A FREE electronic magazine... August 14, 2002
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)
"David made over $5 million at home and wants to help you
do the same or more"
Mark Victor Hanson, co-creator of the #1 best selling
"Chicken Soup for the Soul" series
(Scroll to end for subscribe / unsubscribe instructions)
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Eight e-mails in eight days that will change the way you run your
I n T h i s I s s u e . . .
1. A "Quickie" - Personal Observation
2. Feature: Article
3. Feature: "Ask Dave" - Can I help with a business problem?
The errant web designer
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!
Copyright (c)2002, A Few Good People, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
11111 A "Quickie" - Personal Observation
I love it, I LOVE it, I LOVE IT!
I'm always harping on how you should come up with creative
and inexpensive ways to offer something special, something
extra that will set you apart from the competition.
Kate, my assistant, just ordered a mattress. The delivery
men rolled out a red carpet and wore white gloves when they
carried it into her house!
Beautiful! Very inexpensive, yet something special.
How can you adapt this idea for your business?
22222 A r t i c l e "Stuff Happens"
By Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"(tm)
Stuff happens. You can't always be perfect, and people
don't expect you to be, but when something goes wrong you
have a great opportunity to learn a number of interesting
things about people in general and yourself in particular,
as well as how to handle such situations. As an example,
here's something that recently happened to me.
As you may remember, when you signed-up for this newsletter
I sent you a "Welcome" message to thank you for subscribing
and to send you the most recent issue. Last week I
accidentally sent this "Welcome" message to my entire list
of existing subscribers in 20+ countries!
I realized what had happened within 5 minutes, and
immediately sent a message to the entire list (on purpose
this time!) to apologize and not to worry; they were not on
the list twice and would not be receiving duplicate
newsletters in the future.
The reaction was immediate and surprising, to say the least.
One of the first to respond told me that he never subscribed
(remember, this message was thanking people for
subscribing), that I better not charge him for it or he will
report me to the FBI (!), and that I was a "stinking
con-artist". What made this especially interesting is that
this particular individual has been receiving my newsletter
every other week for over a year!
Several others told me that they never subscribed and to
remove them from the list. Again, all of them had, in fact,
subscribed and had been receiving the newsletter for many
months. (I have never nor would I ever send the newsletter
to anyone who hadn't specifically requested it.)
Then there were the "faithful"; the many nice people who
sent a quick note such as "Don't worry about it", "You're
spending too much time in your bathrobe", and "It's always
nice to hear from you, even if by mistake".
Here are some things that I learned:
1. You can't please everyone, no matter what you do.
Some people are just cranky, so you have to just let them
be cranky! Nothing you say or do will placate them.
2. Sometimes you just have to let go. At first I tried
to tell those who complained that they had been on the
list for months, but then realized that if these people
don't even realize that there is no sense trying to hold
on to them. They obviously don't need the newsletter or
read it. "Buh-bye"!
3. I've got to lighten-up on myself. Even though the
negative messages amounted to less than 1/2 of one
percent, and they were outnumbered by positive messages
by at least 4 to 1, I still found myself focusing on them
and feeling bad about it.
4. When something goes wrong, it is important to try to
identify ALL of the ramifications. It never occurred to
me that people would see the "Welcome" message and think
they were subscribed to something new. If I had thought
of that, I would have mentioned it in my follow-up
message and perhaps fended off a few of the requests to
get off of the list. (Maybe not... see #1 above!)
The next time something goes wrong, think it through calmly
before you take action. Then let the chips fall where they
may and look at the entire situation as a learning
opportunity. If you don't, it just might happen again.
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 help you make "Big Bucks"!
I have a great web designer and I found her at a reasonable
price. The problem is this: she is so good she is swamped.
I have been working with her now for about 2 months. The
deadline for my site has been moved twice, and now I am being
told beginning of next week. I have tried to get a definite
date because I have too many people on hold now. I have a
merchant account. I have affiliate programs set up around
my site I am paying for but not using, and other expenses.
The site is my business. Help! She will be maintaining the
site after completion so I need to keep a good working
relationship going. The site is up but has empty pages!
Any help is greatly appreciated.
Scary, isn't it? You have placed an awful lot of the
control of your business in the hands of someone over
whom you have little control. Here are some thoughts:
1. I went to the site and it has a nice look (except for
the empty pages!)
2. Yes, she is good... or is she? Part of "being good"
is getting the job done on time so her client (you) can
conduct business. If she is lagging on the initial
setup, how responsive will she be when it comes to
maintaining the site? Not to sound too cold, but don't
worry too much about a good working relationship because
you may not want ANY relationship if she won't be
3. I hope that you still owe her some money... if you do,
do not, under any circumstances, pay her until the job is
finished to your satisfaction. That's always a good
4. Does she know that her delays are costing you? Does
she show any concern? Ask for assurances that
maintenance of the site will be done in a reasonable
amount of time.
5. Depending on how complicated the maintenance to your
site may be, you MAY want to consider learning how to do
it yourself; at least some of the things that need to be
done. If all you are going to do is add listings, for
example, learn how to take a 'template' page, insert the
proper photo and text info, and create the appropriate
links to and from that page. (Now get up off of the floor
and stop screaming; it's not that difficult!) That way
you don't have to wait for anyone to get that stuff out
there. If you need something more complicated, then you
can hire someone to do that portion. IT'S DOABLE!
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 )
There are seven birdhouses visible from my desk through the
windows. Every spring most of them are occupied and it gets
very busy with all of the new families that need to be fed
and taken care of. It's fun to watch them check out the
facilities, then 'move in' with their twigs and such.
In some of the birdhouses we see a second family move in
after the first one moves out (or should I say that they
'fly out'?), so we know that they are pretty happy with their
This year, however, we have a brand new nest and chirping
babies RIGHT NOW, in August! The nest isn't even in one of
the birdhouses; they built it on a beam that supports the
deck, and it's hard to see even when you know it's there and
are looking for it.
So I have a special summer treat; the sound of hungry little
birds that is normally reserved for spring time.
-------------------- CHRIS' CANCER UPDATE
Chris continues to do remarkably well. She LOVES her hair
(or should I say "lack of hair") and says she will never
have long hair again; it's just too much trouble. Her 2nd
chemo was Aug 1 and she had two pretty bad days, with nausea
and food cravings. Pretty weird combo, wouldn't you say?
One night she wanted a chicken pot pie, mashed potatoes,
peas, and a Hershey bar with almonds! I made a trip to the
store to get everything, wondering if it would stay down
after she finished eating. It did, and she was happy.
We went shopping for wigs and they were showing her
eyebrows, eyelashes, etc. I asked if they had anything to
replace her mustache that fell out; I was just joking, but
they took me over to a counter and produced mustaches,
beards, sideburns, goatees... what a business!
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:
-You requested it on my website or after seeing me at a
-I know you personally and thought you'd like it
-I asked you if I could send it and you said "Yes"
-Someone forwarded it to you because they thought you'd
like it. Scroll to the bottom for subscription instructions.
If you don't want to receive future issues, scroll to the bottom
for instructions on how to unsubscribe. No harm, no foul, no
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 resources that I offer.
The "Big Bucks Boutique" offers resources and materials that will
help you "Make More Money and Have More Fun" with your business.
Take a look at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com/boutique.htm
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
- This newsletter is sent every other week.
- Comments and suggestions are always welcome!
- Subscriber information is NEVER shared with
ANYone for ANY reason. PERIOD.
- Contact me at mailto:Dave@DaveBalch.com
- HOW TO SUBSCRIBE If this issue was forwarded to you and you
would like to receive your own copy (and OF COURSE you DO!),
subscribe at http://www.TheStayAtHomeCEO.com
A Few Good People, Inc.
P.O. Box 824
Twin Peaks, CA 92391