Changing Your Business Model in Uncertain Times
Let me start by saying that I would never put myself in a position to actually give business advice except for the fact that I actually do lead a business.
For the most part, I don’t feel qualified to be a leader so I’m more comfortable making excuses for not knowing exactly what to do however God did choose me to lead this organization and at some point, I ran out of excuses and had to get my act together.
So with that said, I do have some advice on changing your business model in uncertain times.
We host events (to prevent child sex trafficking) and so naturally, we had to change our business model.
We had three major events on the calendar for this past spring that had to be canceled which was heartbreaking yet at the same time, we all had peace on what God was doing with beLydia.
Let me back up to say that I love to set goals. I’ve talked about it on the blog before and even shared a few months of goal setting and then couldn’t keep it up. I don’t believe that I was being obedient by not continuing to share. I’m pretty sure I was supposed to keep sharing but I chickened out.
Why? I think it’s part insecurity on sharing something so personal, part fear in putting goals out there and then part shame when I can’t fulfill them.
All of that to say that I actually do like setting goals but it’s much more difficult to actually share your goals with a public audience.
Some of our “someday” goals that we had set back in 2017 are now coming into play. Back then, we talked about transitioning and putting together more communities online and now we are doing that because of COVID19.
Even if we get to a place where we can meet with people in person, I can’t imagine it will be the same? I don’t even know. Right now that feels like a long way away.
Back in March when the reality of this set in and we realized that our life and business is going to look a lot different in the near future, we had a choice to do nothing and wait for it to return to normal (when?!) or take a week to pray for clarity and then move forward from whatever God puts on our hearts (which could have been to do nothing).
He was SO CLEAR on what we need to do.
He took things that He had placed on our hearts years ago and put them front and center.
One example, our new website. Chie Carrol, a web designer that I worked with years ago when I was a health coach, approached me about trying out WIX.
We had just (a few months ago) had a company create a new homepage (which sets the tone for the entire website) for us so I had to really pray about that. It made no sense except for a few things:
I knew Chie would do an amazing job and none of us loved our new homepage. While it was more professional, it definitely didn’t capture our vibe. It wasn’t beautiful and we are so passionate about things being beautiful.
We’re grateful for their hard work but it didn’t feel like us.
So, out of nowhere Chie approaches me near the end of February and makes us this incredible offer to redo our homepage for free and move us from Wordpress to Wix.
The free part is what made us really have to pray about it because it was clearly a gift and she only offered that because the Lord put it on her heart.
So we said "Yes!"
But then I needed to create the other pages which at the time didn’t seem like that much work but OY.
Since the end of March, I have worked incredibly hard on this new website and then added a new website for teens called Open Heart Girls.
Anyway, it was a lot of work for Chie to create the new homepage and for me to create the rest but what I didn't know at the time we agreed to the new website back in February, was how much we would need it moving forward in this new direction. God knew though!
That was yet another sign of confirmation for us--we were supposed to change direction and He started that ball rolling before things shut down.
Let me say that even when God starts the ball rolling, it's still a lot of work. I have never been so busy trying to swing our entire business model in a new direction.
You know when you’re on a swing and you’ve just sat down and the swing is still? There’s no movement. No momentum.
You’re starting from scratch, kicking your legs out straight, pulling your feet under your knees, leaning backward, pushing your arms out, and then pulling them back in. It is a lot of work to get any movement, right? You just keep doing it though, you keep pushing and pulling and working towards that goal of swinging. It’s going to be easier but now it’s work.
That’s where we are now. We are working to get to a place where it’s not as much work.
Last year we worked so hard to lay a strong foundation and in the first part of this year, we enjoyed the fruit of that labor. We spoke to more audiences than we had in the past. We felt like our business was swinging in the right direction. We had momentum.
And then our swing was taken down.
But God quickly put up a better swing. I say better because of His promises. We know He is for us, not against us and His ways are always better.