How to Run a Business Without Working 24/7 – Valerie Hayes
Wondering how to run your business without overburdening yourself and working 24/7? You’re going to want to hear what our guest has to say.
Meet Valerie Hayes. Valerie is a Fractional COO, EOS Integrator, and Entrepreneur, helping business owners run their day-to-day operations and implement their strategic vision. She is passionate about helping entrepreneurs, small business owners, and CEOs position their businesses as industry leaders without overburdening themselves. Thanks to her extensive background as a business owner, human resources professional in Fortune 500 companies, and coach/mentor for high achievers, Valerie knows the ins and outs of running a business.
She believes that running your own business can be easy and simple when you know how to do it effectively. That’s why she’s now committed to sharing actionable insights on structuring and scaling businesses.
In this episode of the Think Business with Tyler podcast, we talk about the role of a fractional COO, how it can provide balance to busy entrepreneurs, the importance of processes, and why business owners need to constantly evolve and grow.
If you want to hear a down-to-earth approach to business operations, make sure you tune into this episode to hear what Valerie has to say.
💡 Name: Valerie Hayes
💡 What she does: She’s a Fractional COO, EOS Integrator, and Entrepreneur.
💡 Noteworthy: Valerie has a rich background as a business owner, human resources professional in Fortune 500 companies, and coach/mentor for high achievers.
💡 Key Quote: “Other than being a parent, running your own business is the biggest personal development challenge you’ll ever have. And if you want your business to grow you as a person, you as an individual, you as a leader, you’re going to have to grow too.”
💡 Where to find Valerie: LinkedIn
What is a fractional COO, and how can it improve your business? A fractional COO is a C-suite leadership role that can bring fresh perspectives to the table and return balance to your business. To put it simply, a fractional COO is a part-time and outsourced COO who can significantly improve your business and take the weight off your shoulders.
Valerie explains, “When you’re growing a business, no matter how quickly you want to grow, no matter how smart you are, and how much studying you do, and you just really give it your all, there’s a lot of trial and error that happens there. And so when you hire a fractional COO, it’s like you’re hiring speed. […] So fractional executive leader can grow your business faster than you could do it on your own and still make it really cost-effective for you as a small business owner.”
Hire people who are better than you. More often than not, entrepreneurs hire inexperienced and coachable people to help them with running their businesses. However, this is not always a good idea, especially when you’re busy with other important tasks. According to Valerie, you should hire people who require little to no training. She says,
“The thing that I encourage entrepreneurs and business owners to do is when you’re hiring something for one of your functional areas, let’s just pretend it’s sales, or maybe even customer service, when you’re hiring somebody for that area, you need to hire someone who’s better than you at that area, so you don’t have to train them.”
Processes are there to make your job easier. Business processes and systems get a bad rep for being boring and complex. But if you think about it, processes are there to make your life simpler and easier. Valerie explains, “Processes are really just an agreed-upon system of behavior to achieve a task. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be written. It just has to be agreed upon. This is how we do it. This goes from person one to person two to person three, and this is what they do.”
If you want your business to grow, you need to grow. Being an entrepreneur is a constant journey of self-discovery and self-development. When you feel stuck, it means you have more room to grow. It’s important to be curious and always strive for excellence, and your business will follow. Valerie explains,
“Other than being a parent. running your own business is the biggest personal development challenge you’ll ever have. And if you want your business to grow you as a person, you as an individual, you as a leader, you’re going to have to grow too because your company cannot grow faster than you do. It’s just not possible. And so you should always be curious, always should be learning, always trying to raise your personal bar of excellence, and then your business will naturally follow.”
“In conjunction with that wonderful media exposure, though, I also adopted a different marketing strategy than most of the coaches and consultants in my niche. Most of them were just relying on word of mouth, which is great, but at a certain point, you run out of people you know or who know you. So I started email marketing in 2008, I started doing an email newsletter, I started on social media so that I could really expand my network. So when people were thinking about someone, they had already seen or heard about me.”
“There are many people out there that contribute to that stereotype that if we’re talking about scaling your business, we’re talking about sales and marketing. But that’s not really the case. What you need to do to scale your business is have the foundation in place first because if you just focus on sales and marketing, you can get to a certain point, but then you’re going to plateau because you’re no longer able to deliver beyond what you’re selling at.”
“People are ignoring the 20% of their business that actually has 80% of the impact. I know that people tend to think of it the other way around but how you run your business is what creates your business. It’s not sales and marketing. You can’t just if you can’t deliver on what you’re selling, no matter how many sales you have, you’re still going to go under because you can’t deliver on it.”
“Salary is typically your biggest investment, the largest line item in your budget, and we need to stop thinking of it as an expense and think of it as an asset. You’re purchasing an asset that is helping you deliver your product or service.”
“Entrepreneurs sometimes enjoy being the star of the show. And so we have a little ego moment in that we hire B players or maybe even C players because we always want to be the only A player in the room. And that’s why I try to encourage people to hire someone better than you in each functional area because that’s how you’ll make your business an A player, which is what they really want.”
“When you have issues across your organization, not just specific to one functional area, where the areas aren’t working together, things aren’t passing, the workflow is not good. When you’re feeling that across the area of the organization and you’re thinking in your head, ‘Oh, I think I need a project manager or a Director of Operations.’ No, you need a fractional COO.”