What I’ve Learned from 28 Years in Business

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I have learned a lot during the 25 years that I owned my marketing communications firm, and during the 3 years I’ve been coaching and consulting with creative business owners.

I learned a lot about my clients, my business, and myself.

About my clients, I learned that:

• Everyone is afraid in one way or another. You may think you’re the only one, but you’re not.

• Most people are hiding. Not hiding “something,” just hiding out. Knowing they need to be visible, but secretly hoping no one will notice them — or a part of them.

• Everyone doubts themselves, whether they admit it or not. Those who admit it move forward faster.

• Creative business owners may talk big, but they don’t really mean it. They often feel small and unsure of themselves.

• Creative business owners are afraid their competitors are smarter, more talented, or know more than they do (and they are probably wrong), and this clouds their judgment. It keeps them from showing their brilliance.

• Creative business owners are passionate about their work, which makes them confident about it. This does not always translate into confidence in selling or defending the work.

“Before working with Marcia, I was feeling a bit lost in my business . . . overwhelmed, overworked, and at times under-valued. I notice I feel this way whenever my life is shifting and I’m going through a stage of growth with my marketing and design firm.

From our very first conversation, I knew I wanted to work with Marcia. She is very strategic, which I really appreciate. In her own client application process, Marcia asks you dozens of questions that get you thinking about your business, your challenges, AND your successes in a way that most of us don’t take the time to do. I have found more than the creative business coach I was looking for; I found a partner and friend.

Thank you, Marcia, for all the guidance and encouragement you’ve given me these last few months. You are truly a gifted coach and mentor.”

–Shá LeBoeuf-Dubois, Elan, Cumberland, RI

About business, I learned that:

• Most of it is common sense. And you know what they say about common sense not being all that common. It’s true.

• There are only 3 things that really matter:

1. Do something you really believe in and can therefore be truly yourself about. This sounds good but is more difficult to put into practice.

2. Find a way to show confidence in your work to those who are looking for precisely what you have to offer, so you don’t have to even think about being salesy or icky. Again, easier to say than to do.

3. Do really really good work every single time. That doesn’t mean you have to beat it to death. Or second guess yourself all the time, which you probably do.

“You’re gentle but powerful, Marcia. I’ve worked with a lot of coaches and a lot of mentors in the past, but what I learned and have gotten from you was something on such a deeper level. It wasn’t like making a business plan, it was like ‘hey, let’s look inside at what you can pull out of you and display so your clients see who you are and the value you bring to them.’”

“Marcia is one of the strongest coaches I’ve ever worked with. I got the most value in such a short period of time — so whatever she’s got, you need to sign up for it. She’s a gifted coach, and has been a force in my life. She may be exactly what you need right now.”

–Lorrie Morgan Ferrero, Red Hot Copy, Los Angeles, CA

And about myself, I learned that:

• I know more than I think I do. Experience was a great teacher, and I worked hard.

• Because I paid attention to how I did things, it makes it easy for me to teach what worked to others. And to point out and avoid what doesn’t work.

• It’s better for me to be myself than to try to mold myself into what a business owner, designer, coach, consultant, or mentor “should” be. That doesn’t work anyway.

• If I listen to people, really listen, I can help. I am good at meeting people where they are and leading, guiding, or pointing them in the right direction. Deep listening is a learned skill. Solutions come with experience.

• If I talk to people from my heart, I can help. I am good at breaking things down and communicating in easy terms. This has to do with understanding and translating, which also begins with listening.

• No one cares about what I say I can do. You want to hear how I say it and see how I do it. Authenticity is important to you.

“I’m more than 100% satisfied with my VIP Intensive Day with you. A lot of underlying problems that were not being able to be discussed were brought to the table. My team has the same frustrations I have, and they don’t know how to fix them, either. They could relate to you — as a friendly, caring woman who listened to them — and who had a lot of solutions. They felt refreshed, they could see I was serious about improving the company.

I didn’t really know what to expect. But you could see where you could help the most and where I could get the most bang for my buck, like you’re Nancy Drew or something! You didn’t know me well, or the company, but you have a method of discovery, with your pre-VIP Day questionnaire and interview — and the time with me, with my staff, doing the follow up — it all worked. My team wanted to feel good, and they did. I’ll be working with you again.”

— Marilyn Trent, Trent Design, Rochester, MI

I wish I had learned it earlier

I wish I had learned these things a lot earlier  than I did – I could have been soooo much more ahead of the game — but I didn’t. I had to learn them on the fly, by the school of hard knocks and the seat of my pants.

If you learn them now, you will be so much more ahead of the game.

How can you learn and actually internalize this stuff, so it becomes second nature, and you really understand your place in all of this and how to use it to your advantage?

Come. Join us at my 3-day Courage, Confidence, & Influence retreat June 10 – 12. We’ve had a cancellation, so there are still 2 spots left.

“What your course gives is a process by which people can identify the elements in themselves that may be holding back their confidence. Each of the steps ties in and it’s wonderful . . . it’s presented in a safe environment where it goes very deep and to the very core of how we operate as business owners and as people.”

–Gillian Zali, The Virtual Path, Torrance, CA

This is a rare opportunity to sit in with an amazing group of values centered, like-minded creative business owners who think just like you do. They’re carving out 3 days to work on their businesses in this safe and supportive environment, so they can make leaps forward in their businesses, gaining confidence and understanding that would otherwise take years to obtain. And, they’ll be making life-long connections, and having fun.

I really hope you can make it. I know it will make a difference in your business and your life. Go here to learn more.


Questions? Email me at info at hoeck dot net






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