EP 331: Embracing Simplicity With Brigitte Lyons & Sophy Dale

EP 331: Embracing Simplicity With Brigitte Lyons & Sophy Dale

Doing more and inevitably making things more complex is the main tool we’ve been trained to use.

This leads to all sorts of predictable challenges, though—challenges like the ones I talked about last week with Brigitte Lyons & Sophy Dale—things like scope creep, lack of traction, unsustainable working hours, and less revenue.

It can also lead to leaky boundaries, resentment, anxiety, relationship troubles, and, yes, burnout.

If you identified with their stories and the consequences of Brigitte & Sophy’s more complex businesses, keep listening. This week, we’re talking about what they did to simplify and the incredible results they’ve created.

And if you’re wondering whether this could be the problem you’re experiencing… that you might have made things harder and more complex than they needed to be… but you’re not quite sure yet…

I’d be willing to go out on a limb and say, “Yep, that’s probably true.”

Today’s conversation should give you hope.

Alright, let’s dive into how Brigitte & Sophy actually restructured things, how doing business is different today, and what the results have been—hint: they’re both making more money.

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EP 322: Building A Stronger Team With Productive Flourishing Founder Charlie Gilkey

EP 322: Building A Stronger Team With Productive Flourishing Founder Charlie Gilkey

This week, we’re examining how we nurture the relationships we have with the people who work with us.

I’ll be honest with you: there are so many different places I’d like to take this episode. There are so many of the lessons I’ve learned that I’d like to pass on. Luckily, the lessons I’ve learned have largely come through conversations I’ve had on this very podcast!

And there’s one conversation in particular that I come back to time & time again. It was my first interview with my friend and founder of Productive Flourishing, Charlie Gilkey.

Looking back on this conversation, I can see that there were already lessons that had started to come into focus about how I work with people and what it looks like to nurture relationships with team members. But what I can also see is how much this conversation actually helped to solidify those learnings into how my thinking & approach have changed since.

Charlie and I talk about the operational components of the mindset shift I just dug into. We talk about the art of management, whether for one or for many. We discuss what prompted him to bring his core team on as employees instead of as independent contractors. And how we keeps his team—and himself—from becoming over committed and overwhelmed, as well as how he structures his time to enhance his creativity.

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EP 316: Planning For Parental Leave With Startup Society Founder Gillian Perkins

EP 316: Planning For Parental Leave With Startup Society Founder Gillian Perkins

This week, my guest is Gillian Perkins—a YouTuber with over 450 thousand subscribers, marketing expert, business strategist, and the creator of Startup Society.

I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Gillian through YellowHouse.Media, where we produce her podcast, Work Less, Earn More. Gillian is a disciplined, rigorous executor who is no stranger to making a plan and working it.

And there are plenty of conventional ways that Gillian manages the work to be done—for instance, she loves Asana!

But there was a really intriguing part of our conversation where I learned that Gillian’s found her true way of working on big projects—like planning for her recent parental leave—doesn’t necessarily fit the way we think it’s supposed to be done. She calls it “batching chaotically” and it’s a mode of operation I can definitely relate to!

In this conversation, you’ll hear what Gillian’s average 20-hour workweek looks like, how she changed that up to prepare for parental leave, how she made her leave plan in the first place, and what she’s learned by taking time away from the business over the years.

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EP 315: How I’m Planning For 2021 at What Works & YellowHouse.Media

EP 315: How I’m Planning For 2021 at What Works & YellowHouse.Media

Welcome to the first What Works episode of 2021!

This episode is going to be a look behind the scenes of my two companies and how we’re planning for 2021, some of the choices we’re making, and what we’ll be looking for as the year progresses.

Not only is this the kick-off episode for 2021, it’s the kick-off for our January series on “working the plan.” This month, I’m going to be sharing conversations about planning for parental leave, leveraging LinkedIn, and writing a book—all things that have taken intentional planning and execution!

But before we get to those, I wanted to share not only how I’ll be working the plan this year but how the plan got made in the first place.

I recorded this episode in mid-December 2020. And in that time, I’ve already discovered some things that are altering my plans. After all, the very act of working a plan means you’re gaining new information and even discovering new ideas.

Planning is a learning process.

It’s not about getting the plan right, it’s about finding a starting point and then learning from the result as you go.

My plan is never set in stone. Adjusting my plan doesn’t mean I’ve failed or done something wrong. It means I’m learning. So start with my best guess of what I want to do and then adapt from there as I gain new information and experiences.

In this episode, I’ll share how I’m reallocating my resources this year to better serve my companies, what commitments I’ve made for the year, the Strategic Priorities we’re focused on, and what projects we’re kicking off the year with.

Here’s what works for me when I’m working the plan!

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EP 308: Leveraging Old Skills & Learning New Ones With Bouquet Stock Photography Founders Dana Kaye & Felton Kizer

EP 308: Leveraging Old Skills & Learning New Ones With Bouquet Stock Photography Founders Dana Kaye & Felton Kizer

All this month on What Works, we’re talking about leveling up our skills and, this week, I’ve got the inside scoop on a brand new joint venture that friend of the pod Dana Kaye and her new business partner Felton Kizer put together. Knowing what I’ve learned about my own second company, not to mention working with a business partner, I knew this conversation would teach us a lot about the skills that go into building a new business.

You might remember that Dana Kaye is the founder of Kaye Publicity, a PR firm for authors, as well as the host of the podcast, Branding Outside The Box. Felton Kizer is a photographer and the founder of Off-Kilter Media.

Together, they’ve just launched Bouquet Stock Photography. They wanted to see more people of color, those in the LGBTQIA+ community, non-binary folks, and those with different sizes, ages, and physical abilities represented in the photography that’s available for brands and creators online.

But launching this new business required them to level up.

In this conversation, you’ll hear how they decided to partner up and what skills they’ve learned to communicate clearly, divide labor, and work together effectively. We also talk about the specific skills they needed to make the business a reality—like ecommerce design, search engine optimization, and revenue sharing.

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EP 273: The Tools We Use To Run a Podcast Production Agency with YellowHouse.Media Co-Founders Sean and Tara McMullin

EP 273: The Tools We Use To Run a Podcast Production Agency with YellowHouse.Media Co-Founders Sean and Tara McMullin

This month, we’re going to take a deep dive into the tools that different businesses rely on to run.

We’ll talk software, systems, and processes—plus how it all works together.

We’ll talk about how things have changed, what’s stayed the same, and how to know when it’s time to switch up your tools.

And, we’ll talk with business owners that run different kinds of businesses—digital products, 1:1 services, and agencies.

Focusing on tools is especially relevant right now because many business owners are looking for ways to run more efficiently and more effectively so that they can boost profit or create new streams of revenue as the economy is changing.

We’re also trying out new tools to cope with interruptions and stress. So in this kick off episode, I wanted to talk about both of those pieces of the puzzle with my podcasting partner-in-crime, my husband and the production coordinator for What Works, Sean McMullin.

Together, Sean and I run YellowHouse.Media, a full-service podcast production agency that specializes in helping small business owners create standout podcasts that power their marketing and sales.

We’ll get into the tools we use to run YellowHouse—including how we set up client dashboards, manage projects, edit audio, and consult on content strategy. But first, we wanted to share some of the tools we’re using to mange stress and anxiety right now.

Let’s get into it!

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EP 262: Honing Your Craft Using Smart Project Management With Kickass Conferences Founder Isaac Watson

EP 262: Honing Your Craft Using Smart Project Management With Kickass Conferences Founder Isaac Watson

My guest today has had a similar experience learning the ins and outs of event planning and hosting kickass conferences.

Isaac Watson is the founder of Kickass Conferences, an event strategy and production studio based in the Pacific Northwest. Isaac helps community leaders develop and deliver transformative events for their audiences that inspire them to build a better world. So far, he’s planned and managed events that have touched over 21,000 lives across the US and Europe.

Isaac is a natural event planner. I know because I’ve attended a number of events that he’s planned and I hired him to plan a conference for me 4 years ago.

But Isaac hasn’t relied on his natural aptitude for creating meaningful and engaging experiences. Instead, he’s designed a process he can rely on to pull off one great event after another.

This process and the way he manages his events is clearly a product of the way he’s honed his craft over the years.

He notices what works, he notices patterns, he notices the things that go unnoticed—and then he adapts the way he manages future projects.

In this conversation, Isaac and I talk about how things have evolved since his very first event, the 5 phases that every event goes through from vision to completion, how he works with clients within that process, and what it’s like when it’s go-time and an event is live.

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Host of What Works

Tara is a podcaster, small business community leader, strategist, and speaker. She’s been helping small business owners build stronger businesses for over a decade.  

Tara McMullin, What Works Weekly Newsletter

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