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In the pilot episode of Lambo Goal, we talk about setting the 20 steps to your big goal to work on every day.
Today, we take a systematic approach to breaking down those 20 steps into four groups of five, ultimately arriving at what will effectively be an autonomous empire.
Matt shares a tip that, had I applied it to my first business, not only would have made me thousands, but would have likely resulted in me still owning the business today and maintaining it as an asset.
Whatever level you’re at, you’re going to get a lot out of just the first group of five: the opportunities within immediate reach. There are ways to quickly increase revenue in the short term that are right under your nose.
This episode will show you how and give you oh-so-much more.
Highlights, Takeaways, Quick Wins:
- The 20 steps are comprised of practical things that make money.
- Break projects down into tasks.
- In the beginning, ask yourself: what can you do right now that will make more money tomorrow (short term)?
- Look at what you can do right now with what you have.
- Don’t fragment yourself. Pick one thing and branch out into client work, products, and teaching with it.
- Don’t worry about the price of extra services at first. Worry about the extra value it’s going to provide the customer.
- When you do the hard work yourself first, the people you hire have a quality standard to adhere to.
- In order to expand, you have to give up the things you shouldn’t be doing, even if you love doing them.
- The real learning takes place after you get out of school and start executing.
- When you make mistakes, you start to learn things. Share that experience. People will pay for it so they don’t make the same mistakes.
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- 01:56 Sean: In the first episode we talked about setting a big goal and 20 steps to achieving that, so this episode is focused on those 20 steps. I think some people were overwhelmed and confused by what to put as their steps so we want to clarify that. “Stay positive” is a nice thought but it’s not considered a step.
- 03:04 Matt: The steps we’re going to talk about might seem obvious, but once you put them into play you’ll gain a lot from them. I was telling my wife that a Lambo Goal is something that’s like 10 years away from where you are right now and she said she didn’t want to wait 10 years for a house. I was telling her that it shouldn’t be something you could even reach in 5 years. I was remembering what you said in the first episode, “Take the goal you have in your mind right now and double it.” That’s exactly how people need to think of this. You have to build your steps—your ladder—to your Lambo Goal and every step represents some sort of income stream.
- 05:33 Sean: I don’t like the ladder analogy because I see the steps more as staggered stones set in the ground that move you forward, but each one isn’t above the other. You don’t necessarily need to do one to get to the next, that’s why we’re lumping these steps into categories.
- 06:01 Matt: They’re like streams. Some might be bigger than others but they’re all leading to the same place.
- 06:17 Sean: Each of the 20 steps needs to be something practical that will make you money. You’ll be able to look at your list and ask yourself, “Did I work toward one of these today?” You want to be working on one of those things every single day because it’s going to get you one step closer to your goal.
- 07:00 Matt: Staying positive or being motivated are good things but those should be part of your mindset that’s constantly changing and growing, not considered some of your steps. Think of your income streams as a step instead of aspects of your mindset. What is a step? I was thinking that each step was a different business, but if I put myself in someone else’s shoes, they’re not going to think to open 20 businesses. You shouldn’t have to do that. If someone is at their day job and they hear us and think, “I want to do that!” realistically, Sean, how can they do that without starting 20 businesses?
- 08:40 Sean: Someone was asking if the steps are milestones or if they’re things you do every single day, and I think of them as projects. Let’s say you need to clean your office. That’s a project but a lot of people make that a task on a list. When you look at that list and see, “Clean my office. Start a business. Buy a home,” you immediately think, “Nope!” Those tasks are too big, because you know there are lots of little things you need to do under them. If you were going to buy a home, just one thing you would need to do is research and work on your finances.
You need to break projects down into tasks.
- 09:30 If you want to buy a home, you make a task of: research locations, work on finances, etc. These 20 steps are projects you need to come up with and we’re not going to tell you the tasks you need do under those. Let’s say one of your items is paid speaking engagements. That’s not a task, that’s a project and you need to break down the tasks within that, like making videos of things you want to talk about, networking with conference organizers and other speaks, writing up your contract terms for speaking, etc. Every single day you’ve got these 20 income streams, but the daily steps are to work on one of those streams.
- 11:26 We’re breaking these 20 steps in to groups of 5.
- Immediate 5: things within your reach right now. What can you do tomorrow that can make money?
- Next 5: moving forward. Things beyond what’s within reach.
- Expansion 5: it’s time to shift into CEO mode. Now you’re managing things and you’re expanding instead of doing all the work.
- Long Game 5: empire building time. This is where you think really big. These things will get you to your Lambo Goal. These are the high-tier items that will make the bulk of your revenue.
- 13:36 Matt: Those are the shiny objects you’ll want to jump to, but don’t. Keep running toward that thing but don’t do it too soon.
Immediate 5 (Within Reach)
- 14:11 Sean: The first five will help you focus where you are right now. Matt gave me the example of extra services as an Immediate 5 item.
- 14:50 Matt: When I owned the snow cone business, our main product was a cup, shaved ice, syrup, a straw, and a spoon. We thought we were the coolest for making money off water and flavoring, but we started adding toppings to charge more for like ice cream, skittles, gummy worms, fruit, chopped pickles, and chili sauce. We were making $0.50 on something that cost us $0.02 and people loved it! It became something exotic that people were originally going to pay $1.00 or $1.50 for, but now were willing to pay $4.00 to $5.00 for. Extras and up-sells helped us make three times what we were going to and it didn’t occur to me until later it was something I could with all my other businesses.
- 17:47 Sean: If I had known this with my computer repair business, I could have up-sold cleaning the dust out of peoples’ computers, which is something I would end up doing anyway but I didn’t think of it as an extra service. Backup systems or video conferencing are things I could have set up for an extra charge. I didn’t think of any of these things and it would have doubled or quadrupled my business. I used to charge $50 an hour to drive to someone’s house and fix their computer. It would have been so easy to up-sell some of those things and walk away with more money when I was already there. They wouldn’t have blinked at those extra charges.
You can up-sell or offer extra services in any business and you need to be doing it right now.
- 19:24 Matt: Start thinking of any extra services or products you can up-sell on your main product or service.
- 20:08 Sean: Tell me about the lawns your lawn business does.
- 20:33 Matt: Landscapers make money through their extra services. You get in the door by offering customers a cheap price—we charge $35 for biweekly service of cookie cutter lawns—and you’ve got them locked in. Pulling weeds from a garden, new mulch or dirt, weed mats, and flowers all extras that we provide that add up on the bill.
- 21:28 Sean: All of those things are almost pure money because you don’t have the expenses of acquisition costs or marketing because that paid for you to get there and gets recouped with the basic service. The extra stuff is easy money because you’re already there. You don’t have to drive to the next place or pay for marketing to get the job in the first place. How many kids do you know growing up that do lawns, and maybe some of them turn it into an actual business? But that’s all they did—lawns!
- 22:29 Matt: You just have to pick it up. If a customer asked you to install Office for them, then that’s an extra service and you make up a price. That’s what I did back in the day, before I had an idea of what to charge.
- 22:49 Sean: A lot of people don’t think that way. They think they’re just there to fix a computer and they say no when people ask for extras, and they miss opportunities. It sounds like you’re saying, Matt, that you just say yes. You figure it out, make up a price, and learn how to do that extra thing.
- 23:14 Matt: Now I’m to the point where people ask, “Do you know anyone that does fence repair?” and I’ll tell them we do it too! Not only are we offering extra services, we’ve got whole other businesses that will do that. First thing you should do is offer extra services. You don’t need to advertise your extra services, because with one customer, you can offer them extra services and walk away with a whole lot more.
- 24:08 Sean: This is giving me so many ideas and I hope it is for other people. If you have a closed mind, you’ll hear this and think, “I’m not doing client service so none of this applies to me,” and you tune out. We want you to have an open mind about this and if you do, you hear this and think, “I’m not doing client services but I have a course. If I apply what these guys are saying, instead of just selling the base course, I can sell another tier with group coaching calls, resources, screen casts, or videos.”
- 25:20 Matt: Think about the extra things you can add to your business to increase your revenue or income. Ultimately, with every stream, it’s up to you how much comes through there. It’s very important to have your first five streams to be as wide as possible so as much as possible will come toward you and you can keep growing. The wider streams will help you get to your goal quicker.
- 25:56 Sean: The Immediate 5 is adding things you can do right now. It’s easy to get caught up in the things you want and could do in the future, but you don’t have the resources, time, money, or employees for them yet.
Look at what you can do right now with what you have.
Next 5 (Move Forward)
- 26:24 The Next 5 is the moving forward and growing area. You’ve started out by adding these extra services and up-sells on what you have. Now, you have extra revenue coming in and you can start investing that into your business. You can invest in more products and come up with additional offerings that require resources. These Next 5 are setting the stage for the Expansion 5, where you’re the boss and you need to start thinking big picture. You need to bring people on at the point, but in order to bring people on, you need to have the resources and cash flow.
- 28:41 Matt: I automatically think of my businesses and when they get to this Next 5 point, I would start upgrading my equipment—for others it might be adding services or products—because I need to start getting ready for the expansion. It should be more than the first five because you’re building up to get to the CEO position where you have employees doing the work.
- 29:36 Sean: A think a lot people aren’t tracking with us in the chat room. Someone asked, “How does adding all these opportunities and making up prices work within establishing yourself within a niche? It sounds like you have to come up with things you can do just to make an extra buck.” You’re not just coming up with extra random things you can do outside of your niche so you’re fragmenting yourself. The Trifecta—client work, products, and teaching—are three ways to make money with one single pursuit. Don’t fragment yourself, pick one thing. Client work is services, products are things you sell, either physically or digitally, and teaching is blogging, videos, consulting, podcasting, workshops or courses. That’s all within one niche.
- 30:39 Say you’re a videographer and a client asks you to do a project. If you’re close-minded, you do take it and take it at face value. If you’re open minded, you say, “What if added personalized testimonials throughout this video? Let’s reach out to your past clients and give them a coupon or special gift for their time, shoot a testimonial, and incorporate that into your video.” You can charge the client extra for that and tell them that testimonials will resonate with the people they’re trying to reach. We just added something into the client services without fragmenting.
- 31:35 You’ve made money with client work and started to build an audience. Now, let’s say you made a movie and decided to sell it digitally or as DVDs. If you’re thinking simply, you would make a DVD to sell and that’s it, but if you’re open, you think, “What else can I include here? What are the die-hard fans wanting?” Maybe you include a physical item for the first 100 people. Notice how this is still within the same niche and we’re not fragmenting just to make another buck.
- 32:46 Matt: Stop thinking about the money part, because that’s always going to cloud your mind. Always think of the extra services within the niche first, then you can come up with the price.
Don’t worry about the price of extra services at first.
Worry about the extra value it’s going to provide the customer.
Expansion 5 (CEO/Growth)
- 34:37 At this point, you should be talking about expansion to where you don’t have to be in the field anymore. With videography, you would have people shooting and you’re the director. You would have upgraded your equipment already in the last group of steps, now you’ve got people working for you to either do client work or make a film to sell. This applies to any kind of business or industry you’re in—you’ve got people doing the things you’ve been doing and you’re just behind a computer now.
- 36:12 Sean: This group is where I’m at. The expansion part is really hard because you get into the game because you love doing the actual work. Now, we’re talking about you being the CEO and overseer of other people. Matt, of all people, can understand this part—on a day to day basis, there are a ton of people that need things from him. You’re not doing the field work anymore.
- 37:04 Matt: You wish you were doing the physical work at that point.
- 37:09 Sean: It’s that wishing right there that keeps people from expanding. They hit a ceiling and if they’re not raising that ceiling before they get there, it’s going to hurt. Like a plant in a box, you’re just going to grow within the space you’re in. You’ll stay in the confines you’ve created. I used to wear the badge of solopreneur with honor. I didn’t need help, look at everything I had created on my own? I love editing my own podcast and shooting my own videos. I took pride in being all the things I had spent thousands of hours learning. The good thing is since you took pride in your work up to this point, you set a standard and a quality precedent. If you’re not doing the work yourself and getting your hands dirty in the beginning, the people you bring on to do the work you never did will do it however they want. You don’t know what it’s like to do that work so there’s not a precedent set.
- 39:31 May they do a good job, but maybe they cut corners. You don’t know because you never did it. When you’re the one who did it, you have pride in quality and when you bring someone in to replace you, they have something to live up to and you can relate to them. A lot of people get stuck here. The business stagnates here because someone is so proud of what they accomplish on their own. All the things I’ve hired people to do, I loved doing but I couldn’t grow otherwise.
In order to expand, you have to give up the things you shouldn’t be doing, even if you love doing them.
- 41:00 Matt: It is scary to bring on people. You don’t know if they’re going to show up on time or if they’re going to do as good of a job, but you can’t allow yourself to freeze up. You’re going to hit that ceiling and you won’t be able to grow anymore. Prepare yourself as best you can, take that step, and believe there’s going to be a stone there.
- 41:46 Sean: I’m mid-leap right now. I’m trying to apply all the things I did wrong with the computer repair business and what I learned the hard way now. I needed to be the guy getting more work for the people I hired! I was too scared to hire because I didn’t have enough work, but if I got the work, I wouldn’t have the people, and it stagnated. Now, I’m seeing the trajectory of seanwes and I see that I need to start raising the ceiling. I like what Albert in the chat room says, “Start with client work, then passive income products, then delegation.” That’s perfect. When you’re in that Next 5, you’re learning a lot about client work, up-selling, and how to make money with that. You should teach that! Give all that knowledge away and people will start seeing you as an expert, which will allow you to start selling training products or courses.
Long Game 5 (Empire Building)
- 43:51 From someone who’s in the CEO mindset and expanding, how do you scale the CEO level to empire?
- 44:06 Matt: One of the things we’re starting to do is get managers in place. They’re like mini-CEO’s. They’re above managers actually, because we still have our project managers.
- 44:24 Sean: You’ve grown to the CEO level and you’ve seen all it takes to grow, hire, and delegate. Now, you’re just cloning it. You start building all these identical businesses out from there.
- 44:45 Matt: We’re putting all the systems in place so everything will run efficiently and streamline everything to where I don’t have to be on top of it. This is the stage where I like to say we can be sipping out of coconuts on the beach. This is the one everyone wants to start with from the beginning, but it’s not a reality. This is the stage you work hard for every single day and got your hands dirty in the beginning for.
- 45:56 Sean: For me, the empire is building out a platform and a network here. seanwes is more than just me now, we’re expanding into this podcast network where certain people can come on with different shows. These people are partners on the seanwes platform and will have courses tied to the topic of their podcast that serves as content marketing. They’re getting value but they’re also giving value. These people are mostly coming out of the Community and those are the kind of people I want. I’m not just going for scale, I want quality.
- 49:13 Matt: I don’t want people to think an empire has to be large. Quality is what you want. Sean doesn’t have to have 100 shows for it to be an empire, it could be 5 shows. You want to think about the quality and the growth within your niche. The seanwes network has these multiple streams of income that are getting bigger and will ultimately lead it to empire status.
- 50:39 Sean: You build one at a time yourself and then you start delegating and bringing people on. Then, you have a model that you’ve learned how to build and you start replicating that to bring it all together. Now that the seanwes network is going into empire realm, it’s collectively growing the Community and filling it with the right kind of people—we care about numbers, not quality—but the filtration that brings in the right kind of people is a model that’s in place. We can scale that by adding shows with the right people hosting them. We don’t scale by removing the filter, we scale by increasing the number of incoming lead by creating more quality shows. All of this is an investment but we’re talking about the long game here.
- 52:13 One of my items in the Long Game 5 group is turning things I’ve had build for seanwes exclusively into software as a service type products, like the chat system. We built this for us because we needed it but we needed it but other people have similar needs, so we can create an offering for them, which is yet another stream of income. I haven’t focused on that yet because we’re still growing out the empire. Once you’re not the guy pushing the lawnmower and you’ve got income streams coming in, you can focus on creating even more.
- 53:00 Matt: I even had another landscape business owner ask me how we run our business and when I told him, he asked me when we were going to develop it into a software or product that he could buy from me and learn how to operate that way. Whatever your niche is, keep streamlining and make your processes more efficiently as you learn because someone else might be interested in what you have. You can do that once you’ve gone through the expansion process because it’s actually helping your business. Once you get to empire level, you can package that up and sell it to other businesses.
- 54:30 Sean: That’s brilliant. Even if it’s as simple as your contracts or emails—if you’ve got good writing in place that results in 90% of the time landing the deal, those are templates others might be interested in. With the Value-Based Pricing course that’s coming out, I’ll be teaching people how to price on value. Showing people how I was able to charge five figures for a logo in my early steps got me to the next level. Now, I can help other people with that.
- 55:10 Matt: When you’re in the grind every day, think of it as a learning experience. We get so caught up in going to school to learn things but the real learning takes place after we get out and we start executing, whether thats in the day job or your business.
Whenever you make mistakes, you start to learn things and that experience is what people will pay for.
- 55:43 That way they don’t have to go in and make those mistakes. In the beginning of this podcast when we were talking about the extras, that’s worth a million dollars by itself! If we had known that earlier, we’d have our Lambos by now. Stay creative and always be learning because that’s how you’re going to make real money and success.