Mama’s listen up – today I’m sharing how I’m preparing my business for Baby #2.
Even if you don’t have kids or you’re not planning to have any, keep reading because having a baby taught me some amazing lessons about becoming a great CEO that any entrepreneur can learn from, and Baby #2 is already teaching me even more!
Prefer to listen? Click here.
Lucky Bitch Video Transcript – How I’m Preparing My Business For Baby #2
Before I had Baby #1, I was one of those entrepreneurs who did everything at the last minute.
I was wasting a lot of time in my business because I never had any real urgency, but having my first baby, Willow, taught me so much about time management.
At the time, I joked that I was a CEO before, but I was Chief Everything Officer. I was doing absolutely everything in my business and I was being a real control freak to my team.
Here’s the truth:
A baby gives you better time management
When I went into labor for the first time, I was so distracted because I had an important live interview for an affiliate partnership the next day and I kept asking the midwives, “How long do you think this going to take because I have a very important business meeting at 7a.m.”
Willow was born at 6:30 a.m. and for a moment I thought, “Maybe I could still make that meeting.”
Yes, she was a week early so in theory it wasn’t a huge risk to schedule that meeting – but the point was, that I wasn’t being organized with my business, and I definitely wasn’t honoring my need for downtime.
This time, I’ve said no many weeks before my due date. I wasn’t going to risk that happening again!
But back then, I really was doing everything myself and wasn’t delegating anything to my assistant. I even sent my first newsletter from the hospital after Willow was born, even though my assistant had been asking me to delegate that to her for months.
Once I did delegate it, it was totally fine – of course, and in fact, the newsletter actually went out at the same time every week instead of just “when I felt like it”.
The biggest lesson from having my first baby is that I didn’t have to do everything myself, but I think I’ve got some even deeper lessons for Baby #2.
And Baby #2 is a-comin’…
I’m really excited this time, because I know that I’m going to learn some even deeper lessons. Like any big life changes, having kids is a great chance to reevaluate everything in your life and business.
Moms of multiples: please chime in here in the comments and tell me what lessons I’m missing from this post, because I bow down to you!
Here are some lessons this time around:
Batch more of your content
When I knew I was pregnant the first time, I batched a whole bunch of weekly content to go out when I was on maternity leave, because I had no idea how long that was going to be, and I didn’t want to pressure myself too early.
I’m so glad I did it, because when you’re in that baby bubble, you might not feel like communicating a lot to your audience. Plus, you’re probably covered in vomit and haven’t been to the hairdressers for ages.
Some people shut down their marketing activities during their maternity leave and that’s fine too, but I knew I didn’t want to close my business down completely because I’d be unnecessarily turning down income.
When you have passive income courses like mine, they still take regular and consistent marketing to attract new students, so going away entirely would have cost me money. Why waste all those years of hard work?
I had to batch my videos before I went on maternity leave, so my audience didn’t forget about me while I was away. I wanted to make sure I still served my audience with consistent weekly content. (Consistency is a huge but kinda boring secret of my 7-figure business success).
I also knew that I probably wasn’t going to have the time, the energy, or the desire to get in front of a camera, so I didn’t want the pressure of HAVING to do it. And yeah, I was pretty tired so I might not have made sense anyway!
This time, I’m taking things up a notch
Last time, I did six month’s worth of video content before I went on maternity leave. But I still did all the editing of the transcripts myself.
This time, I did all of my content for the entire year in January. Yes, because I knew I was expecting another baby, but it was actually because my friend Natalie MacNeil told me she batches that far ahead in advance too, and I was SO impressed.
I created all of this year’s videos in one month. This time, we’ve got a transcriptionist, an editor, better video editing, we make a podcast episode for iTunes and there’s also a process for sharing on social media.
That all happens without me thinking about it. That’s taking batching to the next level!
Batching is useful for any business
It doesn’t matter if you’re having a baby or not. Maybe you want to go traveling or you want to take some time off for a sabbatical but you don’t want your business to die.
How to batch without getting bored
I hear that lots of people resist batching content because:
“I like keep things fresh for my audience”
“How do I know what I’ll be talking about in a few months?”
“I like to keep things spontaneous and organic”
“It feels inauthentic to batch”
Here’s the thing. If you only did business when you felt like it, then you wouldn’t have a business. Scheduling your content isn’t inauthentic especially if you talk about evergreen topics.
Obviously if you have a business that needs a fresh take on current affairs, it might be a bit more difficult.
The key is to really know your audience, know what you want to talk about and know what people want from you. I talk about money, marketing and business mindset. It’s really not going to change in six months time, and most of the things I write about will be applicable in years time.
So get clear on what you’re going to talk about – look at the calendar and plan it out.
I actually rotate between mindset, money and marketing topics, so it’s easy for me to know how many of each I need to create.
Batching has gone to the next level for me, and I’ve got a much better process in place since hiring my assistant.
Here’s a link to the article where I talk more about batching. Everything flows really easily now. I do my part (filming the video), then it automatically goes to a transcriber, and then it goes to my blog and then out in my newsletter.
I don’t have to think about it too much – and most importantly, I don’t have to do it all myself.
(Honestly – I’d be crap if I had to do it all – I am the world’s biggest procrastinator.)
Again – this isn’t just for mothers. This is hugely useful advice for ALL entrepreneurs.
But even more – it’s really key when you do have a baby, because even if you had the best intentions to write a new post every week you don’t know what’s going to happen.
You might wake up one day and think, “YES I’m going to do my newsletter today,” and then a child vomits on your face or someone’s sick and it just doesn’t happen.
Days go by, sometimes weeks and nothing happens. That’s how businesses die.
So, vomit proof your business! You’ll be less stressed, and your business will honestly thrive from the consistency.
So, how else am I preparing this time?
Get the big projects done and dusted
The other thing I wanted to do before Baby #2 was to get some big projects out of the way.
Willow, being a toddler, is a little bit easier to handle, and I’ve had a ton of help so I can spend time on my business.
I’ve had this sweet spot over the last year and have been getting some major branding projects out of the way – a new website and new branding for the Lucky Bitch Money Bootcamp.
I wanted to get all that finished so I don’t have to start anything new when I have Baby #2, because I know I won’t have the creative energy to do it.
If there’s any big projects on the horizon right now and you’re thinking, “Do I want to have another baby?” get those big projects out of the way as soon as you can so they’re done and dusted. Don’t try and do everything at once.
Because again – your brain might be mush during maternity leave.
Yeah – you might have a huge creative surge (lots of women do) but don’t count on it.
Tighten up your overheads
The next thing I did in preparing for baby #2 is looking at my overheads and tightening up a few things, just in case.
Again, you never know what’s going to happen when you bring another baby into the world. Willow or the new baby could get sick; I could get sick. I could get postnatal depression. You never can tell.
I’m obviously a very positive, optimistic person, but preparing for a baby is a really good time to be a bit more conservative with your money.
For me, that means looking at all my outgoings, in particular any recurring subscriptions that have added up over time. (I write more about finding money leaks in your business here.)
It’s also a great time to look at your team with a much more discerning eye and asking, “Is this position a nice-to-have or is their role going to bring in revenue?”
By tightening up your expenditures, you’re going to bring in more profit, which means you could extend your maternity leave or just stress less about money.
Set stronger boundaries
I try to do evaluate my boundaries every couple of years, but having a baby is a great excuse too!
Say no to projects you don’t want to complete, people that you don’t want to work with, events that you don’t want to attend, and speaking gigs that you don’t want to do.
Having a baby is such a good opportunity to say no, and having two babies gives you even more of a chance to say no! People understand!
Again, that’s a lesson that you can learn whether you have a baby or not.
How can you become a more discerning CEO in your business?
You don’t have to have a baby to become better at saying no.
You’re allowed to choose everything in your business to serve YOU.
Trust that you’re enough
The last thing I’m doing to prepare my business for baby #2, is to really trust that I don’t have to reinvent the wheel.
The first couple of years in business (especially when you don’t have a lot of products and services to your name) can feel like you have to create something new all the time.
It’s like, “What’s my next big thing?” – and it’s easy to get distracted and try a million things.
Sometimes it’s because you’re bored. Sometimes it’s an unconscious sabotage. But most of the time it’s a big distraction.
Focus and clarity brings money.
This is something I learned from Marie Forleo, creator of B–School. She has just made B–School bigger and better every year.
If she had stopped at a few thousand members, she wouldn’t have the incredible community that she has today that has touched literally tens of thousands of lives, and is now a multi-million dollar business.
So, it’s okay to focus and go all in on just one business idea – whether it’s a signature course or one main offering.
If you do decide to go on maternity leave, or take time off to travel, you need to trust that what you’ve got is enough. It makes your life SO much easier.
You don’t have to be everything to everyone. Just because something is a good business idea, doesn’t mean that YOU have to do it.
It’s okay to let some ideas slide – and go to someone else!
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel
It’s okay to coast, but it’s also okay to deepen and leverage what you already have.
Honestly – I’ve been tempted to start new courses all the time, but I know there are so many more potential customers who NEED my offerings, like my Money Bootcamp.
And this has served me incredibly, when I wanted to take time off. Because everything I do in my business funnels into my calling. I don’t confuse my audience with mixed messages.
This is SO valuable when you take time off, and make things much easier when the shit’s hitting the fan – sometimes literally while you’re on maternity leave.
So – these have been my biggest lessons for preparing for baby #2:
Take batching to new levels
Make things as easy as possible – don’t put pressure on yourself
Finish big projects way ahead of time – don’t count on having any creative energy
Tighten up your overheads so you can make more profit
It’s okay to use your pregnancy and upcoming mat leave as an excuse to say no
Don’t reinvent the wheel – you’ll have more time and creativity later to do new stuff
Again – these are all hugely valuable lessons to learn whether you’re having a baby or not!
As I said, some of these lessons will make you an amazing CEO in your business – and that’s not Chief Everything Officer!
Big love and hugs to all the mamas, and mamas to be!
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Moms, tell us your best tips on how you’re preparing (or how you’ve prepared) your business for baby as well!
It’s your time and you’re totally ready for the next step.
Did you miss last weeks post? Check it out here: Should You Create an Online Course?