How to Learn From Your Business Mistakes: Fail Fast to Learn Fast!
You may have heard of the phrase “Fail Fast to Learn Fast”. Success doesn’t come overnight. It takes a lot of sleepless nights, strategic thinking, and hard work to go from zero to hero. Our today’s guest has had her share of ups and downs, but she never gave up fighting for her goals. Today, she’s here to tell us all about it.
Beate Chelette is the Growth Architect & Founder of The Women’s Code, a strategic business and balanced leadership development company. She has been named “Top 100 Global Thought Leaders” by PeopleHum and “One of 50 Must-Follow Women Entrepreneurs” by HuffPost. But her journey hasn’t been all flowers and unicorns. After finding herself stressed out and with over $135,000 in debt one day, she was forced to fight back. With the power of resilience and perseverance, Beate figured out how to build yet another business and successfully sold it to the one and only, Bill Gates. And the rest was history! Her luck finally changed.
In this episode of the Think Business With Tyler podcast, we discuss why it’s better to work with multiple subject matter experts, and not rely on one person to do everything. We also get into the importance of developing resilience as an entrepreneur, why having business systems is critical, and why you should fail fast to learn fast.
If you want to work on your entrepreneurial mindset, this is the perfect episode for you. Tune in to hear Beate’s success story and what she has to tell you about entrepreneurship.
💡 Name: Beate Chelette
💡 What she does: She’s the Growth Architect and Founder of The Women’s Code that provides strategy development blueprints and results-oriented, tangible tools and techniques for Entrepreneurs, Workplaces, and Organizations.
💡 Noteworthy: Beate has been named “Top 100 Global Thought Leaders” by PeopleHum and “One of 50 Must-Follow Women Entrepreneurs” by HuffPost. She bootstrapped her passion for photography into a global business and sold it to Bill Gates in a multimillion-dollar deal.
💡 Key Quote: “I was either gonna look at my adversity and be defined by my adversity ad then everybody who said I couldn’t do it would be right. That really pissed me off, because I took that as my fuel and say, I will not drown in a puddle. If I drown, It’ll be the ocean. And if I drown, it’ll be worth every penny of it.”
💡 Where to find Beate: LinkedIn
Why you should hire multiple subject matter experts, and not rely on just one person. Most entrepreneurs are so used to doing everything by themselves – emails, marketing, distributions, etc. – that they look to hire one person who can do all those things instead of them. According to Beate, this is a wrong strategy and it makes your business vulnerable. Talking from her own bad experience with a close employee, she doesn’t recommend anyone to repeat her mistakes. “Today, I rather work with 10 freelancers that work for me five hours a week, versus one person that does everything because it reduces the vulnerability. And I have subject matter experts in very specific categories. […] If something falls away, it’s not too hard to replace, I had a Social Media Manager go missing in action on me, suddenly she’s gone. Because of all these other pieces is not that with one person not showing up, the whole business falls apart. It’s only one particular part of the business that’s relatively easy to replace.”
Resilience is the audacity to not give up. As an immigrant and a single mom, Beate knows why it’s important to develop resilience. She says that you don’t have a lot of options when you’re faced with a difficulty, you either give up or fight. According to her, you can train yourself to be more resilient. “The resiliency part to answer your question is something that you train yourself, because if as a business owner, entrepreneur founder, you think that you can flip out every time adversity comes around, you’re in the wrong business, because it’s everywhere, and what it’s designed for spiritually, it’s designed for you to get your toolbox ready for that next level in growth.”
Having systems is key for running a successful business. No matter the industry or area of expertise, every business needs operational systems and procedures. It’s the key to running a profitable business. When Beate sold one of her companies to Bill Gates, she had already implemented the necessary systems that allowed her successor to take over. “I did set my business up for acquisition. So for anyone who is thinking about that, here’s another big takeaway. Do not think that you can set up your operations and your systems wishy-washy, if you want to sell your business, it’s going to backfire so bad. I set it up for acquisition. My systems were transparent. It was designed, I had standard operational procedures at a manual, we had everything documented naming conventions, you name it. When that business got sold, we literally handed the book over, and they knew exactly what we did and how we did it.”
Fail faster. If you want to learn fast, you need to fail fast. Each failure comes with a lesson, you just have to accept it. Every entrepreneur has to go through certain challenges and overcome obstacles at one point. The sooner you do it, the better. According to Beate, failure will teach you to find another way. “I compare this to when you have a GPS, and it’s outdated and you get to a dead end. Would you get out of the car, throw yourself on the ground and throw a temper tantrum? No, you would not. You would go, Ah, geez, bad information. You get back in your car, and you turn around and you find another way. You need to look at failure the exact same way. That is some wonderful, universal trick to show you a person or a thing with a stop sign that says don’t go here. This is no good. Instead of throwing every time this happens a temper tantrum on why this is happening to me, just turn around and find another way.”
“The biggest mistake was that I thought I can clone mini-mes, which is a mistake that I do not recommend anyone to do. So if you’re an entrepreneur and a business owner, you get where we are because we know how to do so many things. But then we expect that other people can do as many things as we do. And so we try to find the one person who kind of does a lot of different things, which is unrealistic, a very bad idea, and makes your business incredibly vulnerable.”
“What went wrong was that I was too busy with doing all the work, that I wasn’t managing properly. And I wasn’t there enough to intervene when in my own home, and my home office. This happened right under my nose.”
“I was either gonna look at my adversity and be defined by my adversity ad then everybody who said I couldn’t do it would be right. That really pissed me off, because I took that as my fuel and say, I will not drown in a puddle. If I drown, it’ll be the ocean. And if I drown, it’ll be worth every penny of it.”
“Women leadership is not defined. Women leadership is defined in the sense that we know what women leadership is not.”
“Don’t sit there with a pen and just start writing. […] And everything that we do as entrepreneurs really needs to be as into, here’s the story, and here’s how it relates to you and why this is a benefit for you and what you can take away from that.”
“My skill set as a growth architect. And the way my brain works is when I hear it, I cannot help myself but in my head, it already formulates the whole system and it just spits it out.”
Full Transcript – Beate Chellete: How to Learn From Your Business Mistakes: Fail Fast to Learn Fast!
Beate Chelette 0:00
I compare this to when you have a GPS and it’s outdated and you get to a dead end. Would you get out of the car, throw yourself on the ground and throw a temper tantrum? No, you would not. You would go, Ah, geez, bad information, you get back in your car and you turn around you find another way. You need to look at failure the exact same way. That is some wonderful, universal trick to show you a person or a thing with a stop sign says don’t go here. This is no good. Instead of throwing every time this happens, a temper tantrum and why this is happening to me. And just turn around and find another way fail fast.
Welcome to think business with Tyler sharing our methods and strategies for success. Join in on our conversations with business owners as we highlight their triumphs and detail how they overcame the challenges they faced while continuing to grow and scale their business. It’s time to think life think success and think business with your host Tyler Martin.
Tyler Martin 1:07
Hello, hello. Today’s guest is BRT shellacked BRT is a growth architect and a founder of the woman’s code, a strategic business and balanced Leadership Development Company. She has been named the top 100 global thought leaders by people, and one of the 50 must follow women entrepreneurs by HuffPost. But her journey hasn’t been an easy one. After finding herself stressed out and with over $135,000 in debt, she was forced to fight back. And with the power of resilience and perseverance, be it figured out how to build yet another business and successfully sold it to the one and only Bill Gates. And the rest was history for luck had finally changed. In this episode, we chat about the biggest business mistakes that Beyonce made, and how she learned from them, how to develop resilience and not give up on your dreams. Why business systems are crucial for success and the importance of failing fast as a business owner. I love that one. This is a great one. So let’s jump in and chat with Beyonce now. Hey, BRT, thanks so much for being on the think business with Tyler podcast show. How are you doing today?
Beate Chelette 2:15
I am terrific Tyler, and I can’t wait to dive in deep with you?
Tyler Martin 2:20
Well, I feel the same way. I’ve been doing a lot of research on you. And we are really excited to talk to you. So you know where I’d like to start? And where usually start? Because I’d love to know what you’re doing now. And then just a little bit more about you like what makes you tick? What’s your story? And let’s just dig in there. And I’ll just kind of drill down from there.
Beate Chelette 2:37
Sounds good? Yes. So today, I work as a strategist and consultant. And I help visionaries and leaders to make an impact to make their impact by developing the strategies and blueprints to actually get that done.
Tyler Martin 2:51
Yeah, that’s great. So I want to just dig in, like in terms of some of your background, I know, you had a photography business, and you got it to around seven figures, you must have been hustling to get there. You were rolling at some point. And then you had a key employee, which sometimes oftentimes business owners have this happen, a key employee that went rogue, I’ll say, and decided to start their own deal and kind of steal things from out under you. Can you tell us about that story a little at first, how did you get to seven figures? Because that’s pretty impressive. And then where did things go wrong? And then I’ll even throw in one more part of it. If you remember this is what did you learn from it?
Beate Chelette 3:26
Yeah, so number one, I can start with the biggest mistake right away. And the biggest mistake was that I thought I can clone Minimes, which is a mistake that I do not recommend anyone to do. So if you’re an entrepreneur and a business owner, you get where we are because we know how to do so many things. But then we expect that other people can do as many things as we do. And so we tried to find the one person was kind of like us who kind of does a lot of different things, which is unrealistic, a very bad idea and makes your business incredibly vulnerable. And so I built this business over a series of several years. It was a photography production business and a photography representation business. I was working for clients like BMW and Mercedes Benz and Wrangler, Levi Strauss. And I had gotten a reputation as one of Los Angeles premiere so photography producers of people came from all over the world and produced here in Los Angeles. And I was kind of the hot ticket producer at the time knew all the cool locations and all of downtown and the graffiti stuff and the bridges and, and and the desert and Palm Springs and Las Vegas and you know, had a great time doing it. And at the same time in the photographer representation business, I made sure that in my photographers were were photographing for magazines and for you know, we Cameron Diaz, back in the days when she was a model was one of the models that we hired for me, you know, swimwear brand, so that’s how it all started and What went wrong was that I was too busy with doing all the work, that I wasn’t managing properly. And I wasn’t there enough to intervene when in my own home, and my home office, this happened right under my nose when I was somewhere in a motorhome producing, they just had too much time, I wasn’t there to hack out the plan, not just on at my expense. But while I was paying for her time to do that, right. And so what do you learn from something like this is, as a big takeaway is today, I rather work with 10 freelancers that work for me five hours a week, versus one person that does everything because it reduces the vulnerability. And I have subject matter experts in very specific categories. Like I have somebody who only does YouTube thumbnails. So what do you only does the video editing? Somebody only does the proofreading somebody only does this? Because if something falls away, it’s not too hard to replace, I had a social media manager go missing an action on me, you know, suddenly she’s gone. But because of all these other pieces is not that with one person on showing up, the whole business falls apart. It’s only one particular part of the business that’s relatively easy to replace.
Tyler Martin 6:21
Do you find a call it diversification of your staff? So you’re kind of really diversifying things out? My immediately what I think is, well, that’s maybe a lot more management, though, and a lot more organization? Do you find that to be challenging, or is like, Hey, that’s a necessary byproduct of being having a lot more flexibility in my workforce and not being hit by one part of the motor going out, per se.
Beate Chelette 6:45
It’s a question on how you look at building a business. So for me, you know, every business I’ve ever built, is set up so it can scale up pretty quickly. Yeah, I cannot scale up a business where I have one full time person, then I need to hire another full time person. But if I have several people that work several hours a week, I can scale that up pretty quickly, because they probably have a couple more hours available for me. So if I have that surge demand, which is what this entire Amazon AWS model was built on, right, the surge demand, right, that I can I can then scale it up. Is it more time and effort to manage is yes, it is 100%. So you need to make sure that in your workflow and in your organizational structure, you have huddles, and checkins. And you need to have a really, really good project management software. We use Asana, other people use Basecamp. I don’t find Basecamp as sexy as Asana or maybe it just gels with the way my brain works better. Without Asana or project management software. I could not do this because it allows me to check and I can have people in all time zones all over the world. We have from the Philippines to India, to our mania, we have people everywhere.
Tyler Martin 7:58
Yeah, I use Trello. I actually use Trello and Asana. And both I find to be somewhat similar. I think Asana allows you to go to the list format, verse board format a little easier. So those, those are great tools. I do want to go in that area of the key employee, I believe you went down a path of litigation or some level of it. What was your takeaway from that? I’ve had a similar experience in my own business, where I had to make a tough decision on whether I sued a former employee for doing something or not. I’d be curious what your takeaway through going that process? Would you do it again, if that happened, let’s hope it never happens again. But if something like that were to happen again, would you sue again? Or would you say, I’m not going to get pulled into this? What’s your feelings on that?
Beate Chelette 8:39
That’s a super smart question. And I hope everybody’s listening very, very carefully. Yeah. Because the initial reaction is that they did wrong by me. Right? And I’m right, right. And I’m German. So do I need to even say anything else? Other than that, so maybe that drove the decision that I had to be right, because it’s just in my, you know, it just comes in my DNA that Germans must be right all the time. After I fought this lawsuit for a year, and I went deep into debt, and then it settled and paid everything, including my lawyer, I ended up with nothing, right. So I ended up exactly where I was before I had lost everything. You know, when it was settled, I still had lost everything, except that I just wasted a year of my life fighting it. Would I do it again? It would have to be something really, really, really, really big. Would I go after another employee doing something like this? No, but I certainly learned my lesson. That’s never gonna happen again. Yeah,
Tyler Martin 9:41
it sounds like you’ve got really good controls and separation now, in terms of who’s doing what so you’re somewhat insulated from anything at least catastrophic. So you also part of that was the key employee issue but also September 11, I believe, and that literally for like many of us that were in business back Then just like literally just stopped everything is that is that what happened? You? And ultimately, you probably I believe you closed that business that correct?
Beate Chelette 10:07
Yes, yes, I did. So on that day, September 11 2001, I had about a half a million dollars on the books to be produced from here on nm, this was when I was still in the lawsuit. So I figured if I can do that, then I can, you know, keep this lawsuit alive and fight longer. Which by itself, by the way, now that I said, sounds really dumb. So September 11, comes and then literally within 24 hours, every every job on the books cancelled. Because at this time, there was not one person in their own right mind, who would wanted to be in a plane flying to Los Angeles, and to produce here and ultimately, I could not recover from that.
Tyler Martin 10:50
So I’m going in this direction, because I love your story. I mean, your transparency to by the way, so things get better. So you go into stock photography. So you’re starting in the world of stock photography, and I have a long history of awareness of this industry. And I believe it was around the time you were entering it was it was really kind of taking off, or it was starting to become, I think Getty was one of them. I can’t remember a couple other ones. Corbis. Yeah, they were kind of blowing up. Take me through that adventure. Now, I know, at one point, you had some debt that you were dealing with, and you had some challenges, as anyone does, as they’re growing a business. Can you kind of tell us that story around it?
Beate Chelette 11:25
Yeah. So I had, interestingly enough, the photographer that what part of this conspiracy was the one who gave me the idea? Wow, you don’t say God does not have a sense of humor? I mean, certainly a lot of that involved. And we just had started to sell a lot of his archive work, and, you know, selling it really well. And so I said, Why don’t I go into this business at this time, there was really no stock syndication, that had specialized in this particular arena as heavily as I wanted to go after certainly not in the United States. And so I went to all the A listers, because I had learned my lesson, why bother with B, or C, if you can go after a. So I went after AIT, and I was able to very quickly get a lot of A listers under my belt, but I had to pay for the digitization. So that was the deal that I made, I pay the out of pocket against future earnings. So it was out of pocket until these future earnings come in. And that in stock photography takes the better part of a year. But it was money I didn’t have. So I borrowed money. And then I had to borrow money to pay interest on borrowed money, which is, as any business person knows, a just brilliant business model, tested, destined to fail, and in a very short amount of time, but I really believed in the idea, and it just was growing and growing and growing. But my expenses were so high, and I needed the manpower to do the digitization and the distribution and the you know, the contracts. And so I found myself in a really serious pickle here.
Tyler Martin 12:56
Cash flow, right? Cash Flow. Yeah. Cash Flow. Yeah. So to lead you along the story, we’re where I’d love to go with this as part of your frustration, you ended up writing a letter to the White House. Is that correct? Yes. And can you share share? I mean, it sounds a little crazy. I’m gonna be honest with you. When I first heard it.
Beate Chelette 13:13
It’s a letter to the President of the United States. Come on, but who gets an
Tyler Martin 13:17
answer, I guess is the other part of this. Crazy. Can you share the story? Yeah. So
Beate Chelette 13:23
the reality of this story, really? Is that my former mother in law? Yeah. would not shut up about it. That’s it in a nutshell. So every time I saw her, and I’d be complaining how hard it was, she’s like, right, the president, right, the President of the United States, he’s your president. You know, that’s what the President is for? Why would you take this all the way to the top, he’s the President of the United States of anybody can help you as the President of the United States. And she went on and on and on Tyler. And finally, I’m like, fine, fine. I’m gonna write the damn letter. So you are not going to talk about this anymore. So I wrote the letter and I let it go. Little did I know, I get a letter from the White House. And so I have this letter in my hand I got this is not even. So I opened it, and it says the President sent his best wishes. And I’m like, sure the President has never even seen this letter. Right. But what it did do, it put me in touch with a small business administration, Tyler. And because it was a letter that came from the White House, that they got a copy off. They also gave it to one of their top guys the second in command. So it wasn’t some low level loan officer. It was the second in command at the SBA in Los Angeles County. And so he called me and he says, Well, we got a letter from the White House and it recommends that we’re getting in touch with you. So So Tyler, so I walk in the SBA with my business plan, which I had written you know, so don’t think that this happens when you don’t do stuff. Did your homework base. I did my I did the work. I walked in with my business plan. My marketing strategy laid out and, you know, and all the bells and whistles and all the beautiful graphics. After all, I’m coming from the visual, visual industry. And then he says to me, I’ll put in what you put in. And that was the beginning of how it all turned.
Tyler Martin 15:14
Wow, you know, something I know about business plans, from what you’ve said, and I just love it is you said, you know, don’t get too hung up into the fanciness of a business plan. It’s more about the numbers are going to go straight to the numbers. Can you share your thoughts on that? Because I just thought it was just almost poetic, and how you said it and your thoughts on it?
Beate Chelette 15:31
Yeah, so here I am, you know, I got this business plan all decked out. And it’s got this beautiful cover and all these photos and of my portfolio. And I’m talking about, you know, the beauty of these images and where they’re going to be published and how happy people are going to be to be looking at these photos and designing their homes and how, how great this is going to feel for everybody. And then the guy from the SBA says, yeah, that’s all really kind of nice. But all the bank wants to know is how they’re going to make their money back.
Tyler Martin 15:58
And they went straight to the numbers, basically, they
Beate Chelette 16:00
went straight to the numbers. Wow. It’s like, it’s like almost like that. You know, when they like, when they like flip through the whole book until the last 10 pages,
Tyler Martin 16:10
right, right, the forecast and the projection. So there’s two things I want to unpack here in your stories, one niching, it sounds like to me in the stock photography, at least, right away, you saw like this niche that you wanted to grab? How would you say that correlates to the typical business owner? Do you think there’s a problem where people business owners oftentimes don’t think about niching? Enough? What’s your opinion in philosophy on that?
Beate Chelette 16:33
I have two completely controversial thoughts about this. Okay, I love it. So there’s number one there is the get rich in the niche certainly exists right? To this day, right. And in this particular area, because I was non competitive to anyone else, it was something that nobody else had at the quality that I had. Nobody knew how to sell, like, I know how to sell it. So I trained them how to sell it, and then they all sold it and everybody was happy. So that was where the niche works. What I find today, and this is really interesting Tyler is today, I just really hunkered down this year on my positioning as a strategist, because I’m recognizing people are now so obsessed in the niche. They can’t bloody see the whole picture, right? So my positioning has completely changed as a result of people just like going so deep into this one thing, that they have no clue how this works together. And so my my whole brand, as the growth architect today is built up on I go in, I’ll take all the puzzle pieces out of your head. Because every business owner has done the internet marketing fors, the copywriting cores, the conversion cores, the landing page, cores, the selling to rich people, cores, but they don’t know how to put it all together, because there’s nobody out there that teaches how to build a system formula. And so my positioning today is you bring me in if you have all the pieces, and do you have no idea what the big picture is.
Tyler Martin 18:10
So you kind of pull them back a little bit to see be able to see in front of their feet, basically, because that’s where they’re probably stuck at good stuff. So the other thing that really stood out for me is your resiliency, like, and we haven’t got to the your story even continues to go uphill. But you have this tremendous resiliency, is that something you think is given? Is that what makes you tick as a person? Or do you develop that muscle?
Beate Chelette 18:35
You develop it? I think resilience is the audacity to not give up. Yeah. And this comes from when I was $135,000 in debt. I’m an immigrant. I’m a single mom, I’m trying to figure out how in the world am I going to put a roof over my head and my baby and get her into school? Pay for it all, while I do it with no family to be found anywhere. So where I arrived at is that I had two choices. I was either gonna look at my adversity, and be defined by my adversity. And then everybody who said I couldn’t do it would be right. That really pissed me off. Because I took that as my fuel and say, I will not drown in a puddle. If I drown. It’ll be the ocean. And if I drown, it’ll be worth every penny of it. It’s not worth filing bankruptcy for $10,000. But it certainly would be worth into Fallout $435,000. I mean, you know, and you kind of have to be prepared for that. But the resiliency part to answer your question is something that you train yourself because if as a business owner, entrepreneur founder, you think that you can flip out every time adversity comes around, you’re in the wrong business, because it’s everywhere and what it’s designed for spiritually. It’s designed for you to get your toolbox ready for that next level. In growth. So I’m a photographer by trade, I learned the business, I went through a lawsuit, I went through betrayal. I know how to build businesses, I know how to scale him up, I know how to scale him down, I know what it feels like to lose it, I know the mistakes you can make. And all of that prepared me to the day when I sold my business, because I knew what it what it would look like and what I needed to do, because I just had all these other experiences. So you believe that all my T’s were crossed, and I’s dotted.
Tyler Martin 20:27
And I love the fact that you do have failures, because so many of us sometimes, when we do hit it big, if sometimes happens on the first swing, and I feel like there’s a lot of lost opportunity there to learn from what you’re going to do better the next time around, or what you’re not going to do. And that takes me to what you just mentioned, is selling your business now, it’s not just selling your business, because that in itself is quite an accomplishment that someone sees value in your business and they’re willing to pay for it. That’s huge. It’s probably the one of the most awesome feelings you had something you built. And someone saw value to buy it. But the but is it was built on a Bill Gates is companies that acquired you. So can you kind of give me How does Bill Gates find your company? I mean, imagine some of his advisors, you just don’t imagine he would be his group of companies would see value in something related stock photography helped me to understand that positioning. And did you see? I mean, Were you conscious in terms of acquisition someday? Or did it just kind of play out because you dominated a niche area or something along those lines? By the questions there.
Beate Chelette 21:27
I did set my business up for acquisition. So for anyone who is thinking about that, here’s another big takeaway. Do not think that you can set up your operations and your systems wishy washy, if you want to sell your business, it’s going to backfire. so bad, I set it up for acquisition. My systems were transparent. It was designed at standard operational procedures at a manual we had everything documented naming conventions, you name it, when that business got sold, we literally handed the book over. And they knew exactly what we did and how we did it. And then in the due diligence, they said it couldn’t happen to anybody better, because you know, there wasn’t anything to be found, because that’s not how I had run it. So it was set up for that. And the way I had after this lawsuit, I said I wanted to be in an equity type business that made money when I wasn’t there. I mean, I learned that pretty quickly. Then I said, I knew what my number was. And the number was a number that I would never have to work again. Why would I sell it? Otherwise? I mean, that’s not even, you know, it doesn’t make any sense, right? Why would you sell for a million dollars, that’s not enough, you know, if you sell it, you need to sell it for multi million dollars, depending on your lifestyle, so you can live off the interest on your investments. That was another requirement. And when I rose, and because of these celebrity at home stories that were a byproduct that that kind of just happened. But because it was a photo edited Elle Magazine, before I went to America, I knew exactly which type of magazines would be interested in buying the celebrity homes, and I knew exactly what I could charge for it because I used to buy them. So and we had like Madonna’s house, and we sold it, I think 35 times all over the world the same story again and again and again, for multiple $1,000. And that just adds up as a line item on your books. And so the Bill Gates company at the time was Corbis. So Bill Gates owned Corbis outright himself. And they had bought in this buying frenzy with Getty, they had bought outline, which was the premium celebrity headshot, you know not headshot, but you know portraiture type of brand. And they couldn’t grow it because it was a high touch business. So they were looking for opportunities to grow that division. And here I was with my celebrity homes. So they came and they asked me on whether or not I would tell them how I do it. And I said like any decent woman would of course not if you want to know what I know you’re gonna have to pay me open your wallet, open your wallet baby. And then they said well, how much do you want and then I named my number and then we we sold the business.
Strategy Meeting 24:13
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Beate Chelette 24:47
Open your wallet baby. And then they said well how much do you want? And then I named my number and then we we sold the business?
Tyler Martin 24:57
What was it like because I’ve gone through this I’d be curious to see had the same experience. What was that due diligence period? Like? So, you know, they come back to you with a number. And then it’s not a deal yet. I mean, you’re still have to work through some due diligence and things. It was at a lot of anxiety. Was it kind of like, Is this really going to happen? Or was it? How did you feel about it? Or was it like you just whatever happens happens? You’re okay.
Beate Chelette 25:18
Well, I knew what they were going to find. Which was nothing, right. So there wasn’t, there wasn’t ever a moment where I hope they’re not going to find that thing where I cheated somebody out of $20,000, or whatever that was, because that just didn’t happen. When they wanted to see my divorce agreement. That was a moment that made me a little pissed, to be honest with you, but they just haven’t heard. That’s personal. Wow. Yeah, that’s personal. But they they wanted to make because it was Bill Gates. So they didn’t, they want to make sure that my ex husband wasn’t gonna jump out of the bushes, with some piece of paper that I signed, you know, drunk one night on a piece of napkin and asked for his fair share of whatever that was, which is, understandably, I found the due diligence was kind of very mysterious, because they like sitting there with a calculator and the crunching numbers, and they’re asking for this, and they asking for that. And they’re, they’re Chartered Financial accountants, and you know, and all that stuff. And you got like, I don’t even know what you’re looking for. But it took six months? Not quite, it took about three months for the due diligence. And they said is all good, we’re good to go.
Tyler Martin 26:27
That’s awesome. Yeah, I felt like a lot of tension, not not tension, anxiety. Because to your point, like you’re sitting through that process, we had a team of lawyers and accountants, team,
Beate Chelette 26:36
the team, the team, the team is nervous because the team knows something’s going on. And you can’t tell them.
Tyler Martin 26:42
Oh, that’s the other one. Oh, you
Beate Chelette 26:44
mean your staff? That’s the worst. Because you have to, like lie to them?
Tyler Martin 26:48
Yeah. You know, we had an interesting thing where it actually, cuz you do want to be forthright with them. But you also don’t want to create anxiety before you need to until you know, it’s a done deal. And we had something that slipped out to on the entire company email. And it was an accident, someone made within the group. And that knew about it. And man, we had to do a lot of damage control until we were ready to really talk it through. So yeah, that’s one thing. I also love something you said a little earlier in the conversation that comes up with a lot of clients I’m working with is even if you’re not going to sell setting up your business in a certain way, so that you can sell or have that option in the future. And it sounds like you were very conscious early on that, hey, I’m going to set it up with with the right procedures, policies, infrastructure niche, not knowing you’d actually sell it, but you were in a position to if you wanted to. So that’s pretty cool that you were conscious about that. Do you reflect on that and go? Man, I’m so smart. I was thinking that through. Or I mean, you must give you a really good feeling to have ended with such a great note through Bill Gates buying your company.
Beate Chelette 27:49
I think that what it actually was the feeling Thailand, I don’t know if you experienced this in your work as well. So I want to reverse pose the question to you, as well, is because a lot of times when you read the business books that exists today, and there are many, and they’re mostly written by men, and they all say, you know, you got to you got to make the sales, make the sales, make the sales. And then when you have the money, you’ll figure it out. I found that business owners who are only focusing on sales, and not building their foundational systems are so screwed, because they can take it to a million dollars. When they’re between 750 to a million, they’re at the massive burnout. They want to run away. They want to get away from this as much as they possibly can they have no idea how they reverse engineer the systems and processes and procedures and process mapping, you know, and somehow put the cloak of systems over this mess that they created. Because it’s, you know, rapid growth, you know, they’re flying by the seat of their pants. So I just felt vindicated that i My way of running a business is the better way. That’s kind of like, you know, I kind of like that did that, huh? told yourself?
Tyler Martin 29:10
I love it. I love it. Yeah, one of my favorite sayings is top line is vanity. Bottom line is sanity. top line is vanity, sanity. And it’s because to your point, like so many people get caught up in sales, revenue, revenue revenue, they think it’s just like the badge of honor to have bigger sales. But oftentimes, I’m sure you’ve seen this too within your own client base. They’re growing their sales, but they’re not growing their profit. And it’s a lot of time because there’s a lot of inefficiency and there isn’t systemization. So it seems like you you really nailed that, and how you went through your adventure. Now you did bring up one thing you said, you brought up, it’s mostly men. And that brings me into my next thing that I wanted to talk about. You have a wonderful book. It’s called Happy women. Happy World. I always get caught up with that. I want to say happy life when I hear that by the way, but it’s happy, happy women happy world. Just want to talk a little bit about that book. And what is your take in terms of women having more equal opportunity, both of owning their own businesses and just even in the workplace? What are your thoughts?
Beate Chelette 30:09
Yeah, so I wrote the book, because I felt that after the Bill Gates company, you know, bought my business, they offered me the position as the Senior Director of Global entertainment. And I accepted in I’m working at a Bill Gates company. And I found that it was so interesting to see what a discrepancy there was, between how men and women are treated, and how women constantly have to justify their subject matter expertise. You know, even every day, even after you’ve done it, you still have to, what do you know about it? How would you know is like, your numbers are wrong? Well, you go to Deloitte and tell them that their numbers are wrong. I’m just I’m just interpreting their numbers. But it’s like always this like sassy as well as if women were idiots. And it really upset me. And so I looked at this, and ever sewed the entrepreneur and problem solver. I said, I know why. That is. Because women leadership is not defined. Women leadership is defined in the sense that we know what women leadership is not. She’s not pushy. She doesn’t have big boobs, she can be too loud, she still has to be feminine. She can’t be like Hillary Clinton. She can’t be like Sarah Palin. She can’t be like Meg Whitman. She can’t be like, like this purse, she can’t be like, This person can’t be like this person. She can’t be like this person. And that leaves nobody. So we look at women leaders, and we say, yeah, that’s not quite it. That’s not quite it. That’s not quite it. And I said, This is crazy. And then I look at the men. And when we look at men, and we define leadership, we say, well, he has a very persuasive style. He is a he’s a ballbuster kind of guy. He is a you know, take charge kind of man. Oh, wow. He’s so empathetic. Geez, you know what a good leader. Well, most women are empathetic. But when we are empathetic, it’s just like, we are soft and emotional. If one woman says to me, You’re too emotional, I’m going to I’m going to vomit on him. Because first of all, I’m not really super emotional, but I will get emotionally if somebody will call me emotional. And it’s just these like trite statements that have been absorbed. So I wanted to change and challenge that. So I wrote the book, happy woman, happy world, number one to teach women that we better be having a code amongst women, if we were to ever be taken seriously. And this first step of this greater leadership concept that I’m working on, is to teach women don’t be a bitch, don’t tear other women down. Don’t do this stuff that we see women do so many times in business, and with each other, you know, by by this backstabbing, and they gossiping, and then some of this stupid stuff women say or do, which hinders us to really get into a position of being taken seriously in equality. That’s step number one. I also wanted to help men to understand what are these challenges that a women experiencing? Because most men really love their partners, their female partners, and they want to be there and understand what is it about being a woman that seems to be so difficult with the kids and the identity crisis and the working and they’re always feeling like you’re chasing something. So I wanted to have men have a little guide, you know, the playbook of the other team, where they could get some pointers out of it. And that was really the foundation for the greater work, which is to define what women leadership is, so that we can have male leadership, which we know what it is, we know what women leadership is, and now at long last, we can combine them like an infinity sign, where a good leader like what you’ve seen in a crisis tailor, you have to be able to make hard decisions and be empathetic and soft and community driven. You have to have both.
Tyler Martin 34:07
Do you feel that gap? Over the last 10 years? Do you see that gap getting less in terms of your mission in terms of just having women having a better voice and leadership roles? What’s your take on that it would definitely was getting a lot more awareness a few years ago, do you think it got pushed back again?
Beate Chelette 34:26
Yes, and this is really sort of the really sad part about this is that he has good and bad sides to it. So the good side is the truth of the matter is that the old man’s code, the heart structure that businesses are built on, doesn’t work for men anymore, either. So the question is, as we had in 2019, focus so much on women leadership, were we helping or hurting the overall objective? And I don’t have a definite answer for that. But men were pushing back hard, because they felt excluded. They felt that they were constantly being told that they’re doing something wrong. They felt there was an unfair advantage for women, they couldn’t understand why women had all these problems because they weren’t experiencing them. And they felt that they were being made the bad guy. And men have a problem with that anyway, because they already have that at home. Now they had it in the business world as well. And who wants to live like this? Nobody. And so that’s I think what happened is that that was a hard reality for me to wake up to and say, the minute COVID came, it was like women leadership was wiped off the planet. I mean, it was a bigger issue. And now if we look, what is the bigger issue, now we have a talent shortage. That’s the biggest issue. It’s not women’s specific. So what do we do now? And how do we solve where we bring people together? Because I think ultimately, there must be our goal is to bring our people together to the table.
Tyler Martin 36:01
Agreed such an important topic. Hey, I do want to transition to one thing I always like to ask. So you’re a published author, for new author want to be authors out there first time authors? And can you give us a couple tips of like, someone wants to write a book? What did you learn from that? What would be a good starting point or something to look out for? So that they can accomplish their goal?
Beate Chelette 36:20
Yeah, I mean, the first thing, I probably would say don’t don’t sit there with a pen and just start writing. Okay, it’s good. You know, like, like, with a business, you have to have a plan. And it has to be a story that’s being led somewhere, and there has to be something in it. That makes it valuable. For other people, that will be my second piece of advice. A lot of the times when I see new authors they go, I eyes becomes the I fest, right? And everything that we do as entrepreneurs really needs to be as into, here’s the story. And here’s how it relates to you, and why this is a benefit for you. And what what you can take away from that. And find, find a good editor, who will tell you, when you’re off the reservation, when you’re off the charts when you’re in the deep end when you’re falling off the cliff, because it’s so easy to go down the rabbit hole and forget the biggest thought of the book.
Tyler Martin 37:16
Yeah, absolutely. So I want to transition into what you’re doing. Now you call yourself growth architect, it’s clear, you have a ton of wisdom, both learning experiences, as well as great successes. Let’s talk about the five star success blueprint. That’s one of the I don’t know if it’s a product line or service and how you approach your growth architect services. Can you tell us a little bit about that? What is it?
Beate Chelette 37:38
Yeah, happy to take you through it. So the idea of the five star success Blueprint was born, because everybody always asked me the same thing. Like I’ve done this, but what do I do now? I wish somebody could tell me what the next step is. Like, what what comes next? What comes next is always been a question what comes next, right? Or people have a number of things that they’ve done, then they’re not sure if they miss something or not. And it’s like, Am I missing something? And so I looked at it. And I said, this is so easy, I can give you the whole blueprint. And so I sat down one day, and I just wrote it out. And because I do this everyday, all day, and I’ve done this 10s of 1000s of times. I’m surprised not everybody knows about this. So the five star success blueprint has five stars. So the first one is the idea. You always have to start with the idea and flesh that out. What is it? Why is it unique? What is the unique value proposition? Why are you the right person to do it, and who would want to buy this product or service. And I want to just make a mental note here for us to talk about this, Tyler, because I’m giving away to your audience, one piece of this foundational piece complements to your audience. So let’s make sure we go back to that. The second piece is the offer. So once you know what it is who it is for why it is so special, why anybody wants to buy it. Now you can design the product, and only now can you design the product or the service because you know what people are looking for what they want. And then you can engineer it in such a way that it is actually solving the problem of the people that you know that they’re having, because you did the work. The third piece now and only now, are you starting to look at your systems and processes. Because now the question is, how am I going to scale this up? You know, what can I automate? How is this going to get manufactured? How is this going to be offered? How is this all being put together? How do we track it? How do we how do we handle the money and then you get to the fourth star, and that is the team because you have the idea. You have the offer you have the system. Now you need to have the people that are running the show. And only then once you have solved the first pieces with a system do you actually know what kind of people you’re needing it’s not the other way around. And then when you have all of these, then we get to you. Then it’s about how do we turn a business owner into a business leader. Because then very much what you said earlier, you need to manage, and you need to grow and grow, build and scale the business. And you’re going to get out of the weeds into leadership.
Tyler Martin 40:12
So who is your ideal target client? Like? Is it someone? Is there a certain revenue size is a certain size of business in terms of employees? Who are you going to help the most,
Beate Chelette 40:23
I help a lot of consultants right now, I don’t know why it is. So many consultants. At this point, I’ve I’ve worked with brick and mortar, I’ve worked with people that have online stores, internet marketers, anybody really who has a hard time understanding how to set up their business model, and then how to, you know what needs to be done to get that to a certain level, because most business owners have a sine wave in income, right? It goes up and down. I’m sure you see this all the time, Tyler up and down, and up and down, and up and down. And then every time they think they got it figured out, then something else happens in the fall back off. So I help fix that. So good avatar. For me, my ideal client is really someone who’s already done other programs and invested and has a lot of the pieces ready, but it’s not connecting. And they are still not clear how to talk about what they do, and how they solve it quickly and concisely because my skill set as a growth architect. And the way my brain works is when I hear it, I cannot help myself. But in my head, it already formulates the whole system and it just spits it out 1-234-567-8910 I think I’m the only person Tyler who has a system on how to build systems.
Tyler Martin 41:47
A checklist for checklists. That’s awesome.
Beate Chelette 41:51
I swear to you, my best selling program right now is called this system builder formula and how I help other people to build their system with my system.
Tyler Martin 41:59
That’s a great guy. I mean, that’s the found that’s why you’ve had so much success, is you’re able to visually see that now you can help people Yes, bring that together. Because frankly, that I think a lot of people have all these, you said it so well. They have pieces, and they just don’t know how to bring it all together. And you know, they get two steps forward, and then four steps back, and then one step forward, and three steps back. And then maybe they get back to the original point, but it’s just that constant tug of war. And it can be frustrating. So that that’s really cool. I want to segue to a couple fun questions. Would you be open to sharing a book that you’re reading right now or one that you’ve read recently that you could share with us?
Beate Chelette 42:33
I actually am reading right now thinking Grow Rich, random Polian Hill Yes.
Tyler Martin 42:38
Is this for the first time? Or have you read it in the past?
Beate Chelette 42:40
No, I’ve read it before. But you know, when when COVID came true story, I got pretty angry, very angry. You know, here I am. I’m speaking everywhere about women leadership. And you know, finally, my dream of the women’s code is all coming together. And then it’s like a hard stop. And I lost everything. Again, for the how many time in my life. In business. I mean, not my investments, you know, even though my investments took a pretty hard hit at the time, too. But I’m like, okay, dear God, hello. I mean, can I ever, like just go on a nice cruiser and just cruise along? I mean, I don’t think that’s possible. So I was really angry. And I had to figure out how to get rid of this anger and this frustration, because I knew it wasn’t going to get me where I needed to go. And so I sat down. And I had to be really, really, really honest with myself. And you know where I’m going with this, right? Yeah, where you go, is what I’m doing working right. Now. If it was that good. Would it have fallen apart the way it did? Ouch. No, it wouldn’t. But it did. I know plenty of businesses that sword in COVID.
Tyler Martin 43:55
Yep. Yeah. That definitely benefited.
Beate Chelette 43:58
I didn’t. So I had to sit down and say, okay, so clearly, I have a different path that I need to figure out. And being angry is certainly not going to help you find it. So I went into my mindset piece, and invested many 1000s of dollars into a mindset program to really help me to get that straight in my head. And to get clear on what it is that I do better than anyone else. I went back in my own five star success blueprint to my number one item. What is the idea? Why am I doing it? What do I better than anyone else? And who needs it? And that’s where I started and then I had to do it all over again. And now business is off the charts.
Tyler Martin 44:47
It’s amazing. So thinking grow rich, it’s feeding your sounds like you’re feeding your mind. You’re trying to really just stay the course with like an abundance mindset, I think, is probably the direction you’re going. And you know, it’s funny, I have a Some friends and colleagues and myself, you and we have a set of books that we tend the ones we like we tend to read every year as a way to kind of reset our minds in terms of thinking. So that’s really cool. That’s an all time great one. Hey, what do we what do we have in store for you professionally? Is there another book in store for you? Or where you going with that?
Beate Chelette 45:17
Yeah, so I definitely want to write the book about the new business code concept that was talking about, and I’ve been working on that. But then COVID came. And that whole idea from a business book for women just got canned. And thank God, I didn’t write that, imagine where that would have been, if that would have been published during COVID, nobody would have cared. So now, there’s two things I’m really passionate about. One is defining what women leadership is. And the other one is to really help other people make an impact with their businesses. And to get them to that point where they make more money than I do, where they’re getting further than I ever went. And then you know, and if you’re listening to this, I want you to listen very carefully. Because the reason people like Thailand me are doing this is for one, and one reason only, is we want to help you to make your impact. So if you hear something, if something resonated, please, please, please subscribe to the podcast, send a note, put it in the review, so that other people can also benefit from this, because it’s always these like little nuggets. You know, like when I had a clubhouse. And this one woman comes in, she says, You don’t know this, but you saved my life. I said, I don’t even know you. She says, Well, back five years ago, when I was in a corporate setting, she tells me the whole store. And it was something that I had said on a webinar that made her make the changes she needed to make to get where she is today. And she’s never forgotten. So I bet Taylor, you take this as seriously as I do, right?
Tyler Martin 46:57
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And you have such a gift. You know, I’ve doing research learning about you, you have such a gift for educating you the way you articulate your topics, and you kind of share things, you have just a great, great, natural gift for educating in an easy to understand way. So I can, I can see how you, you gave me the chills when you said it’s about helping people because we do have an opportunity. And that’s kind of one of my things, too, is it’s awesome to see your clients actually grow bigger than you. I mean, that’s like to me, that’s the badge of honor. So I get you loud and clear. Hey, do you have one thing for us before we wrap up here, and I can’t thank you enough for all the time you spent with us a tip for our personal or business life that we could apply? And just hopefully make us better?
Beate Chelette 47:40
Yes. And my advisors fail faster. I love it. And I compare this to when you have a GPS, and it’s outdated. And you get to a dead end. Would you get out of the car, throw yourself on the ground and throw a temper tantrum? No, you would not. You would go, Oh, geez, bad information. You get back in your car, and you turn around you find another way. You need to look at failure the exact same way. That is some wonderful, universal trick to show you a person or a thing with a stop sign says don’t go here. This is no good. Instead of throwing every time this happens, a temper tantrum on why this is happening to me. And just turn around and find another way, fail fast.
Tyler Martin 48:27
I love that. That’s gold. I feel like the universe is speaking to me. I think in the last two weeks, at least five people have used that term fail fast. So I feel like someone’s trying to tell me something. Maybe Maybe I’m not moving fast enough on Sunday, but that That’s gold. So hey, we’ll send in the notes. We’ll send guests to air tight avatar.com airtight avatar.com You had also mentioned I think that that was it. But you made a comment when you were talking about the ideas that you were going to give away the first foundational piece is that it had airtight avatar.
Beate Chelette 49:00
Yes. So in the airtight avatar when I talked about in the first part of this five star success blueprint is the idea. And the idea needs an airtight avatar, the person you’re selling it to or the people you’re selling into if it’s more than one group. And so I created this whole guide with checklists and things to fill in and within 30 to 45 minutes you’ll have an avatar you know who you’re selling to I’ve taken all the guesswork out and made it really easy because I want to be the excuse Eradicator
Tyler Martin 49:33
that’s awesome. So other than that I’ve some of your other social media sites I’ll put in the show notes that think Tyler calm is there any other place you’d like the audience to reach out to you if they want to talk with you and just give give you your your thoughts? Excuse me?
Beate Chelette 49:46
Yeah, just send me an email at BC at pr digital ad.com and I love to hear from you. I you know I always do events and things and have groups and stuff I want to hear from you. I want to help you and if If you have an AHA share it so we know that we are doing the right thing. And that was one of my requirements. After I sold my business. I had a conversation with God. And I said, if I’m going to step into this one more time, I want a thank you note every single day.
Tyler Martin 50:14
That’s awesome. So you are an absolute amazing person talk with I these are one of the reasons that I do spend time doing this show is getting to talk with someone like you I walk away all fired up. And I feel like I’ve been infused with knowledge. So I can’t thank you enough. And I hope if you do have another book or something happens in your life, I’d love for you to come back on and we could chat again.
Beate Chelette 50:34
It’ll be my pleasure. And thank you so much Tyler for what you are doing because you also incredibly wonderful to share your knowledge with the world. Thank you so much.
Tyler Martin 50:44
Thank you have a great one.
That’s all for this episode of Think business with Tyler. But we have plenty more resources to help you in your pursuit of business excellence on our website at think tyler.com If you’d like to be featured in a future episode of the show, feel free to reach out to us on social media at think underscore Tyler, we look forward to helping you think life think success and think business