5 Business Foundations to Support Your Business Growth

5 Business Foundations to Support Your Business Growth

“It is not the beauty of a building you should look at; it’s the construction of the foundation that will stand the test of time.”

~ David Allan Coe

You can’t build and grow a business on shaky foundations. What I’ve found as a Business Coach is that people often come to me wanting strategies and tactics for getting paying clients, yet often they can’t even tell me clearly what problem they solve for people, who exactly they solve it for or how they solve it. Nor do they have a body of work (content) or any audience (i.e. people to sell to) to speak of.

Having a profitable business under these conditions is unlikely at best. Given this fact, over the last year or so my work has begun to really focus in on supporting people to get 5 foundational pieces in place so that a sustainable level of income generation can be reached. In this post I walk you through what those 5 pieces are.

1. A Well-defined Niche

You’ve undoubtedly heard that niche is something you need to figure out if you are to attract your ideal clients to your business and you’ve also probably heard a slew of different definitions of what niche is. 

In a nutshell, your niche is: the problem you solve + the people you solve it for. 

And here is something that might surprise you, having clarity on the problem you solve is far more important than knowing who exactly you solve it for. I see so many people getting bogged down in client avatar exercises and figuring out demographics, when knowing what problem you solve is actually far more important.

To give you some examples of problems a business might solve:

As a Business Coach, the problem my clients struggle with is a lack of solid foundations meaning that the growth strategies they attempt to implement fail.

A Life Coach might have clients who have a problem with people pleasing and boundary setting which is holding them back from achieving their goals in life.

A Massage Therapist might have clients who have a problem with specific aches and pains that come from sitting at a desk/driving all day.

Knowing the problem you solve (and being able to clearly articulate it) is vital because, when push comes to shove, people will only choose to spend money on your business if they believe you can solve a problem or meet a need they have.

2. Audience Research

The problem with niche is that most people attempt to nail down their niche without doing any research and instead struggle for months (if not years) trying to figure out what problem they solve. I’ve seen too many business owners choosing their niche, then spending thousands of dollars branding their businesses around this niche only to find after a few months that they don’t enjoy working on this problem or with these people. 

In the early stages of business, research is essential, as you seek to figure out the problem you help people with, it’s crucial that you are communicating and in conversation with people who are struggling with that problem. That way your understanding of the problem is such that you are able to articulate and address it using the very language your ideal clients use and understand.

In addition, the more you know about what people need help with, the better placed you are to know if it’s work you really want to do.

Read this post for more on how to conduct audience research. 

3. A Clear Message

I’m surprised by how little I hear people talking about this one and how unclear the information I do see around it is. The clarity of your message lies in your ability to clearly articulate the problem you help people with and how you help them solve it. It consists of your unique point of view or business perspective and your methodology. 

Tad Hargrave has a useful definition of point of view: 

“Point of view is you explaining what you do and why you do it the way you do it. It’s you explaining what your approach is and why you think it will work.”

Your methodology is your how. It’s your unique model for solving the problem your clients have. It’s within your methodology that you might share a framework or journey that you take your clients through.  It’s what makes you unique, it’s what separates you from others in your field. 

Your methodology is your system, your process, the step-by-step journey you take your clients on to take them from problem to solution. It’s the unique combination of tools you use to help your clients to make progress. It’s your diagnosis of the problem and your suggested cure.

Your message, point of view and methodology evolve over time and comes from your experience of working with people on the problem you help them with.

4. An Activated Network

Activating your network, or outreach as I call it, is another foundation that I see many people overlook. Outreach is basically another way of saying connecting or relationship building. When we come to learn that people buy from people they know, like and trust, we begin to appreciate just how important outreach and connection is.

All too often, I see business owners spending countless hours in front of their computer screens working on figuring out their niche, building a fancy website or creating the perfect brand, without talking to anyone. Neither making meaningful connections nor building relationships. Although the world of business has changed dramatically with the rise of the internet and social media, personal and meaningful 1:1 connections are as crucial to business success today as they ever were.

We’re often taught online that the perfect copy, some slick images and a brand to die for is enough to bring our ideal clients flocking to our doors but the truth is nothing brings about sales faster than reaching out to the kind of people we’d love to work with and making genuine and meaningful connections, rooted in integrity and service.

Read blog posts here and here for more on outreach and activating your network. 

5. A Content Strategy

Last but not least I want to talk to you about content. Content is, in my opinion, the glue that holds all of the above together. If not with your content, how else do you communicate your niche, the results of your research, your message and find the very people worth reaching out to?

Content is, contrary to popular belief, far more important to your business image than fancy design, slick copywriting and stunning imagery. For conscious business owners in particular and the people they serve, substance over style is very much the domain of quality and consistent content.

Not only is content the perfect way to share your message and demonstrate your expertise but it’s also the best way to grow your audience. With so many benefits, it’s easy to see why having a solid content strategy in place is a must if you want to see your business grow.

Read blog posts here and here for more on content. 

So there you have it, 5 foundations you don’t want to overlook in your business. Which of these is your business lacking? Feel free to hit reply and let me know. I’ll be happy to share with you my best tips and resource



Once a week, in the form of an e-letter, I share the best of what I know about building a business with integrity for conscious business owners.

The intention behind these letters is to be a voice for integrity within your (undoubtedly) cluttered inbox. To be the one email you can count on to contain strategic and soulful advice for building a business without selling your soul.

If you want to receive the Soulful Strategies Weekly, simply share with me your name and email address below and you’ll start recieving emails right away.

5 Essential Qualities Every Business Owner Should Cultivate

5 Essential Qualities Every Business Owner Should Cultivate

“Effort only fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit.”

~ Napoleon Hill

Being successful in business is not simply about having the right strategy and tools to hand. If it were then way more people would be finding huge success both swiftly and easily, because here’s the thing. The way to build a successful business, is all out there on the internet for free. Sure you might have to sift through a load of crap advice, but you could find a good teacher or coach and steadily implement what they share with you and you would be laughing all the way to the bank.

But this isn’t how it works, is it?

It doesn’t work like this because we’re human. And as humans we love to get in our own way. We have a tendency to make things more complicated than they need to be and if we’re consistent about anything, it’s allowing our self-imposed limitations (fear, doubt, lack of self-belief and so on) to hold us back at every turn. As I contemplated this recently, I realised that there are several qualities we would do well to better cultivate, in order to increase our chances of success.

In this post, I share five of these qualities with you.

1. Passion

If you want to build your own business simply because you like the idea of making a lot of money working in your pyjamas and think that doing so sounds easier than going to work 9-5 for someone else then you’re headed for huge disappointment.

To truly succeed in business and feel happy and fulfilled as you work towards that, you have to have passion for what you do and why you are doing it. Otherwise, when things get tough (which they inevitably do), you won’t have anything to hold on to. When I see new business owners flitting from niche to niche, trying as hard as they can to pick something that will stick, I can’t help feeling that they’re already facing an uphill battle.

Having a burning passion for what you do is the difference between having the wind behind you as you climb the mountain verses blowing hard in your face. That’s why it’s so important to look deep into your soul when it comes to building your business and figure out what really matters to you and how you can uniquely contribute to the betterment of this world.

2. Courage 

Being an entrepreneur requires you to leap into the unknown, time and time again. To create and put your work out there on a regular basis, with limited, or often no, knowledge of how it will be received. There is no doubt about it that for many people this requires courage.

If you’re lucky enough to not care if what you put out into the world fails or succeed, then you’re seriously ahead of the game! Personally, I have got to a point in my life and business where I care little about other people’s reactions (as a result no doubt of cultivating the qualities I share here) but for most people, this is a work in progress. When we can create with true abandon, that’s when we become truly resilient.

Until that time, you will have to call on your courage to see you through. The good news is that being courageous doesn’t mean being fearless, you can feel terrified and still move forward.

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”

~ Nelson Mandela

3. Curiosity 

This is a quality I often see overlooked but one that I believe is crucial in business. We live in a time where the answer to every question is pretty much at our fingertips. With tools like Google and Youtube, we can, with a smart phone or computer, literally find out how to do anything online. Yet often I meet people who seem completely stumped trying to figure things out, things they could easily uncover with a little bit of curiosity. What I see most often is people making assumptions about why something hasn’t or isn’t working. Many assume something won’t work before they’ve even tried.

It’s hugely important to be curious about what is and isn’t working in business. I’m a huge believer in not taking what seems like a failure to heart but instead to look at the variables and ask ourselves, what could be done differently that might, in the future, lead to a different outcome.  Being relentless about asking questions like:

Could I refine my product or service so it’s a better fit for my ideal clients? 

Is there something about the way I’m talking about this product or service that’s confusing to my audience? 

Have I shared information about this product or service widely enough and with enough of the right people? 

What else could I change about what I’m doing to get more sales? 

I often talk to my clients about the importance of becoming like a scientist when it comes to their business.

4. Perseverance 

Something I’ve noticed about the people who succeed, is that they have, at least to some extent, a belief that if they keep at it, eventually, come hell or high water, they will make it. That’s definitely been true for me. Even when all signs have pointed to the opposite, I have never allowed myself to believe that I can’t achieve what I’ve set out for myself.

One of my favourite lessons from Napoleon Hill’s famous book, Think and Grow Rich is “Three Feet from Gold.” If you don’t know the story about perseverance and what happens when you give up too soon, you can read it here.

Allow me to tell you a personal story that sheds more light on this. Years ago, I was sharing with a boyfriend the fact that I wanted to write and publish a book one day. He laughed and said “Don’t you think millions of people have that exact same dream?” without batting an eyelid, I replied, “Yes of course but what do you think is the key difference between those who achieve the dream and those who don’t? The former don’t care how many other people have the same dream, they keep going while the majority of other people give up (or never even start)!”

He wasn’t convinced, but I have a knowing in my heart that this is true and in case you’re wondering the book is written, it just needs some serious work before I get to the publish part but you know, babies and business have been keeping me a touch busy lately.

5. Resilience 

For me resilience comes as a natural result of all of these other qualities combined. When we are truly passionate about what we’re doing, feel deeply rooted in our why and courageously and determinedly head in that direction, adjusting course with curiosity, as and when needed, then we become resilient. It’s inevitable. The changing winds of approval and popularity no longer have a hold on us. We no longer feel beaten down and demotivated when things don’t go as expected or planned, we simply pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, consider and question what we could have done differently and we try again.

And even if that doesn’t work, when we feel we’ve tried every possible iteration of a course of action or strategy to little effect, we simply pivot and we try another approach.

We don’t question ourselves and our abilities, we don’t get down on ourselves and look for reasons why this will never work. Instead we hone and refine our skills and our strategy and we continue. Ever confident that our goal can and will be realised.

This is resilience and given the nature of building, growing and running your own business, believe me you need it.

I hope that reading this list helps and inspires you. These are all qualities that we can work on and cultivate. None of them are beyond you.



Once a week, in the form of an e-letter, I share the best of what I know about building a business with integrity for conscious business owners.

The intention behind these letters is to be a voice for integrity within your (undoubtedly) cluttered inbox. To be the one email you can count on to contain strategic and soulful advice for building a business without selling your soul.

If you want to receive the Soulful Strategies Weekly, simply share with me your name and email address below and you’ll start recieving emails right away.