Question of the Week
Setting Boundaries in Your Business
Happy Friday, all!
This week we dropped another new episode of the Mission Driven Business podcast. I chat with Lauren Klafke, a small business owner, all about supporting other business owners. Lauren’s firm, Willow Creek Financial Services, provides a space for business owners to ask questions and learn more about their financials.
In the episode, Lauren shares how Instagram Reels helps her build her business and conduct market research. She also opens up about how she implemented boundaries to grow her business on her own terms, all while raising a newborn and overseeing a house renovation.
Your mission and your business’s mission don’t have to match.
Lauren defines a mission-driven business as a business that exists for a specific purpose. But the purpose of your business doesn’t have to be the same as your personal reason for running a company.
“What is your mission as the business owner? Is it to retire early? Is it to have more time with your family? Is it to serve everyone? Or is it all three?” Lauren said. “I just think about that.”
That definition is especially true for Lauren, who started her business to spend more time with her husband and son. Before she took the entrepreneurial leap, she worked in the corporate world and realized her career path was incompatible with her ideal lifestyle.
“What powers me to continue to build my business is all the time I am going to have with my family,” Lauren said.
Adjust until your business works for you.
2020 was a rollercoaster year for Lauren. The pandemic kickstarted a year of full-speed business growth — at the same time, she had a newborn, and a house remodel. Suddenly, Lauren had to find ways to schedule calls around construction and newborn sleep times.
“Something was always happening at the same time,” Lauren said. “First world problems, but it was really a struggle.”
In some ways, running a business would have been easier if she hadn’t been building her business from home. So Lauren made an adjustment — hiring a nanny — to give her the time and space to focus on her business. She then set work hours so that she stops working with clients after the nanny leaves.
“It came to this point where I had to realize you have to set boundaries with your clients,” Lauren said. “You can’t always be available, or you’re gonna drive yourself crazy.”
Customer service is important.
Lauren describes herself as a straightforward, type-A person. But her straight-to-the-point answers don’t always go over smoothly with clients and prospective clients. So over time, she realized she had to work on her customer service skills.
“Customer service is such a huge, huge deal,” she said. “You could have the exact same services as somebody else, and customer service would change anybody’s mind.”
Good customer service doesn’t mean saying yes to everything, Lauren said. Instead, it means optimizing how she talks to people on calls and consultations, how she sends emails, and how she engages with clients who text her at inopportune times.
“People want the coddling, and they want the hand-holding,” Lauren said. “So I’ve had to develop that in a way that doesn’t seem condescending.”
Quote of the Week
“You can’t always be available, or you’re gonna drive yourself crazy.”– Lauren Klafke
Task of the Week
Make sure to check out this week’s episode. Additionally, think of three boundaries that you need to set in your business. I’d love to hear what you come up with. You can contact me at the links below.