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Authority Magazine

Brianne Cohen of Virtual Vino: The Power of Flexibility; How I Was Able To Pivot To A New Exciting Opportunity Because Of The Pandemic

When business is good, it’s good. Learn to say “no thank you”. I learned firsthand what it’s like to go from no business (right when the pandemic started) to more business than you can handle (about 6 months later). Identify who your ideal clients are and what types of people and organizations you want to work with. Quickly and politely say “no thank you” to people who do not fit into those categories. My ideal clients are corporate clients who regularly host virtual events of 10+ people.

  1. Look at expenses as investments. When your business starts to grow, or you are actively pivoting, your business will have new needs. Identify and prioritize those needs and set goals for when you can implement each of them. If your business is growing and revenue is increasing, look at a $1,000/month expense as a vehicle to make your life easier and to save you time to do more of what you get paid to do. The investment vs expense mindset is key. Your mindset must shift. If your revenue one year was $100K and the next year it’s $200K, you should hold that $200K mindset. What does a $200K business owner think and do? What does a $200K business need versus a $100K business. As my business grew this past year, implementing a CRM platform into my workflow was integral to my success, in order to manage leads, prospects, and clients. I vetted platforms and hired a professional to help with the onboarding.
  2. You should spend your time doing the thing(s) people pay you for. As I pivoted and my business exploded, I quickly: upped my Virtual Assistants hours, hired a Wordpress/SEO expert, bookkeeper, and a PR professional. All those functions were not core competencies of mine and were not the best way for me to use my time. I was spending more time than necessary on those things and I was not doing them well.
  3. Advocate for you and your business. Above I spoke about being kind. That is key and is important. But one thing business owners (especially women business owners) struggle with is the desire to be “liked”. That is who I show up as personally and I found myself doing it in my professional life, but it was not serving me. Maybe I hired someone and they weren’t doing a great job. Instead of addressing it head on, I’d dance around the issue in an effort to stay friendly and liked. That does not serve me or my business. Be your #1 advocate and learn to freely and regularly ask for what you need. And be kind while doing it.
  4. Turn it off. You are not always available. When you have a business in which everyone is clamoring for you and you have more inquiries that you can handle, that can be exciting. Even addicting. If an inquiry came through my website at 10pm, I wanted to reply, give pricing, get a call on the books, etc. Pretty much anything to move it forward and get close to signing another deal. On the other side of that I found myself burnt out, depleted, and unfulfilled, as I was not leaving any time for my personal life. I now have set boundaries for my business. I close my computer after working 8–10 hours. More than that is just too much. Same with text messages. I only reply to work text messages between the hours of 10am-6pm M-F. I learned that I am not always available and that 99% of communication can wait.
  1. Use the Boomerang app to pause your inbox periodically and to help you only communicate with people during business hours
  2. Meditate every day (even for 1 minute).
  3. List 5 gratitude every single day in a notebook.
  4. Don’t forget to do things that bring you joy. For me that is cooking and learning. Even though I teach wine classes, I still attend and sign up for other people’s wine classes, so I can take a break from teaching, and learn. This is for my own personal enrichment.

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