Breaking Down Your Business | Small Business | Business Owners | Entrepreneurship | Leadership

What’s In This Episode:

Christmas is over, but Jill's not giving up on making eggnog a year-round thing. What are the things they loved most from the holiday? Jill's still basking in the hugs from her daughters (and eggnog), while Brad's happy about the slippers he received.

"If you spend all your time on your personal brand, then the business can never really move away from you." - Brad

Eric Paul Olson, chief marketing officer for Clever Stilettos, an online magazine for women entrepreneurs, calls in to discuss his dilemma. He can't figure out what he wants to devote time to -- his personal brand or the Clever Stilettos brand. He has a team of eight people to help him run Clever Stilettos, but he runs a podcast to go along with the magazine. Furthermore, Eric's also an actor on Chicago Fire and Chicago Med, so Brad and Jill suggest that maybe he should hire someone to help him with Clever Stilettos while he focuses on acting. Jill says that hosting a podcast is great, but he needs to hand it off to the team once he's done lending his time to it. His team can promote on all sides - both the Eric Olson brand AND the Clever Stiletto brand. Brad says that some fans of Eric Olson, the actor, will be interested in the fact that he ALSO has a digital marketing interest. Basically, it comes down to knowing who your audience is and distributing content accordingly.

"I want to pay more attention to my space next year. I used to care less about clutter, but I need more space now." - Jill

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 non-money-driven goals for next year:

  • Try to be more present. No technology (phone, laptop - put it away!) - spend some more time with your family instead.
  • Taking more time off.
  • Make your workspace work better for you.
  • SAY NO! Get out of the habit of saying yes to everything.
  • And the number one thing? It's a tough one, but anyone can join in...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Eric Paul Olson is the chief marketing officer of Clever Stilettos, a women's entrepreneurial magazine. He splits his time between podcasting and acting
Direct download: Breaking_Dwon_Your_Business_EP_238.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

The end is near! The end of the year, that is. And, as the year draws to a close, Jill's in love... with a pitch. She appreciates a pitch she received via email was so personalized via audio that she could tell the person really put time and effort into it. Brad had the opposite reaction: he disliked that he had to click and figure out the message, and thought the sender could have just written things out.

"Why would I listen to two minutes and thirty-six seconds of yapping?" - Brad

Frank Ford, author of Happy Accidents: The Transformative Power of "YES, AND" at Work and in Lifeimproviser, and owner of Four Day Weekend, a comedy space in Fort Worth, TX, calls in to discuss how to open up a new location. He has the opportunity to open up a second location in Dallas, but wonders how to bring the quality and the value to the new digs. 

Brad says to replicate exactly. Once you can get the quality up to par, then you can innovate. Secondly, he suggests that Frank doesn't have to work with entirely new staff. Transfer some over from the original location so the feel and vibe are there. Thirdly, he says that Frank can follow the example of the Blue Man Group and reconvene frequently to see what's working for best practices.

Jill says face-t0-face meetings will be invaluable. And to keep structure, but don't have hard-and-fast rules. Think of SNL, she says. The structure has been carried through for decades and the brand is apparent, but everyone has done it a little differently.

"Take some freakin' time off!" - Jill

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 things you need to do before year end:

  • Look at your taxes. Do it. Do it now.
  • Make a budget. Set goals.
  • Acknowledge those who make your business run. Say thank you!
  • Take some time off.
  • And the number one thing? It's a fun one...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Frank Ford is the owner of Four Day Weekend, a comedy institution in Texas. In addition to performing in over 5,000 shows and working with Fortune 500 companies throughout the world, Frank is also a very popular keynote presenter on the speaker circuit.
Direct download: Breaking_Dwon_Your_Business_EP_237.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 4:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

How long is a long break? In some industries, Brad says, you can take a really long time off. College professors can take sabbaticals. Some professionals can take up to three months! What does Jill think of that? Genius idea. It never hurts to give your brain a break. It's helpful every time. Could Brad take a year off? Well, he could, but he wouldn't have any income. But he's trying to incorporate some sort of sabbatical into his routine. He's going to try it and report back. Good luck, Brad!

"As somebody who's taken time off, you'd have to plan in advance. But there's a way to manage it so that it's doable." - Jill

Ruben Ocampo of Conic, an innovation consultancy, calls into the show to ask how to diversify his client base. For years, he's worked with Fortune 500 companies, but now he's looking to also work with smaller companies and non-profit organizations. He's worked really hard to market his brand, and it's finally starting to pay off. But where does he take the business from here?

Brad wonders, "Well, if you were one of your clients, what would you tell them to do?" Ruben has a clear vision of where he wants to go, but he's trying to work out the path to get there. He knows that he doesn't have to focus on the little things in business (he has an employee to whom he can hand off tasks!). Ultimately, he wants to establish himself as a thought leader.

The good news is that his business is doing well, so Brad suggests that if he wants to take on a business partner, he has to be careful because partnerships can be tricky. If he wants to become part of a larger company, the advantage is that he can get access to larger clients, but he needs to get to know the culture first. Find a place that will value his creativity. However, he might get the largest traction for his ultimate goal by just simply reaching out and saying that he's available for speaking and writing opportunities, and looking for possible projects to collaborate on.

"Saying no to this one is saying yes to the next one that might work." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 ways to plan for a long break:

  • Hire a virtual assistant or a part-timer to work remotely for you. Look at UpWork or IVAA or Founding Moms and keep things running!
  • Collaborate with someone in your field. Have them take the lead and cover for each other in periods of absence.
  • Utilize technology: have your technology take care of technology for you. Use Zapier or Drift. Auto-responders are magical.
  • Have a team? Teach them to handle things!
  • And the last thing? It's so easy...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Ruben Ocampo is the founder of Conic Group, a strategic innovation consultancy, established in 2011. He works with clients in different industries, from Fortune 500 companies to nonprofits and government agencies. He uses a unique approach to engage clients in meaningful conversations with their customers, workforce, and other key stakeholders in the value chain. This approach allows teams to create and deliver intuitive, empowering, innovative and delightful experiences that translate into healthier business results. Find him on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_236.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Did you ever work with a workaholic? Jill did, and it was not fun. Brad considers himself to be a recovering workaholic, and now operates under the assumption that if you don't answer e-mails right away, the world won't end.

Michael Asare of FeeBelly calls in for help on how to convert the free users of his app to paid users. Jill suggests that Michael is giving too many keywords away on the free version, and so he can cut back on that and offer more information on the paid version. Brad says that for a B2C user who doesn't need to go through pages of loan documents every month, it may be worth it to have a one-time price for one document instead of someone who doesn't want to pay for a monthly subscription.

"Get some rest so that you can be more creative." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 ways taking time off makes you a better business owner:

  • You might be less of a work-addict. Addicts don't make good leaders.
  • Getting away gives you perspective and realize what's actually important.
  • Taking breaks makes you more creative!
  • When you take time off, you have to delegate.
  • And then there's that thing that's pretty irritating to those around you...

 

Guest:

  • Michael Asare is the founder of FeeBelly, an app that allows you to scan documents for the hidden fees that are often in the small print. It is available for download from the App Store.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_235.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Jill and Brad are continuing their series on taking time off. They discuss Thanksgiving, and neither believes that visiting family counts as a vacation. They don't think the occasion is bad, but Brad can't really talk about business while he's around his family, and Jill has to explain to hers why she doesn't eat turkey. She says that, as a vegan, sides are where it's at anyway. And she's making a supposedly delicious vegan pumpkin cheesecake, so maybe desserts are a close runner-up.

"Why are we encouraging working on a Saturday? Why isn't it Small Business Wednesday?" - Jill

They then talk about Small Business Saturday, which was created by American Express to get more people to shop local ... and therefore, get more of a percentage from the transaction. Jill has to admit that the marketing is clever. After all, it's not every day small business owners get to celebrate themselves. Brad's conflicted because it does get people to shop local, but it was created in self-interest which benefits a big corporation.

"Boredom does good things for your brain." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 ways taking time off makes you a better person:

  • Your stress levels go waaaaay down and you're less anxious about your business.
  • It allows you to step back, see the big picture, and see what's working (or not).
  • Travel allows you to learn things about other cultures and see how they run their businesses.
  • You start to realize that social media is maybe not the best habit to have. (By the way, check out this TED talk about Facebook being a dystopia)
  • And then everyone will do THIS...

Sponsor:

  • This episode is sponsored by Hubba, the largest network of brands, buyers, distributors, and influencers. They take all the activities that happen at a trade show and put it online. Brands get increased distribution; buyers find the right products for their stores. Join for free today and make connections that grow your business.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_234.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Jill and Brad are still talking about taking time off, 'cause business owners NEED it. They ponder the longest they went without taking a vacation. For Jill, her longest span was 2 years. Brad went 4 years without taking a bonafide vacation. If it's been more than six months, please, please, please book a vacation (or a staycation, or just a break where you don't do work). You need it.

"If you start small, you might accomplish all of the things you want to do." - Jill

Amelia Forczak of Pithy Wordsmithery calls in and has two related problems. She wants to be able to help the clients who reach out, but who can't make the investment that ghostwriting a book calls for. Secondly, she needs to figure out how to make her business scalable. She's thinking of starting a course for people to write and edit books on their own, but she doesn't quite know how to begin. Jill's advice: start small. Brad says that if she coaches clients to do the work, then that serves as practice for the eventual course Amelia wants to create. Overall, though, she needs to decide what market she wants to serve.

"I hope you get rich. And when you do, send us 5%." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 excuses for not taking time off:

  • There's too much to do. But remember, you're the boss. Set deadlines for things in the future, and go.
  • Time is money, and there's never enough. Starting a business costs money, we get it. Stay with a friend, and take a break.
  • DEADLINES. Once you meet your deadline, THEN you'll take a break. But there's always one more thing... But again, you're the boss. Go away.
  • "When I'm rich, I'll take a big vacation." You can't just wait... do it now.
  • And then there's that mentality that all business owners have...

Guest:

  • Amelia Forczak is the founder of Pithy Wordsmithery, which provides strategic ghostwriting, marketing, and consulting for authors and businesses. She is the ghostwriter of five published books, including two best-sellers. She has served as a content strategist or editor for a handful of other successful books. Amelia’s background in corporate marketing enables her to go beyond transcribing conversations with authors and putting commas in the right places. She partners with authors to truly understand their business, serving as a dedicated book-writing consultant.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_233.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Who needs a break? Jill 'n Brad are on a mission to make sure that business owners take more time off. Jill thinks that some people don't want to take time off because they don't want to miss anything (FOMO, anyone?). Others fear that the business won't survive without them. Or worse, people think that their customers will hate them if they take time for themselves. Brad also points out that it takes so much momentum to get started again once you've gone away for a little bit.

"You have to connect the dots and make sure that I know that if I'm spending money on you, you're going to improve my ROI." - Jill

Renee Epstein and Lisette Kreuzer of B-Well Wellness Events started their business three years ago and have been doing well in their primary market. They want to branch out and do more corporate events, so they ask Jill and Brad how to get more exposure. Jill suggests that they make a good 30-second video to avoid having 17 pages of e-mail testimonials in order to pitch to the right people, and follow up repeatedly. Brad says that corporate stuff always takes time to come to fruition because it needs to get onto budgets. He also points out that even if you have a contact in the business, or names of people on your lists, they may not be the right people to talk to. So you need to find a way in and then get to the person who cares. Lastly, he suggests they may want to check out wellness fairs (that's where that video would do REALLY well).

"It's like walking in a forest where you realize that you're a very small part of this large thing." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 reasons you need more time off:

  • You're getting stale in your business. You can't do this forever without taking a break.
  • You can't think outside the box without getting outside the box.
  • It's good practice to learn to let go.
  • On a basic level, it's amazing and fun and relaxing. (You're gonna love it.)
  • Oh, and then there's that thing that ALL business owners are guilty of, and should really stop...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Renee Epstein and Lisette Kreuzer began B-Well Wellness Events after realizing that teachers don't often take the time to practice self-care. They promote wellness events in schools and corporate settings in the Chicagoland area
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_232.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What are your bad habits? For Jill, she says yes to things she doesn't need to say yes to (coffee dates can wait). Brad overschedules himself and has too many piles of papers on his desk. And while they both agree that social media is a bad habit, Jill thinks that's sort of a necessary evil for small business owners.

"I'm really good at pretending that things are going well in certain areas when they're not." - Jill

Muhga Eltigani, creator of the fresh fruit hair care line NaturAll Club, calls in to ask how to expand her product line. Customers are asking for more product and since she promotes a subscription-based service, she's wondering how to best launch new product. On top of that, her product is refrigerated which might add a logistical problem. Brad suggests she uses a line of credit to introduce new products to select customers. This way her inventory doesn't get crazy. Jill suggests pre-orders, but Muhga is worried that they might not be able to fulfill the orders within a certain timeframe. The easiest way to get money is to sell things to people who already buy from you, and you don't need to tell them a timeframe - if they want the product, they'll wait for it.

"It's okay to adjust your scope to their budget, but you can't give away the whole shebang." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 things you should do less often:

  • Stop meeting with people. Use the phone first. Or do a video conference like Pluot.
  • Give up sleep. Sleeping less is not good for you!
  • Take over your team member's work and do it for them. You're only teaching them that you'll do their work for them.
  • Start new things. It gives you an endorphin rush, but if you don't finish anything, but you get no value from it. creator of the fresh fruit hair care line NaturAll Club, calls in to ask how to expand her product line. Customers are asking for more product and since she promotes a subscription-based service, she's wondering how to best launch new product. On top of that, her product is refrigerated which might add a logistical proble
  • And so many business owners do this one thing...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Muhga Eltigani is the founder of NaturALL Club, a monthly subscription service that delivers fresh handmade hair products. Want to try it out? Listeners of the Breaking Down Your Business podcast can use code NATURALL01 to get 15% off any order.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_231.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What do you believe in? Jill believes in the gut-check. Brad believes in giving in any interaction - that a client or a prospect walked away with more than they came with. Both are essential to business.

"As a business gets bigger, your gut gets disconnected with what's happening in the business." - Brad

Jared Hecht, superstar to his 11-month-old son and tech guru, calls in to talk about his new startup, Fundera. He's really proud of what Fundera has accomplished, and how they're helping people all across the country with small-business pitfalls. But he has a problem with hiring. Since the company is located in NYC, it's hard to compete dollar-for-dollar with the bigger-name companies out there (Facebook, Google, the list goes on). They want the best talent. Brad and Jill suggest that he look at the areas he can compete: the mission, the autonomy involved in changing people's lives - which you might not be getting at a major company -  and the mindset of employees when it comes to workplace culture and recognition.

"If you're able to create a fun story that your PR team will go out and tell, people will gravitate toward applying to you." - Jill

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 things you should never quit doing:

  • Clarifying your pitch for your business.
  • Asking for feedback. Ask differently. Ask other people. JUST ASK.
  • Getting people to subscribe to your mailing list. These people, essentially, help pay your bills. Get on it.
  • RAISING YOUR PRICES. If you're not raising your prices, you're not honing your pitch. Such synergy!
  • Oh, and then there's that thing that Jill refuses to do.

Guest:

  • Jared Hecht is the CEO of Fundera, a company that is transforming the world of business finance by replacing old school loan brokers with a smart and intuitive online shopping experience. Prior to founding Fundera, Hecht created GroupMe, which was eventually sold to Microsoft. 
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_230.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Does practice make perfect? Brad seems to think so. Not only because we practice, but because the benefit increases the more we do something. Jill agrees, especially when it comes to business: the operations and managerial tasks get easier, as well as figuring out how to pitch properly so that you get a response! In fact, that might be the difference between a bad entrepreneur and a good one.

"Good entrepreneurs pay attention and aren't mindlessly doing the same thing over and over again." - Jill

Author and teacher Kimberly Johnson calls into the show because she doesn't have enough time and she's not the best at delegating. Brad says that you need to make a list - who can do things for you? Then write down procedures. Furthermore, Jill says to put a timeframe on it. If you write down 5 things, pick the first item and say, "I'm handing this off in the next 12 hours." And when you hand things off, you're actually allowing people to share in your success.

"You're more likely to get referrals the fifth time you ask than the first time you ask." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 things that are better the more frequently you do them:

E-mail marketing. The more frequently you e-mail, the more people respond.
Asking for referrals.
Communication with employees. You need to communicate more than you think is necessary.
Saying no. Do one thing, and do it well.
Oh, and then there's that one thing that business owners forget to do...
Want to know what it is? Listen in!»

Listener question:

Will asks, "Do you have any tips for taking a break from your business due to moving?" Think about your clients. Will they go anywhere? You can bring on contractors to cover some things for you. Phone calls can be done from the road.

Guest:

Kimberly Johnson is the author of The Start of Something BIG:: Your Ultimate Guide to Writing a Dynamic Business Plan, now in its second edition. She founded U3I, a management and marketing consulting firm which provides business development, project management, and management/technical assistance to small, medium, and large private businesses, government agencies and not-for-profit organizations. 

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20229.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Brad just wants to automate things - is that too much to ask? He loves Zapier. He wants to make things better, and optimize them, and make them run more efficiently! Over time, however, business owners need to keep in mind that your business will change, along with the perspective on your business. Jill says that the more efficient you get, the more you see where you actually need to do the work... instead of letting a computer do it for you. So there may be a thing as optimizing too much (sorry, Brad).

"Sometimes I'm working on the dashboard of my dashboard." - Brad

David Feinman calls into the show and talks about what "viral" means in the video space. To him, viral means getting the audience that they want to see the product at the right place at the right time. He's got a problem, though: His pricing. Two years into his business, he's realizing that while the quality of his product is better than his competitors, he's charging less than he should be. Jill and Brad explain that he absolutely should raise his prices because that communicates to the marketplace that you're more confident in the value that you're putting out. People want high-quality stuff, and if they want it bad enough, they'll pay for it. In fact, they suggest tripling David's current prices for his new clients.

"You need to take more time for yourself. Schedule a block a week. Center yourself and make more money that way." - Jill

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 reasons you should quit doing things that aren't working:

Do a gut-check, and put your focus elsewhere.
You could make more money (duh).
Make room to see what really matters.
Spend more time on the big picture. Or self-reflection.
Oh, and then there's that whole thing that business owners tend to spend too much time on...
Want to know what it is? Listen in!»

Oh hey there, memory lane:

As an added bonus in this episode, Rebecca Dengrove from Rebecca's Mom Leotards calls in to follow up from her podcast episode. Her terrible 1995-era website was redesigned based on Jill and Brad's advice, and consumers love it so much, she can't keep up with current demand! A better website really is magical, guys.

Guest:David Feinman is the co-founder of Viral Ideas Marketing, where they create to inspire. They believe everyone has the right to be fulfilled, they believe in shared creativity, and in the power of defining your why. His company shares this message through the creative process and through video. 

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20228.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Jill and Brad conclude their series on money and wonder aloud why talking about money is so weird. Jill remembers that she was offended the first time someone asked her what her money-making model was. She takes a much more private and personal approach to the topic because it's one that is a source of pride as well as a vulnerability for many. Brad thinks that if you just talked about pricing outright, things wouldn't be so uncomfortable.

Social entrepreneur Joanna Black calls into the show and talks about the impetus for starting her co-working space, SheWorks Collective. The times they are a'changing for Joanna's business model, due to the fact that the collaborative/co-working environment that kicked off her business two years ago is a bit outdated. She's trying to attract new members but finds that it might be difficult given her industry. Jill and Brad suggest focusing on community as well as possible work themes which might bring connection.

"Collaboration doesn't happen because you have a conference room or because you have a meeting. It happens in between meetings." - Brad

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 money hang ups business owners have:

  • Everything is too expensive. Instead, focus on what's valuable to the business.
  • Insecurity about the future, leading to either spend too little or too much.
  • "Everyone has more money than me!!!" This allows you to shirk responsibility about what your priorities should be.
  • "I don't want to pay any taxes." Think of taxes as a privilege. You made money this year!
  • Oh, and then there's that nit-picky thing about running a successful business...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

  • Joanna Black is the founder of SheWorks Collective, a collaborative co-working space for female entrepreneurs. For more than 20 years, Joanna has been a leader in social responsibility, sustainability, wellness and women’s empowerment. She has consulted for some of the world’s largest companies on corporate responsibility and purpose; co-founded Hip-E Living, one of the country's first eco-lifestyle retailers; re-ignited environmental activation as managing director of Earth Day New York. Find her on Facebook.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_227.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Jill and Brad take a trip down memory lane and talk about why they started their businesses. When Jill started her first business, she focused on money. Now into her third enterprise, money matters a bit less and it's more about enjoyment. Brad agrees with Jill (it doesn't happen often, but it happens!): When you have a baseline, it becomes easier to build the type of business you want.

Fun fact that we didn't know about until this episode: Vanilla custard and moisturizer have similar methods of cooking.

Katarina Stetz calls into the show and discusses how she was inspired by chemistry and her grandmother from a young age to become a skincare formulator (that's the technical term for a person who makes skincare products).

Her problem? She moved from London to Chicago and doesn't know how to build up her network of industry contacts or buyers or other entrepreneurs in her new location. Every city has a code, she says, so she wants to know how to "crack the code" of Chicago. Jill and Brad suggest going to networking organizations no matter what city you're in - and while it won't happen overnight - it gradually will result in business relationships you're looking for.

And the other important thing? If you want something, all you have to do is ask. You can't go into any industry and assume that they'll be helpful without asking.

With enough opportunity, you can even create an event of your own and look like a rockstar for bringing everyone together!

"There is a much bigger mission that I understand and a lot more satisfaction I get from not thinking every day about, 'Did I make this number today?'" - Jill

Jill and Brad then discuss the top 5 things that are more important to your business than money:

  • Customer feedback. If customers are happy, the money will follow.
  • Branding and design. A good design will keep customers coming back.
  • Paying attention to the changing of the times. Stay ahead of the curve and don't get too comfortable.

"When I take a day off, I'm actually better at what I do." - Brad

  • Personal joy and freedom. Save some time for you.
  • And then there's those folks you lean on...

Want to know who they are? Listen in

Guest:

  • Katarina Stetz is the founder of NINNI, a skincare company, which began in London, UK. Katarina is from Sweden and NINNI is based on the Scandinavian philosophy of natural, simple and effective skin care; all made in a sustainable way. Katarina has a Master’s degree in chemical engineering and 10 years experience in the beauty industry. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_226.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Are you a rule follower or a rule breaker?

That's the topic of the day for Jill and Brad. They discuss if entrepreneurs are, by their very nature, rule breakers or rule followers. Both consider themselves to be rule breakers, but rule followers shouldn't feel left out: Followers are vital to entrepreneurship. (Hooray!)

Sara Lingenfelter, entrepreneur and all-around awesome person, calls into the show and asks for help with finding her target audience. This leads to a conversation about the best methods for networking using LinkedIn, Facebook, or getting feedback via Google Forms or Typeform to spread the word.

"If somebody says, 'Here's the boundary' you say, 'Let me move it for you.'" - Jill

Jill and Brad discuss money rules to follow:

  • Don't run out money. This causes suffering and exasperation that you just don't need.
  • Money gives you choices. Be prudent about yours.
  • Don't borrow money, especially if you're a service-based business.

"When you borrow money, you put someone else in charge of your business." - Brad

  • If you need money, ask for it. Send your invoices on time, follow up with those who are late paying you, or raise your prices.
  • And then there's that old saying about money...

Want to know what it is? Listen in

Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_225.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

In this episode (the first in a series about that cash money), Jill and Brad talk about the things they don't know but everyone else seems to: For Jill, it's accounting. For Brad, it's fashion (thank God we just have to hear him, then, right?).

They talk with Karen M. Carlson, the "absolute best, therapeutic relaxation expert east of the Mississippi" who calls in to discuss whether some of the products she's offering should be on a separate website other than the one she has now. This spurs a great conversation about what people will be drawn to when visiting your business website (hint: keep it clear and simple).

"Wait... you didn't get into business to make money?" - Brad

Jill and Brad discuss why we don't know our numbers: we're multitaskers, not accountants. (Brad likes Zapier to help with that.)We might not even know what a P&L statement is. We're not good at tracking your time.

"You can hire people, you can ask friends to look at your numbers, you can even have machines come up with reports for you." - Jill

Entrepreneurs like to try the same thing hoping for different results (spoiler alert: it won't work). And then there's always that pesky problem about numbers...

Want to know what it is? Listen!

Guest:

  • Karen M. Carlson is the founder of Be Well and Renew, and is a massage therapist and author. She offers guided meditation, and makes eye pillows for adults and children to help them to be calm, quiet and comfortable in their bodies. A new children's book, which accompanies the eye pillows, will be out soon! Find her on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_224.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

We all hear about the speed of business and how we need to be faster, but is that speed good in itself? Jill gets a bit math-y and talks sine curves and parabolas, but eventually shares that we fall into the same pattern. You start off in a big rush trying to get everything done and figure it all out, but then something changes. Maybe it's burn out, tons of success, or simply age and experience -- whatever it is, you eventually realize you can slow down. We should trust our guts more because in our anxiety of trying to be faster, we inherently know the pace we should be working at. Brad and Jill chat more about why you should ease up in the Top 5 Reasons To Slow Down in this episode and they welcome coach, speaker, and author Karen Friedman to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Karen Friedman is the founder of Karen Friedman Enterprises, providers of speaker and communication training programs across the globe.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_223.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What was the best team you were ever a part of? Jill was part of a powerhouse team at Elektra Records; they pushed each other to be better, could make fun of each other, but most importantly, were respectful of one another. For Brad, each person on his team thought they were the worst performer so they worked hard to not let the group down. That kind of respect for each other is a big part in making a team successful. Do you already have a strong team but want to push them to go further? Jill and Brad talk about the Top 5 Ways To Get Your Team GOING in this episode and they welcome billboard visionary Matthew Olivieri to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Matthew Olivieri is the founder of AdSemble, a self-service billboard advertising marketplace.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_222.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you ever get that feeling that your business is about to take off? Jill definitely knows that feeling - it's exciting and re-energizing! It infuses life into the business and even though it may not pan out, it's a sign that good things are happening. Brad used to chase that feeling but has come to realize he'd rather have steady progress instead. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Know That It's "GO TIME" in this episode and they share which apps they've been trying out lately. We promise Jill doesn't talk about any photo apps... sort of. Listen in! »

Tools:

  • Shapr - Tinder interface applied to networking. Brad swears you don't have to immediately make out as soon as you meet in person. 
  • Lighter - It's a virtual lighter. And that's it. Jill loves it.
  • BRiN - World's first artificially intelligent business advisor. Brad thinks it has potential but isn't there yet.
  • Magic - Text-based personal assistant available 24/7
  • Legend - Easily turn text into animations
  • Light Phone - A phone that's not a computer. Jill is fascinated, Brad is not. (Get a $7 burner phone from eBay instead)
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_221.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you talk to yourself? Jill does all the time! What, you don't? She thinks there are two types of people in this world, those who talk to themselves in their head and those who do it out loud. And sometimes, Jill even gets answers from herself! Brad thinks that's just called thinking.. and you're not really getting answers (which is why you should call us at 708-872-7878 with your questions!). They also talk to each other about the Top 5 Questions To Ask Yourself in this episode and welcome UX designers Mark Baldino and Ben Ihnchak to the show. Listen in! »

Guests:

  • Mark Baldino and Ben Ihnchak are the founders of Fuzzy Math, a user experience design, strategy, and innovation firm. Find them on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Shout-out:

  • Brooke Craven left us the nicest review on iTunes - thanks Brooke, we think you're awesome!
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_220.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

How's your to-do list looking? Brad noticed that no matter how many things he crosses off, he's left with more than he started with. How does a to-do list become a three-do list? (Groan). But really, can he declare bankruptcy on his list and make it go away? Jill teaches Brad the trick of just tearing off a new sheet of paper and starting a brand new list the following day. Yes, actual paper. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Feel Less Overwhelmed (And Make More Progress) in this episode and they welcome world famous freelancer Mark Fromson to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_219.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 8:49am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What was the happiest team you were ever a part of? The first thing that popped into Jill's mind was a dance troupe her and her sisters were a part of. #Adorable. Brad recalls being part of a small team that led an organization for 1.5 years. It was a high pressure position but the group still remains in touch. They discovered that each person thought they were the weakest link of the bunch and continually worked hard in order to not let the group down. Everybody truly respected one another and it forged a relationship that continues to this day! Sometimes moments are more memorable with a team because you get to share a happy experience with others, instead of alone in an office. Jill and Brad chat about how you can strengthen your own relationships in the Top 5 Ways To Have A Happier Team and welcome quizmaster Josh Haynam to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Josh Haynam is the co-founder of Interact, a company that makes it easy for you to create and embed lead capture quizzes. Find him on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_218.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Why is Jill soaked? Well, she followed her own advice. She woke up this morning, did not look at her phone, then hopped on her Vespa to head to the studio. 20 minutes into her ride, it started raining. And then it started hailing. If only she had looked at her weather app! New rule: Don't look at your phone when you wake up, unless you're going outside and traveling in an open air vehicle. They also address the summer lull you may be feeling in the Top 5 Ways To Build Your Business When Things Are Slow in this episode and bring AMA to a close..for now. Listen in! »

AMA (Ask Me/Us Anything):

Brad and Jill wrap up their AMA series with questions from Sarah and an anonymous listener. Sarah wonders if she should ask for feedback from her employees, and if so, how to not get defensive. Our anonymous questioner wants to know if they should try to make their company look bigger than they actually are - the short answer is no. We've really enjoyed receiving and answering your questions, so thank you again for sending them in! If you want to ask us literally anything (dying to know what's Brad's favorite ice cream flavor?), just call or text and you may hear your question in a future episode!

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20217.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Are there problems you have outside of work that you've had forever? (Um, yes, how about all of them?!) The older he gets, the more Brad figures out what are problems, and what are just tensions to manage. For example, he wanted more fresh veggies in his life so he planted a garden. But now he has too much zucchini and doesn't know what to do with it all! That's just something he has to manage while enjoying his fresh food. Also, don't be surprised if you receive a jar of pickled zucchini from Brad. In our work lives, we're all familiar with the strain of never having enough new business. No matter who you are, it's never going away. Jill and Brad share other examples in the Top 5 Business Problems You’ll Never Fix in this episode and continue on with AMA part deux. Listen in! »

AMA (Ask Me/Us Anything):

  • Brad and Jill asked listeners a few weeks ago if they had any questions they'd like answered - the response was so great we had to split up the AMA section into several parts! This week, former guest Rebecca Dengrove wants to know about ERPs and Cheryl Taylor wonders if email marketing really works. It's no surprise that our favorite hosts have plenty to say about both topics.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_216.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Why is Brad yawning? Well, yesterday was pretty eventful. He came home to find maintenance folks outside his house inspecting a suspected gas leak. That somehow turned into a broken gas line, and then a broken water line. Which have to be fixed with very loud tools. What?! Brad #canteven. So, he didn't sleep at all. He wonders about the crew outside his house though; have they been working for 14 hours straight? When do they go home? Speaking of which, Jill and Brad also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Stop Working All The Time in this episode and share the questions they received from listeners when they opened up an AMA. Listen in! »

AMA (Ask Me/Us Anything):

  • We asked listeners on social media if they had any questions they'd like answered, and the response we received was so great! Thank you all! Greg wanted to know how to decide when to take risks and Peter wondered how to overcome feeling guilty for (fill in the blank). Brad and Jill shared some great nuggets of wisdom that will definitely apply to you so make sure to tune in.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_215.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

When you take a vacation with your family, does it really count as a vacation? Probably not. You don't get any rest, constantly have to be "on," and likely have a lot of anxiety around past issues. At the same time, it is nice to spend time with people you don't get to see very often. Also, as kids start coming home from college, Brad realized something - kids think of their parents as frozen in time, just as parents see their kids frozen in time as a certain age (ex: their favorite meal will always be meatloaf because it was when they were younger, even though it may not be true now). Now that the roles are reversed, he realizes it's a two-way street of misconception. As summer sneaks up on us, Brad and Jill help us make the most of our vacations by sharing the Top 5 Ways To Be With Your Family, When You Are With Your Family in this episode and they welcome author, podcaster, and business woman Nedalee Thomas to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_214.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you know what mindfulness is? It's a mental state achieved by focusing on the present. Brad has been trying to incorporate mindfulness into his daily life. He starts his day off by getting into that frame of mind, and also sets a reminder for himself midday to reset, relax, and re-find some of the peace that slips away during a workday. He is also practicing mindful eating by slowing down and actually tasting his food, instead of shoveling it down as fast as he can. Practicing mindfulness has been shown to improve your sleep, relationships, mental and physical health. Jill and Brad teach you how to be more present with the Top 5 Ways To Be More Mindful All Day Long in this episode and they welcome sexy mama Luci Lampe to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_213.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you ever completely shut down your work? Seems like an impossible dream, but it's possible! When Jill goes on vacation, she'll shut down all electronics and leave work behind. It takes a bit of time to fully shut down but once it's done, it's so hard to get back to reality. How does she do it? A lot of planning and heavy lifting beforehand. And if she absolutely needs to use a phone to find the nearest pizza place, someone else will have an available phone so it's not the end of the world. Brad and Jill give you tips on how to find your bliss with the Top 5 Ways To Leave Work In The Office in this episode and they welcome Yahaira Núñez to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Yahaira Núñez is the Assistant VP of Business Development at Excelsior Growth Fund, a non-profit organization that offers affordable, flexible and fast business loans along with free advisory services to help small businesses grow. Find her on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_212.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you think there's no crying in baseball..no, I mean, the office? Brad had a conversation with a client last week about a team member who recently spent a lot of time crying at work. The client told the team member to put on some sunglasses and take a walk around the block. Essentially, "there's no crying in the office." Brad told the client he agreed with the action; it's ok to cry in the office, but not all the time. If crying at the office diminishes your ability to get your work done, then yes, take a walk around the block and pull it together. Jill agrees too, and thinks she'd be even harsher; she'd simply suggest not coming into the office. There's office morale and work flow to think about, and she wants to preserve that. The exception is if you cry over something you're incredibly passionate about in a situation where permission has been granted. Overall, if you're in a business setting and emotions are prohibiting you from working, that's not good. Brad and Jill also talk about the Top 5 Times To Show Your Emotions In Business and they welcome entrepreneur and dog walker extraordinaire Britt Alwerud to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Britt Alwerud is the founder and CEO of Handlr, a software platform that makes it easier for business owners to handle their daily operations. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_211.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

When is it helpful to be emotional in business? Jill started out stoic and business-like in her career, but when she began being herself, she made more money! She's now on a mission to let people know that business doesn't have to be boring. Yes, there's a fine line between emotions and business, but Jill believes we should all be closer to that line. As a consultant, Brad likes to give his clients permission to have their emotions because it allows for effective problem solving. If you can get to the root of the issue, you can connect with others and solve it! Ultimately, there are emotions you don't want to bring into the workplace but more often than not, we can all benefit from showing up as our authentic, genuine selves. They also talk about the Top 5 Emotions You Need In Business in this episode and they welcome dessert designer Joellyn Huebner to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

  • Joellyn Huebner is the founder of Sweet Soirées, a Chicago-based dessert catering company specializing in custom-styled, visually stunning, luxury dessert and candy buffets for all occasions. Find her on Twitter, and Facebook, and Instagram.

Shout-out:

  • Justin D K left us a review on iTunes and we were tickled pink at all the great things he had to say! Thanks for the looooove, Justin D K!
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_210.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Do you know of some companies that are doing good? Not well, but good! Jill mentioned a woman who is converting her dance studio into a non-profit, and another who runs an organization which helps literacy in Chicago. Internationally speaking, she's all about Kiva. She can go on and on about all the great companies she knows of; there are so many! Brad loves the local breweries in Chicago and how they're creating wonderful communities around them. If you know of a company that's doing good, let us know! Call or text 708-872-7878 and share it with us please! They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Know It's Time To Promote A Team Member in this episode and they welcome pharmacist and entrepreneur Rosemarie Rutecki to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Rosemarie Rutecki is the founder of Mashtopatoes, a platform focused on helping busy parents and neighbors work together and build a strong community through covering tasks that will lessen a parent's load. Find her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Sponsor:

  • This episode is brought to you by FreshBooks. Ridiculously easy accounting software that’s completely transformed how freelancers and small business owners deal with their day-to-day paperwork, built for exactly the way you work. For a free trial, go to freshbooks.com/bdyb and enter Breaking Down Your Business in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_209.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What are you planting this spring? Whether physically or metaphorically, 'tis the season! Jill is definitely not physically planting anything - rather than two green thumbs, she has two murderous thumbs. Instead, she's planting the seeds of massive business growth! She's all about planting lots of seeds/ideas and then thinning out the ones that don't work. Brad is the total opposite - he loves planting tomatoes every year, as well as other beautiful flowers in front of his home. He also plans to take his business deeper, focusing on helping his clients be better human beings, in addition to better business owners. Our favorite gardeners discuss the Top 5 Ways To Make Your Business Come Alive in this episode and they welcome Scottish superhero and entrepreneur Katy Lynch to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Katy Lynch is the co-founder of Codeverse, the world's first fully interactive coding school and educational tech platform that teaches kids to code. Find her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
  • Bonus: Get a $100 discount through our exclusive link when you sign your kid up today for Codeverse! Just click HERE

Sponsor:

  • This episode is brought to you by FreshBooks. Ridiculously easy accounting software that’s completely transformed how freelancers and small business owners deal with their day-to-day paperwork, built for exactly the way you work. For a free trial, go to freshbooks.com/bdyb and enter Breaking Down Your Business in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_208.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

When you're sitting in a meeting that's been going on for too long, how do you bring it to an end and get out of there? According to Jill, there's an app for that (of course there is). Set the app to call you at a certain time and just tell everybody you need to deal with an emergency. Or maybe go to the bathroom and never come back. Brad tries to redirect and lead the meeting so that all participants can get the info they came for and leave. We also learn what the devil is really up to, the importance of mute buttons, and why Jill is going to give Brad a jar of nail files (it's for a very important business reason). Plus, they talk about the Top 5 Longest Meetings in this episode and welcome back the focused and flourishing Emily Lonigro Boylan to the show. 

Guest:

Emily Lonigro Boylan is the founder of LimeRed Studio, a WBE Certified and Certified B Corporation UX agency that develops user experiences and shapes campaigns that create social impact. Find her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Sponsor:

This episode is brought to you by FreshBooks. Ridiculously easy accounting software that’s completely transformed how freelancers and small business owners deal with their day-to-day paperwork, built for exactly the way you work. For a free trial, go to freshbooks.com/bdyb and enter Breaking Down Your Business in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20207.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Brad received the worst sales email in the world from "Catherine" at.. let's just call them Sales Mango. It was from a person and company he didn't know with a subject line asking about the main "pain-point" in his marketing. He replied and told them it was the worst sales email he's ever gotten, and the emails still kept coming! Clearly these (terrible) generic emails were coming from a robot, so why would anybody use their services? Do all their customers deal with robots too? Don't send out bad templated emails. Just stop. It's the worst. Please stop. Jill and Brad also talk about the Top 5 People You Need To Grow Your Business in this episode and they welcome financial advisor and life coach Lonnie Ogulnick to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

Lonnie Ogulnick is the founder of Gordon Wealth, a financial advisory firm focused on helping their clients accumulate and preserve wealth over a long-term investment horizon. Find him on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Sponsor:

This episode is brought to you by FreshBooks. Ridiculously easy accounting software that’s completely transformed how freelancers and small business owners deal with their day-to-day paperwork, built for exactly the way you work. For a free trial, go to freshbooks.com/bdyb and enter Breaking Down Your Business in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20206.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

When you start out, you market broadly. To grow, you must focus. What has helped you focus your attention in life? Brad and Jill's series on scaling your business continues as they share ways to focus that has worked for them. For Jill, it's been other people telling her she has to focus (you mean doing everything and anything all the time is not the way entrepreneurs do it? No!). Thanks Brad for telling Jill she has to focus! Plus, she turns off her wifi to pause the constant flow of pings and buzzes. Brad finds time blocking incredibly effective for him, as well as automation (via Zapier). So, if you need to find Brad on a Monday morning, you know he'll be writing. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Focus Your Business As You Grow in this episode and welcome money guy and family man Justin Krane to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Justin Krane is a business money strategist focused on helping small business owners get clarity around their money.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_205.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

When you were first starting out, what was the one marketing strategy that worked really well for you? Jill and Brad agree that talking to people face to face ranks pretty high up there. Brad remembers someone telling him "No one is going to crawl through your computer screen and say they want to work with you." You have to meet people! Email newsletters are also tremendously powerful. It's a free way to reach out to folks! If you don't have an email list, stop what you're doing and start one right now. Thanks to the magic of the internet, Jill and Brad hop in a time machine and travel back to 1996, so you'll definitely want to stay tuned for that. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways Your Marketing Changes As You Scale in this episode and they welcome gymnast Rebecca Dengrove to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Rebecca Dengrove is THE Rebecca of Rebecca's Mom Leotards, makers of women's gymnastics leotards. No, really, it is!
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_204.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Why did Brad get a shoe in the mail? To be specific, the package (with a handwritten recipient address) contained a kids' size 10 shoe with three Velcro straps, a letter, and a business card. The letter started out with a story about a man with one shoe on the bus. You then learn he didn't lose a shoe but found one, which transitions into a woman asking about your graphic design and photography needs. To Brad, it's a good pitch but to the wrong audience (he has a small team and uses a graphic designer about once a year). To Jill, it's way too much. It gives the impression that the person has too much time or is not using funds in the right areas. She recalls a marketing event she was invited to that involved a limo, babysitter for her kid, wine, and a celebrity guest speaker. Does she remember who the company was? Absolutely not. Less pretty packaging, more effective stuff! Brad and Jill also talk funnel cakes, niching down, and sure enough, raising prices. They kick off their series on how to scale with the Top 5 Things That Need To Change As You Grow in this episode and they welcome marketing guru and dancer Hilary Buuck to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Hilary P. Buuck is a marketing strategist focused on helping service providers get more leads in order to gain more clients, memberships, and students.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_203.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

We've been talking a lot about how business owners are the worst employees over the past few episodes, so what's an example of a time you've derailed your business? For Jill, it seems like all she does is derail her business. For example, she's forgetful, calendars badly, and doesn't reach out to people about events she puts together. So, how does she get back on track? She reminds herself to focus! (See below for some tools she uses to help her) Brad is very quick to admit he's a terrible calendarer (yup, we're making that a word) so he's going to hire someone to help him. They share more ways to remain on course in this episode with the Top 5 Things To Get You Back On Track and they welcome mom, writer, and entrepreneur Eraina Ferguson to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Tools:

  • Forest: an app that gamifies focusing; don't let your tree die!
  • Go...Work: a Chrome extension which blocks sites that keep you unproductive and constantly reminds you to stay on track
  • One Big Thing: an app to keep you focused on, you guessed it, one big thing
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_202.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

How has your most unmanageable employee derailed your business? In an earlier episode, we learned that the business owner is the most unmanageable one of the bunch. So, what have you done? By that logic, what Jill has done is be herself! Fears around not charging enough, not following up enough, or not getting out there more - they're always there. Brad realized he gets bored with training others. He'll do a great job upfront but won't do it continually, resulting in someone being half trained. Take a deep look inside and figure out what's really the problem - like, so deep inside you'll need an x-ray machine. We also get some wise words from Nelson Mandela, talk about your why, and discover how sprints can be good for you. The systems series continues with Brad and Jill discussing How Do You Find Your Way and they welcome financially savvy author Kate Stalter to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Kate Stalter is the co-founder of Better Money Decisions, a financial firm dedicating to helping clients meet their unique financial goals. Find her on Twitter and Facebook, and learn about her latest book here.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_201.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

It's a bicentennial celebration with episode 200! How has Jill and Brad stayed on track for so many episodes? For Jill, the answer is Brad. Brad is excellent at keeping her on track, whereas he simply keeps showing up and episodes magically happen! (Just kidding. It takes work!) Send your congratulations and well wishes by calling 708-872-7878 and leaving a message; we're hoping for 200 callers with ideas on how to get to episode 400. The best idea gets a special prize! They also continue with their systems series and share the Top 5 Systems To Keep Your Team On Track in this episode and welcome former YouTube singer and entrepreneur Camila Paola to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_200.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

We know business owners don't like to follow rules, but are there ones you choose to follow? Which ones make you a better owner and leader? Jill likes the kindergarten rule, better known as the Golden Rule - treat others the way you'd want to be treated. Let's just all be nice to each other! She's also punctual, showing up at the agreed upon time..on most days. Along those same lines, Brad loves using meeting invites. It keeps Brad on track (since he's a self-confessed moron when it comes to his calendar) and ensures both parties show up at the right time! He pays people on time and won't work them down on their fee too, because he wouldn't want it done to him. Basically, let's all live by the Golden Rule and the world will be a happy place. They also talk about the Top 5 New Business Rules in this episode and welcome coach, speaker, and podcaster Amy Smalarz to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

 

 

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_199.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Who's the most unmanageable person in your business? You, the business owner! Brad and Jill theorize why - is it because we're control freaks, like to do everything, and don't want anybody telling us what to do? Is it because we just don't fit in a corporate environment? If you know the magic answer, call and tell us why! Jill recalls her time at a super corporate place and how she did everything she was supposed to do and enjoyed it, but then went to grad school and realized she never wanted to go back to corporate. She needs her freedom and thrives in it! Brad shares how he'll sit down with business owners time and time again, explain to them how they're ruining their business, yet they don't do anything about it. They also talk about the Top 5 Systems To Get You Through The Day in this episode and they welcome people development trainer and fairy dust sprinkler Alissa Friedman to the show. Listen in! »

Guest:

Alissa Friedman is a trainer and coach who lifts the fog and helps people get out of their own way. Find her on about.me and LinkedIn.


Talk to us! Leave us a Google Voicemail with your burning business question so that we can read it in a future episode at 708.872.7878. Or tweet at us using hashtag #jillnbrad. And leave us a review on iTunes — pretty please? Over here!

Direct download: Breaking20Down20Your20Business20EP20198.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

What's the best spam you've ever received? Jill got an email from an unknown sender and the first thing she saw was a picture of an adorable dog. Once she read through the copy and got to a sales pitch, she deleted it. BUT, she received more follow-up emails from the company that all included pictures of cute dogs! Considering the emails were memorable enough for Jill to forward them to Brad and talk about them in this episode, but not enough for her to remember the company name or even what they sell, is the approach worth it? Let Brad and Jill know! Call, email, tweet..including pictures of adorable dogs won't hurt either. We also hear from a longtime listener who emailed and expressed how much she enjoyed the short series on hiring we recently did (we hear you Nedra, and thank you for emailing!). She requested more themes, including one on systems and processes around running a business. So, in the first of a short series on systems, Jill and Brad talk about the Top 5 Systems To Keep Your Business On Track  and they welcome photographer Monika Labbe to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_197.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

What’s In This Episode:

Are you aware of the things you do and the way you act? Brad has been paying attention to awareness a lot lately and noticed he acts differently. For example, someone recently told him he tends to interrupt others and ever since then, he's been aware of it happening (and he tries to stop of course). Jill thinks she became much more self-aware when she started her own business. She thought she was pretty normal until a ton of people told her "You're so crazy!" When you hear something over and over again, it might be true. But, embrace it, champion it, and allow it to make you a better leader! Brad and Jill help you get to that point by sharing the Top 5 Things That Will Make You More Self-Aware In Business in this episode and they welcome super mom and super CEO Danielle Dy Buncio to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Danielle Dy Buncio is president and CEO of VIATechnik, providers of technology solutions to the engineering & construction industry. Find her on LinkedIn and Twitter.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_196a.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Things To Do On Your Employee's First Day w/ Natasha Case

What’s In This Episode:

Is there a first day of work experience that's particularly memorable for you? Jill shares her worst first day of work story where her boss essentially said "Ok, go" then didn't look or speak to her for the entire day. What?! That's definitely a way to kick things off at a new job. On the other side of the spectrum, Brad remembers a job where on his first day, he already had business cards and log-in instructions for his computer right from the get-go. Plus, his boss took him on a tour of the office to introduce him to the team he'd be working with. From the very beginning, he knew what needed to be done and what his priorities were. Now that's an excellent way to make a first day impression! Brad and Jill help you make that same impression by sharing the Top 5 Things To Do On Your Employee's First Day in this episode and they welcome ice cream maven Natasha Case to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Natasha Case is the co-founder and CEO Coolhaus, maker of gourmet, hand-crafted super unique ice cream with an architectural twist. Find her on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_195.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Things You Need When You Make A Job Offer w/ Janae' Wesby

What’s In This Episode:

Hey, in a few days, we've got a thing going on.. are you in? Of course you're not! That invitation is incredibly unclear and includes zero details! Would you ever offer a job to someone in that same manner? If you want someone to say yes to something, you need to give them a firm and specific offer. Jill looks back on past offers she's given and wonders if she's been doing it wrong this entire time. So, you can't just hire someone and say "Go!"? Has her entire life been one long "oops"? Plus, we learn all about Brad's sturdy eyebrows. Continuing their series on hiring, Jill and Brad talk about the Top 5 Things You Need When You Make A Job Offer in this episode and they welcome brow whisperer Janae' Wesby to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_194.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Signs You Are Interviewing All Wrong w/ Amanda Young

What’s In This Episode:

Have you been on some bad interviews? Jill sure has. From a computer store fiasco in high school to "interviewing" with the ultimate New York jerk in college (it's ok, she still loves NY! #pizza), she's been burned and has learned from it the hard way. For Brad, a brilliant recruiter taught him an easy way to nail an interview, but unfortunately it doesn't involve learning about the job at all! Luckily, Brad is a stand-up guy who turned down a position (and a potential boss) that probably wasn't the right fit. Windex, pop vs. soda vs. Coke, a brand new self-awareness course called "No, You're Not" Jill will probably launch in late 2017...it's a jam packed episode! They also talk about the Top 5 Signs You Are Interviewing All Wrong and welcome author and business coach Amanda Young to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Amanda Young is the founder of Simplify Your Marketing, a consulting agency focused on helping women entrepreneurs design businesses they love while finding themselves, fulfilling their life's purpose, and supporting their families. Find her on TwitterFacebook, and her book on Amazon.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_193.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Ways To Make Your Job Posting "Pop" w/ George Berlin

What’s In This Episode:

Do you need to hire? Have you ever hired a friend, neighbor, or even someone you bumped into on the street? Jill admits to hiring anybody she bumps into, but is steadfast in never hiring family. You're too emotionally tied and it'll be difficult to fire them! Stay far far away from that situation! The best hires come through referrals; someone who knows you sends along a gem (who's already pre-vetted) - it's so great and much easier! If you aren't so lucky and you have to go through the hiring process, Jill and Brad share the Top 5 Ways To Make Your Job Posting "Pop" in this episode and welcome creative genius George Berlin to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

 

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_192.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Things to Think about BEFORE you hire w/ Rich Kahn

What’s In This Episode:

Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Unlike Jill and Brad, do you stick to them? If you’re resolving to get in shape, stop doing all the bad things and wanna sing Kumbaya more often: Good luck with that. Jill and Brad talk about how they make goals, not resolutions, and they plan ahead rather than making a few things up in the hopes that they stick to it. They also talk about the Top 5 Things To Think About BEFORE You Hire in this episode and they welcome advertising guru Rich Kahn to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_191.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Ways to Stay the Course w/ Kelly Jurecko

What’s In This Episode:

Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Unlike Jill and Brad, do you stick to them? If you’re resolving to get in shape, stop doing all the bad things and wanna sing Kumbaya more often: Good luck with that. Jill and Brad talk about how they make goals, not resolutions, and they plan ahead rather than making a few things up in the hopes that they stick to it. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Stay The Course in this episode and they welcome mom extraordinaire Kelly Jurecko to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

  • Kelly Jurecko is the Co-founder and President of SPD Parent Zone, a non-profit dedicated to raising awareness about Sensory Processing Disorder. Find her on Twitter and Facebook.
Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_190.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Signs You Need To Switch Things Up w/ Niala Boodhoo

What’s In This Episode:

Is your plan for 2017 just to work harder and hopefully get more from your efforts? What makes that different from every other time you've set that goal? For Jill, this isn't the first time she's made a 'no sugar' resolution except this time around, she's telling tons of people about it (that includes you!). We get an update on the noble quest and learn a cookie or two may have snuck its way in. Maybe even a doughnut. We'll have to check Instagram to find out for sure. Jill and Brad ask some hard-hitting questions that may make you realize something needs to change in the Top 5 Signs You Need To Switch Things Up. They also welcome talk show host and producer Niala Boodhoo to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: BDYB_EP_189.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Ways To Build Momentum w/ Devorah Steinberg

What’s In This Episode:

Did you make any changes at the start of this new year? Still got that "new year" smell? Running off renewed energy and feeling upbeat about the coming months? Jill and Brad are right there with you and want to help keep it going! They discover they've both cut sugar out of their diet and decide to keep each other accountable. Jill is pretty sure she'll fall off the wagon by February 17th but until then, she's holding strong. Plus, we get to hear the equivalent of an audio unicorn: Brad sings. Well, maybe it's more of a brief sighting of the unicorn's tail. They also talk about the Top 5 Ways To Build Momentum in this episode and they welcome mind/body psychotherapist Devorah Steinberg to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_188.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

Top 5 Ways To Hit The Ground Running w/ Sam Skoryna

What’s In This Episode:

It's the start of a new year - are you ready to hit the ground running or still exhausted from the holidays? Brad went swimming this morning and had a swimsuit mishap because he couldn't focus (don't worry, it's G-rated), and Jill just misses her eggnog. Luckily, they've got methods to kickstart themselves. Having an office to go back to always helps get you back into the routine of work, as does an inbox filled with emails needing responses. Brad shares his secret to dealing with a full inbox - don't answer any emails. So, good luck getting a hold of him this year! In all seriousness, kick off the year by making a plan, organizing, and then just get going! Jill and Brad talk about the Top 5 Ways To Hit The Ground Running in this episode and they welcome kids fitness guru Sam Skoryna to the show. Listen in! »


Guest:

Direct download: Breaking_Down_Your_Business_EP_187.mp3
Category:Business -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

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