“You have to do this in order to really get that growth and that scale from your business.”
The Wedding Pro CEO SHORTS are quick, bite-sized episodes are meant to inspire you as you build the business you’re dreaming of!
[00:00:00] Brandee Gaar: Hey, they’re CEOs. Welcome back to today’s Thursday short of the Wedding Pro CEO podcast. I’m your host, Brandee Gaar, and my mission is to help you, the wedding industry entrepreneur, to build a profitable wedding business that you love.
On today’s podcast, we are talking about how to grow your business in 2023, and I know that is the top of everyone’s mind right now because it’s a fresh New Year, and there’s so much that you wanna do with this year, and you’re thinking, “How do I grow?” “What is the secret to success?”
And I’ll tell you, there’s not just obviously one magic pill, there’s not one secret. But what I have found in coaching for the last two and a half years, dozens and dozens of wedding pros that are growing and scaling their business, and from my own experience, is that this one thing that we are gonna talk about on today’s show is really the foundation to growing your business.
You have to do this in order to really get
[00:01:00] that growth and that scale from your business.
So what is it? I know I don’t wanna gate keep it any longer. I wanna just tell you what it is and it’s absolutely implementing CEO Mondays.
Now stick with me on what this is.
What are CEO Mondays?
In our businesses, so often we get overwhelmed. We have so much going on, especially if you’re still a solopreneur, but even if you have a small team.
You have so many things that you have to take care of on a day-to-day basis. You’re servicing clients, you have team members that need your help. You’ve got HR and payroll and taxes and social media and marketing and all the things, right?
And so often we forget to set aside time every single week to really look at our business from the top down. To look at from a CEO’s perspective, from a business owner’s perspective, and to say, “What do I need to do in my business this week to move the needle on the growth that I want to see?”
When you let yourself get bogged down with the
[00:02:00] day-to-day and all of the details, and you don’t set aside that time, your business will stop growing. If you’re not focused on the growth of your business, it doesn’t happen just because it will start to become like a hamster wheel you’re gonna be like, where is the growth? What is happening? Why am I not achieving these goals? But if your focus isn’t on those goals, then it’s certainly not gonna just happen overnight.
Now, I know this feeling all too well. About eight years ago in my business, I was still running on that hamster wheel.
We had not implemented CEO Mondays. I certainly wasn’t acting like a CEO. I wasn’t focused on the growth of my company. And what ended up happening is that we did get a lot of growth. We had a ton of what you would call success from the outside looking in. But what was actually happening is that it felt like the wheels were about to fall off at any second on the back end, because I hadn’t taken the time set aside in my business to focus on how we were gonna keep up with the demand, how we were gonna continue to scale the business,
[00:03:00] how we were going to, be able to service all of the things that were coming our way. And because I hadn’t done that, it really genuinely felt like at any second, if I turned away, all the wheels were gonna fall off, and they probably would have.
I ended up having to go backwards and recreate a lot of the processes in our business to make sure that we could keep up with the demand that was coming our way.
And so what I want you to do is I really want you to do that now.
Starting in 2023, I want you to implement these CEO Mondays. I’m very, very passionate about how this will change your business because it will help you to dedicate that time to focusing on the growth of your business. That’s really, really important as you start to scale.
So, I know you’ve probably heard this so many times before, you’re like, “Thanks so much, Brandee. I hear people literally say on the daily, I want you to work on your business and not in your business. And that’s a cute catchphrase and all, but like what does it actually mean to work on your business and not in your business?”
[00:04:00] So here’s what it means. Every single Monday is set aside as an absolutely under no circumstances for any reason whatsoever. Do I ever, ever take a client facing meeting? Never.
And to be honest, I actually don’t take internal meetings either, unless there’s some kind of a project or something that we’re doing that absolutely necessitates it, but it’s pretty rare.
I don’t take meetings on Mondays because that’s the day that I am in CEO mode, and I’m in rest and recovery mode. I personally don’t do that many weddings anymore, but when I did have a full load of weddings as a CEO, I still had to be completely focused on the growth of our business in addition to doing those events.
And I’m sure some of you are feeling that as you’re listening to this, you’re like, “Yes, girl! Yes! Like I have a wedding on Saturday. I have a wedding hangover on Sunday, but I have 1,001 emails and things that need my attention, and so I hit the ground running first thing on Monday.”
I’ve got meeting after meeting, and I’ve got things that I have to do and I don’t have time to set aside these CEO
[00:05:00] Mondays. But I promise you that if you implement this into your business where you make it a non-negotiable, No one gets your time on Mondays.
Now what I do is we tell our clients that our office is closed on Monday, when in fact I am working.
A lot of my team may be working as well. I leave that up to them whether they want to catch up on emails on Monday or wait until Tuesday. That’s completely up to them.
But for me, it’s a CEO and rest and recovery day.
So what that looks like is that I will likely be working with no hair and makeup. I am in my jammies working from my couch, most likely, not all the time, but most likely.
I want to make sure that I don’t have to be camera ready. I don’t have to go on Zoom. I don’t have to see anybody, but I can plow through catching up from the week.
The reality is most of us in the wedding industry are going to work a six day work week. When you have a wedding, you’re gonna work a six day work week. Now, I hate saying that out loud cuz I’d really love to say that you can only work five days. I don’t know that that’s necessarily, um,
[00:06:00] an attainable goal in our industry. But what I definitely wanna see is that you’re not working seven days a week.
So if you have this day set aside, then on Sundays or over the weekend, you’re not constantly thinking, oh my gosh, I’ve gotta get to my emails, I’ve gotta get to my emails, because you know that’s what you’re gonna actually do on Monday, right?
So on Monday, the first thing I want you to do is, Take just a little bit extra time to get to your desk. Like give yourself that space to understand that you worked a huge wedding over the weekend, or that you had a lot going on over the weekend and you just need a little bit of time to kind of even catch up in your house, right?
You might throw a load of laundry in or take an extra few minutes to drink some coffee. You just, whatever it is that you need to do that morning.
The next thing I want you to do is I want you to triage your inbox. You’re not gonna actually answer emails yet.
What you’re gonna do is you’re gonna go into your inbox and you’re gonna first delete everything that’s just junk, right? We know we all get junk emails that you don’t need.
I want you to quickly read anything like I personally get the Morning
[00:07:00] Brew. I love that email. It comes to my email every single morning. It takes me about five minutes to read it. I love reading it first thing in the morning. So I quickly read that and then I delete it.
The second step I want you to do is I want you to forward anything that has to do with a team member. So sometimes you’re gonna get an email that you’re like, I don’t actually need to be the one that needs to address this. I’m gonna go ahead and forward that to my VA, or I’m gonna forward it to one of my team members that needs to deal with it, right?
And then I want you to answer any emails that will literally take you a quick, like one minute to answer. So let’s say it’s just a quick question that you need to say, yes, I can do that, or no, that’s not me, or whatever it is that you need to answer that will take you a minute or less.
So I want you to go ahead and answer those and then delete them or file them.
So the only thing you should have left in your inbox are things that actually need some attention, but I don’t want you to answer those now because what happens, and tell me if you can relate with this.
What happens is the reason you never get to your to-do list for the day is because you got stuck in your inbox because you started
[00:08:00] answering emails, you kept answering emails, more came in while you were answering emails, and so all of a sudden it’s five o’clock and you’re like, I never actually got to my to-do list.
Sound familiar? So I do not want you to do that.
So you’re gonna leave your inbox as is. It should take you about 30 minutes to triage your inbox on Monday morning.
Okay, so you’re gonna delete anything that’s junk, then you’re gonna forward anything that has to do with someone else, you’re gonna quickly answer anything that takes a minute or less, and then you’re gonna leave your inbox alone for anything that needs your actual attention.
Okay? Then I want you to actually start working on the things that require your CEO attention.
So this is where we come to, “We’re gonna work on our business, not in our business.”
On Mondays, I’m not working on client timelines, I’m not working on sales calls, I’m not working on sending out contracts, I’m not working on anything that’s client facing.
I’m only working on things that are gonna grow my business.
What are some examples of things that we work on, on CEO Monday’s? The first one is gonna be
[00:09:00] marketing or social media.
This is an important piece of your business. You wanna make sure that you’re constantly marketing your business.
If your social media is outsourced, then this should take you no time at all. on Mondays set aside a very small amount of time, 15 to 30 minutes to approve whatever posts are gonna go up for the following week.
So your social media team should be creating those either in Airtable if you got Social 365. This is a great way for them to just put all of the content into one area for you to approve it.
Now, if you’re creating all of your marketing yourself, then you might need to set aside a longer amount of time to do that, but Mondays are the best day to do that.
But you’re also gonna set aside a very specific amount of time because what happens is we don’t set aside a certain amount of time. You start scrolling to get inspiration, to get ideas and then all of a sudden it’s two hours later and you haven’t created anything, right? No.
So you’re gonna set aside a certain amount of time and you’re gonna write all of your content for the whole week, right then, so you don’t have to worry about it for the rest of the week. Okay?
So marketing is one of the things we’re gonna work
[00:10:00] on, on CEO Mondays.
Another one is gonna be networking. So grassroots networking is a huge piece of what you can be doing. you wanna be thinking about if you did have weddings the weekend before. This is a great time to follow up with the vendor team that you worked with over the weekend and follow up with the venue, the photographer, any vendors.
Just say thank you so much. It was great to work with you. I’d love to get together for coffee. You know, whatever it is. Thank you so much. I would love to take your team out for dinner. Whatever it is that feels like it would be valuable to continue making sure that you’re building those relationships.
This is a great opportunity to do that because grassroots networking is so important in your local market.
If you didn’t have a wedding that weekend, it’s also a great time to think about. What venues you’ve been working in most often, that you can just reach out and say thank you. It’s a great time to think about what venues you want to work in…
Win the battle over your inbox!!!
more and to reach out and maybe schedule a venue tour with them or do a collaboration post with them.
It’s a, just a really great time to set aside a few minutes, maybe 30 minutes on your Mondays to think about what have we been
[00:11:00] doing in terms of networking and marketing and outreach to our local market.
The next thing that you can be working on on your CEO Mondays is your team development.
If you do not have a team yet, then maybe this is a great time to really be thinking about, what do you need on your team?
What is the next position that you want to hire? The first position that you want to hire?
Do you need a va?
Do you need a social media manager?
What does that look like?
What qualities would they have?
If you do have a team, this is a great time to schedule a one-on-one, not do a one-on-one.
We’re not doing that on our Mondays, but we want to schedule our one-on-ones or schedule a time to sit down with your team members quarterly to think about what their goals are, what they want from the business, how they can help move your business forward.
Team development is a major piece of running a successful business, so you always wanna make sure that you set aside just a little bit of time, maybe 30 minutes to really think about your team development, every single Monday.
And one of the last ones that I love to implement is your financial tracking
[00:12:00] and your goal tracking.
So you wanna make sure that you’re doing this every single week, but especially on the first Monday of every month. I have a longer period of time, set aside about an hour on the first Monday, and I will really go through all of our financials from the month before.
if you don’t have a bookkeeper, this is when you’re gonna wanna reconcile the month before. Now, if you don’t have a bookkeeper, I can already hear it cuz I used to be this way myself, but I would literally be like, I hate when I have to reconcile my books. Right? I hated it. I hated it. And so I would put it off as long as possible.
But the problem with that is you go six months without ever reconciling your books, and then it takes you days to get them reconciled. Plus, you don’t even know where your company stands financially. And if you’re the CEO of your business, you need to always know where your company stands financially every single month.
If you do have a bookkeeper, this is a great time to just review your reports, make sure everything’s been classed correctly. See if you were over or under
[00:13:00] your budget.
See if you’re hitting your sales goals, this is a great thing to do, but you really wanna make sure that you’re reconciling the entire month before on the first Monday of every month.
Now, on the other Mondays, I do a quick 30 minute check-in and I look at where we’re pacing with our sales goals.
So I wanna know how many consults did we have last week?
How many of them booked?
What’s our goal for the month?
And do we still think we’re gonna reach that?
You just really wanna be focusing on how you’re doing on pace to your goals because if you’re behind, this is a great time to talk to your social media team or yourself. Go and create new posts that are kind of amping up, getting to work with you, book a consult with you, you know, all these things.
It could be a great time to reach out to a couple more venues or vendors to really push those sales cuz sales don’t just happen to you. You have to be active in your selling process, right? Whole different topic for a whole different show, but I really want you to be always, every single Monday tracking your sales goals and seeing how
[00:14:00] you’re pacing to the goal that you’ve set.
Okay? Seeing if you need to go and attract more sales or if you’re right on pace.
The other thing I want you to always be looking at is your expenses. Did you have a major expense in the last week that you weren’t counting on? Do you need to make up for that? What does that look like to your budget? So that’s just a quick check-in every single week on your finances and your profit.
The other thing I want you to always be thinking about is how you’re tracking on your goals.
So as we talked about in a previous episode just recently here on the podcast, is talking about setting those goals and then making an action plan to actually achieve those goals. We don’t just wanna make goals in January and then put ’em in a drawer somewhere. we want to actually be active in our goals, and we want to make sure that we’re taking action on them every single week.
So I want you to have a time set aside to be looking at your goals and see what actions you need to take that week to achieve those goals. Okay? So those are the CEO tasks that we’re gonna do every single Monday.
Now you’ve triaged your inbox, you’ve done your CEO tasks, you should be
[00:15:00] somewhere around lunchtime at this point. And so I want you to make sure that you take a break for lunch. I am the world’s worst at taking a break for lunch. So this is gonna be a personal goal of mine in 2023.
And then in the afternoon on CEO Mondays, what I typically do is I look at my week ahead.
So I really want to feel good about closing my computer on Monday, and I wanna know that my week is not overscheduled. That I’ve got enough time to do everything that I have to do. So I’m gonna go in and now time block the rest of my week.
What does that look like?
The first thing I do is I scan my calendar for the rest of the week and I make sure that I don’t have any meetings that are either double booked or that are too close together, that happens sometimes. You get all thinking, you can do so much, and then you get in the week and you’re like, wow, I don’t think I can actually do this much.
You really wanna go through the rest of your week and make sure that it all feels good that your calendar is up to date. Then you’re gonna go back to those emails that were left in your inbox that needed some more attention from you, and anything that’s gonna take more than 30 minutes
[00:16:00] to do, you’re gonna make sure that you block that into your calendar at some point that week.
So You’re gonna go to that email. You’re gonna let the client know, “Hey, got your email. We’ll definitely get this back to you by Thursday of this week.” Right? Because we don’t wanna not respond to them, but we also don’t necessarily need to do that task right now.
So I’m gonna go into Thursday. I’m gonna schedule time to do it. And then I’m gonna get that done on Thursday and respond to the client.
I go ahead and file that email.
So that’s what I’m doing is I’m putting anything else into my week that needs to be done.
If I need to have a meeting with a client, I go ahead and schedule that.
If I need to, set aside time to run errands for a client, I’m gonna go ahead and schedule that.
So that, now, by the end of Monday, you should have a calendar that feels super achievable for the rest of the week.
You should have time blocked in to the entire week to do everything on your to-do list. You should not have a to-do list that is not assigned to your calendar and you should feel really confident in closing your
[00:17:00] computer and saying, wow, I accomplished a lot today and I feel really good about the rest of the week.
And then, hopefully that’s gonna give you that ability to relax for the rest of the day. Maybe that only took you till like three o’clock and you can go get a manny-petty or you can go have a glass of wine with a friend, or you can just sit on your couch and stare at a wall if that’s really what you wanna do.
Cuz sometimes we need to do that.
But the importance of these CEO Mondays is to make sure that you’re not only, really focusing on your business instead of in your business, but also taking that time as a business owner to understand that you are human and that you need time to relax and to really enjoy your business.
I promise you. I promise you, you can talk to any person inside my CEO Mastermind. Come into the Facebook community and ask the question, say, “Anybody in Brandee’s, CEO mastermind that has implemented these CEO Mondays can tell me how they’ve changed their business?”
I promise you that every single one of them will tell you that it has completely changed the way that they do
[00:18:00] business, because not only are they more successful in their business because they’ve taken time to focus on growth, but they’re also finding a lot more balance in their life and less anxiety because they’ve taken the time to really focus on, their week and what their weak looks like and how to achieve everything that they want to achieve.
And I promise you that you will get those same results if you implement these CEO Mondays. So come over to the Facebook community, let me know, “Hey, yes, I’m gonna commit to these CEO Mondays for 2023!”
I want to know who’s committing to it and who’s gonna join this journey with me. So, thank you so much for being here every single week, and I will see you next time.
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I help creative business owners sustainably scale their business so they can create a thriving career and work-life balance.
small biz coach
I have experience speaking at both live and virtual events, educating creative and wedding entrepreneurs how to step into their role as CEO. If you're looking for speakers for your next conference, workshop, event, or the next guest for your podcast, I'd love to see how we can collaborate!
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