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Business Growth Expert Sarah Dawn

by Business RadioX®
June 17th 2021
Sarah Dawn, Business Growth Expert at Sarah Dawn Consulting, Attorney, and Host of The Blissed Biz Podcast, helps entrepreneurs and professionals create the business of their dreams that supports a li... More
broadcasting live from the Business Radio X studios in Atlanta Georgia. It's time for coach the Coach Radio brought to you by the Business Radio ex Ambassador program. The no cost business development strategy for coaches who want to spend more time serving local business clients and less time selling them. Go to be our ex ambassador dot com to learn more. Now here's your host lee Cantor here, another episode of Coach the Coach radio and this is gonna be a fun one today. We have with us Sarah dawn with Sarah Dawn consulting. Welcome Sarah highly. Thanks for having me on the show. Well I'm excited to learn what you're up to. Tell us a little bit about your consulting practice, how you're serving folks. Yeah, I'm working with business owners to help them reach all of those growth goals. What do they want to do in their business to make more money? And having that set up really super intentionally so that that growing business fits in a lifestyle.

They love. Most entrepreneurs don't do just that it's kind of all or nothing and it ends up this roller coaster and we think that you can have it all now. What's your back story? How did you get involved in this line of work? I actually am an attorney and I think we can tend to serve our best role in helping people down the path that we forged a little bit harder with a little bit more effort. I picture kind of going through that jungle with the machete. That's what I did in growing my business as an attorney. I was a partner in a law firm. I was hustle work nonstop. All I wanted to do was build and grow that business success and I didn't have any measurement for what personal success would look like. What was the life that I wanted? I just wanted to grow more, have the clout, have the money and the other parts weren't falling in place. I think I had some belief system. I know I had some belief systems behind it, on where my value lied within my organization, even though it was mine.

I thought I had to work harder and longer hours to be valuable to it. And I fully burned myself out. I had health concerns for several years in a row that I kind of war is a badge of honor, that it meant I must be doing something right Because along with those health concerns was a growing business and ultimately my body knocked me down in a way that like I couldn't ignore it, I ended up with a sudden onset of Bell's palsy, which is paralysis of half of your face. And that was my pause. Um I won't pretend like I'm a quick learner, it's not like that happened and I thought, oh I better do something better. It took some time. But that was my realization that I needed to structure my own work differently. And over the years I realized I could do that and I didn't have to give up the success part. I didn't have to make less money just because I was getting better. Um I don't love the word balance but kind of better variety in my life.

And when I did that for myself, I thought every entrepreneur I meet, when I'm networking, when I'm doing anything meeting other business owners, there's still that same practice, people say I'm an entrepreneur, so I get to pick which 80 hours a week I work or talking about answering those midnight emails and I was like, man, everybody else is doing this and I really want to show them that they don't have to. Now, are you still doing loitering or is this now? Um Just one of the tools in your tool belt and your consulting. In addition to the loitering, Very, very little loitering. I don't take any new clients. Um That's actually probably one of the hardest boundaries to draw with my consulting clients because it's kind of like, okay, we got a lawyer in house to let's let's do all that part and I refer all of that out. Um I have very narrow little bit of loitering and I just realized this is the work that lights me up.

Watching this success growth for people has more fulfillment for me than any contract I've ever drafted in my career. So I'm moving that direction to have little to no loitering in my life. Uh and now you chose to call your firm consulting, not coaching. How do you kind of discern the difference between consulting and coaching? Yeah, I know. Um I know people feel really passionate about those different words when people say well which is it? I say yes. You know it depends in the strategy part, it's very much consulting where I'm giving my client tools, showing them how to structure it in their business and guiding them through strategy. Marketing plans, very much consulting when it's one on one with that business owner. A lot of coaching. A lot of um diving into belief systems and behaviors and leadership training, that's the part that's more coaching.

But across the board whatever anybody wants to call it, I'm getting people results, whatever it's called. I love the results at the end. So now how do people kind of find you, what what are they going through where uh the solution is to call Sarah and her team. I have gotten most of my client base so far, just through networking and referrals. I have a huge referral base where this I'm a business owner that loves my life is contagious and that's exactly what I want to develop here. I want to, I want to create a movement of doing business better, where you're not having to pick between, you know, being mentally healthy and loving life and having success in your business. So a lot of my clients have been referral based, like I said, one client will do it, they have their network and friends seeing something shift and they're like, what are you doing? And I get that next referral.

Um and then just through my network, showing up in rooms, talking with people and just kind of having this conversation about what's possible and etching away at those beliefs that you have to pick now when you're working with someone, are they? They must have a level of self awareness where they're like, hey, something's not going right. Um, there must be a better way, Let me explore, kind of, some coaching or consulting or advisory services to help me get through this, or is it something that their symptoms that they're like, hey, my business hasn't grown in six months or a year, or I'm losing clients, or, you know, um, having trouble in my relationship? Like, are there symptoms or is it something that just self awareness where they're just realize they have this kind of realization? Yeah, the symptom base is, you know, if I'll get a referral from an acupuncturist or a therapist of somebody that has gone to them for the problem, those symptoms that are coming up, somebody with some other practitioner modality that the individual has said, I'm burning out, My body's shutting down, something's not working for me.

And when it's clear it's their business, those referrals come over to me now, it's what's the saying? You can lead a horse to water, but you can't force them to drink. I can tell pretty quickly when I'm talking to someone, especially if it's somebody that's wanting one on one services with me. This consulting service, I can tell pretty quickly if they have the level of self awareness that I can do any good for them. If I hear somebody say, well, I've already tried everything and I actually know already that nothing works or or my business is different. You can't really apply any new strategies to it. You everything has to stay exactly the same way it is. Well, okay, there's, there's really not. You've got to have that level of self awareness that you just mentioned that something is not working and something needs to shift that you don't know about yet. If you're convinced that there aren't any solutions that will work and there's nothing in your business or lifestyle you can change, okay.

There's nothing I could do with that. So now, I mean, even in your own life you were having those like the universe was giving you signals and you were like, I got this, this is just another hurdle in front of me. So you weren't ready for the work at that point? Yeah. There were plenty of years that I actually remember a life coach approaching me. He was in my network and I was putting on this big event that was part of my firm. We would have these huge events that would just kind of bring in, not necessarily the clients, but the network and build clout. And I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off and a gentleman that was a life coach, which actually put a really bad taste in my mouth for life coaches for a while, but because my mindset wasn't there, I wasn't ready. Um he approached me and just said, Sarah, how are you? I'm like, oh good, great, thanks for being here, have a drink. And he's like, no, I'm watching you and I think we need to talk, are you doing okay?

And I wasn't having it for a second. I took major offense to him noticing that I might not have it all together and he could kick rocks as far as I was concerned. And so I can relate to that. I can relate to not being ready to make any shifts. And I think that's why I can see it so easily. And somebody else of, I've been on that part of the path and I get I get it, I don't shame anybody for it, I've been there, um but but you have to be ready to actually make those big changes, otherwise you'll be fighting against your mentor versus working with them to create, to create that new structure, right? And I think that's an important issue to deal with when it comes to coaching. If if you're being coached, you have to be vulnerable and you have to be humble and if you want it to work, I mean, otherwise you're just looking for someone to argue with and pay them a fee for that, you know, like, it's not really moving the ball for you, but you think you're doing something and you're checking that box, like, oh, I got a coach, it didn't work.

Another thing that didn't work, and you, kind of, your self sabotaging? Yeah, yeah, and I was a lawyer, I mean, I could argue with anything, right? And I actually, I highly encourage my clients as part of onboarding to take the Disc profile. Now, you know, there's disk, there's any a gram, there's several different of those personality profiles. I love disk, I have no affiliation with them, but I love disk because in a work in leadership setting, it gives a really, really good idea on how controlling they are of the whole situation. That's the D level of disk and then how open they are to any kind of change, which is the s I immediately look at their D. N. S. Levels to say, are are they going to need to control every bit of this process, and how open are they to have any kind of change?

And I'll not just because of the disc profile scores, there would also be a conversation but I don't want somebody's money. If if we can't do anything, I need to be fulfilled by my work too. So if if we can't make movement if if they can't open up, take some more time, look I'll give some more resources for them to look into for them to decide that they're ready to come back around and really dive in. Yeah, I find that a lot of coaches um they're hesitant to just use that true North and say look this is a good fit or it's not and if it's not let's not work together because it's not gonna be good for either one of us. But a lot of people are so you know the money part of it is, so in front of them, it's hard for them to pass up money, but um, you know, they're sometimes that's the best thing to do is to just just work with good fits and everything will take care of itself. Your life becomes a lot easier rather than just forcing every client with every challenge into what you do, even though it may not be really what you do.

Yeah, it may not be the best fit for either one of us. And you know, it's kind of the same thought processes that expensive money just because you're a business coach or a consultant doesn't mean you're immune to the same problems that you help people with, so that those money issues can creep up for anybody. And it's really hard to turn away money, even when it's good, it's hard to turn it away. Um, but it can be really expensive money to chase and energetically expensive to take on those clients that you just can't move the needle for him. So now because it's not my work. It's not the coaches work that moves the needle. It's the clients work with your guidance. Well that's the that's the the ultimate thing though. The client has to want it more than you. Like if they don't want to do the work unless they're just going to pay you to do work which is a different service. You know that it then it can't work like it's just not gonna work. It's like how much I want my childs room to be cleaned.

Doesn't matter. Well unless you're going to go and clean it and then the child trained you into cleaning their room. Exactly. Exactly. A whole new whole new service model there now um Talk me through the on boarding. Uh, so like say I come to you and I got a challenge or I'm frustrated or things aren't going my way. What does that first kind of conversation look like? What, what, what are some of the questions you're asking me and how are you able to kind of see if it is going to work or not? Yeah. In that first conversation, I love for it to be casual and just really genuinely learning about the other person. How did they get into their business? What did they love about it? What, what aspects of the work they do that just really light them up and remind them, Oh yeah, this is the reason I started this work and then also getting curious about what do you procrastinate on all the time? What is always hit in the back burner and then you're mad at yourself for it. What comes across your desk and you instantly can feel some resentment towards that being there.

Tell me about your customers, tell me about how you want to serve them and what the highest money making parts of your business are. Just getting really curious about all of that. And that doesn't even have to be an onboarding conversation. Any entrepreneur I meet, I just get giddy listening to all of that. That gives me really great insight on where, where do we need to make some changes or do they even know, do we need to do a whole lot more work into just diving in on what's not working for them? What's not the money making activities? And then then I kind of follow that up with, I have a set questionnaire to ask similar questions and then goes into, you know, what are some measurable goals you would really like to reach in the next three months, the next six months and see how realistically we can implement some strategy and get those goals met because oftentimes they'll have something that they want to reach in the next three months, but it's because it's been a goal on their list for the last two years and some things just permitted them from getting to that.

And then that last piece is the Disc profile. Um I love to get it from the client themselves. If they have a team that's going to be integral to the work we do. I love to get the Disc profile from the employees and from the team to I'm very, very cautious about that though, because it can freak people out, employees, it can really freak them out. And the last thing we want is to create a flight risk from their team while we're trying to make positive, this person asking me these questions and that's how they feel. They, you know, you're their team also feels fulfilled by their work. So if somebody from the outside's coming in, they instantly have the question of, did I do something wrong? And then now I have to take this personality test that in their mind. What if I fail it in this third and Sarah comes in and tells my boss I shouldn't be here and that's that's not how it works, but it's really hard to convince them that that's not how it works. So while I would, well, I love to have that information, it really helps us structure things to be optimal for the team were so delicate about that, that there's trust their first and excitement about the work we're doing first.

Before we go, um throwing personality test in front of team members. Now, do you, do you must your work with individual entrepreneurs or business leaders or do you work with the entire teams? I've worked with entire teams. That is so fun to get everybody on board, but it has to start with that business owner operator and that's my ideal client is the owner operator. It's not an entrepreneur that just kind of threw their money into a business and there's a whole different group that's not really my niche. Um but those owner operators that have a role within their business, but that role is just way too intense for them to keep creating and innovating to make the business grow, They need to get out of the weeds and be more of that kind of umbrella person than the critical employee in their own business. Now, when you're working with that person. Um And and do you have a story? You can share that? Maybe you helped somebody go to a new level. Uh Has that happened?

Yeah. Oh yeah. Okay. So one of one of my clients actually started as a solo procure and was hitting a place in her business that she had more and more clients coming to her. She was a fitness coach. So she had more and more clients coming to her and she was maxed out and she was getting to the point that she was rethinking whether her business would work for her or not considering just completely ca bashing the whole idea and starting over because it's it's um it's emotionally draining especially like fitness, nutrition, that kind of thing. The clients need a lot from you emotionally as they go through their transformation. And she just didn't see how she could serve everybody she wanted to serve and and have any level of her own mental health. So every time she gave to a client, she was breaking down a little bit more.

And within a year of where I worked with her for about a year, a little bit more, maybe about a year and a half. And within a year she went from this mindset that she was the only person that could ever serve her clients. There's no way she could ever higher. On two, she had a team of five. She had other coaches underneath her taking care of the client base. She was able to take her services at a premium price level and doubled her profit, not just revenue, but doubled her profit in that year. Just by looking at things more systematically and realizing that she wasn't the only person that could do what she did. She was the face of the company and she was the innovator within the company. But she could train other skilled individuals to serve her client base. And that one was so much fun watching that transition go from a burned out solo procure to the president of an actual company. Now you mentioned the niche of an owner operator.

Do you have a niche from an industry standpoint? You know, I haven't had to narrow that down. And it's so fun when people with different industries come in. I've worked with, um, several nutrition and fitness coaches. I've worked with salons and aestheticians and um, various cosmetologists. I've worked with attorneys and CPAs and I've worked with, um artists, graphic designers, people in that kind of industry. So I haven't needed to do that because the pain point has been the niche for me, it's, I'm operating this thing and I need to get out of the weeds. And that pain point has been so specific. I've been able to apply this modality across the board. Now, if somebody wants to learn more about your practice or get on your calendar, is there a website, yep? It is W W W dot Sarah Don consulting dot com.

And actually when you go to my website, the very first thing you're going to see is a free tool to get you started on doing the work I do with my clients. It walks you through a week of itemizing what needs to come off of your plate and exactly how to do that without losing money in your business. Um and then pretty soon within days on that website is going to be a link to a new program that I have started called Blissed Business Mastery where it takes the work. I do one on one with people and lets me expand it in a course level with individual support to just reach more people to start doing like I said, doing business better. Well. Sarah congratulations on all the success. You're doing important work and we appreciate you. Thank you. I appreciate it. And I love being on here talking to you today. All right. This is lee Cantor Wills Hill next time on coach, the coach radio. Yeah, true. Yeah, Yeah.

Okay. Yeah.

Business Growth Expert Sarah Dawn
Business Growth Expert Sarah Dawn
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