Lessons I Wish I Had Known Before Starting My Business With Business Coach Emily Merrell

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In the 6 years of being an entrepreneur, I’ve learned A LOT. Over the years I’ve learned what type of lifestyle I want, how much money and how to show my expertise. In this episode I’ll guide you through the important lessons I wish I had known before starting my business.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Learn how to take care of your own business! 
  • Whenever you are struggling to become an entrepreneur, look around and take inventory of all the things you are passionate about, because that could turn into a business.
  • The importance of listening to your gut and filtering the noise to what works best for you.
  • Think about what kind of lifestyle you want to have. What is important for you?
  • Think about how much money you want to make, but don’t let that limit you.
  • Take advantage of digital platforms to show your expertise.
  • If you want to get clients, you need to do relationship building, and know where your ideal client hangs out. Relationships are the most important part of your business!

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Sign up for The First Degree Membership! By becoming a member, we’re getting more intimate than ever! Get the Membership now! 

Check our past episodes of The Sixth Degree podcast! Remember to follow us on:

Instagram: @six_degrees_society

Facebook: @sixdegreessociety

Twitter: @six_society

Go back to the homepage.

Emily Merrell  

Welcome to the 60 degree podcast, the podcast where we grill our guests about the things that make them tick and find out how human connection plays a role in their life. I’m your host, Emily Merrill.


Hello, and welcome back to the 60 degree with Emily Merrill, the podcast where we grow our guests about the things that make them tick, find out how human connection plays a role in their life. I’m your host, Emily, and today I’m having this amazing networking connector expert on the podcast, I’m actually having me. So in today’s episode, this is a solo episode, and I’m going to be talking about taking charge. Recently, people have been asking me about my origin story. And when I knew to leap into entrepreneurship, and I want to share a little bit about my experience of when I knew it was the right time, to become an entrepreneur, there’s gonna be a lot of vulnerability in this story. So buckle up, I’m going to tell you the exact truth of how I started my business, in my learnings of taking charge of my business. So when I started as an entrepreneur, I didn’t know I was going to be an entrepreneur, actually started my business completely by accident. I have this need and desire to bring humans together. And I was doing it and I was doing it as, at the time a side hustle, which was a new word that I hadn’t even heard that much of. But it was the idea of connecting people and bringing people together that just needed to be connected. It was super easy for me. So the idea of monetizing it seems crazy. Like why would I monetize something that came so easy. And for me, I’ve really struggled with the idea of charging my friends to attend my events. So my very first event, I actually had my mom handle Venmo payments and accept cash from people. And I was mortified that I was charging my friends $25 for two glasses of wine and cheese, Potter and everything in a beautiful space. But again, I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur. And I always felt like I was undercover at a business, just wondering what I was going to be and what I was going to be hit with that entrepreneurial know how and when I was going to be hit with that idea. I looked at different products that I could create. I kept brainstorming, I had brainstorm, after brainstorm of ideas of my future companies. And it wasn’t until my community really shook me and said, Emily, you are building a business, you just need to pay attention to it, that I was able to take six degrees society and treat it like the business it deserved to be treated us. So I tell you the story because as an entrepreneur, I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur, but I didn’t know what problem I wanted to solve. Yet I created a business before I even knew I had a business there to create. So if you were struggling with becoming an entrepreneur, or knowing what your ideas, look around you, you might have already been leaning into something that you could turn into a business, but you’re not quite sure what that thing is yet. So I think I highly recommend taking inventory of all the things that you’re passionate about and all the things that you do. It could be something as simple as you make the most gorgeous scones, or you make the most incredible crochet blankets. And you just do it for fun because you believe in it. But, but that could be something that could be turned in monetized into a business. On that same note, just because your credit something does not mean it has to become a business. Not everything you’re good at has to be monetized. And not everything that you’re good at has to be business related. So when I started as a business, I think one of the biggest challenges was hearing all the advice from people who already had a business before me. Everyone has advice. Heck, I have advice. Now I’m a business coach. And that’s one of my favorite things is giving people advice. So I want you to think about, you know, the fears that go with starting a business and also listening to your gut, it your best friend might tell you that you need to start this business or people around you might tell you, you have to but you ultimately are the boss in your own life. And you have to listen to your gut and filter out the noise of what works best for you. And I say filter by, by example that everyone will have something to say I’m currently pregnant. Everyone has a piece of advice on motherhood already. They tell me what kind of birth they should do what they shouldn’t do. And it’s very much like the birthing of a business. Everyone has had their own personal experience and they want to share it with you. So it’s important to come up with your own type of filtration system to filter out the noise so you’re not pulled in all these different directions of what you need and have to do. So if you’re thinking of starting a business from the very beginning, think about what kind of lifestyle you want to have. What’s important for you? Do you want to live a lifestyle? Where you are in person with your clients? Or are you thinking you want to be virtual and work with clients? in Sri Lanka or in Argentina? Do you want to have clients that you have to be on phone calls with? Or do you want to have clients where you deliver something to them? And you could work very random hours and deliver at all hours of the day? Do you want to have dedicated days to work? Or do you want to work every day? nine to five. So it’s really the very first step is to think about the lifestyle. And I often think that this step is the last step that people take. So where do you want to live? How do you want to live? Is the pandemic’s had a Sunday thing was the desire to be nomadic in the desire to roam, Van life definitely picked up. So if you want to live in a van, or if you want to live in a place, that’s a little bit more off the grid, you also have to be mindful of connectivity issues, and making sure you’re able to connect when you need to connect. Another thing to consider is how much money you want to make. And this is another mistake I see happening all the time, where people will say, Well, my rents 15 $100, my food is $500. And my utilities are $300. So I need about $3,000 to live. Awesome, that’s great. That’s a great number to know. And it’s super important to know your numbers inside and out of what how much it is to live, or how much you need to live. But also you want to know how much money is coming in. But I say it’s important to also know your numbers in terms of what you want to be making. But thinking bigger, don’t limit yourself by how much money it is to survive. Because you wouldn’t be back in the corporate job. If you wanted to just survive, you’re starting a business See, you can thrive, then you can live the life of your dreams. See my earlier comment about, you know, working three days a week, X number of clients, etc. So let’s say you want to make $10,000 a month. How many clients? Does that have to be? If you only want to work three days a week? What’s your capacity? Is it you’re now taking five clients a day, and you’re taking them at $5,000 program for three months? So you have to do some simple math, I’m not going to do the calculations for you here. But how much money? Will you need to survive your? And how much money will you need to thrive? So just doing that math based on what it looks like with the lifestyle you want to live? Another thing to think about too, is where do these people hang out? I think one of the biggest challenges or frustrations I get is people will look at me and they’re like, but how do you get your clients? What do you mean, you don’t get them on Instagram, and I don’t get mine on Instagram, I love Instagram and I use Instagram. Heck, I have a podcast, I have LinkedIn. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten a client from a podcast before. But my role in both the podcast, LinkedIn, Instagram is to provide value and to give an offer myself to you. So while at night might not necessarily be a place that I monetize. It’s a place where I can, I can really showcase my expertise. And so that’s what I use on those platforms for. But in terms of actually getting those clients, how do I get them, I get them by relationship building. I know you’re gonna be like Emily, but you do networking for a living. I don’t. I’m an introvert, I hate relationship building. I urge you to think about the relationships that you already have existing in your life, who is already in your life that you can look around to who are the super connectors in your life. We all have super connectors, we probably have five that you can think of off the top of your head. Those are those people are those friends that you can be like, Oh, let me ask this person, she probably knows the answer. Or she probably knows that individual. So make a list of those super connectors and let them know what you’re up to. So if you want to start a business, I would get on board with those super connectors. And I would also start nurturing those relationships again with them before your business fully launches. Because the worst thing as someone who is a super connector is to get inundated with messages the moment something goes live and not giving me time to prep and to think about how I want to gracefully and tactfully introduce this person to other individuals. So you want to warm up and nurture those relationships throughout the year even when they’re not, quote unquote activated.


The last question or the last thing to think about in terms of your filtration system is, where do these people hang out? You know, I just told you sure I hang out on Instagram I hang out on LinkedIn, I hang out up podcast I hang out at networking groups. Where does your ideal customer hang out? Do they hang out in Facebook groups? Do they hang out in person? Do they hang out at? Let’s see, where else could they hang up? So many places they could hang out. But the point is, Oh, do they hang out in a certain, you know, BB meetup, like if you’re servicing BB pregnant woman, for example, like you probably want to get in with mama groups. So the point being is you want to go where these people are hanging out. And you don’t want to just wait and be passive and have these people wait and find you. Because the odds of these people just randomly finding you, without you putting in the work to find find them. It’s pretty unlikely. And in terms of relationship building, I’ll give you a quick example of a client. I have one client that it took me three years to book her as a client. And I truly didn’t even know she was going to be a client. She was someone that I just believed in from the day that she quit her corporate job. And I nurtured and I introduced and I hired her. And I just always believed in this person. So when the time came, that she was ready to hire a business coach, she looked around, and she saw me there and I had no expectations I had, I would not have been disappointed if she didn’t hire me. But I was so grateful she did and I was able to work with her and help her grow her business from one area of expertise to another. And from our experience working together so positive, she referred me personally to about five different clients. Because she believed in me. So you know, if you are someone, you always want to leave a relationship on a good note. Because those people are your potential referral partners, even after the time of working together comes to an end. So in conclusion, you know, if you were thinking about taking charge of your life, and you’re thinking about starting a job, or starting your own business, or starting in taking that leap from scratch, make sure to think about my origin story, I had no idea what the heck I was doing. And I didn’t even recognize it was a business because it was so easy. So start with thinking around looking around what is easy in your life, what’s something that you could do, make the choice and commit to starting, I always urge people to mark it down on the calendar, retell some key people that will hold them accountable. Create your own filtration system. But make sure that you think in line of what kind of lifestyle you want to live, what kind of money you want to be making, and start nurturing those relationships now, because at the end of the day, the relationships are probably going to be the most important part of your business. Fun fact 85% of your business will come from people you already know. So tapping that network, before you even go out to a wider network. I’m sure you have existing clients living there. So that is all on today’s episode of the 60 degree. If you liked today’s episode, please give us a like, subscribe and share with a friend and we’ll see you the next time on the sixth degree. Thanks for joining.


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