4 Questions to Answer as You Work Through 'What's Next'?

Last week I posed the question, ‘What stays and what goes?’ As we start to ready our businesses for re-opening or returning, with our rewritten 2020 business plans, the questions I hear most isn’t, “what do I do next,” but rather “how do I figure out what to do next?


As someone who religiously engages in a seasonal Goodwill closet purge (mine AND Pat’s - but don’t tell him), I am pretty good at letting go when it comes to those shirts I’ve never worn, and never will. I can easily accept that some things in life are ‘square peg, round hole‘ and not meant to work.


When it comes to my business though? I’m not nearly as open minded. I built this from nothing. I grew this into something. Change for change’s sake? Oh no, I’m going to need way more than that.


(granted, yes, CV19 is WAY more than that - but you get me)


This week as I started to figure out what makes the cut in my metaphorical closet/business purge, I realized it’s hard to even know how to weigh those decisions. So I did what I do when I need to work through some big decisions that only I can answer. I coach myself. And I want to share a few of my key exercises that are helping me make some big decisions right now.


In last week’s blog I posed 5 perspectives from which you could view your business to get a better understanding of what it’s going to look like in a land of social distancing, half capacity, virtual everything, and yes, even a possible second stay-at-home order.


Yours. Your clients. Your revenue. Your unearned money. Your goals.


I strongly encourage you to start this ‘what’s next’ journey by going back to that blog and work your way through those 5 perspectives.


From there, these are some of the questions + exercises I’m doing myself as I work on the ‘NOW WHAT’ question mark that’s taking up residence in my office.


1 - What do YOU want to be doing? NOT ‘what are/were you doing to pay your bills’, but where does your heart want you to go? I have zero shame in sharing that I have the type of 5-year dreams that are so huge I’m not even sure how I’m going to get there. But I know I am. And I’m not going to get there any faster by sitting here, waiting for permission, waiting for it to be ‘ok’ to sell, waiting for life to go back to ‘normal.’


So ask yourself what you really truly want to be doing, and if what you’re doing today is really truly part of your path to get there. You know.


2 - What do your CLIENTS and COMMUNITY need? What are they willing to invest in? How do those two lists line up? On a regular basis I have coaching sessions every week with someone who knows *exactly* what they want to offer the universe, and maybe they’ve even created it, but no one is coming and buying. And my favorite phrase always comes out to play: if you build it, they won’t come.


See, it’s not our job as business owners to ONLY talk about what we want to talk about. Our job is to serve. Our job is to fill in the gaps for our community. The most successful people I know solve problems by creating solutions so good their potential clients can’t say ‘no’.


So put yourself in your clients’ and communities’ shoes: what do they need? And how will you give it to them?


(Side note: if you don’t know who your client and community are, now is a GREAT time to start working that one out too.)


3 - If you can’t teach a full room of clients in-person for the next year, what does that mean for your business? The sooner we accept that life BC (before ‘rona) is NOT going to be life moving forward, the sooner we can pivot to give our clients what they need.


Ask yourself: What exactly DO your clients miss about the studio? Are they looking for the energy? Support? Camaraderie? And then answer: If we’re not going to get them into the studio or gym the same way, what’s the next best solution?


For many trainers and instructors, this will be key to answering ‘what’s next.’


4 - What resources do you need to a) serve your clients, and b) be doing what you want to be doing. A new website, a business coach, or something in between? I find that whenever I have big ideas, I hesitate because I don’t have the technology, infrastructure, staff, etc. And it’s funny because these are the *easiest* fixes.


Don’t know how to start a newsletter? I have a webinar coming this month for that. Need vision and direction to start forming your new venture? Let’s set-up coaching sessions to help construct that plan and hold you accountable.


Ask yourself: what does this great idea require? Write out each step and component. When you hit your first roadblock - reach out to me and I will help you find the right person, software, or path to get you back on your way.


So what’s next for you? And more importantly, how can I help you get there?


x, D