The Number One Business Question I Regularly Ask Myself
After years of trial and error and navigating periods of burnout, I’m delighted to report that I have a business model that really works for me. Not only does it bring in regular and sustainable income but it does so in a way that allows me to take time off when I need to, not work crazy hours each day and still have an impact on my client’s lives and businesses.
This is not by accident, it’s by design and from keeping my focus firmly on one question and 3 variables.
How can I make the most amount of money, with the greatest amount of ease without sacrificing impact?
What I love about this question is that it’s answer leads me to a business model that is sustainable for me. Let’s look at each of these in turn.
You don’t need me to tell you how important income is. Without income, we don’t have a business (rather an expensive hobby). Without a steady and consistent flow of income that covers our expenses, we struggle. Often living month to month in a state of stress and worry, which then impacts how we show up to our work.
We might even repel would-be clients with a needy, desperate energy because we are so focused on getting the sale that we struggle to stay in a mode of generous service.
Or maybe you are making regular and consistent income and want to grow. You want to go beyond just covering expenses and want to be able to save for the future, travel, buy a home.
Whatever your situation, as a business owner, income is likely to be a priority for you.
If it’s the only priority, that’s when we run into trouble. That’s where we see businesses that prioritise profits before people and we all know how that goes.
As conscious business owners, only focusing on money isn’t enough of a driver for us, so it would be unsustainable over the long term if this was our only priority.
When we seriously consider how easy it is for us to do the work we do, we begin to work smarter instead of harder.
It’s a common mistake to think that if we are going to make a decent living, we must be working hard. I long ago stopped buying into the idea of hard work. Does that mean I slack off all day and do the bare minimum? Hell no!
What it means is that I consider each and every task and service I offer in my business and ask myself, how can I make this easier for me to do? How can I work smarter instead of harder?
Over the years that has looked like simplifying my services so that I still serve my people but without overstretching myself to do so. Why? Because overgiving and overextending ourselves is not sustainable in the long term.
For the conscious business owner, having a positive impact is a key driver in everything you do. It’s why you do the work you do, it’s what motivated you to start your own business in the first place.
When impact is focused on above all else, we start to see overgiving. We tell ourselves that in order to have a meaningful impact we must be doing all of the things for all of the people, all of the time.
When impact is prioritised over income, I hear business owners saying things like “the money isn’t important to me” and this is where I despair.
When we only focus on impact and ignore the importance of both income and ease, we deplete ourselves in the name of giving. We give everything to our clients and don’t get enough in return. We live in a state of unsustainable struggle and over time, this inevitably becomes unsustainable.
When making the most money in the easiest way possible becomes the goal, without any consideration of impact then the end user or client can suffer because the impact of the service is not being prioritised.
Maintaining a healthy balance between all three of these variables (income, ease and impact) is crucial and ultimately leads to the most sustainable way to do business.
What this looks like in practice
Allow me to give you an example of how this has played out in my own business.
When I first launched the Conscious Business Mastermind back in 2020, I had the price low — 100€ a month. I gave a lot for that. Weekly calls all year round, new classes every month and 1:1 sessions for every member, every quarter. The number of participants that first year was also low. The result being a yearlong group program that wasn’t profitable and that took an enormous amount of time to deliver. Low income, high impact, low ease. Not sustainable.
Over the years, asking myself the question, how can I make the most money, with the greatest amount of ease, without sacrificing impact? has led to many changes which have resulted in the Mastermind becoming a hugely important revenue generator in my business. It’s also where I see many of my clients really soar. Those changes have included: Putting the price up from 100€ to 135€ a month, removing the free 1:1 sessions and instead offering these at a discounted rate and focusing on getting the numbers of participants up. Given that I repeat much of the teaching, every year it gets easier to deliver.
I’m regularly told by participants that I could charge more for what’s on offer but I don’t because I think that on this service, I’ve got the balance of Income, Ease and Impact just right. But this didn’t happen by accident. It happened because I thought long and hard about these 3 variables and made sure that all were taken into account as I tweaked and redesigned my offer. High income, high impact and high ease = sustainable over the long-term which is why I’ve offered it for 4 years running.
So how about you? Is your business model working for you? Could you use some support. See below for details of a low-cost workshop I’m running on this very topic.
On Friday 24th February, I’m hosting a Create Your Sustainable Workshop in which I’ll share what it takes to create a business model that can sustain you financially and energetically. To register head here.