Run Business in 3 Month Increments

Run Business in 3-Month Increments // Businesses are run in 3-month increments. Any long term contracts should have a 3-month reassessment clause. When you look at your financials, you should consider things with a 3-month window. When you hire someone, you should consider it a 90 day trial. This video is a clip from a recent coaching call I had with my friend, the super talented designer, Jade Warrington based in London.

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Will a Robot Take Your Design Job?

Will Robots Take Your Design Job? Michael Janda and Cassi Nicole // Low cost design solutions, pre-made templates, downloadable themes, Wix, Squarespace, oh my! There are a lot of ways for clients to solve their design needs for cheap. To combat this, there are two options for designers to retain validity in the future. First, they can master these low cost services and off low cost solutions to their clients by leveraging the quick to create, pre-made solutions. Or second, and my preferred choice, designers can look to expand their services to solve bigger client problems including brand strategy, marketing strategy, and business strategy. By building strategic expertise beyond just the design, you create a scenario where you are no longer an apples to apples comparison with a lower cost solution.

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The Motherland of Value

The Motherland of Value with Michael Janda and Cassi Nicole // Clients often come to a creative person to help solve an assumed problem in their business. They want a new website, more sales, a new brand. But is that their real problem? Every designer’s goal should be to grow into a consultant role, as opposed to an order-taker. A consultant helps the client see and understand the problems in their business, and then provides strategies and tactics to help the client solve them.

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Your client is trying to hire you to solve X problem but is that their REAL problem? Is that their only problem? Building your ability to see the REAL problems of a business, and create a plan to solve them, is how you can dramatically increase the value you provide to your clients…and consequently increase the amount of money you can charge for your services. Want to make more money? Learn to see and solve the big problems of a business.

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Getting Started on Social Media

Getting Started on Social Media with Michael Janda with Arcui Usoara // Many people feel like they have to have their whole strategy figured out before they start a social media campaign. On the contrary, you just need to get started. Start sharing. Don’t worry about engagement. Don’t worry about followers. Just start sharing content that is valuable to you and you will inevitably find people who feel it is valuable to them. Your first posts will be your worst posts ever. Start anyway. What are you waiting for? Start building your audience!

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You Need a Rush Free Clause

You Need a Rush Fee Clause. Michael Janda with G’day Frank // Whether you use it or not, your contract should include a “rush fee clause.” A rush fee clause will empower you to push back on a client who has an unnecessary rush project…or to charge more money if the rush project requires you to drop everything, cancel your plans, and execute on their work.

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Retainers and Buckets of Hours

Retainers and Buckets of Hours // Traditional retainers are difficult to manage and require the right type of client if they are going to work. An alternative solution for clients who want a discounted rate by providing you with guaranteed work is to engage in a “bucket of hours” relationship. In this relationship, a client will pre-purchase a block of hours from you that can be used over a set period of time (3, 6, 12 months). Whereas a retainer is traditional a monthly amount of hours with a certain amount that can be rolled over the following month (often creating an accounting and production scheduling nightmare).

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Managing Stress & Worry

Managing Stress & Worry // This simple technique has helped me one million times during my creative career. It is easy to get burdened with stress and worry. Clients are frustrated. Deadlines are looming. Employees haven’t fulfilled assignments. Cashflow is tight. All of these worries can pile up and create an enormous amount of stress and worry. In the book, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie shares a simple technique that has helped me throughout my career. First, write down all of the things that are causing you stress and worry. Second, come to terms with “what is the worst thing that can happen” if these things don’t get resolved. This technique has helped me see things in a new light and reduce my stress. This video is a clip from a recent coaching call I had with my friend, the super talented designer, Jade Warrington based in London.

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Line-Item Price Breakdowns

Line-item Price Breakdowns. Michael Janda with G’Day Frank // Giving you client a proposal with line-items broken down by deliverable is giving them a menu of items they can pick apart to reduce the price to a budget they are comfortable with. But giving them line-items broken down based on project phases protects the scope.

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