Business Models Archives | What Works
EP 288: Rethinking Your Business Amidst Change With Second Breaks Founder Lou Blaser

EP 288: Rethinking Your Business Amidst Change With Second Breaks Founder Lou Blaser

We are all facing uncertainty–as we do every day. So I wanted to talk with business owners who have their own stories about embracing uncertainty this month and the first person I thought of was Lou Blaser, the founder & host of Second Breaks.

I’ve watched Lou embrace uncertainty over and over again throughout the years. I’ve watched her step outside her comfort zone and I’ve watched her take courageous action.

Earlier this year, she announced that she’d made the decision to upend her business, then a career coaching company for late Boomers and Gen Xers, and move back to the Philippines to help out with her aging m. And while she could have tried to continue with her business as is–she made the bold move to use the change as a way to rethink everything.

That’s where this conversation starts–and throughout, Lou and I talk about how her business has evolved, the questions she asked herself to create the new plan, how she could use her existing assets in new ways, and how she started experimenting with her new ideas.

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EP 286: Pricing For The Future With Fire + Mineral Jewelry Founder Tiffany Whipps

EP 286: Pricing For The Future With Fire + Mineral Jewelry Founder Tiffany Whipps

As you grow as a business owner, you can start to anticipate market changes and plan for the way your cost of goods increases. You can set a goal to position your brand in a certain way and you can become smarter about your target market so you understand the value of what you’re offering more fully.

And perhaps most importantly…

You can plan for the ways your cost of doing business will evolve.

You can anticipate the team members you’ll hire. You can plan for the software upgrades you’ll need. You can build in margin to cover unforeseen circumstances or changes in the market that impact your bottom line.

Very, very few business owners do this from the start. But over time, you can get better and better at your pricing strategy—and even your overall financial strategy—so that you’re planning for the future instead of reacting to it.

And that’s exactly what I’m talking about with today’s guest, Tiffany Whipps. Tiffany is the founder and designer behind Fire + Mineral Jewelry. Tiffany has been designing jewelry full-time since 2012 and she’d be the first to admit that her pricing strategy has become a lot more sophisticated since she put together her first line sheet on a whim.

I originally invited Tiffany onto the show to showcase how money flows through product-based businesses. And we absolutely talk about that. But we also talk about how Tiffany’s approach to money has grown more sophisticated over time, as well as how she’s now pricing for the business she wants to have instead of the business she has right now.

Tiffany and I talk about how her pricing strategy has evolved over the years, why she’s focused on products that have more long-term value as opposed to what’s trendy right now, and how she’s using her goals to set prices for her new work.

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EP 285: Going All In With Strategist Marie Poulin

EP 285: Going All In With Strategist Marie Poulin

This week, we’re taking a look at what happens when you’re able to go all in on every aspect of building your business—product, marketing, and operations—and how that impacts how money flows through your business.

To do that, I talked with Marie Poulin.

Now, Marie has been on the podcast several times now. Most recently, I spoke with her about her decision to not build a business that scales. Funnily enough, at just about the time that interview aired, things started to change for Marie.

Marie found something she could go all in on.

And suddenly her path to the right product, the right marketing, and the right operations became clear—as did the path to making money with ease.

In this conversation, Marie and I talk about how she transformed her business when she stopped resisting and found the thing she could go all in on. We talk about how the way she makes money has changed, how she’s finding her customers, how it’s all impacted her personal finances, and what she’s investing in now that her business is growing with ease.

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EP 279: Leveraging Masterminds For Support With Startup Pregnant Founder Sarah Peck

EP 279: Leveraging Masterminds For Support With Startup Pregnant Founder Sarah Peck

Last year, at an in-person gathering of one of the masterminds that we run at What Works, one participant told me that they didn’t really need anyone to tell them what to do with their business. They knew exactly what they should be doing. Instead, they said they needed people to ask why they weren’t doing it.

That’s why they were in the mastermind group.

To me, that’s the perfect illustration of how a mastermind group can support business owners who are committed to—not just learning a new marketing skill or figuring out how to launch a new product—but to becoming a more whole entrepreneur and building a business that works exceptionally well.

I’ve been running mastermind groups of one sort or another for about 5 years and I have a lot to say on the subject. But I didn’t want you to just get my thoughts…

So I invited someone equally as passionate about masterminding as I am, Sarah K. Peck, the founder of Startup Pregnant.

Sarah was on the show before talking about how the Startup Pregnant podcast got started—but the whole business and community of Startup Pregnant has evolved and grown a ton since then. Check out Episode 134 for our original conversation.

Today, Sarah and I jam about masterminding—how we participate in masterminds, how we facilitate masterminds, and how we leverage them in our businesses. We also talk about the role masterminding plays in how you get support as an entrepreneur and we talk through how we structure sessions for the best outcomes.

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EP 254: Transforming Your Business Model With Growth & Impact Strategist Toi Smith

EP 254: Transforming Your Business Model With Growth & Impact Strategist Toi Smith

Today’s guest is Toi Smith—a growth & impact strategist who has wrestled with this same question.

Toi and I talk about how her identity and business model has shifted from virtual assistant to online business manager to strategist and why each pivot was necessary. We also talk about the ups and downs of making these changes and the impact each shift has had on her rates, working hours, and client load.

Pay close attention to how Toi talks about her mindset shift away from thinking of her work as labor and into thinking of it as thought partnership and leadership.

She’s had to dismantle and reassemble the way she thinks about how she and her business creates value in order to realize the full potential of her own entrepreneurship.

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EP 245: Coaching Yourself To Stick With It With Original Impulse Founder Cynthia Morris

EP 245: Coaching Yourself To Stick With It With Original Impulse Founder Cynthia Morris

Cynthia Morris is the founder of Original Impulse. She coaches writers, artists and entrepreneurs to get out of their own way so they can finish projects that matter. She’s also the author of The Busy Woman’s Guide To Writing A World-Changing Book.

Cynthia and I talk about her 20 year journey of business ownership, creative exploration, and coaching. I ask her about the lessons she’s learned along the way and how she’s kept the business going for over 2 decades.

Pay close attention to the commitment she made to taking risks and the willingness to do the hard creative work she asks her clients to do.

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EP 238: Scaling Up With A Certification Program  With The Ops Authority Founder Natalie Gingrich

EP 238: Scaling Up With A Certification Program With The Ops Authority Founder Natalie Gingrich

My guest is Natalie Gingrich, the founder of The Ops Authority.

After spending 15 years in corporate at a Fortune 150 company, she dove into entrepreneurship leveraging her project management and HR experience to assist high-level influencers in the online and small business worlds. What she discovered along the way was that there was a ton of super capable women whose skill sets were not leveraged and whose natural tendency toward leadership wasn’t acknowledged.

In this conversation, Natalie and I talk about why she decided to create a certification program instead of an online course, why she takes screening candidates very seriously, and how the certification unfolds from start to finish. We also talk about some of the new opportunities she sees for growth now that the certification program is underway & successful.

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EP 234: Choosing Not To Scale With Oki Doki Co-Founder Marie Poulin

EP 234: Choosing Not To Scale With Oki Doki Co-Founder Marie Poulin

Today, my guest is Marie Poulin—our first 3 time guest here on the pod!

Marie is not someone to miss the important questions. Her and her husband Ben are building Oki Doki with the life and work they want to lead top of mind. That choice has brought them face to face with some scrutiny from people with a scale-or-die mindset.

Marie recently wrote a lengthy article about her choice not to scale—or, not to scale in any conventional way—so, of course, I wanted to bring her on the show while we’re covering scale to talk about it!

Marie and I chat about the hybrid business model Oki Doki has developed, the cocktail party conversation that shook her up, how she approaches finding a equilibrium with her energy, and how her focus on profitability has paid off.

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EP 233: Creating Scale With A Single Offer With Membership Guys Co-Founder Callie Willows

EP 233: Creating Scale With A Single Offer With Membership Guys Co-Founder Callie Willows

Building a subscription-based product is one key way small businesses can scale up.

But they can require a significant trade-off in at the beginning. It takes time, energy, infrastructure, and savvy marketing to get to a point where the business is healthy and profitable.

I know this from personal experience.

So does Callie Willows, the co-founder of The Membership Guys. Callie runs Member Site Academy, a leading training resource and community for membership site owners.

Callie and I talk about why The Membership Guys chose to focus on just one offer, the mindset shifts she’s had to make running a membership site, the operations that go into keeping members happy, and how running a membership site is a great fit for her as an introvert.

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Tara McMullin

Tara McMullin

Host of What Works

Tara is a podcaster, small business community leader, and speaker. She’s been helping small business owners find what works for them for over a decade. Her goal is to push past the hype and facilitate candid conversations about doing business in the New Economy.