I love @fiverr - here’s why: . You know, Fiverr gets a lot of hate. Guilty. But here’s the God’s-honest truth: . Fiverr saves me time. . Now, before you all lay into the comments like I just dropkicked your cousin, let me explain. . We hear so many times about how Fiverr devalues design. How they negatively impact the industry. How clients expectations are warped. . I used to think the same thing. . Not anymore. . I’ve learned a secret that not many people realize. Something that if you internalize, it will change the way you look at clients. Here it is: . . You’ll never convince a client who shops on Fiverr to pay five, six, seven figures. . Conversely, someone who will pay five, six, seven figures would never shop on Fiverr. . . These are two very different types of purchases. Two very different types of buyers. They’re worlds apart. Their core value system and available resources are wildly opposite. . Trying to convince the bargain shoppers of the world to pay more is pointless and painful. . So many times I talk with people who are so frustrated at not being able to find high paying clients at these sites... and I wonder every time: why?! They 👏 aren’t 👏 there 👏 . It’s like standing in the desert with your mouth open trying to catch a snowflake on your tongue. . It’s tough love Thursday. Stop trying to convince. Stop expecting to waltz into a pool of clients. Stop expecting a website to be an entrepreneur for you. Specialize. Position yourself well. Meet people. Get out of your computer/office/city/state/country. Go where they are. . And most of all, stop complaining: do more. . So how does Fiverr save me time? . I don’t have to spend time pre qualifying people who want to spend five bucks on their next project. They attract them all. And I love them for that. 😎 . Sorry for the rant. I got all hot and bothered talking to @joeycvitale tonight. . Haters, I’m here. Come at me.
Here’s the thing about work-life balance. . What’s right for you might be totally different than what’s right for someone else. . I work a lot. . More than most. . Here’s my schedule: 8:00 Wakeup. Shower, play, breakfast 9:30 Leave for work 7:30 Home. Play. Dinner. Bedtime routine 9:00 Kid in bed. Relax 10:00 Pick up the CPU and work more 1:30 Bed . Not the healthiest. But not the worst. . What I try to do is reserve those hours just for her. They are sacred. No phone calls, no internet, no distractions. Same with weekend days. . Balance. . But as she’s getting older, I’m starting to feel a stronger pull. She needs more attention. Wondering if a rebalancing might be in order. I started bringing her into the office for lunch here and there. Doing coffee dates in the mornings. Special stuff. . I’m not sure how it will all wash out, but I do know one thing: that balance will always be changing. It won’t ever be static for long. And I just need to pay attention. . So just remember as you scroll through the rest of the hustle propaganda and hippie-ish anti-work content today on Instagram: . Work life balance is real. But it doesn’t always mean working less. It means finding the right balance for you and the people you love.
What is the difference between freelancing, being a solopreneur, and starting a design business? . This is an oversimplified breakdown. So I want your questions. If you guys want more, lemme know and I'll write more about this stuff. . We see this confusion a lot out there. And I was confused about this distinction myself until literally about two years ago. . Let's get into it: . --- . Freelancers are hired guns. They are usually makers. Doers. Their goal is to be as busy and booked as possible: when there is downtime, they're not being paid. They're focused on improving their craft and building relationships with larger agencies. . Typically, they don't have clients. They work for larger service providers or larger entities that need short-term work. They're seen as temporary employees. . Some are so specialized in their expertise, that they are offered the opportunity to work with massive brands. Usually, this is brokered through a larger agency or studio. . Freelancers are assigned to be a part of a team. They may work remotely or in-office, depending on the assignment. . Freelancers typically charge for their time. . --- . Solopreneurs work for themselves. They can be makers, but the successful ones outsource the making to freelancers. Their goal is to sell as many jobs as they can and keep their freelance roster up to date. . Typically, they work directly with small to medium companies. They're seen as businesses. . Solopreneurs build teams around projects when appropriate. They nearly always work remotely, though some do have offices. . Solopreneurs typically charge fixed/flat fees but some charge by the hour. . --- . Business Owners work for their employees. They may still make, but only out of passion. Their goal is to scale their business to a certain revenue or team size. . They are focused on finding great people and establishing processes. This is the only way to scale. . Business Owners build teams to support the process. Not around jobs. They do, however, supplement with freelancers when specific expertise is needed. . Studios typically charged flat fees, but many charge by the hour.
This simple change made me feel so much better about cash flow. . I remember feeling completely confused when someone mentioned the term cash flow positive. . I was always stressed about cash flow... and positive had to be good, right? . A common mistake is that cash flow positive means being profitable... and it's not. At least not all the time. . Being cash flow positive is pretty simple: it's when your inflow of cash exceeds your expenses during a specific period. . For quite a few stressful quarters in the beginning, I was not consistently cashflow positive. . Every month, I would wonder why the cash in the bank didn't match the number of jobs I was booking. . Now, I was charging by the hour at the time, but that's not the major issue here. . My mistake was that I wasn't billing projects until I the project was finished. . Big mistake. Huge. . What I didn't realize is that by waiting until the end of the project to send an invoice, I was financing my client's projects FOR them. . And as you guys probably know, projects always take longer than we think. So that payday got further away as I moved forward with the job. . But then, I did one thing that changed everything. . I started charging a deposit at the beginning of the relationship. . Now I started small, only a 20% deposit, but having that cash in the bank made me feel so 👏 much 👏 better 👏 . What this required was that I started estimating how much time I would actually have to spend on the job... a nightmare of math that we won't get into in this post. . Eventually, I raised the deposit minimum to 50% of the project. When I did this, so many doors opened. I could hire an employee, actually pay myself, and get the equipment that we needed to do business. . If you're already charging a deposit, it seems like a no-brainer... but for some of you guys, this will change your life. . As business owners, having cash in the bank will make you stress less. It's as simple as that. . So are you charging a deposit? How much? Anybody real ballers in here requiring 100% up front?
Step into the unknown, and you will step into the field of all possibilities.” -Deepak Chopra . I have many faults. Confidence in my ability to figure things out is not among them. . I credit every success I’ve earned to being confident navigating the unknown. . Nothing in life or business is certain. Success leaves clues, not blueprints. What works for others may not work again. Luck is always at play. Opportunity rises and falls. . Only by having an unwavering belief in our ability to react, to counterpunch, to think on our feet are we able to capitalize on these moments. . We just need to be willing to venture onward. To take the hits and keep moving forward. To put one foot in front of the other, even if the path ahead isn’t readily apparent. . There is so much out there for you. It’s outside of the known. Down the path less traveled. . Photo taken at Bridal Veil falls in OR.
This one skill can help you in every aspect of your life. Especially in business. . That skill? Teaching. . I want to think back on your favorite teacher-the teacher that made all the difference in the world to you. How did they make you feel? What impact did they have in your life? Mine was a photography teacher in high school. She taught me how to see. . Teaching is a skill that, if honed, can be in amazing resource in your tool kit simply because of the impact you can have on another human being. . . Teaching doesn’t come easily for me. . I am a very direct person. So my teaching style comprises of telling you exactly what you need to do. I didn’t realize this until last month, when I spoke at the @togetherexperience. A now friend of mine, @montivation, told me that I was extremely direct (but funny, which was nice). . The directness isn’t a bad thing, but it can have negative impacts. I find that what I’m trying to communicate a skill or teach a skill to my team, they wind up looking like they were drinking from a firehose. . What I miss in that cycle is the use of stories and examples. And that’s what I’m trying to get better at now. . What do you guys think? Have you thought about teaching as a skill? The uses in business and leadership?