nothing booked on my fall calendar, and I was like, well, you know why not? Like, I've got nothing to do, I'll take on this role, I'll meet some new people, basically paid education, and network growth, and a girlfriend of mine, who I've known for a long time, we used to be studio partners, said you know, every time you're about on the cusp of something, you find a distraction to put in your way. (group laughs)
And I said to her, you know, I talked myself all the way around it, then I said, oh, no, it's gonna be great, it's gonna be great, and then two weeks into the job I said you know what? You're right. But I'm one of those people that I made commitment so I will carry it out, then I will not do it again.
But, yeah, so I need to stop doing the distractions.
You and me both sister (laughs) Yes, that's great, and just recognizing opportunities sometimes as distractions and yeah, and the clearer you are on what your job really is, and what your vision is, and what you're creating as opposed to what work you wanna be doing, the less you'll be distracted by those opportunities.
Shiny objects. What else? What do you need to change to start doing more of your actual job, the job you want to be doing on your dream team? Lashonda.
Mine's learning to say no and knowing that just because I can do it doesn't mean it needs to be in my plan.
Yeah, amen! (laughs)
And then it was funny, when she talked about casting, because business is a dance and I'm the choreographer, I order the steps and cast the crew instead of just trying to be in the center and on fire looking like I'm doing a crazy dance.
(laughs) yes, amen to that. Anybody else? Yeah.
Like if you can only afford to hire one, you know, what is the next hire? And is it better to focus on, like, you know, making your product better, client services, is it better to focus there is it better to focus on the growth, do you get someone who is gonna help you bring more people into your pipeline, or do you get someone who is gonna help you serve the people who are in there, and kinda figuring out, okay, I'd like to hire 12 people, but you know, where do I start?
So, we're gonna talk about that a little bit in the next segment, and I will also say that I think it depends a lot on your goals, and this is a place where you get to be a decision maker, and I can't tell you what the right answer is.
I can't give you a formula for it, right, but I can talk you through obviously helping you set goals, but in the next segment we're gonna talk about kind of doing what your organization does best, and looking at ways to hire into that so that you're not trying to do too much, but you're keeping it as focused as possible, and one of the places that people go wrong with hiring is it looks like hiring is a way to do more, when hiring should also be a way to do, or not also as in addition to that, but hiring, like many other things we talk about in business, should be a way to do less, better, right. I like those stares of recognition, it makes me so happy. (group laughs) So, so happy. Alright, so we've kinda started talking about who's on your dream team, what is your dream team, in your class journal, there's some space there for you to draw out a chart just like this, there should be, it's on the one page. I don't have one with me, but it's there. (laughs) but you can draw out a chart like this, make it yours. Your chart doesn't need to look like my chart, maybe your teams look completely different, just make sure that each of those areas, each of those parts of every business are represented in one way or another. Start thinking through, what are some of the jobs that end up on each team? Where do you have opportunities to create value, to bring people in who can create value for you? And then what are all the different jobs that you're already doing? Stop thinking about your job as one full-time job, or more than full-time, two full-time jobs, start thinking about it as a grouping of part time jobs, because that's gonna help you identify who you can hire next. Before we wrap up here, any questions about what we've covered so far? Lashonda.
Do you think there's ever, I'm definitely the leadership portion of my business, is there ever an opportunity that you've seen where your business can't afford for you to be the part time because you should be part time outside of your business, so someone else can do the part-time capacity better?
You mean in terms of leadership?
No, not in terms of leadership, so example, if I was in the growth area, but I knew it made more sense for me to do something more profitable part time outside of my business so someone else could grow that growth capacity at a better situation.
Absolutely, yes. I can't just off the top of my head, just this second, I can't give you an example of that, but that's absolutely a decision you should be thinking about. If there's someone who can grow the business better than you can, and you can go out and make more money to fund that growth, that absolutely might be a viable decision for you. I'm not gonna say it's the right way to go, but it is absolutely something you should consider, and it's something that a lot of big businesses have been built on in the past, yeah absolutely. Anything else? No? I love, oh, we have a couple of questions online. Go ahead and bring those up- alright Heidi says Heidi, both, I like to do both. Absolutely when you're hiring someone, bringing someone on board, you need to clue them in on how they're creating value for your organization and moving your organization closer to its goals. They should know how they fit into the big picture and we're gonna talk about this a lot at the end of the class, when we talk about onboarding and just giving people a really good look at where they fit into your company, and at the same time, when you run a small business, you need to tell people they need to be flexible, and you only hire people who identify as flexible people, and that should be something that you build into your job descriptions, something that you build into your interviews, which we will also talk about in the second half of this class, so that you're making sure you're not hiring someone who's like, well, that's not on my job description, so I'm not doing that. (laughing) Like, that's not gonna help you very much, so you wanna hire people who are gonna have that kind of openness and flexibility and can build that into your whole process. Next question? Louise says No. (group laughs) don't do that. I can't say for sure that that's illegal, but I'm pretty sure it is. The only way that there is an exception there is if you have, say two different businesses, you can hire your other business for one business and use that as an expense, but that needs to be properly documented by your accountant and you need to be properly incorporated, and all of that good stuff, or else they call that money laundering. (group laughs) so don't do that. But, in terms of bookkeeping, this isn't something that necessarily your bookkeeper is gonna do for you, or your accountant is gonna do for you, but this is a phenomenal exercise that you can do for yourself. How much is your time worth in each of those jobs that you're doing outside of your core job? And keep track of that, because if you're not accounting for that in pricing, if you're not accounting for that in your sales goals, then you're gonna be stuck in those jobs for forever, so for you guys who are maybe feeling a little more type A with your budgeting, that's a great exercise that you can do, if what would you pay someone else for this time that you are spending doing these tasks for which you've hired yourself, because you might find that you actually have the money when you didn't realize it, that you could actually hire somebody else, and you also just have a much better idea of what it actually costs to run your business. One of the biggest problems I see with small business owners is they don't actually know what it costs to run their business, because they've been hiring themselves for years, that make sense? Cool. Do you guys have an inkling of who you might be able to hire to help you fulfill your vision? Somebody shout something out, Megan.
Like a specific person?
Yeah, or not a specific person, but a specific role.
Yeah, I'm really liking this kind of member experience that in the beginning could cover maybe even some sales, piece all the way through onboarding, all the way through, like when you started talking about I spend so much time with my clients, like, okay, do this for our next call, you know, someone that could handle all of that piece.
And maybe that job can get more smaller and more specific as I'm able to bring on other people, but that's the one that I kinda keep coming back to, is that some kind of member experience all the way from, or client experience all the way from before they're our client all the way through the process.
Love it. Anybody else? A project manager? Excellent, I love it.