Hello my friends. I have a special episode for you. Today, I am interviewing my coach, multi eight-figure earner Stephanie Anne Hughson. A lot of you guys might know her on Instagram and on social media as ItsXOGingy. She is known for building her coaching company her way. When I say her way, I mean guys, she is just having fun. She is contradicting herself. She is pivoting all over the place. She is doing big things, and it’s working. It’s showing.
So today we’re going to talk to you about the importance of brand. We’re going to talk to you about the way that we use coaching containers. We’re going to talk to you about how she started as a fitness coach and what led her to become a very successful business coach and all of the ups and downs that she went through along the way.
But before I get to that episode, that brings me to this. Guys, if you are a coach out there, I want to talk directly to you. My business didn’t explode just out of magic poofy fairy dust, right. I had a successful business before I built the coaching business. I understood business. I understood the foundations that needed to be in place.
So I don’t necessarily think someone with zero business knowledge can have the type of growth that I had in the beginning. I don’t think that you can just throw together a coaching business, watch clients pour in unless you have it set up correctly. You have to know how to get your legal documents in order, create contracts. You need to know how to market yourself, how to become seen as an expert, how to charge properly, how to build out your offers, right?
That’s why my team and I created the Zero to Coach certification course. Not to teach you how to coach but to teach you how to build a successful coaching business. Because there’s too many coaches out there that are taking too long to make big money and have big impact. The coaching industry is a fucking booming industry, and you will get your slice when your business is set up correctly, and you are infused with the foundational business knowledge. Okay.
When you take Zero to Coach certification, you’re going to have clients before the 12 weeks is even over. You will have an unwavering understanding of exactly who you help, how to become in demand, and how to grow after every level. Zero to Coach is 12 weeks long. This is for coaches who have made less than $50,000 in one year in their coaching business. You will receive a Hell Yes certification and a certification badge once you graduate. You can use the little badge on your website, on your marketing because you will be a certified coach with clients.
Guys, this is the final time that we are running this course at $6,000. It is grossly underpriced. We haven’t raised the price since we began. So we are doubling the price next round. This is the last time you can get it at $6,000. It will be going up to $12,000.
We are signing up right now until February 26 is the deadline. So save your seat now. You can message us. You can email us at [email protected]. Or, as always, you can hit me up on Instagram @1beccapike. All right, without further ado, this is episode number 143. I am your host Becca Pike, and it is time for your weekly dose of Hell Yes Coaching. Let’s go.
Hey, guys. I’m Becca Pike and welcome to The Hell Yes Entrepreneur podcast, the number one show for entrepreneurs looking to create their first six-figure year. If you’ve got the drive and you know how to hustle but you’re not sure where to channel your energy, we’ve got the answers. Let’s dive into today’s show.
Becca: Hello, Stephanie. I am so excited to have you. How are you?
Stephanie: I’m so happy to be here. I’m like smiling ear to ear right now just because I get to hang out and chat with you.
Becca: Oh my god, this is the best. So I’ve already given an introduction. But will you please just tell my audience who you are and what you do?
Stephanie: I am Stephanie Anne Hughson, otherwise known as XOGingy on Instagram, and I am an eight figure business coach, business mentor.
Becca: And my coach.
Stephanie: And your coach. That should be my bio. I’m Becca.
Becca: Becca Pike’s Coach. I love it. Okay, let’s jump right in because there’s so much juicy goodness to get to. You are an eight figure coach, which very few people are able to say. You became eight-figure, what, in 2023?
Stephanie: Yes. Like lifetime, yes. 2023.
Becca: So I’m going to give my audience a timeframe because we’re talking, you started in 2019 as a coach. You weren’t even a business coach at the time. You were a fitness coach.
Becca: Oh, 2017. Okay. As a fitness coach?
Stephanie: Yes. So like summer, it was like August/September of 2017 as a fitness coach. That was when I started putting out my first offers.
Becca: Okay, and so you are helping people like build muscle, lose weight, just get healthier.
Stephanie: Yeah. So my whole thing at the time was like helping women get into the gym and build muscle, feel strong, like have a workout routine where they’re not just like doing cardio, whatever. I started that by selling $14.99 personalized fitness programs.
Stephanie: Yeah. $14.99. I wish I still had the records of like how many people bought that or how many plans that I did because it was like I did so many. It’s actually it’s wild to think about like, and I was so excited every time someone would buy that. I was like yes. This is working.
Becca: Well, and one of my favorite things about the transition from your fitness journey to your business journey wasn’t because your fitness coaching was doing poorly. You became successful in the fitness industry, correct?
Stephanie: Yeah. So I learned very quickly how to turn what I was doing into a program that was more scalable and sustainable and whatever. So I developed a fitness program that was, it eventually became $1,000 for like a three month program. So I scaled very quickly the fitness side of things to multi six-figures. So 2017, the like the second half I was selling $14.99. Then I came up with some other offers because I didn’t really know what I was doing.
But the next year was 100 and something K year from okay how do I turn this into something more sustainable? How do I actually package this? Then I think from not January to December, but 2017, that summer to 2018, it was almost close to multi six-figures within the first year and a half. That’s just when I really figured out how to create scalable offers.
Because we might talk about this, but I had the audience in front of me. I just needed to figure out the offers and the pricing and make it all come together in a more sustainable way. As soon as I nailed that, it just all took off really quickly.
Becca: Now when you said you had the audience in front of you, you had an Instagram audience at the time.
Becca: Because you fell in love with Instagram pretty early on. You fell in love with the whole culture of it, the posting the photos, just the talking, the connecting, the nurturing. That really took you a far way in your businesses.
Stephanie: Yeah. So I was in university when, I think it was it’s such a silly story, but I just got my first iPhone. At the time, Instagram was, I wasn’t on it yet, but one of my friends was like, “You’re getting an iPhone. Get on Instagram.” At the time, I just associated Instagram with being that’s where people post more of the photography style photos and the landscape, you know what I mean? I was like why would I get on Instagram? Whatever.
But then I got on Instagram. The way that I used it was more of a diary almost for myself So I was really just using it to post my progress photos or what I’m eating or my own motivation. Not really understanding how other people can find you. But through that, my community started to build of oh, these women who are literally interested in my journey because they’re having their own fitness journey to start to follow me.
Then from that it was it turned into not just posting about myself, but posting content that I knew would be valuable for another woman on the same journey as me. So that’s why it was years of nurturing that. So when I realized I can package this and sell this, the people were right there.
Becca: Yeah, it’s not a silly story at all. I think it should be such a big part of your come up story because what it says to me is you didn’t jump on the Instagram bandwagon because everyone was on it, and you thought about it being a moneymaker. You jumped on it because it was fun. You didn’t follow any rules. You were literally using it as a diary. You weren’t listening to Instagram influencers telling you how to build it. You just created it how you felt, and it eventually made you a lot of money, a big audience. That’s a huge part of it.
Stephanie: This piece right here I think is so important because I think that’s a reason, and I know you’re going to ask me about this. My success is the piece around finding the way to genuinely love social media or not even love social media, but the genuine way to post because that genuine connection is what builds the connection with people who want to buy.
Like you were saying, I didn’t just go on Instagram so that I can sell. It was I wanted to genuinely connect and serve and create. There’s something about that, that people feel where it’s this person is doing it because they love it. Now I want to buy from them. Versus how do I get people to buy? What do I say? You know what I mean? So much of this has been I love this, and I’m going to do it because I love it. The byproduct of that is the success versus trying to get this success by trying to love the connection and the social media.
Becca: Yeah. So what made you, what was the main reason you wanted to change from fitness to business coaching?
Stephanie: Good question. I have been, truthfully, I was having a hard time getting excited to continually sell my fitness program. That was a big piece. At the time, I didn’t know why. I was like why do I not want to launch this again? Why do I, whatever?
I think in hindsight, I’m learning now that I was speaking to the wrong people. Because eventually, I was just hearing, I can’t afford that. I’m not going to pay that. I was like okay, whatever. But I realized through that year and a half, being so good building the fitness side that I had a love for social media. I knew that before.
But from the year and a half plus, creating content and selling and not being successful, I wanted to spend my time teaching that. I wanted to spend my. That was just a natural progression of this is just what I want to teach now. It was the easiest transition, I think, because it was just so natural. It was like I’m done with this. I want to do this. It didn’t even feel I needed a warm up phase.
Some people followed me when I was still only selling fitness. But they followed me not for fitness, but for oh, how is Steph doing what she’s doing? So I think when I officially came out with different offers, more business related, it works so quickly because a lot of people just happened to be following me for watching how I was building my fitness business. When it became an opportunity to actually learn how, it worked.
Becca: You’ve always been willing to publicly contradict yourself. You’ve been willing to say, “Yes, I was fitness. Now I’m business.” Or, “Yes, I used to believe this and now I don’t.” Or, “I used to teach this business topic on social media this way. Now I’ve changed my mind, and I’m teaching it this way.”
I think that there is so much lacking of that in this industry. I have dealt with it myself, but I also have a lot of peers that have dealt with well, I have a whole program on this. I’m kind of known for this, but I don’t believe it anymore. But I’m going to keep teaching it just because I don’t want to go through the uncomfort and telling people that I changed my mind. Can you speak on that a little bit?
Stephanie: Yes. I mean so I had this conversation with a client yesterday. I told her I was, because she was battling something of wanting to do something a very different way than how she’d done it. She’s like, “Is this going to be out of integrity? I used to claim this. Now if I do this.”
So basically what I’m getting at is I’ve learned through this to try and not claim things. Like oh, I only believe in this, or this is the only way. Because I used to say stuff that because I really felt that. But then what I’ve learned through my journey is if I’m going to constantly be growing and learning and experiencing and doing things, I’m going to then realize that there’s a different way or a better way.
So that’s what gives me the permission to change things and say I once said I wanted this, and now I’m going to do it a different way, and to not feel bad about it. Because one, if I don’t let myself evolve then I’m going to stay stuck. Not only financially but unfulfilled. But two, we’re always getting better, and we’re learning different. It’s like oh, I thought it was one way, and now it’s a different way. It doesn’t make the past way wrong. That’s the other thing. It’s still valuable.
Becca: Yeah, it’s made me really realize in the last few years that if you’re not contradicting yourself, actually, that’s the fishier side of things. If you’re growing as rapidly as you say that you’re growing, and you still believe the same things that you believe to the tee and exactly four years ago, there might be something missing there.
Stephanie: 100%. Where I see people get really trapped is, to your point, the fear of if I change, what are people going to think or whatever? I literally see people do this to themselves, and that’s why they’re stuck financially. Right? It’s they know if they just adjusted something, but God forbid they adjust something because it goes against what they said before even though they now they want it. People get really wrapped up in that. That that’s a disservice to your business. But I think that’s just where you become trapped in your mind, and it just becomes so unfulfilling.
Becca: Well, I think that that’s part of the mental health crisis that we see in online coaches. I don’t say that lightly. I do think that there is a mental health crisis in the coaching, but I don’t think it’s just the coaching industry. I think that it’s working from home, online space. It’s really hard to have a strong in person community in this industry. It’s hard to remember to get outside and get the sun shining, get the heck away from your laptop, and live an actual normal life.
Especially for those of us that are making a lot of money, there is something there that is when you can make a post, and that post instantly makes money. It is hard to pull yourself away from making post after post after post after post after post. Because it’s just endless. So, at some point, I think most of us have this breaking point where we’re like we want our lives back.
But going back to the original point, I think that when you aren’t willing to contradict yourself and you box yourself in, and you create this identity from three years ago. Now you have to live it out, and you have to stick with it, it can weigh so much on people. It’s just worth it to be willing to say what? I’m going a totally different route. I’m unboxing myself. I’m creating the life and the image that I want.
Stephanie: The thing is anytime I do something that is different than what I did in the past, every client is like thank you for doing this. Because it gives them permission of whatever they’re struggling with changing, they’re like oh, I can change my mind too. It’s not even if they agree or not. It’s more of the permission piece.
At the end of the day, speaking to coaches. No matter what it is that you coach on, your clients want to see you model something where it’s like oh, I can be flexible here. I can change my mind here. I can whatever it may be. I can still be successful, and I can still be respected. I can still have that reputation, I think.
To what you’re saying about social media and mental health. It’s like we create these reputations that people follow us for a certain way. I think we get so attached to that of what people think or what people will think if we change or whatever. There’s so much fear and trauma around it because the online space can be brutal sometimes.
But, again, it’s not worth sacrificing your own happiness, your own peace of mind, and your own innovation. Because at the end of the day, I started this to have freedom in how I can live a life and how I can make money. So it’s like if I rob myself of that then what’s the point? I might as well just, you know. So that’s something to remember as well.
Becca: I have that thought all of the time. Because I do think, I look back, and I think of eras that I’ve kind of lost my way. This all started because I wanted to have a lot of free time with my kids. I wanted to raise them out in the country and having tons of just time to grill and walk around our property and walk our dogs and all of the things. If I’m working this hard to create that future, but that future is here. It’s right in front of me. But I’m saying no to it to go get on my laptop then I have missed the mark completely. So hearing you say that.
Stephanie: It’s almost like let me wait until I get to the next level and then I’ll enjoy it, the next thing then I’ll enjoy it. It’s like wait, my original dream was to be here. I’m not even letting myself enjoy here. It’s the moment you let yourself enjoy here is when things can even grow more because you’re actually anchoring in with what you built.
Becca: Yeah, absolutely. I think that I’ve always attempted to keep a strong lifestyle balance with my business. But as you know, and my audience on the podcast knows, when my mom passed away, it was the biggest wakeup call of my life. It was I don’t even know if it was oh my gosh, life is short, or if it’s just I don’t know. Something comes out of the depths of despair that changes you.
It was just the biggest well, I’m not doing anything that I don’t want to do. I am done. It is over. I am only showing up exactly how I want to because I created this business to support my life. Now it is officially time to support my life and nothing else. You got to walk with me through that.
Stephanie: I’ve seen that shift in you. When that happened of just life is now and life is short and do what you want and live how you want. But even in your business recently, we’ve been talking about how you’ve just been claiming things differently. This is the way that I do it. This is the way that I run my business. This is how I show up. This is the way that I coach.
I feel that’s really influenced you, and that change in you has been such a reason for how things have been blowing up in different areas for you lately. It’s just, unfortunately, sometimes it takes things that for us to really realize what life is about. But now it’s like you learn that lesson so quickly, and your life gets to change so greatly because of it.
Becca: Yeah. Thank you. Before we detour from the mental health topic, one last thing is I was so surprised when I came into your world at just how happy you were. How do I want to put this? It’s not that I don’t see the difficulty of building such a large business. I am very aware that you have hard days, and that there are times that you are at the level that your problem solving, it’s very advanced.
But, at the same time, it is very clear that you are having fun, and you are celebrating in ways that I had forgotten to do. It was such a breath of fresh air. One of the things that I took away from it is to normalize lots of money coming in but never normalize lots of money coming in. That’s not your words. That’s my own, but we spend a lot of time normalizing the money that’s coming in.
So yes, we might be used to $50,000, $60,000, $70,000 invoices hitting our inbox, but also when we have a $200 invoice hitting our inbox, we are as happy as we were on day one. That has brought so much more joy into my life.
Stephanie: I love that so much. That’s the other thing because it’s so easy to normalize a new level of success. We want to. That’s what we want. But when it starts to feel we’re bypassing, and we don’t ever do that intentionally, but it can just happen. Then it’s like why have I lost the fun in this? Why am I not excited?
It’s like oh because I’ve normalized this. Now it’s just it’s practicing it in a different level. At the beginning, everything’s so exciting. But then we get used to it, and it’s to make that conscious effort to say I’m going to celebrate the shit out of everything.
Becca: Yeah, I love that. So when you look back on your entire journey of coaching, what was one of the biggest hardships that you had to face? Or you know, what created the grit that you have? What did you go through? Anything that my audience can hear about and take lessons from would be awesome.
Stephanie: I mean, I think the hardest part of my journey was more of just navigating. I was talking about this in a program I’m running right now. Navigating the dynamics of being a coach. What I mean by that is bringing people into your space and really doing life with people in close proximity, especially, and having people come in, and just holding that, but then having people leave.
The whole dynamic of, and not anything is bad or wrong, but just holding space for people and really taking people through a life and business transformation. That’s energetically so much. To do that and have so many clients coming in and out. At the beginning, I think the biggest thing for me was the capacity piece. The capacity of this is a business that’s growing massively financially, which is amazing.
But in the coaching world, it’s not just you make a shit ton of money. It’s you’re also literally holding space for people. You’re holding people’s lives. I think that really, I knew that coming in, obviously, but that really stretched my capacity, my emotional intelligence, my leadership, my communication. To just be able to not just say I want this, but to have it and then hold myself to a higher standard while I’m holding it all. Does that makes sense?
That’s really what stretch me is we often think build an online business, build a coaching business, sign clients, it will be super easy, super fun. It gets to be, but it’s also holding other people’s ups and downs. That’s the truth of it, while you’re going through your own. You need double the level of emotional intelligence to hold your own stuff, hold your client’s stuff, and keep it all together at the same time.
I was even saying yesterday in a training, and I didn’t realize it until I was speaking on this training yesterday that there was a time in my business where I had a mastermind with I think there was 20 people. At the time, I was available seven days a week in the Voxer. It was perfect at the time. But that was where I was stretched the most, emotionally and my capacity, but that was also the year my business, it was my right after a million dollar year. Then it was a $5 million year. So that was a big jump.
I was saying in hindsight, I think it was because I was being so stretched holding that mastermind, that that level of capacity was stretching into all areas of my business. That’s why it grew so much. In hindsight, I had to lead myself through that challenge to be like oh, if I could do this, I can do anything. Or oh, I can do this, I know how to set up more boundaries or whatever going forward, which then scaled my business. But that’s really been the thing to navigate is more of the emotional capacity piece.
Becca: It’s the self-leadership that’s required to be able to hold space for them and you. A lot of people have trouble even self-leading themselves to a million. But here we are, here you are leading yourself to a million or millions and then leading other people to millions as well. It is a lot more than a lot of people think.
I want to touch base on one of the first things you said, which is when clients leave. I think that this should be talked about more normalized more. When clients come to me, anyway, this is my own journey. But when clients come to me and I work with them for years, and we go through the ups and downs.
I’m with them while they’re pregnant, and while they’re having their babies, and while their business is booming, and while their business is going through a pandemic and all of the rollercoaster of emotions, and we are side by side for years. When they graduate from me, there is a mourning period. I mean they are more than friends. It’s like watching your kid go to college. It’s such a feeling.
Stephanie: That’s the thing is especially in close proximity or when you’re talking to someone multiple times a week or every week or almost every day, and then it ends and not even. Because something I say a lot is in life, most relationships end because something bad happened, right? A breakup, or we’re not friends anymore, or whatever.
But in the coaching space, it’s just like we’re done. It’s complete. It’s not like anything is bad or wrong. So even like hold an ending, that it’s there’s nothing wrong, but we’re just complete here with someone that you’ve held and walked through everything with for years or however long. You’re going to miss that person. You’re going to miss that person. You’re going to miss those conversations. That person was a part of your life as much as you are part of their transformation.
I think we know this consciously, but to then feel what it feels is a whole different thing that we often forget we have to hold as coaches. If you can’t hold that, you’re going to let one client or multiple clients leaving the heaviness of that affect how you show up, and then that will affect your business.
This is where I talk about duality. We have to be okay with new clients coming in and clients leaving. That’s just the flow of it at the same time. We get stronger through experience being able to be okay with and hold our emotions as all of these things are happening.
Becca: Yeah, it’s something that every coach that has ever coached from the beginning of coaching time has dealt with. Yeah. So the sooner you can get your mind wrapped around the beauty of someone departing and not it being necessarily sad, or meaning that something’s wrong with you as a coach, or meaning that you didn’t provide enough, or that you couldn’t grow with them enough. Getting rid of all of those thoughts.
The sooner you can get to that point, the better your coaching life is going to be as well. You can’t just carry that with you through the years. What do you think has changed the most about the coaching industry since 2019, or 2017? Sorry.
Stephanie: Whether your audience needs to know this or not, I’m like Becca showed me your questions before we came on. So I was thinking about this since you sent it to me. It’s interesting, because this is my true answer, is sure, some ways that people buy have shifted. Sure, business models have shifted, for sure.
But my true answer is, and we talked about my journey building my business has been based off of genuine connection and building a brand. That, for me, not a lot has changed. For some coaches, a lot has changed because they built a model based in a way that was only trendy, a strategy that was only trendy before that has changed. But I built my model based off a brand.
My whole thing since the beginning is brand equals relationship. When people have relationship, they’ll buy no matter what the strategy is. They’ll buy no matter what the business model looks or the offers look. So it’s just interesting because the industry share has changed, but it also depends on how you’ve built it. Because, for me, I built it from brand since the beginning. So not a lot has really changed.
But for someone who relied on a certain strategy that people aren’t interested in anymore to make sales, and they would have had to have a big pivot. Or a model that was like oh, their business coach taught them this is the only model. They do that model, but then they realized they hate it then they would have had to do a big pivot.
Versus for me, one, it’s been brand, but even my model and my offers, I’m always doing things in a way that’s in alignment for me. I’ll pivot it whether it’s an industry change or not. That’s why I think I’ve had consistent growth as other people maybe haven’t because they’ve been building based off of a cookie cutter approach versus I’ve always built from just how am I going to do this in a way that’s best for me.
So I feel like I’ve always been micro-pivoting. So I built my business through that lens. So I don’t even often see what big changes have been because I’m so laser focused on how I’m doing things.
Becca: So what you’re saying is what hasn’t changed since 2017 is brand is important and being willing to pivot is just as important. Yeah?
Stephanie: Similar to what we’re talking about contradicting yourself, right? I think a lot of people aren’t willing to pivot because they think oh, pivot means what I’m doing is no longer working. They attach that with oh, if something’s not working then something must be wrong with me. People take it very personally.
Versus I’m just kind of like oh, if something’s for whatever reason not working, I’m just like cool. Let’s do it a different way. I try and just not spiral and to making it about me whether it’s my fault or not. It’s just all about constantly changing. That’s why it’s never felt a big overhaul in my business. But if you look at it from 2019 until now, it’s a very different thing, but it’s through just micro-changes on a regular basis.
Becca: Yeah. I think pivoting when things aren’t working is the last case scenario, the very last thing that should be done. Really what the best pivot is is pivoting when it is working, right. So you pivoted when you were already successful. It wasn’t you went to business coaching because you were failing a fitness coaching.
You were with me when I tore down my program that had made hundreds of thousands of dollars. It was working. It had lots of students in it. But I pivoted because it just wasn’t the best work that I could do. Now you see what has happened since I opened into the membership, right? That all, I think, comes from having the courage to pivot when something is working instead of anybody can have the courage to pivot when something’s not working.
Stephanie: Yeah. This is why I say it’s when you have the courage to change when something is working but it doesn’t align, that’s where you’re going to explode. Because something can be, your program was working. It was making you money, but it didn’t feel right. That’s a scary thing to say I could just keep doing it, it would make me money. But if something feels wrong about it, that’s scary because you could be losing what you built.
But that’s also why it’s that level of courage is what gets a greater result because you’re willing to change something even though you don’t need to. That’s where the game just gets so interesting.
Becca: Yeah, I love that. Okay, so I’m going to ask you some different pieces of advice for different levels of business owners and entrepreneurs. So if you were talking to someone who is just starting out, they have made less than $100,000 in the online coaching space, what would your best advice be?
Stephanie: My best advice would be to show up every day on social media like you are the Beyonce of whatever it is that you do. Whether you have the financial results or not, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are loud about whatever it is that you help people with, and you build a platform and a community where you just showcase your brilliance. That’s the only thing you need to do.
That’s what I did at the beginning. I didn’t care about what the business model looked or offers. It was just build the connection, show up every day and give value, over deliver to your people. You don’t need a million followers. You just need those however many people. But you show up and you serve to them, it will grow. It will convert the people right in front of you very quickly. All you need to focus on is service.
Becca: I love that. Okay, so let’s say that they do that. Now they’ve reached the next level, they’re sitting around $100,000, maybe $200,000 a year. What would your advice for them be?
Stephanie: I think at that point, it would be two things. Refining your current business model. So you would look at where’s your money coming from? What are your offers, and what needs to change? That doesn’t need to be a big overhaul. Like we were just saying, it might just be oh, I can streamline this a little bit more.
Or I’m maybe need to increase the price a little bit of close proximity and change up boundaries. Or I’m giving hot seat coaching in this program, but I want to scale this program. We’ve got a dial back. It’s little things that, refining what you currently have, and looking from a practical standpoint and an energy standpoint of where can you increase your capacity? Because if you want more, and you’re not getting more, it needs to be tweaks in your business model and in your energy. That’s boundaries. That’s what I would look at to scale what you currently have.
Then on the other side of things. Like my advice for less than 100K was just show up and build community. But I think at the multi six-figures, it’s like where can you really start to take your brand and your online presence to another level? Right? At the beginning, it can be kind of messy. It can be whatever, and that’s enough. But now it’s like okay, really thinking about what do I want my reputation to be? What do I want to be known for? How am I presenting myself online? Taking that up a notch to increase the visibility and the reputation.
Becca: Yeah, I love that. If you’re new to this idea of building a brand or really thinking about your brand, I think one of the best ways to do it is look at other people that give you a feeling. So if you follow Stephanie, can you look at her and just ask yourself what are the top three feelings I get when I’m on her page? What are the top three feelings I get when I’m on Becca Pike’s page? What are the top three feelings I get when I’m on Elon Musk’s page or Michael Jordan? Everybody has a brand.
The ones that are really good at it, the ones that have built large brands, they have put a lot of forethought into what they want you to feel. Most of them can name the same words that you’re going to name because they chose it before you, right?
So yeah. Okay. So let’s say that they do all that, and now they’re at a million. So they are advanced business owners at this point. They’re in the top 1% of business owners. What’s your advice for them?
Stephanie: So for me, it depends on how you got to the million. For me, it was okay, if I want to scale beyond here, what is this going to look like? Similar to what I said about the category before, look at your current offers and say what needs to change if I want to double next year or three times next year. What needs to change? That’s different for everybody depending on how you built there.
Maybe you need to, maybe you still have a lot of close proximity clients, and you know you should be charging more and have less. That will increase your income, but also give you more space to be more in CEO role to then work on stuff behind the scenes to create more income coming from whether it’s memberships and more scalable programs or passive.
So it’s just looking at, again, what can you clean up and adjust if you really want to double, and that’s usually creating more opportunities for you to have more space to then be working on creating more systems to get more people in your scalable offers. Because at that point, for me, it’s really about volume. Depending on what you want, it’s really about the volume.
Because at a million plus, again depending on the model, you’re probably not looking at I want to take more clients. It’s probably like less people in your world, but you want to serve more at once. Depending on how you want to do that, just adjusting some things.
Becca: Yeah, I think that you can get to 100K pretty dang sloppy, right? No boundaries. You’re just flying all over the place. I don’t think you can get to a million super sloppy. Usually you have your back end pretty cleaned up. To me, once you’re at a million.
Stephanie: Well, I didn’t have a good number until a million.
Becca: Right. But I bet you weren’t sloppy, right?
Stephanie: I don’t know. I don’t know what other people’s behind the scenes looked like. No, it probably wasn’t that sloppy. At that level, when I hit a million, then it was like I know to go beyond here I need support. That was it for me. Most people get the support way earlier. But for me, for whatever reason, I was just able to do it. But I knew to go beyond here, I needed the support and to clean things up.
Becca: For me, I think that once you’re in the million dollar area, it’s a lot of refinement on who you are as a person, not necessarily how your business is. To get to a million, you’ve already cleaned up a lot. But who you are is what has to change.
So if you are the boss that allows your team to miss meetings all the time just because you don’t feel it. Or if you are the leader who is willing to, I don’t know, maybe you drink wine every single night. You wake up slightly hungover every single day. These are the little refinements that you’re okay. If I’m at a million, and I want to go to 10 million, I’m going to have to make these minor tweaks that are going to change massive things for me. So a lot of times, to me, it’s just the self-leadership at that level.
Stephanie: 100%. Because at that level, it’s not just you anymore. It’s like you’ve got team. You’ve got a lot of clients. You want to work on other projects. So it’s like you have to really be the strongest version of yourself to hold it all together. Versus six figures, it’s, like you were saying, you can do it pretty messy. It’s just like you signed some clients here, you make it work, and you can be sloppy.
But it’s really an identity shift at that higher level and saying if I’m going to hold a million dollar, multi-million dollar business, is who I’m being lining up with being able to create that and hold that? Then it just, again, it’s a conscious choice of am I willing to make the changes that I know I need to make to hold and build beyond here?
Becca: Yeah, I love that. Okay, before we go, I want to touch on one more thing, which is client coach relationship. I’m not sure exactly what I want to ask here, but I just want to highlight you and I were having a conversation not too long ago. I was saying, I was kind of joking that I don’t have to talk to you every day. I kind of pop in once a week. We chat about something really deep, I take it with me for two weeks, and I implement it. Then I come back.
We were joking at how little, I quote unquote, need. I’m not necessarily saying that’s the right way to get coached, but it is something that I wanted to highlight today. I wanted to talk about the different ways that you use coaching and the different ways that your own self-leadership shows up in your coaching container. Can you talk on that at all?
Stephanie: Yeah the first thing I want to say is, well, depending on the corner of the social media that you hang out on and the coaching industry online, but sometimes I’ll see content about people saying oh coaches who talk about self-led clients are basically just saying don’t use the container or whatever. I hate that kind of content because it’s so, it’s not representing what’s actually happening.
Becca, you just said, this is what’s happening for you or clients who are the same is you know who you are, and you know what you need. So when you show up to, whether it’s in Vox or on a mastermind call, you know what you need, and you ask for it. You get it and then you’re able to then go implement and apply and not necessarily need to be in the space all the time.
But even if you were in the space all the time, it would be intentional. So I feel the big word here is the intentionality of okay, what do I need? I know what I need. I go get it, and then I go move. Then it’s like then everything’s always moving forward. Then there’s okay, something else came up. Something else came up. Okay, this is what’s happening. This is what I’m doing. This is how I’m progressing.
I think you came into my world with a massive level of self-leadership. So it’s it depends on the kind of client too, where they’re at in their life and in their business, and what kind of self-leadership do they have? This is a whole other conversation of a client who has a low level of self-leadership is going to show up differently in a container versus a client who doesn’t. I can argue that part of coaching is learning how to be more self-led because you’re you don’t know how to use the space, and then you learn how to use the space. I don’t think one is right or wrong. It just depends.
But I think it’s my clients who I have the best relationship with, and not one is better than the other but the more mature kind of relationship, it’s because they’re already mature in their life. They came in, and they hired coaching and mentorship to progress, not to fix them. You know what I mean? They weren’t looking for validation and mentorship. They were looking for growth. They were looking for intentional conversations.
So when you come in with that mindset, that’s how you’re going to show up in the space. But a lot of people come in, and coaching, or whatever, relationships are new to them. They have to work through a lot of oh, I invested in this coach, and I want them to see me. I need the validation. A lot of the value to them is based off of time being used, not necessarily just quality of conversation.
Again, I think people have to go through learning what mentorship is like and working through some of those weird things to then get to a place where it’s like oh, this is how I value it. So I think it’s some people already come in with that intentionality. Some people learn it through being in it. That make sense?
Becca: Yes, I was just having this conversation in my head actually. It was just me. But I was thinking the other day, I think that there was a time in my life where when I got my coach’s ears. I was in front of her and ready to talk to her, it felt, there was this need that I’ve got to make it all worth it. I need to bring up everything in that time. I need to use that time. I’m going to squeeze every drop of juice out of the lemon, right?
It was so spastic and all over the place, and the energy was just off. Then it morphed, and it turned into okay, if I have my coach’s ear, I’m going to talk to her about whatever is coming up for me over the last week. I’m going to do my best to own that space.
Well, now, it’s morphed even further to the point where it’s like I don’t want to say I don’t even have to talk to you. That’s not true. I want to talk to you often, but it’s more I want to pay just to be in your world. I don’t have to talk directly to you. We talk about this, right? This is on social media, but I don’t think it really clicked for me until the last year or so.
I would pay just to be able to listen to you talk the way that you talk in the mastermind just about what’s going on behind the scenes, how you’re feeling about things, how you’re navigating things. Again, this is the importance of long term containers, which is you can’t watch a coach navigate very much in six months. You really can’t.
I mean, this is a three year, four year, five year endeavor where you’re watching someone grow a company over the years. You’re going to see them go through problems. You’re going to see them get sued. You’re going to see them have times where people all leave. You’re going to have them get canceled on social media. You’re going to have the time to really see it. So it’s not about every second that you get and asking every single question you possibly can. It’s about actually having a true mentor.
Stephanie: Yep. You know, I often think this is people will go into mentorship, and I think it’s fine, with an intention of I want to learn this thing, right? I want to learn social media. I want to learn how to sell better. I want to whatever. Like the how. But then people will come into the mentorship, get that, but then realize how valuable all the other things that you were just saying is, and that’s why people will stay.
So what I’ve realized is trying to explain to people the value of just witnessing someone and how they lead themselves. Someone who hasn’t been in coaching will be like oh, yeah, I could see how that’s valuable but that’s not why they’d sign up. They sign up for the how, but they stay once they realize how beneficial all the other things are.
That’s just something I’ve learned in my journey of people come in, usually with a more masculine intention, but they stay when they realize it’s so much more than that. I just learned that I think people need to come in with something more focused, but then they have to learn and see the value for themselves. But we can often only see that once we’re in it.
Becca: Yeah. I love that. Oh, so good. Well this podcast was worth $100,000. Thank you for being here. If my audience loves you, which they will, and they want to find you. They’ve never even heard of you before. Where do they go?
Stephanie: They can go to ItsXOGingy on Instagram. That is the best place to go.
Becca: Yep, ItsXOGingy. That’s where I found you. Which is fun.
Stephanie: Yay. Oh my gosh. Thank you for having me.
Becca: Thank you so much for being here. Have a great rest of your day, and I will talk to you soon.
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