Episode 15 Show Notes

Why Isn’t My Business Growing? (And What You Can Do About It)

Here’s the million-dollar question for all entrepreneurs: Why isn’t my business growing?

Many business owners struggle with scaling their businesses and they start looking for the answer in new strategies or different tactics. The reality is that the reason why your business isn’t growing is most likely that you haven’t settled strong foundations for it.

Our mission at Flourish is to help you get those foundations in place so you can grow a successful business. That’s why in this episode Jane talks about surrounding yourself with the right people and not settling for the “I’m comfortable” narrative out of fear of failure. Also, Pam tells us how to manage the fear of failure and the importance of settling processes to guarantee business growth.

Today we discuss:

  • [01:27] Reasons why your business isn’t growing part. 1: Fear of failure.
  • [03:56] Reasons why your business isn’t growing part. 2: You are not surrounding yourself with people who inspire and guide you to success.
  • [09:05] Reasons why your business isn’t growing part. 3: You are not creating or using business processes.
  • [14:16] Reasons why your business isn’t growing part. 4: You are settling for a definition of success lower than what you initially planned for.


Resources mentioned in this episode:

In today’s episode, we didn’t mention any resources, but that doesn’t mean you are leaving empty-handed. We are aware that taking that step from solopreneur to CEO is not easy and we want to give you all the tools so you can succeed. So we’ve designed a course focused on creating your own Informational Products.

InfoProducts are a great way to create new streams of income and also deliver valuable items to your clients. Click here to sign up for our course on how to create InfoProducts or head over to our website flourish.biz where you can learn more about us, and even get a free guide to get started!

We hope this episode has made you think about what you want from your business and how to take action to actually achieve that desired result.

Thank you for listening to this episode of Flourish and Grow to CEO! And we would be even more grateful if you use everything you learn here to improve your business.

Don’t forget to rate this podcast on the platform you prefer and leave us a comment in the comment section below telling us what else are you interested in knowing more about. We would love to hear from you!

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Pam (00:00):

You’re listening to the flourish and grow to CEO podcast. This is episode 15.

Pam (00:26):

Are you a lady boss making 50 to a hundred thousand in your business? And you’re ready to break through that six figure barrier.

Jane (00:33):

Have you done a great job of creating a nice life as the ultimate gig master, but no, your inner CEO is calling you to greater Heights. You’re in the right place. If you want to create and implement solid fundamentals in your business without sacrificing fun.

Pam (00:48):

I’m Pam Ivey, I’m certified in small business management and I concentrate in the areas of training and certifying real estate assistance, coaching and mentoring entrepreneurs in online business, marketing growth and profit acceleration. And I take men and women business owners aged 40 plus two bucket list destinations around the world for a month at a time to work, explore, and live in community.

Jane (01:14):

And I’m Jane Garee, known as the sales strategist for the non-sales person. And I work with business owners who want to increase their conversion rate, shorten their sales cycle and have more impact and influence with the work they do all while having more

Pam (01:27):

Fun with selling. Hey everyone. And welcome back to another episode of the flourish and grow to CEO podcast, both Jane and I have heard this question from several business owners. Why isn’t my business growing? Well, there’s a great number of reasons that it could be holding you back from growing or scaling your business today. We’re going to be looking at a few of those reasons that we see over and over again. So, let’s start with taking a look under the first pillar in the business growth foundations, which is inner game. This is where your thoughts often show up in your reality. It’s your mindset under inner game. It could be that you’re not failing enough. So many business owners let their fear of failure. Stop them from putting their ideas into action. The challenge with that mindset is that without trying fresh ideas, you stagnate by default.

Pam (02:26):

The fear of failure is the biggest hurdle to success. It robs you of opportunity. It causes you to play it safe, which is the riskiest thing a business owner could do. Interestingly, the most successful business owners see failure very differently to them. It looks like this. If they try something and it doesn’t work, they learn from it. Then they invest the lesson into their next idea. And this makes them far more likely to succeed the next time. Or if they try something and it works, they learn from it and they earn from it. So wouldn’t you agree, Jane? That the first one I think is a really big one is the fear of failure.

Jane (03:09):

Yeah, absolutely. Fear of failure holds a lot of people back. And I know I’ve been down that road myself. So when you think about failure and being able to move ahead in your business, one of the best things you can really do for yourself is reframe it and think of it instead of failure. Think of it as feedback, which is really all that’s happening. When we get up and go about our daily lives, you’ll do something and you got feedback. Sometimes the feedback is this is going to work brilliantly. Sometimes the feedback is this might be okay, here’s some revisions you need to make. And sometimes the feedback is this is not going to work at all. Not a great idea. So if you think of it in terms of feedback, rather than failure, it enables you to kind of be a scientist in a lab and say, this is what I need to do based on the feedback and I can get up and I can keep going.

Pam (03:56):

Great analogy. The second common reason why businesses don’t grow also falls under the inner game pillar. And that is that you’re hanging around with the wrong people. There is a direct link between how we think and the people we have bitterly associate with. If we associate with people who inspire us, we feel inspired. If we hang out with people who encourage and motivate us to stretch, we grow when we associate with people who are doing better than we are, the natural inclination is to rise to their level. Conversely, when we hang out with people who are doing as well as us or less, well, we can find ourselves often spinning our wheels. So choose wisely, hang out with people who inspire you to be better. People who encourage and motivate you to be the best version of you. And I know Jane you’re often like me. We seek out people that are smarter than us, or are winning or doing better than us so we can learn from them. Right?

Jane (04:59):

Absolutely. And part of it is learning from them. But another part of it is really having cheerleaders and surrounding yourself with people who they’re in your corner, they’ve got your back and they become your self-talk when your true literal self-talk is kind of going down the path of negativity. So I always think in terms of, you know, I’ve got some people in my life that I don’t want to remove from my life. Third, you know, there are certain family members or whatever, but everything’s always, this is why it won’t work. This is why it’s not going to happen for you. This is what you need to be aware of. And it’s done in love and it’s done in concern, but really what’s going on is those people are internally translating into something that would sound like I can’t do that because it would probably never work for me. Or I would not be brave enough to take that risk. They process it. And it comes out of their mouth as something on you. You’re never going to make any money doing this, you know? Right. And so you don’t really want to listen to those people. You can love them, but those are not people that you’re going to surround yourself with in specific areas, especially regarding your business, because they’re not going to help you push you to where you need to be. They’re going to actually derail you.

Pam (06:10):

Yeah. That is absolutely true. Jane. And I want to be with people who sure there’s competition there. Cause you know, competition can be totally healthy and really help us to up-level and to grow, but not so much that they’re going to sabotage sometimes when someone isn’t doing as well as you are, and they might not even know that they’re doing it, but they could be sabotaging you because they don’t want you to do better than them.

Jane (06:37):

That’s another part of it too. So part of being able to stay in the mindset where you can keep your own mindset on course on track and in a positive reference is realize number one, don’t take anything personally. Number two, the people that are giving you verbal pushback or feel like they’re trying to bring you down, it’s whatever’s going on within them. So don’t take it as a reflection or any kind of reality of what is, or isn’t going to happen for you. They’re just really expressing how they feel about their own ability to do something to you. And obviously they don’t feel that strongly or confident about it, which is why it’s coming out in a negative way. So kind of love them, bless and release, love them, no need to get kind of snippy with them or whatever, but just realize it’s their own internal demons that they’re battling and you keep going and you find the people who will encourage you.

Jane (07:29):

I do want to note, it’s important to have people who are going to help you think things through logically and there is certainly nothing wrong with a trusted advisor or friend saying. Hmm, that sounds like a great idea. I can see you’re passionate about it. Let’s look at some areas of, of maybe where you need to pay additional attention or extra attention to, to make sure that this can actually happen. So poking holes in your plan is never a bad thing provided it’s done with the right people in the right spirit, because you do want to be aware of things that could go not the way you intended.

Pam (08:03):

Yeah, for sure. And I, I just love the challenge of it all.

Jane (08:07):

You know, that’s a really important point. Pam entrepreneurs and business owners by nature, they love a challenge. So a lot of times when you’re talking to the people who are giving you that it’s never going to happen or the negative Nancy’s or here’s all the reasons it could go wrong or will go wrong or should go wrong. They’re not risk-takers anyway. They are people who really crave safety and security and routine and things that can be as reliable as anything can. And there’s nothing wrong with that, but they’re not of the same mindset. So the quicker you can identify, this is somebody who loves me and they support me, but they just don’t have the risk-taking abilities. And the stepping out in faith and the, all the things that are required to build a business. And so you can love them for what they do bring to your life. But these are never going to be people that you want to in closes business confidence or go to for advice.

Pam (08:59):

Amen sister. So

Pam (09:05):

Are you hanging around with wisely? Really? So here’s another big, unit’s actually not just a biggie. I think this lays the foundation for growth. This is the biggie, I think, in growing your business successfully, it’s that you’re not creating business processes and yes, that follows under the pillar of operations. And here’s a good example. Let’s say you’re a business coach. And once a month you bring on a new client. There’s a number of things that have to be done, right? Things like send a coaching agreement for signature, send your welcome packet with the receipt, conduct an intake interview, send a pre-call form and so on and so on. And every month, if you don’t have a system in place, you have to remember each step in what order. And when you have to send them, it takes way too much brainpower. And it wastes way too much time.

Jane (10:07):

Yeah. Processing. These are often the thing that will keep your business afloat or have it start to derail. And I don’t really know that enough emphasis can ever be placed on processes within a business. The sooner you have systems and processes in place, the better off that you are. And by systems, I don’t necessarily mean high and yes, the system of a process kind of using those a little interchangeably there, but without a process, really what you’re doing is you’re getting up every day and you’re kind of on the hustle and that’s not a bad thing, but it’s not a rinse and repeat kind of formula. And the busier you get, the more important that process is going to be to ensure that you can actually continue to grow your business. It can get crazy fast without a process. And I really wish somebody would have explained to me 10 years ago, moving into 11 years ago when I started this business that having those processes in place was just a fundamental component of having a successful business.

Pam (11:05):

Hey lady, boss, would you like to learn how to quickly create information products that you can sell to add additional streams of income to your business? Check out our fast and profitable info products course@flourish.biz forward slash F I P what’s great is you’ll learn how to make information products quickly using content that you already have. This video course is available for only 49 bucks, less than a couple of Starbucks coffees I kid, but not by much. So, head over to https://flourish.biz/fip that’s F L O U R I S H dot BIZ forward slash F I P as in fast info products. All right, let’s get back to the show.

Pam (12:14):

I didn’t have to think of what I had to do over and over again, like each time I had to do it, it was written down or there was video recording of my screen, or there was screenshots in a word document. What ever it is a checklist that makes things easy for you to be able to recreate every time in the same order. So everything’s consistent, especially when it touches your clients. That’s another biggie. Things are consistent. It just, it gives you the time and the freedom to work on your business. It also allows you to hand off things, which is another important component of rowing because when we grow, we just simply can’t do it all ourselves.

Jane (13:01):

Yeah, absolutely. You really, you need to have a team. And part of being able to anticipate getting a team is having processes in place because it’s really difficult to explain to somebody in an intangible way, Hey, I need you to do this. Whereas if you have a process and it’s hi, welcome aboard, here’s the process. Here’s what I need you to follow. And then it becomes easier for you also do interact with your team, manage your team, lead your team, because they’re very clear on what needs to be done. Yeah.

Pam (13:27):

Powering team members do, which is also a great component for growth. So I’m glad that you touched on that too. And you know, you might have some business processes, but maybe you’re not using them. That could be a real biggie too, right. Or maybe it’s a combination of both. You have them, you use some, you don’t use the others. So really to be able to free yourself up and grow that business, you need to create systems period. Huh? I said it.

Jane (14:06):


Pam (14:06):

I really want that to sink in though. You need systems and processes. Okay. The next one,

Jane (14:13):

Can we say it again

Pam (14:16):

Under the next one? Actually, you know, the final one that we’re going to look at today, it falls under our pillar of vision and strategy. Maybe you become comfortable. Small business owners usually start off with great plans, but somewhere along the way they settle. So instead of focusing on building their business, so it provides them with the rewards they want, they change their definition of success. They actually lower their lifestyle expectations. So it meets the limitations of their underperforming business. And Jane, you and I talked about this quite a bit, you know, in our pre-recording meeting. Cause we know quite a few people that have done this.

Jane (15:01):

There’s something that’s just inherently thrilling when you start your business and you get it going. And then, then the big moment comes after. Usually, you know, it takes several months, but the big moment comes when you say, Hey, I am going to be able to do this. I’m going to make it. I can financially support myself. This is financially sustainable. I’m going to be good to go. And that is a beautiful moment. And I would say for the most part, most businesses barring some external circumstance or catastrophe. Once you know that you know that you can make it, you’re going to be, you’re going to be fine. You can make it, the money is going to continue to come in and you’ll probably grow revenue and so on and so forth. However, one of the things that happens, and I know that I went through this a few times and Pam, I know you did too, is why we talked about it is you lose the original vision that you have or you settle in and you get a little too comfortable or it’s actually time to redefine your vision and make it bigger and more aggressive.

Jane (15:59):

And you don’t do that. So you get very comfortable at the level of income you have been bringing in, which means you’re very comfortable doing the work that you’re doing. And that’s a, two-pronged something that’s not so good because number one, you’re not stretching yourself or growing just in skills or performance when you’re settling into this is a good enough mentality. And then the other thing is your revenue is going to stall out because you really are settled into a, this is a good enough mentality and good enough is good enough if you’re doing it intentionally. So what I mean by that is if you are somebody who says, cause Pam, I know you and I have clients like this. They’re at a certain phase of their life. They just want to work 20 to 25 hours per week. They’re not looking to make oodles and oodles of money.

Jane (16:42):

It’s for all the reasons that they’re not. So, they’re good enough is actually their top end. You know, that was all, that was what they wanted to accomplish. When they set out in their business, 20 to 25 hours a week and extra pick a numerical number, pick a financial and I’m picking money numbers. What I’m trying to say, pick a number, pick a math number. That’s something different though than saying, Hey, my goal was to make $500,000 a year and I’m at two 50, but you know what? I have a really, really good life. And so I think I’ll just, you know, I’m good here. I don’t need to keep going. If in fact that is something that you decide is your new truth and you’re in alignment with that, then that’s okay. However, if you’re backing up from your goal, just because you’re getting complacent, then that’s, that’s something a little bit different.

Jane (17:30):

I know Pam, you and I, when we talked that this tends to be one of my biggest struggles, because my reason for not my whole reason, but one of my biggest personal reasons for owning a business is just a lifestyle that allows me a lot of freedom and a lot of mobility. And I have been able to determine that at a certain level of income, I can do that. And I get stuck there because I think, well, it’s, it’s good enough. You know, I can live this way. I can go here. I can do what I want to do. And it’s easy to become complacent because once that goal is met, which was the primary personal goal I was trying to meet, then the desire to really continue to push myself, just it just lessens because it’s easier to keep the status quo than to grow.

Jane (18:11):

But what I know is that if I have an opportunity to create more of an impact, and if I have an opportunity to serve more people, then I really need to lean into that because I think it’s, it can start to almost feel selfish when you know that you could do more for more people, but you’re fine with where you are. If, and only if you know that you’re not actually really fine. So I’m not talking about being self-sacrificing. If you’ve got a great life and you love it and you feel comfortable, what I am not talking about is, Hey, let me go take care of everybody else to the tune of burning myself out there. That’s, that’s no way to live either, but just be mindful of, am I complacent? Am I settling? Because I know I can take care of myself and live the life that I want to live.

Jane (18:55):

And so you’ve sort of buried the desire to adhere to your original vision or you’re suppressing the desire to create a bigger vision. If that’s the case, that’s going to show up pretty quickly because you’re out of alignment. If on the other hand, you’re truly in a place where you go, you know what? I hit it, I hit my goals. This is how I wanted to live. I feel an enormous sense of peace and contentment. I’ve I’ve tapped out. This is what I was going for. I’m creating the impact that I want and creating the income that I want. This is the lifestyle that I want, then that’s okay. The goal is the point I’m trying to make is just be very intentional and very mindful about what is going on with your business.

Pam (19:31):

It’s really what you want out of your business. So that means taking a look at your vision and your strategy on a regular basis. I mean, regular, I think, you know, a planning session you should have with yourself every couple of weeks, every month at maximum or maximum time, you know, that’s between it, but your vision and strategy, even taking a look at it, quarterly is a great idea to ensure that you’re always looking forward. I don’t want to rest on my laurels and just be satisfied. I have been there because it’s hard, right? And sometimes you just say, Oh, I just don’t want the slog of growing, growing, growing. But you know, let me just say, go back to the systems and processes. You get those systems and processes in place. And I mean really tight and it’s not going to be a slog anymore.

Pam (20:27):

We’ve been working with our team. Now we have, I think, six or seven on our team now that are helping us to produce the podcast, to do social media stuff, to do marketing, that kind of thing. And we’re getting these really tight systems in place now. So the team is just doing their stuff and it really empowers them, right? Yeah. But it makes it easier on us so that we can really look to our vision and our strategy to that planning and looking forward to see how I really loved when you said Jane, making more impact out there, touching more clients, changing more lives, which sounds so hokey, but it’s true. If you’re a business coach and you help somebody grow a business, then you’re really helping the life of that person that you’re working with. So I think it makes such a big difference, but what’s happens is we get into this zone of comfort or our comfort zone and we kind of rest there. It’s time to leave it, leave that comfort zone behind set yourself exciting and really challenging goals, and then make the commitment to take the action that’s required to get there.

Jane (21:45):

Yeah. I mean, this is it. This is your one and only life cliche, but true.

Pam (21:53):

So our question to you is this, if your business isn’t growing the way, you’d like, what do you plan to do about it? In our experience, people who identify their business needs help falls into one or two broad groups. One people who find the information interesting, but they start looking for excuses to do nothing about it. They’ll say they don’t have the time, the money, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. And this group is the largest by far. Or do you fall into camp? Number two, those are people who also find the information useful. And they look for reasons to improve things rather than excuses not to they’ll then work on making the improvements needed and their business will grow accordingly cause and effect. We hope you found this information today useful, but our real hope is that you do something with it. Well, that sums up our podcast for today. Everyone. We hope that you got some ah-ha’s there and we also hope that you have a terrific week. We’ll chat with you next time.

Jane (23:05):

Thanks everybody for joining us. We’ll see you next time.

Pam (23:08):

Well, that’s a wrap everyone. Thanks for joining us this week on the flourishing, grow to CEO podcast, be sure to visit our website at flourish.biz. That’s F L O U R I S h.biz, where you can subscribe to the shows in iTunes, Stitcher, or via RSS. So you’ll never miss an episode. You can also find our show notes and resources there too. And while you’re at it, if you found value in this show, we’d love for you to leave a rating on iTunes. Or if you’d simply tell a friend about the show that would sure help us out too. Now get out there and flourish.

About Flourish + Grow to CEO

What does it take to build a successful business? That’s the question we want to answer for women business owners, so we can flourish and grow together from solopreneur to strategic CEO. Flourish and Grow to CEO is hosted by small business management certified, Pam Ivey and sales strategist, Jane Garee, who share their experiences in business ownership, sales and marketing to help women entrepreneurs scale their business and flourish confidently into the CEO role.

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