I spend a lot of time studying copywriting (in addition to coding, software strategy, process management, and you know, school). I actually thought I would be a writer when I was in high school. I went to college for it - then realized I wasn't disciplined enough to actually write for a living. Now I spend a lot of time writing as a business owner, but I digress. This quote, which is often a staple of copywriting theory, is also really helpful when you are looking down the barrel of trying to streamline your business.
Kill your darlings - when translated to business - it means that you can't rest on the things you love and expect to improve your business. Just because you love something in your business, doesn't mean you should keep it.
I often meet with other business owners who want to streamline their business. It's great, but then we get into how they want to deliver that experience and the nineties come flooding back to me. Montell Jordan starts dancing in my head - "this is how we do it
MMHMM. I know that's how you CURRENTLY do it, but are you open to changing up your delivery method?
Nope, this is how we do it
And the "we" is usually "I", and it's usually a very successful but slightly run down business owner delivering that verse.
They have been in startup mode entirely too long, have a following that expects a specific delivery method and are deathly afraid that if they changed
the delivery method of an outcome that they will disappear the moment they get one pre-canned message.
The thing is, most clients will be completely happy getting the outcome you promised, regardless of delivery method. And all you have to do is spend a little time creating more education around the things that you do so that you don't have to be front and center for every transformative moment in their business.
But if you are in love with the delivery method (or just feel beholden to it) then you will not be able to truly create more efficiency in your business - allowing you to scale. The thing is, just because people pay for that delivery method, doesn't mean that it's the best method for your energy, your business, or just the opportunity costs associated with your delivery method.
The delivery method adjustments can be as simple as adding a few learning modules along with your 1:1 coaching so you can spend less time in front of your client in order to deliver the desired outcome, or creating standard operating procedures so that you can be the CEO and you can hire team members to follow explicit instructions to deliver results.
It could also mean that some part of your business no longer makes sense.
I'm going to leave that one right there.
That's a big conversation, but it still is something to consider.
Here's the thing, if you are wanting to streamline your business - nothing should be off the table. You should be prepared to examine all facets of your business and really dig deep to make the decisions that will help you get one step closer to attaining your business goals.
So this is why "killing your darlings" is important. It means that you are ready to get rid of any and everything you are currently doing in order to make your business the stuff dreams are made of. Mostly easier to run, and easier to generate income so that you can scale to your big goals without working harder and longer to achieve them.
While it seems unattainable from where you are currently sitting, I can tell you with a lot of decision making, ability to let go of things that don't serve you, and the ability to become more disciplined with what you are doing (hello standard operating procedures!) that you will get where you want to be.
If this seems like something you are ready for, then let's talk
. The Growth Accelerator addresses the mindset, systems structuring, and real talk that will help you put your business on the right track.
If you aren't there, then that is totally ok too! One way to do the prep work that comes before actually streamlining your business is to start to clear your thoughts about how you want your business landscape to look, how you want to work, how often you want to work, and what you want your business structure to be. These don't directly address your delivery methods, but more your relationship with your business. Which, as a business owner is super important.
At the end of the day, just remember that just because you can earn money doing something, it doesn't mean that you should be doing that thing. It may not match your workload expectations, the number of vacations you want to take each year, or how big you want to grow your team. The cool thing about building your business is that you can do it on your own terms - really.
I'll dive into this concept of HOW you are making money in my next post!