I’m Canadian, and I fully understand the concept of being on the cutting edge of cheap. I often joke about this with my father because he is a stickler to get his hydro bill as low as possible.
The problem with our scarcity mindset is that it creeps into our business lives as well which is not productive. Here are some crazy things that I’ve seen others do when they’re a slave to scarcity. And some of them I’ve even done myself from time to time. Moving away from this mindset into abundance takes time, and recognizing the behaviours is an important first step.
Not Putting a Value on Your Time
When people first start their business, they rarely accept credit cards. I know that I did this myself because I resented the transaction fees that they charged. I know a fellow business owner that has been driving an hour to meet with a client to collect a project installment cheque.
Until the two of us talked about it, she didn’t realize how crazy that was. Especially when it is so easy these days to create a merchant account to accept credit cards from your clients. It’s important to think about the time you’re spending in order to save. Being mindful of this will help you avoid this type of a trap.
Avoiding business automation tools because you think the software/plugin is too expensive without factoring in the time that it takes is another demonstration of not valuing your own time. Some of these tools can save hours of data entry per month through integrations which do cost money, but if you think about the time it takes to do them manually then they’re definitely worth it!
Here are some time saving examples:
- Integrating your website e-commerce software with your accounting software
- Using a paid web form software that has lots of functionality (i.e. integrations, exports, etc.)
- Connecting your web forms with your email software, accounting software, etc.
- Using a meeting scheduling software to book meetings with clients/prospects
- Inserting a pre-questionnaire before people can schedule a time in your calendar so you can determine if they’re qualified leads (this is important once your business is at a point where you cannot keep up with the consultation requests)
- Project management software saves you time because you’re on track with what needs to get done and in what order
- Buying stock images instead of surfing for hours on the Internet to find free ones
Buying Cheap Website Hosting
When you think of your website like a real estate property that you own, you’ll start to realize that not all of your visitors fit on the property as your business grows, or they have a lousy experience visiting your property because it hasn’t been well maintained. You may think that you’ve made a secret “win” by getting a ridiculously cheap hosting package, but the joke’s on you in the end.
As an example, I attended a webinar hosted by an influential business consultant who was interviewing a coach. It was an excellent interview and I visited the coach’s website during the webinar because I was curious about them. Their website was down because it could not handle the influx of traffic. I went from thinking of the coach as an expert to wondering if they had their s4*t together. Can you imagine the lost opportunities?
The Difference Between a $100,000 and a $1,000,000 Business
What’s the difference? It’s the expenses. As your business grows, so do you expenses. I’ve suffered from this recently because I experienced significant growth in the past year, but I kept trying to keep my business credit card statements at the same amount as they were the year before. This is simply not realistic.
As your business grows, be mindful that your expenses need to reflect that as well. Money is like energy, and needs to continue to flow. When you hoard it, you’re not allowing things to flow naturally.
Doing Tasks You Shouldn’t
Sometimes we wander down a rabbit hole of tasks that we have no business getting ourselves into. Here are some examples of things you should be passing off to someone else as your business expands:
- Running errands
- Building and editing your website
- Doing expense reports, bank reconciliations and bookkeeping
- Cleaning your house/office
- Basic customer service
- Basic copywriting and creating social media posts
I’m sure you’ve become attached to some of these tasks especially because you’re so good at them now. If you want to grow your business and your reach, this is not the type of work that will let you shine. It is critical to hire support in these areas to free up your time for making big shifts in your business.
This type of work can be hired out to another person for $10-25 per hour. If that sounds expensive for you, then you’re not valuing your own time enough. To become more efficient and effective, than outsourcing is a strategy worth considering on your journey.
Getting Chintzy with a Good Cause
Since money is energy and keeping it flowing is important, what if you don’t have any in the beginning? How can you get the flow going? What I did as I was growing my business was take on charitable projects for free for other people as a way of giving back. This initiated a flow of goodwill that felt right for me.
As my business has grown, I am finally able to make financial contributions to charities and causes that resonate with me instead of time. It feels so good to give back. And that includes more than just charity. I also consider budding businesses a good cause. I saw a quote by Kevin Spacey about the importance of sending the elevator back down once you’ve risen to the top and I’m always mindful of them when I’m talking to people making the transition from the corporate world into their own business.
Growing Into Abundance
Shifting from scarcity into abundance takes time and mindfulness. It’s easy to fall into old habits and requires mindfulness during the transition. I often joke about the idea of “getting off of your wallet” which definitely plagues the even the best of us at times.
The important thing is to realize is that it’s a choice.
If you want more abundance in your life, it starts with your everyday decisions like these.