I’m excited to announce a new video interview series for Illumination Wealth entitled “Owners’ Equity: Conversations with Today’s Business Leaders.” We recently released our first few episodes of the series.
In Episode 1, I had the pleasure to sit down (well, virtually speaking as we both are staying safe at home) with my own personal Business Coach, Aaron Keith. He is the Founder of Buildify Systems. He is an entrepreneur, consultant and coach to business owners in a wide variety of industries all over the country. I know his guidance has been instrumental in building my business over the years and his professional insight should help you, as well.
You can check out the full video on the Illumination Wealth YouTube Channel (or watch the embedded video below).
In this article, I wanted to highlight some of the things that Aaron and I talked about in our 10-minute conversation. I was able to pick his brain to gather more insight and learn what he’s been discussing with his clients during the COVID-19 crisis.
“I coach about 55-60 companies a week from across the country,” Aaron says. “For the most part, I’d say most people are doing alright, though certain industries like restaurants are getting hit really hard. Everyone is taking a little bit of a hit, but most people have hidden it pretty well. As entrepreneurs and small business owners, we’re pretty scrappy as a group of people.”
Aaron talks about how there was a bit of shock at first for virtually everyone.
“Everybody kind of paused in place for a moment, but then everyone just kind of got to work,” he remarks. “They pulled out their entrepreneurial spirit and have been pivoting pretty well. They’ve been finding new ways of doing things, seeing what’s going to work, making the hard decisions with staff and hours, and looking at their financial reserves.”
I have to say I have seen a lot of the same from my financial advisement clients. This situation definitely came as a sudden and significant shock to the system. However, people are amazingly resilient and the most successful individuals are highly adaptable. We all know the markets will have their ups and downs, so a stronger financial plan can weather the storm.
Aaron and I have both found that those individuals who are feeling the most stress and anxiety right now are those with financial concerns. People who have a better understanding of their finances and have more solid systems in place seem to be adapting much better. This is certainly understandable.
Aaron recommends a couple books that you can read to help get a better grasp on your finances:
When I asked Aaron about how businesses can strategize and implement these pivotal changes, he offered some sound advice:
“Companies right now need to have a plan around their finances,” Aaron says. “They need to have a plan around their staffing model. They definitely need to have a plan around their marketing strategies. Those are the three components right now that are mission critical for all of us.”
With most people self-quarantining as much as possible right now, there just aren’t as many people out and about. That makes it harder for business owners to implement their normal service and marketing strategies. Aaron sees today as a great opportunity not to “sell” in our marketing, but to approach things with more of a leadership perspective.
“Be a leader in front of your community, in front of your customer base and in front of your peers,” he says. “Put out a lot more content where you are providing leadership, knowledge and true honest-to-God value.”
From the service side, Aaron recommends getting as much value as you can out of the limited resources available. There’s delivery and pick-up services you may need to adopt and refine to maintain cash flow. There are virtual services through video, audio, social media. Have daily or weekly morning huddles with your staff on a video conference to keep culture in place and to maintain positive productivity. This will help everyone dial in their work schedules and priorities.
Be sure and watch the full video interview for more tips, insights and information from Aaron Keith. You can also visit his website (buildifysystems.com) or download The Buildify Method podcasts, where he is covering so many great topics relevant to life and business.
For help with your business and/or personal financial plan, you can contact us at Illumination Wealth to schedule a free introductory consultation. Let us know how we can help you get through these difficult times and come out the other side with a stronger financial foundation.