EP 169: Leveraging The Wing Woman Effect With Build Yourself Workshop Founder Mia Scharphie

The Nitty Gritty

  • The origin story of the “wing woman effect”
  • How Mia Scharphie, founder of Build Yourself Workshop, uses what she calls a Virtuous Circle to connect with other business owners and grow her company (and how it differs from a mastermind)
  • Why making amazing connections with other entrepreneurs doesn’t come down to magic or luck but instead by intentionally crafting the relationship
  • How to use online business communities to find a business ally (plus, a number of ways to do this offline, too)
  • What to do when you struggle with making an ask in business

[smart_track_player url=”http://media.blubrry.com/profit_power_pursuit_a/content.blubrry.com/profit_power_pursuit_a/What_Works_163_Mia_Scharphie.mp3″ social_gplus=”false” social_linkedin=”true” ]

Mia Scharphie believes in the power of a virtuous circle. It’s all about proactively cultivating the business allies within your realm who help take you to new heights — in business and in life. In this episode, Mia shares exactly how she cultivates strong business allies by making asks, connecting over a virtual coffee date with people she admires, and so much more.

If you’ve ever wondered how to take your business to the next level through strategic business connections, a business bestie, or a wing woman as Mia describes, this conversation is for you. (And be sure to download her guide on growing your virtuous circle by clicking here.)

We release new episodes of What Works every week. Subscribe on iTunes so you never miss an episode.

Creating your virtuous circle

“It’s about linking together with other people who can support you and connect you to the opportunities that you want. But it’s also about building deeper, longer-term relationships with other people that really levels you.” — Mia Scharphie

For Mia, a virtuous circle isn’t a nice to have; it’s a must-have. “It’s a fundamental approach to how I think about and grow my business,” she says. “It’s really about focusing on other people — but as part of this collective pact that can move you forward.”

There are a number of totally practical ways that Mia creates and grows her virtuous circle. First, she has what she called a business wing woman. “It’s what some people might call a mastermind,” Mia says. “We get under the hood. We share language and templates. Sometimes we’ll even swap challenges and solve them for each other.”

For example, Mia recently helped her wing woman through a recent challenge on structuring her calendar… and ultimately, Mia helped streamline her schedule so it’s that much easier to say yes to what she wants and no when she feels it necessary to preserve her energy and focus.

Working with this business ally is something Mia’s done for the better part of four years. She also makes goals to meet for virtual coffee with interesting business owners that she connects with through CoCommercial and podcasts. This approach to connecting with other members and online business owners has led to partnerships and a safe space to share what’s working — and what’s not — in business.

Intentionally crafting connections

“Sometimes things seem magical… but I think you can craft a relationship this good.” — Mia Scharphie

In this episode, Mia talks about the origin of her relationship with her “wing woman” Kristen… and how, over 4 years, they’ve supported each other through countless business challenges. And, as Mia mentions, this connection with Kristen didn’t happen by magic or by accident.

Instead, relationships that click and last begin with your willingness to make an ask — even if you’re not fully clear on what you’re asking for, Mia says. The other key, she adds, is “to show — not tell — what is really going on in your business. It’s what creates those kinds of relationships.” It’s about honesty, vulnerability, and transparency — and truly showing up for your business ally, too.

Finding your next business ally

“Curate a sense of who you think is interesting. Don’t overthink it. I keep an Evernote file of interesting business owners. If I’m listening to a podcast and I think someone’s interesting, I mark them down. Then, I have a goal to have an online business coffee date once a month because it gives me a way in.” — Mia Scharphie

At this point, you might be wondering how to find a business ally. Fortunately, Mia shares a number of ways for doing just that. It all comes down to putting yourself out there, whether that’s through an online (or offline) business community, listening to business podcasts, and thinking strategically about who could benefit your business.

For example, Mia recommends thinking about someone who isn’t a competitor but instead thinking of one who serves a similar customer or client base. Beyond that, think of who you admire. Who’s leading from the values you want to lead from? “The people who are in their world will be good people for you to know, too,” says Mia.

And, of course, a business community like CoCommercial can be a great place to meet like-minded business owners. But, as Mia says, it’s imperative that you reach out and make the ask, even if you don’t know exactly what you need yet. Getting visible is the first step in upleveling your business connections, your virtuous circle, and your business.

Listen to this episode to hear more from Mia Scharphie on the importance of growing your virtuous circle and practical ways to find the right business allies to take your business to the next level.

[smart_track_player url=”http://media.blubrry.com/profit_power_pursuit_a/content.blubrry.com/profit_power_pursuit_a/What_Works_163_Mia_Scharphie.mp3″ social_gplus=”false” social_linkedin=”true” ]

What Works Is Brought To You By

Mighty Networks powers brands and businesses – like yours! – that bring people together.
With a Mighty Network, online business owners just like you can bring together in one place:

  • Your website
  • Your content
  • Your courses
  • Your community
  • Your events online and in real life
  • And charge for them…all while building YOUR brand.

Visit mightynetworks.com to see more examples of brands bringing people together and taking their businesses to the next level.


I pay the CoCommercial team—and myself—with Gusto. Now, you might be thinking… “I’m not ready for a payroll provider.” I was in the same boat when I started with Gusto. Gusto gave me the confidence to hire—both contractors and employees—and they’ve made it easy to stay compliant, offer great benefits, and keep me in control of our money. Gusto automatically files and pays your taxes, guides you and educates you along the way, and takes the guesswork out of taking care of your team. We love Gusto and we think you might too. Test it out—and get 3 months free–at gusto.com/whatworks.


Cover of What Works book by Tara McMullin

Read More

EP 299: How To Design Your Own Sales System

EP 299: How To Design Your Own Sales System

This week, I’ve got 4 more stories to share with you from small business owners who have intentionally done things their own way when it comes to sales and selling. They’ve found what truly works for them–even if it bucks the prevailing wisdom or would make a bro marketing expert role his or her eyes.

These stories come from business coach Ashley Gartland, marketing expert Amy Lippmann, designer Mel Richards, and work reinvention coach Lydia Lee.

Listen for how they incorporated these same considerations into finding their own unique sales systems. They designed their systems with personal values, strong relationships, reduced anxiety, and agency in mind.

EP 298: Creating A Less Harmful Sales System with Wanderwell Founder Kate Strathmann

EP 298: Creating A Less Harmful Sales System with Wanderwell Founder Kate Strathmann

This show is called What Works for a reason.

Sometimes it’s a declaration: this is what worked for this small business. And often, it’s a question, “What works?”

Today’s episode is very much a question, many questions, really:

What works when it comes to selling when you want to avoid manipulative or exploitative practices?

What works when your values conflict with many of the best practices of selling online but you still want people to buy your stuff?

What works when it comes to sales in a business that is actively anti-racist and anti-capitalist?

And even more bluntly: Can you even sell things without causing harm or perpetuating harmful systems?

My friend Kate Strathmann is the founder of Wanderwell, a bookkeeping and consulting firm that grows thriving businesses while investigating new models for being in business.

Recently, Kate took a bit of a detour from how she’s used to building her business, which is 90% referral based and fueled by deep relationship- and community-building. She decided to offer a small group program called the Equitable Business Incubator as a way of exploring anti-capitalist business practices and how they apply to the small businesses we’re building.

To fill the program, Kate need to sell differently.

Which led her to asking the question: Can you even sell things as a anti-capitalist?

While that might not be your specific question, I have a feeling that you too have wondering how you can effectively sell your offers without causing harm, perpetuating harmful systems, or damaging relationships. And that’s why I knew Kate and I needed to explore this topic on the show.

This is a conversation about what a kinder, less harmful sales process could look like—and it probably contains more questions than answers. But I’m confident those questions can help you find the answers that are right for you and the sales system that you want to build to make your business stronger.

We start out by defining what we’re really talking about when we talk about capitalism and anti-capitalism. Then, Kate shares how the Equitable Business Incubator came to be and how she ended up selling it. And then we dig into what makes many of the sales formulas and best practices being taught today problematic—and how to think differently to create your own alternative practices.

Now, let’s take a look at what works for creating less harmful sales systems!

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