EP 277: 3 Tools These Small Business Owners Swoon Over

EP 277: 3 Tools These Small Business Owners Swoon Over

We’ve covered a lot of territory with the tools we use to run our businesses over the last month. And we’re going to cover a little more today.

But I think this mindset shift around how we use technology and develop systems has been a thread that has tied all of our episodes together. Whether it was my conversation with Sean, or Jessica, or Prerna, or Holly & Arryn, I hope you picked up on the strategy that these business owners use when it comes to picking and working with tools.

That strategy isn’t just about what tools or systems they use.

It’s really a bigger mindset around how they run their businesses. They expect to be running, building, and growing these businesses for years to come and so they choose tools, systems, and workflows that make that easier.

Today, I want to share 3 more business owners and their favorite tools with you. You’ll hear from designer & illustrator Cynthia Oswald, operations manager Heidi Johnson, and software engineer Rachel Ober. Each one is sharing a tool that’s dramatically changed the way they do business–each in completely different ways.

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EP 276: Tools For Building An Online Personal Training Business With Holly Myers and Arryn Grogan From Lift With Holly & Arryn

EP 276: Tools For Building An Online Personal Training Business With Holly Myers and Arryn Grogan From Lift With Holly & Arryn

My guests today are Holly Myers and Arryn Grogan from Lift With Holly And Arryn. They were running an online personal training business before taking your personal training business online was corona-cool!

I found Holly and Arryn through my Instagram gym family and fell in love with their joy, strength, and precision. Their content is incredibly useful and very fun and real at the same time.

Because Holly and Arryn specialize in training other coaches on the techniques they’ve mastered, they realized that online coaching was a great fit for them early on. Instead of constraining their client base to their hometown, they’re able to coach people from all over—and coach while they’re on the road, as well.

In this episode, we talk about the tools and systems they’ve used to build their online training business—including the equipment they prefer, the software they use for coaching, the system they use for putting together programs, and how they build content for Instagram.

We also talk about some of their favorite tools for working on the road.

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EP 275: Tools For Building A Copywriting Agency With Content Bistro Founder Prerna Malik

EP 275: Tools For Building A Copywriting Agency With Content Bistro Founder Prerna Malik

And this week, I’m talking with Prerna Malik about the tools she uses to run her copywriting agency, Content Bistro.

Yes, Prerna and I get into the specific tools she uses—things like Google Drive, Notion, and CrazyEgg. But we also talk a lot about her process—how she does what she does.

Like I said, process is the most valuable tool in your business and your process should determine the tools that you use.

Prerna’s approach certainly demonstrates this. Her tools help her make her process work. They help her make her process more efficient. And ultimately, it’s her process that’s helped her build an incredible business.

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EP 274: The Tools That Power A Content-Driven Business With Grit Host Jessica Stansberry

EP 274: The Tools That Power A Content-Driven Business With Grit Host Jessica Stansberry

We’re continuing our series on the tools we use to run our small businesses by taking a look at the tools a content-driven business uses to create, manage, and publish all that content—as well as how it actually drives revenue, too.

I could think of no one better than my friend Jessica Stansberry to talk content & tools with. Jessica is a YouTuber, podcaster, and fellow lover of tools.

She’s the host of Grit, a podcast about business and lifestyle design. She’s also produces videos on planning, productivity, business, and marketing for over 66,000 subscribers on YouTube.

Jessica and I chat about the hardware, software, and systems she uses to manage it all—plus her criteria for selecting or switching tools! I also asked her about the tools she uses to manage her life outside of business.

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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 261: 5 Project Management Tools These Small Business Owners Can’t Do Without

EP 261: 5 Project Management Tools These Small Business Owners Can’t Do Without

Today, you’re going to hear from 5 business owners–all member of The What Works Network members. They’re sharing the project management software they use and how it fits with the way they work.

Susan Boles shares how she manages her projects in ClickUp. Joe Taylor, Jr shares how he and his team manage projects in Basecamp. Ayelet Marinovich shares how she used Trello to manage writing & publishing a book in just 6 weeks. Melissa Emler shares how she got used to managing–and automating–projects in AirTable. And finally, Jonathan Stewart shares how he took a windy road to managing projects in Notion.

Keep an ear out for why each business owner uses the software they use and how it lets them manage the work they way they want to. Remember that the software is there to help them manage projects the way they choose to manage projects–not because it’s fixing them or the work itself.

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EP 257: End-Of-Year Mailbag Episode With Tara McMullin

EP 257: End-Of-Year Mailbag Episode With Tara McMullin

We’ve had a helluva year here at What Works. We’ve talked to over 100 small business owners, published more than 80 episodes, and tackled 12 different themes this year.

What Works is special because we focus on the people who are making their businesses work every single day.

We believe we all have a lot to learn from each other—and the more honest & transparent we are about how our marketing, operations, tools, product development, or sales processes work, the better chance we all have for success.

On this episode, it’s no different—except, instead of me being the one asking the questions, you are!

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EP 247: Managing Exceptional Client Experiences In Less Time With Coach Ashley Gartland

EP 247: Managing Exceptional Client Experiences In Less Time With Coach Ashley Gartland

Ashley is a business coach who specializes in helping overwhelmed, frazzled entrepreneurs streamline their businesses and work less—while they continue to grow.

Ashley took me through her whole client process—from on-boarding, to communication, to workflows, to off-boarding. You’ll learn about how she manages the whole client experience through a customized Trello board both she & the client accesses. And you’ll learn how she’s streamlined her own packages to allow her to provide the best experiences.

This interview—and this whole month—is going to be full of aha moments you can immediately apply to your own business to find what works.

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EP 235: What’s Working To Scale With Software With Scale Spark Founder Susan Boles

EP 235: What’s Working To Scale With Software With Scale Spark Founder Susan Boles

Susan Boles is the founder of ScaleSpark, a consulting firm that helps companies break through growth ceilings by fixing back-end processes and creating systems designed to scale.

One way she does that is by addressing operational capacity problems through software. She helps business owners and their teams get more done by better utilizing the software they have—or the software they should be using.

In this conversation, I ask Susan what’s working for her clients—how she helps them identify their operational challenges, choose the best software, and adapt their processes to create additional capacity. We also talk about the challenging work of implementing new software—and how to make a change easier and more effective.

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EP 207: What’s Working In Tracking Your Business Finances With Kaitlyn Louvier From Bench

EP 207: What’s Working In Tracking Your Business Finances With Kaitlyn Louvier From Bench

My business had been making well over $100,000 per year before I finally hired a great bookkeeper who could help me understand what was really going on with our finances.

There is absolutely no shame in not having your bookkeeping and financial reporting figured out right now. But today the day you need to start moving in the right direction if you want to experience more clarity and growth for your business.

Today, we’re continuing our “what’s working” series. This series features consultants, service providers, and software companies that help make small businesses work. They offer a bird’s eye view across industries and business models to help us parse the trends and systems that are actually working for lots of businesses.

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Go behind the scenes to find out what’s really working to run & grow a small business today.

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.