When it comes to growing a business and taking things to the next level, a mentor of mine used to say:
“New level, new devil”
It’s so easy to think that taking our business to the next level is going to make things so much better. And in many ways it can!
BUT there is also a lot about hitting those next levels that can make things tougher. And if we aren’t aware of these things, it can be quite a smack upside the head when it happens.
Instead of ‘beware what you wish for’, let’s be AWARE of what you are wishing for. I’m a big believer in expecting the tough stuff, so that it doesn’t seem so tough when it happens. (Maybe I’m just weird that way? But I really like to know what I’m getting into…)
- Hiring a team – finding the right folks, onboarding them, leading them! (and what if they don’t do as good a job as you do? ooof…)
- Being responsible for other people’s paychecks (people are now relying on you for their income!)
- Losing a key team member (not just having to replace them, but the emotions around them leaving)
- If you are no longer ‘doing all the things’ then what the heck are you doing now? (this was a big identity crisis for me, as I had spent a lifetime of being the superwoman who could do it all)
- Keeping the marketing engine running (a bigger business requires more consistent marketing efforts)
- The money you make is no longer just your own – there are so many more things to pay for (I remember being a solopreneur where pretty much every dollar I made landed in my pocket… ahh the good ole days 😉
- More clients to take care of (and having to trust your team and systems to make sure they are taken care of! Cause you can’t keep a finger on every client anymore)
- The pressure to make the right decisions – there is so much more at stake as your business grows
- Your legal, financial and corporate structures need to be solid (no more winging it and hoping for the best)
- You can’t just walk away if it gets too hard or if you don’t want to do it anymore (there is no easy escape hatch at a certain level in your business.)
To be clear, all of these things are manageable… AND they could also become big problems if we aren’t aware of what we are getting into. Heck, they can become big problems even when we are aware of what we are getting into!
The biggest shift of all is responsibility – as you get away from the ‘doing’ the responsibility goes up. And you need to be prepared – and supported! – to shoulder that responsibility. If you aren’t ready for it and don’t have the right support around it then your next level may suck the life out of you.
I know for a fact, I wouldn’t have made it through the hard things in my business if it wasn’t for the folks around me. Who have my back when the going gets tough. Who can look me in the eye and say “yes, I know it’s hard AND you need to step up and step in here.” Who can help me navigate the surprising things about success as they arise. Coaches & colleagues who “get it” are really important in this journey.
If you are navigating into your next level know I’m here cheering you on! And if you need some extra support around it all let me know… this is exactly what I do with my coaching clients.