A FREE electronic magazine... November 8, 2001
B I G B U C K S I N A B A T H R O B E
Make More Money & Have More Fun With Your Small Business!
Publisher: Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"(tm)
Back issues at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com/bucksarchive.htm
Comments, suggestions, or questions are always welcome.
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I n T h i s I s s u e . . .
1. NEW FEATURE: Topic of the month
2. Feature: Article "The Wonders of Flexible Time"
3. Feature: "Ask Dave" - Can I help with a business problem?
4. Feature: "Meanwhile, back at the ranch..."
5. About "Big Bucks in a Bathrobe" Newsletter
6. Who the Heck am I, Anyway?
7. How to Subscribe / Unsubscribe
PLEASE FORWARD THIS to each of your friends who have small or
home-based businesses; they'll LOVE you for it! (Be sure they
know it's from you, or they'll think I spammed 'em!) Thanks!
(c)2001, A Few Good People, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
11111 N E W F E A T U R E: Topic of the Month
Let's try something new. I'm going to post a topic each month so
we can share our experiences and learn from each other.
This month's topic...
As small business owners, our time is pretty much our own (see
the following article). How do you take advantage of that
flexibility, and how do you keep from working TOO much?
E-mail your comments on this topic to mailto:dave@DaveBalch.com
I will post your responses in a future issue or on the web.
22222 A r t i c l e "The Wonders of Flexible Time"
By Dave Balch, the "Stay-at-Home CEO"(tm)
Once in a while something comes up that just can't be ignored;
it's those times that make me thankful that I have flexibility
with my time. Just recently one of those opportunities presented
itself and, because I could, I jumped on it: working with the
Red Cross near Ground Zero. I have posted an extensive
description of that experience, but first let's talk a little
about "flexible time".
One of the biggest advantages of working at home is the fact that
your time is your own. BUT... one of the biggest disadvantages
of working at home is the same thing, so it can be very difficult
to leave it alone.
After over 19 years of struggling with this, I must say that I am
still on the fence about whether it's a plus or a minus. But
then again, it really doesn't matter does it? It is what it is.
We have to learn to take advantage of it when we can and manage
it when we can't. I've experienced incredible joy taking time
off when I could and terrible frustration trying to take time off
when I couldn't. We've all had these trials and tribulations,
Back to the Red Cross. I was in New York to meet with a mentor
and fellow speaker. I found myself inexplicably drawn to Ground
Zero and I knew that I simply had to do something to help.
Thanks to my time flexibility, I was able to do just that. It
was an experience that I will never forget; one that was so
rewarding that I want to share it with anyone and everyone.
Click here for an extensive article about
my Red Cross experience!
Are you making good use of your flexible time? Are you using it
to do things that are important to you? I know a home
entrepreneur in Arizona that works with youths in local jails and
is also active with Junior Achievement projects in local schools.
She has the time flexibility to do these things and she does.
Then there is the dark side. It can be awfully hard to leave
your business alone when it is just a room or two away isn't it?
How do you resist that little voice that says, "Just come to the
office for a minute"? We all know what happens then; you're
already sitting there so you might as well do just one more
thing, and another, and another. Suddenly it's too late to do
anything but go to bed.
There is no easy answer. Awareness of the problem and the
importance of managing it is a big step. Sometimes a "trading"
strategy helps smooth the bumps. For example, if you take a day
off to spend with visiting relatives you get to "trade" that free
time for working time a few evenings after dinner. That's fair,
don't you think?
Our time flexibility is one of our biggest assets. Let's use it
33333 "A s k D a v e"
(Can I help you with a business problem? I will field
business questions in every issue. Send them to
Ask whatever you'd like... all letters will remain anonymous.
Maybe my 2-cents'-worth will make you "Big Bucks"!
I am a professional organizer and for the last 9 years I have
worked alone. This year, in an effort to expand and grow, I
trained someone to be able to go out and work in addition to just
myself (and she is excellent).
Here's my problem. When prospects call, it's very hard for me to
sell her. (I am excellent at selling myself.). It's like I get
attached to them, and I feel like I want to work with them, which
defeats the purpose. I would like to get her busy, or she will
not be able to afford to work for me.
It's hard to let go, isn't it? You are used to doing the
work, you enjoy doing the work, yet you need to let someone
else do some of it instead.
I hate to tell you this, but what you have here is a sales
organization! My suggestion would be to treat it that way and
create "territories"; divide the clients in some sort of
objective manner. Then, when a prospect calls, you determine
in which "territory" they belong and handle them accordingly.
Of course, you'd have to figure out how to handle referrals
that cross territories, individual clients that fall into more
than one territory, etc. but as long as the two of you are
reasonable and you, as the boss, remain fair-minded and on the
generous side, you should do just fine. Setting up this kind
of structure will also get you ready for further expansion.
Some ideas for territories:
a) Type of business: for example, you handle the home
businesses, she handles the others.
c) By industry (An added benefit would be that you each
could offer more specialized service if you are more
familiar with the problems/requirements of specific
Don't forget the reason that you took on the new person in the
first place: to free up some of your time so you can drum
up new business for both you.
Good luck! Let me know how it turns out!
44444 "M e a n w h i l e, b a c k a t t h e r a n c h..."
A glimpse into the life of this "Stay-at-Home CEO"
(Photos and short bios of the complete "cast of characters"
are posted at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com/theranch.htm )
Kate (my assistant) doesn't like mice. Yes, they're only field
mice and yes, they're cute, but not if they are within 100 yards
So what does Kate find? Mouse 'dirt'... ON HER DESK.
"Houston, we have a problem..."
Upon further investigation, it turned out that there was similar
"evidence" INSIDE the desk, along with pieces of dry dog food
that had mysteriously found their way onto shelves and into
organizers. (There is always food and water available for the
dogs, just in case. This situation would be the downside of that
So, after Kate left for the day, Dave (that would be ME) went
through her entire desk to clean out the droppings, kibble, and
various other mouse debris, and to set some traps.
I don't like to hurt any of our creatures and I take them outside
whenever I can, but this was an emergency; I can't have Kate
worried about coming to work! Can you imagine what would happen
if a mouse suddenly scurried across the desk?!? I put live traps
and snap traps in there, baited with peanut butter.
But what if she came to work and found them there? Yikes! Up
went a warning sign, just in case I forgot to remove them before
she showed up.
So far, no success. No evidence of their return, either. I
think I should have left the dog food in there until I caught
something, but it's too late now.
55555 A b o u t "Big Bucks in a Bathrobe" N e w s l e t t e r
Welcome! You are receiving this because either:
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like it. Scroll to the bottom for subscription instructions.
My goal is a bi-weekly newsletter that will:
-help you with your small or home-based business
-share articles of interest
-be informal and informative
-answer specific questions asked by readers
66666 W h o t h e H e c k a m I, A n y w a y ?
I've generated over $5 million (so far!) from my own home-based
software business and I have a lot to share with you about how I
did it and what I learned along the way. Now, as a professional
speaker, I offer programs that will help you and your employees
"Make More Money and Have More Fun" with your small or home-based
Visit me at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com for descriptions of
the programs and educational materials that I offer.
77777 H o w to S u b s c r i b e / U n s u b s c r i b e
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A Few Good People, Inc.
P.O. Box 824
Twin Peaks, CA 92391