How to Collaborate with Others to Build Your Business with Leanne Peterson #61

Are you looking to collaborate with others to build your business? Do you have loads of creative ideas that you can share with the world if you just had the right partner? Collaborative genius, Leanne Peterson, joins the My Biz Bestie podcast to share her expertise in this area. She has a lot of wisdom to share on how to collaborate with others both at your level of success and beyond. Listen to this episode to hear her share her experience on collaborating with others to grow your community and your business.

How do you reach out to collaborate with others on a project?

Everyone likes the idea of collaborating on a project with others. But then people tend to stumble on the how. How do you collaborate with someone? How do you reach out? What do you say? What do you do?

When you want to work with someone at your level, collaboration is easy. It can be as easy as picking up the phone or shooting off an email and pitching your idea. You have to ask, but sometimes its easier and more affordable than you think. You never know what the other person is thinking, your idea may be an exciting opportunity for them.

TWEET THIS: If you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far go together

Start where you are

You probably shouldn’t reach out and call Oprah just yet. Start small. You can look to other sole business owners around you and see how you can build a project that would be mutually beneficial. You can also step out of your box. Sometimes as online business owners people tend to think that they have to stay in the online space. But you can look around at the local businesses in your area to see if there are opportunities right under your nose. Local businesses may have resources that you don’t and you may have more reach than they do. You never know what can become of a relationship until you reach out. Start with a small project and see if you want to continue building a relationship to collaborate on something bigger.

How do you collaborate with someone who is out of your league?

Creating a business is all about building different relationships. Begin to think about your long-term business goals and then think about who you want to develop relationships with. If you are looking to begin a relationship with someone a few steps ahead of you in their business then try becoming a fangirl. Stalk them online, take their classes, join their masterminds. Taking their courses is a great way to get in front of them. You can then begin to build touchpoints to build the relationship you want. You can then start nurturing your relationship so that when the time comes to make the big ask, they will already know you and understand who you are and what you do. Listen to Leanne Peterson describe how to reach out to others who are just beyond your reach on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

Feel the fear and do it anyway

Reaching out to others can be scary but changing your mindset can help you grow. Curiosity and fear can’t exist at the same time. So if you are curious about what the outcome will be you won’t have the space to be scared about what will happen. When reaching out it can be helpful to have a script when calling or you can just wing it. You might feel those 7 hard seconds before you press the send button on the email or call button on the phone. But feel the fear and do it anyway. Discover how to feel more confident about collaborating with others by listening to Leanne’s sage advice on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

In this episode...

  • [3:12] Everyone likes the idea of collaborating, but how to do it?

  • [8:07] It's smart to look around you at your local space

  • [12:25] Creating a business is all about building different relationships

  • [16:15] How did Leanne choose who to collaborate with?

  • [25:39] Get in front of someone else’s audience

  • [32:05] How well has Leanne planned out her events?

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Leanne Peterson

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

The Keys to Building and Maintaining Business Relationships with Betsy Furler #60

Even if you’re great at networking you may struggle with maintaining business relationships. It can be a struggle to keep up with those contacts that you have met in various different circumstances. Your App Lady and networking extraordinaire, Betsy Furler, joins the My Biz Bestie podcast to discuss the power of networking and the often forgotten role of maintaining business relationships. Listen in to this conversation to learn from Betsy’s expertise and discover how important networking and maintaining relationships are.

Betsy is a speech pathologist that turned into Your App Lady

Betsy Furler is a speech pathologist with a passion for helping people with disabilities. Her work in speech pathology has led her to connect with many people with disabilities. This led her to help companies create disability-friendly workplaces. She loves apps and is passionate about the use of apps and technology to help those with disabilities. Her company, For All Abilities, helps people with disabilities navigate challenges in the workplace and brings disability awareness to workplaces around the world. Listen to this episode to hear how

You may want to rethink taking a break over the holidays

Many people take a break from their business and networking over the holidays. But Betsy learned that even during downtime networking can lead to real payoffs. She shares a story about how continuing to network over the holidays paid off in a big way. She attended one networking event which led to another and ended up making connections which sparked a domino effect. That one networking decision to attend an event during Christmastime landed her 4 amazing meetings with people that were highly connected all over the world in her field. Those 4 meetings resulted in 2 consulting gigs.

Build genuine relationships, not just business contacts

Betsy is not a shy person she is the epitome of an extrovert. She knows a lot of people and loves to meet people randomly. The great thing about Betsy is that she speaks to everyone as if they are her best friend. What makes her conversations different from many other people is that she always exchanges her contact information and stays in touch with the people she meets. Betsy is intentional about continuing the connections she has made. She loves to nurture those connections and build real relationships. She is genuinely interested in people’s lives, not just as business connections.

The importance of maintaining business relationships

Betsy understands just how important it is to maintain business relationships. She knows that networking doesn’t stop at attending conferences and cocktail parties. To maintain her professional relationships she keeps track of her contacts by using a simple spreadsheet. She tried different apps but found the best way to keep track of her networking contacts is with a spreadsheet. She has columns for their name, their contact information, where she met them, when they met, and other interesting information about the contact. She keeps it updated as she gets to know them. She goes through the spreadsheet about once a month. She is trying to be more intentional about nurturing her relationships with people on a more regular basis. Learn how to create and maintain business relationships on this episode of My Biz Bestie with Betsy Furler.

In this episode...

  • [3:12] You never know when networking will pay off

  • [9:57] What makes Betsy’s network so amazing?

  • [14:45] A cautionary tale about keeping track of connections

  • [18:09] A simple spreadsheet is all she needs to keep track of her networking

  • [21:25] How she met a group of tech company CEO’s

  • [26:27] Betsy only attends conferences where she could make connections

  • [37:09] Look for paid events

Connect with Betsy Furler

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

How to Make Changes to Improve Your Leadership Skills with Michael Diettrich Chastain #59

Are you ready to improve your leadership skills and yourself? Michael Diettrich Chastain joins the biz besties to discuss his new book Changes. Michael is a licensed therapist that focuses on leadership development and the psychology of business at Arc Integrated. His years of work in this field have lead him to write Changes for busy professionals and team leaders that want to create change in their own lives. Listen to this episode of My Biz Bestie to hear more about the book and how it can help you improve your leadership skills and yourself.

Why did Michael write this book?

Michael had blogged for his company’s website for several years and after a while, he began to notice a common theme to his blogging. He noticed that the clients that he worked with usually needed more help in certain areas of their lives before they could improve their leadership skills. Most busy professionals that he works with are looking for clear direction translating insight into their behavior. Unfortunately, insight alone doesn’t create sustainable change. To improve your leadership skills, you must take action for lasting change to come about. He knew that he wanted to help more people create change in their lives and so began the lengthy process of writing this book.

TWEET THIS: Are you ready to improve your #LeadershipSkills and yourself? Listen to this interview with #TheBookChanges author Michael Diettrich Chastain on this episode of #MyBizBestie to hear how.

What is the book, Changes, about?

There are 2 parts to the book. Part one focuses on 7 life domains that are important to improving your leadership skills and yourself. These habits are good predictors of success and failure. They make up the acronym Changes.

  • Cognition - how people think

  • Heart - how people feel

  • Action - what people do

  • Nourishment - the physical component of how people sleep, move, and eat

  • Guts - the courage people have to act

  • Environment- people places and things people surround themselves with

  • Spirit - belief systems which include spiritual and nonspiritual

The second part of the book helps the reader understand who to ask for help if they struggle to do the work on their own. It focuses on helping people find the right kind of professional to help them. Michael used his experience with clients as well as plenty of research to write the book.

How can you use the book to improve your leadership skills?

Michael recommends that you choose a few areas from the book to evaluate in your own life and move forward from there. Each section has work that you can do on your own. For instance, consider the stories that you tell yourself. Write out 3 negative stories that you tell yourself and think of ways that you can reframe those stories. What you tell yourself stays with you. What you may consider failures can be reframed into a different narrative. Listen to this interview with Michael Diettrich Chastain to hear how you can improve your leadership skills and your life.

What should people do when they recognize that they need some support?

As people dive into the book they may recognize that there is a theme with the work that they are doing to improve themselves. They may find that they need a bit more help than the exercises in the book can offer. Think about your communication style and personality then think about the problem you are having. Is the problem stemming from a trauma or is it a lack of skill set or lack of motivation? There is a big difference between having a mentor, a coach, and a therapist. The book outlines the different disciplines so that people understand what they’re getting into. It also recommends ways to choose the right kind of professional to help you improve your leadership skills and your life.

In this episode...

  • [5:42] A bit about Michael’s book

  • [11:46] What are the different pillars of his book?

  • [16:58] Where to begin the process of diving into the work?

  • [22:35] What do people do when they recognize that they need some support?

  • [31:02] Are there any common patterns among leaders?

Resources & People Mentioned

  • BOOK - Changes by Michael Diettrich Chastain

Connect with Michael Diettrich Chastain

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

How to Tell if That Business Coaching Course is Worth It #58

Before you invest in another business coaching course stop and listen to this episode of My Biz Bestie. If you are anything like Maelisa and Amber you have invested a ton of money in masterminds, courses, programs, and anything else you can think of to help your business grow. But how can you tell if you’re getting a good ROI? On this episode the biz besties help you analyze whether or not you should buy that next business course (or join that mastermind, etc) or whether the one you are currently in is actually doing you any good.

Do you have space in your life to dedicate to this investment?

Before you invest any money in a business coaching course or a program you need to analyze your life. Do you have time for it and do you need it? Oftentimes there is value in what you are looking to purchase but if you don’t have the free time or free mind space to invest in it then it won’t be of any value to you. So, do you have space in your life to dedicate to this thing? If you don’t try looking for a middle ground. If you know that you aren’t ready to put yourself all in then there might be a shorter program that you can handle right now. Get clear with yourself on what you can handle. If it's not a hell yes then its a no.

What is the need you are trying to fill?

When you are considering signing up for a business coaching course or a program then think about your needs. How will this investment help you learn what you need right now? If the thing you are looking at fills a need then go for it. Something you may not have considered is whether you really need to learn the new thing or if you should just hire it out instead. Sometimes you don’t need to learn the skill you just need to hire it out. Check in with yourself. Do a time study and identify what you are actually spending your time on. Everyone has time blindness and grossly overestimates or underestimates what they spend time on. Once you look at the data then you are in a better place to make decisions.

What is the ROI that you are looking for?

Before you invest in another business coaching course think about the outcome. How should things look different for you after you complete the course? Don’t be afraid to contact the seller. Ask them specific questions about how you will achieve your goals. Don’t be shy! They are trying to sell you something so they should be happy to answer the questions. This also helps manage your expectations. Understand how to measure your ROI if you are doing your work and the coach is doing their work. Ask the coach what their expectation is, can you complete it?

How do you know if the business coaching course is worth it?

You should already have an idea of the results that you want to see. Make sure to have a way of tracking those results whether it’s weekly, monthly or whatever. Have a specific way to look for your progress. When a goal is ambiguous it can be hard to see the progress even if you aren’t feeling it at the moment. You take a program, not because you are unable to learn without it, but because something is holding you back from doing it on your own. So give credit where credit is due when you do achieve your goals. So, are you achieving the goals you set out to achieve?

In this episode...

  • [3:12] Do you have space in your life to dedicate to this investment?

  • [7:04] What is the need you are trying to fill?

  • [13:55] What is the ROI that you are looking for?

  • [21:51] How do you know if the program is worth it?

  • [24:06] What should you do if the program doesn’t live up to your expectations?

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

How Inner Growth Can Lead to Prosperity Inside and Out with Natalie MacNeil #57

Maelisa and Amber welcome self-care guru, Natalie MacNeil to discuss personal reflection, imbalance, and inner growth. Natalie has written 3 best selling books and is the visionary behind one of Forbes Top 100 websites for women. She has a new book called The Rituals coming out in the fall of 2019. You will want to download this one so that you can pause and reflect and then go back and listen again. Watch out because Natalie throws the inspirational knowledge bombs in every direction on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

Personal reflection brings both inner growth and outer growth

Natalie’s business decisions come after a lot of personal reflection. She is always seeking personal improvement on every level. Her deep work has caused her to break through years of conditioning. She insists that business owners do the deep inner work so that they can grow inside and out. Think about what is triggering you right now. What causes you to feel a lack in your life? What causes you to compare yourself to others? Once you resolve these things, doors begin to open and your business can prosper. Doing the inner work allows you to focus more on the outer work in your life.

Strategic imbalance can bring you more joy

Balance means something different for everyone. Marcus Buckingham created the concept of strategic imbalance which allows people to imbalance their lives to bring them more joy. Whatever brings you joy matters. What is the one essential thing you need to focus on in your life right now? Many people get distracted by all the shiny objects. But if you spread yourself too thin no one thing will reach its fullest potential. Think about how you can focus your attention and resources before expanding to other projects and businesses. What should you focus on temporarily? Think about the next 12 weeks. Maintain your focus on one thing that will lead to your next goal. Let Maelisa and Amber know how you will strategically imbalance your life.

Give yourself permission to step away and take a break

When you are experiencing suffering step away for a moment. You can’t do your best work and bring your highest service if you are in a place of suffering. If you keep on barreling through then you will continue to feel stuck. Remember that this feeling is just passing through so let it pass through you and then come back to the present moment. Allow yourself to get back into the creative flow by changing your state. One way to step away is to move your body. When you move your body more your creativity and answers will flow through you. How do you take a break when you are feeling stuck?

What you are seeing is what you are being

It is important to take care of yourself first in the here and now. Find ways to enjoy the process and your journey because there will always be something else ahead. Since everyone is in a constant state of evolution you never know what the future may bring. Find a way to appreciate the uncertainty that is life and that's how you will learn to experience the joy. We need the contrast of the ups and downs to truly appreciate life. The bad enhances the good. What you see outside is a reflection of what is going on inside. What you are seeing is what you are being. How do you see the world right now?

In this episode…

  • [3:12] Her business decisions come after lots of personal reflection

  • [8:13] Strategic imbalance can bring you more joy

  • [18:35] How will do you think your goal will make you feel?

  • [27:56] If you are suffering step away

  • [42:44] Take an inventory of your life right now

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Natalie MacNeil

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

How to Set Networking Goals with Nikki Rausch #56

Nikki Rausch is ready to teach you how to set networking goals by using her Stride 5 list on this episode of My Biz Bestie. Nikki is Your Sales Maven, a sales coach, author, and speaker. She teaches entrepreneurs and business owners how to sell without being salesy. Nikki prefers to build strong relationships in an authentic way before ever engaging in a sale. Learn how to build authentic relationships first by setting networking goals on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

Why is it important to build relationships first?

You may be thinking that building relationships prior to a sale is a waste of time, but it's not. Making sales starts with relationships, so understanding how to build authentic relationships is important to the sales process. Consumers are constantly bombarded by advertising these days. They are much more savvy and skeptical and don’t want to buy from every person trying to sell them something. The selling process gets easier when you build a relationship first. Most entrepreneurs are not just selling a product they create a story behind it. When you can tell your story well it engages with your audience. And once your audience connects with you they are more likely to buy from you.

What is the Stride 5 method?

The Strive 5 is method is a way to set an intention around the people you want to connect with. The next time you attend a live event make a list of 5 people who you really want to connect with and have an interaction with. The whole idea behind the Strive 5 is to dream big, In your wildest dreams who would you like to meet? Even the smallest interaction can lead to something bigger down the road. Nikki’s Strive 5 doesn’t always include people she wants to sell to. Often it includes people she simply wants to be around and learn from.

How to use the Stride 5 list to set networking goals

Networking at live events can be tricky. You only have so much time at a conference so creating a Stride 5 list and setting networking goals can help you from feeling overwhelmed. There are a million ways to get sidetracked from your true intentions if you don’t have concrete networking goals. The Stride 5 list is a way to focus your intentions on those you really want to meet. You’ll meet plenty of other people as well. But you can put yourself in situations or take opportunities to connect with the people on your Stride 5 list. Listen to this episode to hear Nikki Rausch explain how she uses her Stride 5 list to set networking goals.

What should people who are just starting out focus on?

When you are just starting out you may have different intentions than someone who has been doing this awhile. It is important to update your list frequently. You can even have multiple lists. When thinking about creating your list focus on the connections you intend to make. Why do you want to meet that person? What can you learn from them? What can you offer them? Remember that building a community is an important way to build your business. The stride 5 list is a great way to help you up your networking goals and build your community.

In this episode...

  • [6:12] What is her Strive 5 method?

  • [10:22] Having a premade list helps you push past your comfort zone

  • [16:44] Does she share her Strive 5 list with others?

  • [19:34] Even a small connection can lead to a bigger one later

  • [21:51] What should people who are just starting out focus on?

  • [25:22] What has come from her Stride 5 list?

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Nikki Rausch

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

Friendship Through Frugal Living with Jen Smith and Jill Sirianni #55

Jen Smith and Jill Sirianni are frugal living experts and cohosts of the Frugal Friends Podcast. Being frugal is what brought them together in friendship and what inspired them to start a podcast together. They share frugal living advice as well as advice on how to expand your circle by stepping outside your comfort zone on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

How did frugal living bring Jen and Jill together?

Jill is a social worker and therapist that has always used frugality and lived in nontraditional ways since being a social worker isn’t the highest paid gig out there. Jen is a personal finance writer who documented her journey in paying off $78,000 in 2 years. She met Jill through a random chance meeting while on a road trip and living in her RV. The two couples hit it off by discussing frugal living. After bonding in a KOA hot tub they knew that their friendship could stand the test of time.

How did they start the Frugal Friends Podcast?

Jen began working a 40 hour a week job writing for the Penny Hoarder which meant that she was limited in what she could write on her blog and for other sites. Her husband is an audio engineer and posed the idea of her starting a podcast. She was totally against it. Writing is her thing, not podcasting. But the more she thought about it, the more it made sense. There were no other podcasts about frugal living. She knew that Jill would bring a different point of view on frugal living and bring balance to the show. And so the Frugal Friends Podcast was born.

How did their friendship transform through the podcast?

Jen attributes the podcast to keep them in touch. They produce the Frugal Friends Podcast weekly and have a chance to chat both before and after they record. They have grace with each other and since their schedules fluctuate, so does their recording schedule. They love that recording the show is like hanging out with a friend with everyone listening in. They never really communicated how they would divvy up the work. They divided their roles naturally since they know each other’s strengths. Jill is a great interviewer and connector, and Jen is a natural researcher.

What words of advice do they have on finding business friendships?

Jen’s advice is to make yourself uncomfortable. Put yourself out there even if you aren’t comfortable doing so. When you step outside of your comfort zone you open yourself up to new opportunities. To find people to connect with think about your interests. What are you good at and what do you like to talk about? Find someone you admire that is good at things you want to be good at. These are great ways to make connections.

In this episode...

  • [5:42] How did they meet?

  • [10:22] How did they start the Frugal Friends podcast?

  • [13:30] How did their friendship transform through the podcast?

  • [15:54] How do they communicate?

  • [19:56] Do they have other biz besties?

  • [28:22] What words of advice do they have?

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Jen and Jill

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify

How These Biz Besties Began a Software Startup with Jennifer Barcelos and Sandy Connery #54

Sandy Connery and Jeni Barcelos met through a course that taught how to begin a software startup. Sandy had a successful brick and mortar business selling custom orthotics in Canada. She knew she was burned out and needed a change when she stopped caring about her work. She liked the idea of creating an online business so that she could stay at home and not have an inventory. Jennifer was a human rights lawyer who traveled to the scarier parts of the globe. They were brought together by a software startup course and have been meeting the male-dominated world of software head on ever since. Listen to their biz bestie story on this episode of My Biz Bestie.

What is their biz bestie relationship like?

These biz besties didn’t start out working together, that happened over time. But when Jeni needed a co-founder to receive a B2B accelerator she knew just the woman for the job. They both attribute their success in working together as due to their honest communication with each other. They both have mutual respect for one another and keep it real. Their business partnership allows them to take turns falling apart or taking breaks at the helm. They both have a real sense of accountability since they both care so much for each other and the company.

How do they communicate?

Jeni and Sandy don’t have the type of relationship that relies on schedules and boundaries. Their conversations slide back and forth between work and their personal lives. Every day is off the cuff and their side conversations happen in real life and online. They feel like their communication is structured much like being in an office where you stop by someone’s office to have a chat to take a break from the busyness of work life. They use Zoom and Slack daily as their main communication tools. The one conversation they do plan is a monthly meeting where they run the numbers of their business. How do you communicate with your biz bestie?

What is Namastream?

Namastream is Jeni and Sandy’s software company. It is an online learning platform that allows people in the wellness industry to teach online. It was developed for yoga teachers but they have expanded to include the wellness industry as a whole. Namastream allows wellness companies to create a membership site, teach courses, and do live streams. Namastream is an easy-to-use online tool designed for people who are not techy.

Do they have any advice for women who may want to run a software startup?

Jeni’s advice for women who want to get their feet wet with a software startup is: do it! She feels that the world is now being created and defined by software. Since there are not many women in the software industry there is a strong, supportive community of female entrepreneurs. There is a lot of generosity from other female members. They are willing to share advice to those just starting out. Right now is an amazing time to be a woman in tech. Sandy’s advice is to ensure that you have a trusted CTO by your side if you are not writing code for yourself. You should also make sure that there is a need in the market you want to serve. Aim high and expect to be paid your worth.

In this episode...

  • [3:12] How did they meet?

  • [8:45] Did they plan on staying in touch after the conference?

  • [12:14] What challenges did they face working together?

  • [16:39] How do they communicate?

  • [22:35] What is Namastream?

  • [29:04] Do they have any advice for women who may want to start a software company?

  • [34:02] Do they meet up IRL?

Connect with Jennifer Barcelos and Sandy Connery

Connect With Maelisa and Amber

Subscribe to My Biz Bestie on iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, or Spotify