Business

Ep 106. Become a Consistent CEO in 4 Simple Steps

I'm Ashley!

My mission at The Purpose Gathering is to help driven momtogs like you level up, so you can build a sustainable business AND a fulfilling family life. I do that through authentic brand photography for mompreneurs and my signature program for mom photographers: Side Hustler to CEO.

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Are you finding it hard right now to prioritize being the CEO in your photography business?

Because everything else seems to be so much more important.

You have to put out constant fires, you’re always feeling behind with editing and it just feels like there’s never enough time in the day to focus on the CEO work. Maybe you’re here right now, because you don’t even really know what that means.

What does it mean to be the CEO of your photography business?

Today, I am so excited to be chatting with you about how to become consistent as the CEO and the steps that you need to take to do this. If you are ready to finally feel that freedom to step into this role and to really own this role, this episode is going to be incredible for you. So, let’s get right to it.

If you have been around for a while you know how much I love talking about this role as CEO. When I first heard this a couple of years ago, it was a game changer for me and really changed my perspective. It helped me see the overall picture of my business as well as helped me to stop working in my business enough that I could work on my business and I could really figure out the growth and the trajectory of the future of my business.

As we go through these steps, a question that I want you to be pondering on right now is:

How consistent are you when it comes to doing CEO work?

Do you spend time every day? Every week? Every month?

Do you not spend any time doing this because you’re not even sure what CEO work is?

Send me that DM @thepurposegathering on Instagram because I really want to gauge where you are right now when it comes to this CEO work. If you are a regular listener, then you may have already listened to Episode 102, which is titled Become a More Confident CEO. This is a great episode to listen to, if you’re not really sure what that means or if you just want a review. Another excellent episode to also listen to is Episode 50, which is Plan Your Week like a CEO.

As the role of CEO in your business, it’s important that you’re looking at the future.

You’re looking and forecasting, metrics and growth and marketing strategies and profit strategies and you’re really thinking more so big picture. This more strategic CEO mindset is different than your employee mindset and as a solopreneur, you’re in charge of both. What typically happens is that you get stuck in that employee mindset of checking off the to-dos:

  • Editing
  • Client communication & client management
  • Sending invoices & contracts
  • Delivering galleries
  • In-person sales sessions selling prints
  • And the list goes on..

Whatever the case may be, those are employee mindset tasks that are taking up too much of your time. It’s important that you spend time focusing on the CEO work, the work that essentially drives growth in your business and also creates that stability in your business.

As you start to grow without the CEO mindset, burnout starts to sets in and that’s when you get so overwhelmed that you want to quit. The CEO mindset is super important to help you streamline and to automate. To help you get out from behind the camera, out from behind the computer and actually start living your life and not just working all the time. So here are four steps you need to be doing to become a consistent CEO in your photography business.

Step #1: Commit to Showing Up

It is essential when you are transitioning from the employee mindset and introducing this CEO mindset, that you preschedule it into your calendar. Just like with anything that’s important to you, if it’s not on your schedule, it likely won’t get done. So, preschedule it, time-block it in your calendar and don’t miss it. Whatever you have to do to protect this time, make it fun and actually commit to doing it.

Remember, when you commit to showing up, motivation happens, not the other way around. You’re not going to just wake up one day and be motivated to make a change, you actually have to do the thing. You have to consistently show up and then the motivation comes after you move, after you decide that it’s going to be a priority.

Step #2: Start Small

After you have committed to showing up, it’s important to start small. We always have these big ambitions and these big goals, and then what happens is they’re too unrealistic. They don’t fit into our regular schedule, and then we fall down on the job. We beat ourselves up about it, and then we decide to just drop it because it’s too much.

This CEO work is essential if you want to grow a sustainable, and profitable business that you love, not that you hate.

It’s really important that you prioritize the CEO time and starting small as the way to go. It’s more important to be consistent, than to have quantity, so if you can only do one hour a week, only do one hour a week. If you can only do two hours a month, start there and do that. But stay consistent and don’t break this CEO date!

Imagine if you went to a corporate company and you had an appointment with the CEO of the company, you would not miss that appointment wouldn’t you? Because the CEO is the Chief Executive Officer. They have the highest prestige in the company and you need to treat yourself with that same esteem and that same prestige. So, when you’re listening to this CEO status, this CEO mindset, I don’t want you to think that this is only for people who want to do this full-time hours, who want to make six figures or more. That’s not it. It’s whatever you want your business to be with a CEO perspective in mind.

Step #3: Surround Yourself with CEO Minded Things

If you want to step into that role as CEO, and you want to be consistent with it, you have to surround yourself with it. So, CEO minded books, CEO minded podcasts, CEO minded besties. Get some friends who are of the mindset of being informed as the CEO who is making decisions, not just by emotions but making real strategic CEO minded decisions.

If you don’t know where to start with that, take the Passion to Profit Challenge. Where I go through each day layering different pieces of how to become a more CEO minded photographer. You can sign up at thepurposegathering.com/challenge and bring a friend with you. It’s always more fun to have a friend go through a challenge with you so you can keep each other accountable. If you don’t have any photographer friends, check out our Facebook group where you can plug in and connect with likeminded mom photographers. You can do that over at thepurposegathering.com/mamas.

Step #4: Regularly Evaluate your CEO Date

Lastly, it’s important that regularly evaluate your CEO date. So that means reviewing what is working in your CEO time. When you block out time to work on those CEO things, what’s working? Also identify what’s not working, because if you just keep doing this CEO time block, and you never evaluate what is working and what’s not, then it’s not going to help you. It’s so important that you know the data to help inform the strategic decisions that you’re making. Regularly evaluate your date. So, let’s say you do your CEO date every week, then you can evaluate it every month. If you’re only doing CEO work every month, I would say evaluate it every three months.

What do you keep avoiding during your CEO time that you’re not doing?

Or what are those tasks that you never have time to do? Those are the things you should  focus on first. When you’re becoming more consistent as the CEO, it’s important to identify those areas that you try to dodge. Those are the things that you need to invest more time in, maybe more education or more strategic habit stacking to make that more of a fun process. What can you do to make it more simple and sort of change your mindset around that thing?

Then finally, it’s important that you time block your CEO time. So, think about those things that are important to the growth of your business, like regularly updating your website. Many photographers fail to do this because they think Instagram is sufficient. But you could be missing out on a lot of traffic that comes to your website organically. Maybe someone gave a potential client your website, or they found you on Google. Even if you’re not using it for SEO blog purposes, if you just have a Google listing, you can find a lot of people or a lot of people can find you just based on your location with your Google listing. I have had people reach out to me randomly that find me on Google just because we live close to each other. So don’t underestimate the power of your website and how important it is to keep it regularly updated.

ACTION STEPS

Just to recap, the four steps to being a consistent CEO are:

  1. Commit to showing up. Preschedule this time into your calendar and don’t miss a date.
  2. Start small. Set attainable expectations and remember that consistency is more important than quantity.
  3. Surround yourself with CEO minded things like books, podcasts, and people. If you need help getting started with CEO things, make sure you check out the Passion to Profit Challenge linked below.
  4. Regularly evaluate your CEO date. Create that action plan as outlined in Episode 50 and really make sure that you are understanding what’s working about that date, what’s not working, and what you keep avoiding and learn how to course correct quickly.

I hope that you have found value in today’s episode. If so, I would love for you to take a screenshot of it, share it out on Instagram and tag me @thepurposegathering. Remember, I want to feature you in one of my next episodes, so head on over to my podcast page scroll all the way down to the bottom and you can leave me a voice message asking me a specific question and I hope to feature you on my next episode. As always, Mama I am here rooting for you and you are not alone on this journey.

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My mission is to help fellow momtogs (mama photographers!) experience success in business and in motherhood. As an Arizona brand photographer for mompreneurs, I’m passionate about capturing authentic images that show off my clients’ unique personalities so they can connect with their ideal clients. And as an online business coach for momtogs, I LIVE for helping mamas experience incredible transformations that help them build a business they love, without sacrificing their precious time with their littles.

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