EP 232: Scaling From The Start With Yellow House Media Co-Founders Sean & Tara McMullin

The Nitty-Gritty:

  • Why Sean & Tara McMullin are starting a second company, Yellow House Media, and keeping scale in mind from the get-go
  • How they’ve prioritized doing every task like they’ll have to do it again tomorrow
  • Why they’re keeping future hires in mind while they document processes
  • The importance of considering an exit strategy earlier than you’d ever expect
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How To Think Like A Big Business From The Start

Big businesses start small, too.

Today, we’re kicking off a month focused on scaling up.

We’re examining the misconceptions, the assumptions, the biases, and—of course—the many ways that small business owners today are scaling up.

And no—it’s not all online courses or apps.

If you’ve been thinking about how your business can have a bigger impact, serve more customers, and make you more money…

…but you’re at a loss of how to do that without running yourself into the ground or sacrificing your values…

…this month is dedicated to you.

To start this month, I have a confession to make.

I started a new company. A second company.

And I started it with someone you know: my husband and the producer of What Works, Sean McMullin.

We’re approaching the first moves in this company completely differently than when I started my own business almost 11 years ago.

To sum it up: we’re starting with scale in mind from the get-go.

To be honest, the idea of “scaling up” snuck up on me the first time around. By the time I was well on my way to scaling up in theory, I realized that my company wasn’t ready to scale up in practice.

My finances were a mess. My team was disorganized. There was little—if any—documentation. Important stuff fell through the cracks all the time.

Getting that stuff handled? It took years.

I do not want to repeat those mistakes.

And since Sean was around for that clean-up job, he doesn’t want to repeat them either.

So Sean and I are doing things very differently this time around.

In just a bit, we’ll have a conversation about what scaling up means to us, why we’ve started this company, and how I finally convinced Sean to start a business.

We’re also going to talk about the nitty-gritty details of how we’re starting with scale in mind. Things like process documentation, planning for future hires, pricing with labor in mind, creating scripts, anticipating training, and considering our exit strategy.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg for what we’re covering on the podcast this month. You’ll hear from Callie Willows who scaled up with a membership site, Marie Poulin who is intentionally choosing a path that doesn’t necessarily scale, and Carol Cox who is hiring and training coaches to help her scaling her speech coaching company.

You’ll also hear from Katey Schultz who challenged some personal assumptions to scale up her writer mentorship program, Debra Giunta who has scaled her company providing dance classes to schools in Chicago and beyond, and Natalie Gingrich who’s scaling up her business as a director of operations for hire by certified other directs of operations!

And, I’ll even talk to Susan Boles about what’s working for companies to scale their operations through software.

It’s a jam-packed month and I couldn’t be more excited to help you find a few new ideas for running your business more effectively and efficiently—and yes, help you scale up if that’s your goal.

Now, let’s dive into how Sean and I are building our new company to scale from Day 1.


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Cover of What Works book by Tara McMullin

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I've explored goal-setting and planning with small business owners, creatives, and independent workers for over 12 years now. That means I've observed many different types of goal-setters. Some confidently choose a new goal and get to work. Others rebel against...

What Works offers in-depth, well-researched content that strips away the hype of the 21st-century economy. Whether you love the podcast, the articles, or the Instagram content, we’d love your support