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Stay Lean, Even If You Can Afford To Get Fat

14th May 2016 | Written By Neil Bannister

stay-lean-even-if-you-can-afford-to-get-fat

What would be the biggest thing you would try and drill into a younger version of yourself?

What’s the biggest thing I would try and drill into myself 3 or 4 years ago… Having a chat over a drink with the 21-year-old just starting to really get his teeth into this whole business thing?

See, they say the best lessons in business are born from your failures and not your successes

I am not sure how much I subscribe to that passage of thought, I think you can take just as much away from your successes if you look for them

However, it is the failures that can burn you, the failures that will put you out of business, and the failures which you are forced to learn from.

So the biggest thing I would try and drill into my younger self…

Stay lean even if you can afford to get fat

 

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What I mean by that is.. Slow the fuck down… make sure you can adapt to the increased capacity of work, make sure you can cover the cost of growth and make sure your level of service grows with your income

I would say that advice (and my own stupidness to follow it) was probably the single biggest problem in my early businesses.

Fuck that. Overhead is not a sign of success... Turnover is not a sign of success, I’ve lost count of the people who have “7 figure businesses” and don’t make a penny.

Profit is the only number that matters… Because guess what, if you don’t have it, you’re out of business

Focus (especially in the early stages) on investing in things that bring you a short - mid term return (long term when you can afford to), on things that enhance your business, on growing that buffer of spare cash you can access when the market shifts and you need it.

Schedule it in your calendar every single month to go through your expenses and cut the fat.

Boring as shit, but one of the biggest things I would make my younger self do... In fact, it's so important that I would sit with him and make him do it.

Do it yourself and thank me in 3 years time.Because the higher your overheads, the more aggressively you need to rely on your resources every single month and the bigger the likelihood there is of disaster

As you grow your income, especially in a service-based business, you are forced to grow your overheads… and trust me when I say, overheads are a bitch (especially when they are fixed you have to personally guarantee them)

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They need to be kept on top of and cut hard and fast IN THE GOOD TIMES.

That’s right when you’re doing well and you feel like you’ve got more money than you know what to do with... More cash coming in than you’ve ever had before

Cut the unnecessary expense, because you can be sure that when the market shifts, it will shift faster than you cut those overheads.

I am not talking about the expenses that bring an ROI…

I am talking about the expenses that you know you should get rid of but are emotionally hard to cut, the staff you employ that are next to useless, the things that you feel would be good to have but do not increase your business in any way, the new facility that you know deep down you are not ready for, the personal items you are putting through the business, the nice car, the nice house.

The expenses that are brought on purely out of ego and that offer no real substance. I truly believe ego is the biggest destroyer of small businesses

Just because you can afford these things, it doesn’t mean you should. They can all come when you have a large buffer of cash in the bank, when there is a specific need for them or when your investments cover that cost

I even had a mentor back then who taught "it doesn’t matter how much it is… just buy it and make a new offer to cover it."

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Neil Bannister was the author of this lead generation article

Neil Bannister

Nicknamed meatball, co-founder of The Success Vaults and head of all things online. Neil started his business journey growing a successful gym before finding his passion for marketing, numbers and customer psychology. Predominantly specialising in Facebook and Google paid advertising, he leads the team to create and manage complex marketing ecosystems for our clients that have led to ROI's of over 1,000% and conversion rates of up to 95% to email.

WHAT'S YOUR BIGGEST STRUGGLE IN YOUR BUSINESS?

DISCOVER HOW TO EFFECTIVELY GROW YOUR ONLINE AND OFFLINE PERSONAL TRAINING BUSINESS USING THE VIRTUAL COACH

DISCOVER HOW TO EFFECTIVELY GROW YOUR ONLINE AND OFFLINE PERSONAL TRAINING BUSINESS USING THE VIRTUAL COACH

Get instant FREE access to over 500 hours’ worth of trainings on lead generation, charging what your worth, how to close new clients and building an online business

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