Nick Hauser: Welcome everybody. Nick Hauser here. And in today's customer interview, I'm sitting down with that with Kareen Delice-Kercher. First off, Kareen. How are you doing today?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Hey Nick, I'm doing great. How are you?
Nick Hauser: Good, thanks. And so Kareen joined Uplevel Consulting back in September, 2018 and she went from making, you know, around 12 to 17 k per month now depending on the model of their business and has now gone to the point where she's making 15,000, 800 and with more balance and flexibility and our own time scheduling. And it really also more control on her end versus having all the control and the clients. And so she, she found a way to really, uh, change your structure, fill in the gaps of what she was doing to improve the efficiency of our business in general. So we're going to dive into all of that and how she made that transformation. And what are the key things she does, I bought Corinne does, is she helps new entrepreneurs create the structure they need, eliminating the busy work and the guesswork to create a, you know, new and profitable business. So can you touch on that a little bit more to do, um, you know, that's kind of who you help, right? We discussed that. But what's like the current situation maybe that a person's facing when they come to you and want to speak about, you know, maybe working together?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Sure. A lot of people when they want to start a business, you've got really know at what point to start. And I myself back in 2013 when I decided to create my own business, uh, and I explained it, I explained this in my book, waking up from your parents, American dream. I texted a friend and I said, what's the first thing I need to do to have my own business? That's really how I started. Um, I had a lot of gumption and I had some initial failures, but then I found my sea legs and I created a high six figure business from the start. I made a lot of mistakes, but I also learned a lot. And as a result of that, whenever I was speaking somewhere or whenever I was at some event, people would ask me if I would coach them. And crazily enough I said no.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: I said, that's not what I do. I own it. Tech consulting business, the hocks advisers. That's what I do. I gave people advice on the side in an unstructured way. And then eventually with the number of people that I helped, dozens upon, dozens upon dozens of people, I said, I got something here, I should do something about it and create a structure. But I did not want to do people a disservice when I have my very high paying clients. Um, on one side. And then on the other side I would be working with people at a low level. Like what am I able to give them that's going to be substantial enough? That way they have some skin in the game to actually build their own business. And what would also be worth my time, because I can't step as the saying goes over dollars to pick up pennies.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: So I wanted to make sure that I'm offering people substantial help. And because my cell phone at one point I was looking to scale my business and I didn't really know how, and I paid a lot of money to a lot of different folks to kind of help me. And invariably we would get to a point where they said, well, in order for us to help you more, you have to pay more money to go into this other program that we have. And I'm like, wait a minute. I was extremely detailed about my situation and what I wanted to change. And you said you can call me and I came into your program and I'm not really seeing much in terms of substance. So that, that was really disappointing. So, and I noticed that a lot of people were in that same situation because they weren't getting advice from people who had never actually run it business.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: So I'm like, wow, are there any business coaches out there who actually have run a business before? And because of my own experience, I ended up helping a lot of my fellow entrepreneurs or people who wanted to be entrepreneurs along their way in terms of how to talk to people, how to start a conversation, um, with photos, how to find out what clients need. And that's simply, simply guess what people need and want. And you know, that's how I started it started because so many people were coming to me for help on that end. And the asking didn't stop. So I said, okay, let me figure out a way to create a structured program to help folks. But initially what I was looking to do was figure out a better way to structure my tech consulting business. And that's what I came, that's what I came here for. But the out other opportunities just were incessant pretty much. So I decided to go in that direction
Nick Hauser: and what was going on too. Um, can you describe a little about like the services you're offering with your consulting business? And you mentioned that you were trying to find a way to scale, but it was, it was kind of difficult. What were some of the challenges you face there with the way you had your service delivery set up and just the business in general?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yep. So most of my clients were a combination of remote and face to face. So I would travel all over the country, uh, all expenses paid. So I couldn't complain about that. Um, to go to various clients and meet with your people, meet with their directors or vps of engineering and so on and help them, uh, introduced new processes, new efficiencies in the way that their developers, they're engineers, system engineers, project managers, business analysts, and a whole slew of other people in how they can better collaborate and better deliver for the business side of the company. Because, um, you know, the, the bottom line is what drives any company no matter what good intentions you have, if you cannot turn a profit, you don't have a business. So my stock and trade was to understand the development side and to understand the operation side of the business.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And because all my life has not been in pure technology, I was also on the business side and fails. So I knew what the business we're expecting and when they went to the tech side of the company, how they were served or not served very well. And I also knew from the tech perspective how when they go to the business based, sometimes we're not appreciated or they, sometimes we're not able to clearly communicate their message in a way that the business felt comfortable. So they ended up either intimidating people are overwhelming folks and they were not getting traction to do the things that they really wanted to do. So I was always the person who was able to straddle the business side as well as the technical side as well as, you know, get folks out of the logjam that'd be, or in, so, um,
Nick Hauser: well what type of companies were these? Like, how, like what size and can you go to the trouble
Kareen Delice-Kircher: beneath, uh, including the big four? Um, including companies like Fiserv, uh, companies like, uh, Deloitte, um, uh, a lot of, a lot of large companies, a very large automotive company out in the Midwest. Um, I besa and, um, I traveled to many different places. Uh, Boston, uh, Wisconsin, Indiana, uh, Alpharetta, Cetera, um, Miami, um, to clients all over who wanted to create it, that hops practice in their organization. And it's not only the technical piece that was at stake sometimes it was just an ego problem. Sometimes it was just a political problem that was holding the technical solution hostage. And so it, it, it not only require the technical skills but the soft skills as well to get through to that log jam. So that's what I was doing. But the way it was structured or the lack of structure did not really serve me as well as I wanted it to. And I wanted to figure out, well, how do I do that better? How do I walk and Chew Gum? How do I restructure and still make money? That's not something that was very clear to me. And the, the
fundament mental pieces of what Sam teaches helped me figure out how to do that better.
Nick Hauser: And when you were working with them face to face, was it, were you like hands on doing some things like just on your own or where you're working with their team or certain heads of their departments or were you just kind of advising them and they were coming back to you for feedback and such?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: It was all of the above. Sometimes I've had clients that purely paid me for advice. I was not hands on at all. I did absolutely nothing, um, hands on except give them my advice. Some clients I train, uh, some clients I worked with the top level leadership like their c level team and other times, um, I had to roll up my sleeves and say, this is how you do this. So I was um, a hands on engineer, uh, sometimes teaching people how to get things done, how to rollback issues that they experience.
Nick Hauser: I have to, before we, I want to slide into what kind of what you're doing now more so book people have a lot of questions. Sometimes if they want to pursue more of the like classic corporate consulting space, you know, wherever they fit into there. But uh, the sales cycle and how, you know, how they land the clients and such a, there's always a question mark around that for them. Can you explain the kind of process you used for, you know, reaching out to them or you're having a sales discussion with them and how long they would typically take?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Well, um, most times found me because I have a long reputation in the industry, 18 years in the industry. And also, um, I have a lot of connections on linkedin. So people just found me most of the time I didn't have to really prospect many times. But at another point in my life I did have a job where I had to actively prospect for customers. So that is something that a lot of people who are technical have a problem with. They are afraid to approach people. I had the luxury that I did not have to always approach people, but that also had some bounce sides. So, um, for a lot of people they may take on a project for a certain amount of time, but the middlemen in the process don't always tell the truth in terms of what the expectations are. So it's not until you begin to work and begin to see the landscape of things that people really have an understanding of what the project lifecycle is going to be.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And they ended up having a lot of gaps. They have a lot of ups and downs as a result. So that's very typical with a corporate consulting. Um, unless you have a structure that, that creates that pipeline for you, a steady pipeline for you and, and you have that predictability. So that's something which was important to me. Um, I didn't really have much downtime. Um, however, I wanted to have a better flow. I didn't want to be stuck with one or two big clients, like huge clients and, and be dependent on only one or two huge clients. I want it to be able to better structure what I'm offering, streamlining my services, and have a more repeatable process myself as a business owner.
Nick Hauser: Oh. And then initial conversation too. So it sounds like, um, you know, there was a lot of word of mouth your connections on Linkedin, so people were finding you. Um, and there was a need for obviously what you are providing, even whether a, a warmer referral or somebody coming to, you know, how long typically, like who are you speaking with to, to try, you know, close the deal. And did he have to go through multiple decision makers and layers of management? Did that take one week, two weeks? A lot of people, they, they, they go with the expectation that for a, you know, a bigger, like a big four type of firm that they're going to close the deal and like one sales call without ever showing them anything or, um, and everyone I've spoken with that it's probably unrealistic. It's going to take just a little bit longer. Um, so what, what has been your experience with that, that you can maybe share with somebody who's in that spot right now?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes. So actually it depends, and that's a benefit of working with me because I, I've worked with very, very large companies. Um, one of my past clients, they are literally making $235 million each and every single month. So these are not small companies, but I have also had some smaller end clients on the order of, you know, uh, 20 $30 million that'd be, are making per year. Um, those are obviously much smaller company. So in terms of, um, getting contracts, winning projects to work with those folks, there's a different approach that you might be able to make. And um, that's something I help my clients with as well. If the desire to go into a corporate consulting and yes, it does sometimes take a month in the cell cycle, depends on what kind of company it is. It depends sometimes on what industry that they're in. And some are just more, uh, more traditional I would say in their approach in terms of how they bring the consultant and the, the systems that they have to onboard people through, um, to bring you into, into their company, to, to help their departments.
Nick Hauser: And the closest kind of, um, you know, where you were before so we can transition over. What's like one example of like the, um, from your experience, really the, the toughest, like, you know, just most annoying sales cycle with one of these corporate clients just so that people can get idea of what may be the worst thing to expect is, yeah.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes. Um, I actually had one, it was nine months and it took nine months to close that deal because they were, they had three major programs that they were going to be running for a client and um, they had the capabilities they had, they had existence back that couldn't handle two of them, but the third one, they did not have anyone. So that's why they brought on my company. And um, but the client was not ready to start. Things were shifting, um, in terms of their, their management, their senior leadership, their, their internal leadership. All the things were shifting. So it was all like, hey, you know, are you still going to be, you know, are still going to have capacity to take us on when this is ready? And, um, you know, eventually, you know, they said, yes, we're ready. We're ready to sign on the dotted line and we're waiting to, um, you know, sign a contract with you. Um,
Nick Hauser: so a lot of emails, a lot of phone calls here and there and a lot of people you're speaking to to. Yeah. Yeah. And then obviously I would assume, you know, with one of these bigger clients, you send them over a contract and
Kareen Delice-Kircher: yes, yes. Everything proper contract. Um, I have my own standard contract that I follow for clients. I also have, um, with certain ones. I have my attorney review them if I don't feel that there's something in the contract, which is necessarily everything just to me or protective of my intellectual property because, um, as I, as I told you one time before, um, I have, I have a formula that I started nine years ago that I have brought to all my client companies, to my, to my past employers and to all my clients companies over the last five plus years. And, um, so this is something that I protect very dearly and that was important to me to make sure that when I signed a contract with a client, I'm like, look, this is exclusive of this because this is something I created. Um, and the reason that's important is because one time, um, I, I was one of the vendors at a particular company and someone tried to actually not steal my idea but presented as his own, but he was doing that in a meeting that I was not attending.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And then one day I happened to be around and I, I was at the meeting and I heard them, you know, spouting this off. And I'm like, oh, that's interesting. And, but there came a point where I'm the managing partner in that company wanted to know if this could be a guarantee. And they wanted to know how do we know this is going to work this time? Because all along you guys have not been able to deliver at the time that you said you would. And that's when I had an opportunity to pipe up and I said, my name is Korean. Karcher I'm new to the project. Um, this is actually, this is actually something that I have a process. It's my signature process that I have created back in 2010 and I use that same process at Citibank. I brought that same process and then I started dropping the names of the fortune 50 companies where I had brought that process before.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Um, that way they could be sure that this is not something that we pulled out of thin air, that this is a Well Thought Out, well oiled process that I brought to many different high level companies and it works for them and we were going to be able to stand on the promise of, of what was happening. So, um, and that's the kind of thing that I teach my, that I teach people in my program also. Um, like I said, a lot of a lot of business coaches out there, the only know enough to regurgitate what somebody else's code is telling them and some coaching program they haven't had the real life experience to bring to bear and say, here's how you conduct yourself. Here's when to know that you're overselling. And not really, um, making the pitch and then stepping back, um, that, that client engagement, that little dance that you do, they don't know how to do that because they've never had to do with in real life. Um, and also them things that are made in real life, uh, where you put your foot in your mouth and you don't even realize that you're putting your foot in your mouth. Those are things that you would not going to get from some coaching certification program because all you're doing is teaching you material or they train someone to teach the material and that's all they have to offer
Nick Hauser: or has no way to re reenacted or simulate putting your foot in your mouth. And it seems like to you, you know, you have a, a strong confident personality with some short helped and was needed for some of those bigger clients that you're working with you because you have to speak up sometimes when you know somebody else's ceiling for idea or,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: and you can be afraid of your clients and you can't be afraid of competitors. Um, you have to be willing to stand up for what is right. Um, I used to take it personally when clients didn't do what I tell them to do because I'm like, you're paying me a lot of money and you're not doing it what I'm telling you to too. And um, I had to step back and realize that people were dealing with, um, a lot of unspoken fears that even though someone might have a very impressive title, it didn't really matter. That person was dealing with threats in their life, in their career. That all played into the decision about doing what I told them to do, doing what I told what I told them to do with their department. So
Nick Hauser: be them. It might be their ass on the line, right, because they're comfortable and they are, they kind of made it to a point where they're, you know, they just don't want to mess up and then we're going to come in, you're like, hey, we're going to do this new thing. And they're like, Oh, if I sign off on this, then I'm the one who potentially mess it up. If it didn't work and
Kareen Delice-Kircher: yeah, so because I came in, you know, typically you would think I'm, I come in, I come in, I'm a consultant and we wanted to do Xyz. I ended up having to do a lot of coaching actually to deal with issues that people were having in order for us to move forward and actually give them the results that they were looking for. Um, one thing that I became very wise too is that I cannot override the will of another person. And I did not realize I was doing that. It was not, it was not until I had a few experiences like that that I realized I was doing something wrong with their, um, I was basically dictating and not really coaching them to bring them along to make them feel comfortable with what we're about to do. Because I'm like, well, you got me here.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: You know, I'm, you know, don't, you know, I'm an expert. I don't really have to sell myself. Um, but then by having to coach these people to make the right decisions and then letting them understand that, um, I'm recommending this in my best opinion, but then also be respectful of their choice of taking or not taking that advice. And it used to pain me to see a client headed right for the wrong direction and I'm trying to save them and I'm like, oh my God, don't do this. This is really going to blow up in your face. Um, your software's going to suffer as a result of doing this, you know, making this decision. Um, and then I realized, wait a minute, I can give them my best opinion, my best advice. At the end of the day, they have to decide whether or not to accept it. And that was maybe it's not a big thing for other people, but it was a big thing for me. Um, yeah. Well it makes sense now.
Nick Hauser: No ma'am. I would imagine the people that, the kind of people you were working with and probably they were at a, you know, a pretty decent level in their company and that a person who has a stronger personality and they are used to controlling things. So if somebody comes in right away, it just says, here's the way we're going to do it for them. If they want, like want the control and they want the power to make the final say in everything they can to feel like they lost everything. So it's easier for them when you said, hey, here's what we, here's the reasons why I recommend doing this. But still it's still up to you. Like, you know, you're, you're kind of still in control. That's why I don't know if you've ever read that book. It's, um, the 48 laws of power he'd ever read that
Kareen Delice-Kircher: by Robert. Um, I think some of your other
Nick Hauser: green is the first law is like, you know, letting like, letting the people who, I don't remember what the exact line was. It like letting the people who are in, in greater power than you would have some capacity, still feel like they're in power, even if you are doing something right. And that way you gained the power because then they're, they don't feel pressured into making decisions. So they're probably like, hey, you know what, maybe maybe I should consider what she's saying here.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And you know, I did not realize that a lot of people said that to me and I, a lot of people said that I came across as intimidating because I know so much because I would come into some companies and literally on day one, literally on day one, I would come in and find a problem that they had been struggling with for months. And I come in and I diagnose it right away and I'm like, oh, I know what problem you're having. And they're, and they're thinking, well, if he knows this, like what else can she find? Or, you know, so it made them intimidated. And I didn't really believe people when, when, when they told me that my approach was a little bit intimidating to people. Um,
Nick Hauser: as you should be able to come in though way, they're like, if we're talking about pure efficiency, like if you're the owner of a company and somebody going to come in like yourself and helped them, you know, they should want you to just come in and get right to it versus having to like warm up the staff and you know, all the stuff,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: there is some merit to that. Actually, there is some merit to that. And um, I actually ended up winning over a lead, um, um, developer architect over Chi food because I wasn't just some consultant flying in from New Jersey coming to tell them what to do and cashing my big check. Um, I said, hey, you know, like every time I come here I want to, I want to go somewhere for Thai food, but I don't see anything. Um, like before I, before I fly home, um, you know, in a couple of days I'd love to, you know, can anybody recommend some Thai food? And he hoped, overheard, overheard me and he said, you like Thai food? I'm like, yeah. So it turns out I would, Thai food snob. He's a type, was not his favorite Thai food place. And let me tell you after that, there was no recommendation from me that they did not accept because they found out I'm a human being.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: I'm not just here for the money. I'm here to help. I care about the quality of, um, of what I do as well as the quality of your project. Once I'm fun, I'm all of a sudden like all, all the objections that he was getting me, all the obstacles that he was putting up, all the fake objections really he was putting up that was gone because we bonded over Thai food of whole thing. Um, so you know, being, being a human being, um, it counts for a lot. You can't just look at someone's title and assume that they're not going to be intimidated because here I am coming in, I have my own business. You know, I may go from one client to the next to the cook to the next. They have to stay there. That's where they're intending to stay for the duration of their kid.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Getting through college, for example. So for them, they don't want to mess up and I don't want them to mess up. I want to make my clients look good, but just coming in the door like that, they didn't really know that. So I had to take a certain approach, um, to my clients to really show them that I care. And those are things that I, that I teach my constant, my program. Also, how do you approach people in a way that they know you'd give to them? That you're not just here to just, you know, a transaction, but you're really here to make an impact in someone's business. You're really there to make a difference. That you respect them. That even though they may have made some mistakes in the past, you're here now to save the day and you're able to make that difference.
Nick Hauser: Yeah. Let's transition over now to, to what you're doing, how you help people. Oh, wasn't it? What's an example of that? Of like, you know, you're working with one of your clients and teaching them how to really communicate more efficiently with, with somebody.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes. So one thing that I teach people how to do is when somebody asks a question, don't jump to take to give the first answer that comes to your mind. Take some time to consider.
Nick Hauser: Okay,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: why are asking that question? Is that the real question? Is that the best way they could think of articulating the question or did they just throw it out there? Um, really try to help someone formulate it better questions so that they can get the best answer possible. The kind of answer that's actually going to get them moving. So for example, I have one of my clients who is a fitness, um, uh, he owns a fitness coaching business and I said, well, don't ask people what their fitness goals are. If you're not an athlete, you may not necessarily have fitness goals, but people have health goals. They want to be able to make it to their daughter's wedding. They want to be able to, um, retire and travel to every continent. They may have seen an older relative pass away from a disease that could have been better controlled with exercise.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Talk about those things. Everybody's coming at them full frontal. Every other, um, a health coach out there is coming at them full frontal saying, oh, you need to do, you know, 50 plants in the morning and 20 push ups in the evening. I'm like, everybody does that. Don't do that. Find a different way to present yourself to the marketplace. And this is precisely what I do in my tech consulting business. I put myself at the crossroads of something and filling a gap that is often not filled and often not feel very well because people wait until your client figures out that there's more work to be done. Then the client initially thought there was to be done and then say, oh, by the way, yes I can help you and it's gonna cost you x more. Um, whereas I always took the approach of really educating my clients and saying, you think you only need steps one and two.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: There are actually three other steps that you need in order to have something substantial. Something that's not going to fall apart is if you only have one and two, it's going to fall apart. Here's what else do you need? Do you also want to do those things that when my clients can make an educated decision as to what they want, they're still in control of the ship, but at least mad. They're not making an uninformed decision. So I teach the same thing to my, to my folks. Um, how are your potential customers being served now? How are they being underserved? And you come in and fill that gap. No, no company can be everything to every client. Just like, I'm not everything to my clients, but what I do know how to do is to create a proper business that I can be proud to have my name next to in public on Linkedin, on social media, wherever I go, um, in, in my daily life. And I want the same for my clients. So I teach them, you know, five fundamentals to grow a business is sustainable business and business. That five years from now it's still going to exist.
Nick Hauser: Yeah, that's important too. I think. Olivia, forget about the other one. I'll just start this business and then, you know, how do I make it last though? What are some of those things that, what are some of those things? Um, I think you mentioned it to me earlier. Was it s or I mean, what does that strategy and system that you had used with your corporate clients that you wanted to protect that information that you now help your existing clients implement and understand?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes. The ESF formula is basically the phrase that I use to explain that signature process that I did for my clients. So Esa stands for eliminate, streamline, automate, and eliminate me as the eliminate things like meetings are not necessary. When I went into an organization, they had so many meetings that were where people were really not necessary in the meeting. Why is this person taking up space? Why is this person commenting on something when they really have no business in this discussion? Um, what else are you doing in your process that's simply making things more complicated, but it's not really doing anything for you. Likewise, what activities are you doing, which are useless? W you know, um, what meetings are you, have you obligated yourself to? What things have you promised to do for people that you should not be doing because it's not a good use of your time?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Are you doing things to be a people pleaser or because you're really committed to doing those things? Are you using it, uh, you know, to build up your own ego? Or are those things actually necessary? So the process I start with my clients is we examine their actual time. Uh, we'd go through, um, what is your week like, what are the things that you're committed to every single week? Everyone who's in my program has to commit just then in minimum of two to four hours a day on their business. And I call that the sweet spot method because it's something that has worked for me for past corporate clients. Where I was taught were where I was teaching them new tech technical skills. And here's how you're going to go from knowing nothing to be able to now use this in a proficient way on the job.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: So it's the same sweetspot method that I'm teaching my clients now to structure their business and to actually put something together where if you're going to be able to grow it and sustain it. So Esa eliminates streamline automate. There are certain things which are, um, that you should eliminate, but it doesn't mean that they could not be done. There's work that's necessary, but it doesn't mean you necessarily have to do it. Perhaps it's something you can delegate to someone else. And, um, and then for the things that are left that you must do, how can you refine the process and make it better, make it tighter and as much as possible automate with technology nowadays, you don't have to have been somebody like me who has been using technology literally since they were 15 years old, um, to be able to, to do something with it. The, the entry point, um, is a lot lower now. It's a lot more accessible now. So everybody has some recent, some ability to automate some of what they have to do. So for my specific clients, we have an entire list of things that they need to eliminate, things that they need to streamline and things that we can automate. That way they can have, you know, the luxury of living their life as well as building a business.
Nick Hauser: Have you read the book, Lean thinking at all? Budgets, not lean principles or you trained at all in a six sigma, anything like that? Lean thinking.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Agile. Okay. Agile methodologies.
Nick Hauser: Yeah. Cause it sounds similarly we, um, in that book it's, it's a funny word. It's a Japanese word for waste because it's that book lean thinking followers like Toyota and how they really streamline their whole like supply chain and everything like that and distribution,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: all of that.
Nick Hauser: Yeah. And the word was Moodle, which is, um, it sounds funny but like we read that book as a company and we dissected it and it was interesting. But yeah, type one Buddha are things that can be eliminated right away. They don't have an impact. They don't need to be there anymore. Type two or the grunt work that still needs to be there. But is there a better way to do it? Uh, can you allocate, you know, is it, is like adjusting time activity. Can you batch and queue it at certain different times or can you send it off to a teammate? So yeah, those, those things really important. I think it's cool you do with their time. Well that's everyone's excuse, right? When they start at like, oh, I don't have time for this. And you're like, let's figure out where the time is first. So then you can ever say, I don't have the time.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: All right. And um, sometimes the time becomes a rabbit holes for people. They don't really know how they spend their time and they think, oh, it's going to be too difficult for me to do this. It's not take a long time to learn this. But when you take stock of how much time you spend on a game, solitaire is my game. So that's my, that's my little place. Spider or a regular, a spider. Yeah.
Nick Hauser: I don't know the difference between others too.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Um, but you know, we, we all have our little vices, right? And those things take time. So if you are not ruthless about eliminating things which are not really serving you, um, you're going to tripped herself up and you're going to get discouraged and you're going to end up selling things for like $3 or $7 or, or 1999 to try and make money. And I don't feel that's a proper business because when people think about going into business for themselves, they have much higher expectations than that. And all of a sudden, once reality hits, when putting a plan together and actually trying to get something off the ground, they realize how difficult it is. And um, you know, and, and I've been through that process and some people are just hoping to break even. And I'm like, that's not a business mindset to try and break even. That's not how businesses run.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: What does the structure, no too, like as far as you know, how many weeks it was to somebody coming to work with you and in what way do they work with you? Can you kind of explain that? Yes. So I wanted to give people something that is substantial and something that is long lasting. So my program is eight weeks or the way I describe it as there are eight weeks of material to which they have access forever. And unlike some other people, when my program is updated, there's not an update from my new clients and my old clients, they on the old program and they get nothing. Um, but as I improve the program in the future, they're going to, um, they're going to be able to get the benefit of the newer versions of the program as we improve it every year. We also have two very structured calls every week, um, where, where they show up and whichever time is best for them.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: They come, they ask a question, we help them. Um, outside of the calls, we have a Facebook group where it's not a lot of noise. People are very focused and very disciplined in terms of approaching, um, questions in terms of, uh, you know, getting the help that they need. And that's how we work. We are focused, we work every single day. I am in touch with my clients every single day. They get plenty of personal attention from me. Um, they get a lot of personal guidance from me. It's not simply saying, oh, go watch video two or video five. Um, and then they're left on their own to figure out, well how does this apply to my particular business? And that is my, what I bring to the table. Because over the last many years I've worked with companies in different verticals. I've been able to adapt what I learned and did for those people, for my, for my corporate clients to now to other small business owners who are getting off the ground.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Or maybe they already have a business and they're trying to figure out how do they scale, how do they get beyond making just $20,000 a year in that business? There are people out there, you know, for them to make $40,000 in their business would be a big deal. And I'm like, that's, you know, I don't want to insulted, but I'm like, that's not a real business. That's like a hobby. Um, it businesses, something that needs to be able to sustain itself as well as sustain you. So let's create the proper foundation so that from the get go it is something that's going to give you all of that. But also let's get rid of all the complexity and all the things that you don't need and let's get rid of the rabbit holes. And you know, we pulled him back from, from that sort of that decision making.
Nick Hauser: And for you too, I know you even ringing the bell on a, in our group lately, which is great to see. How have you been able to sort of landing some clients for this new program, a new offer that you have?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Um, you know, to be honest there, there are things that I should be doing on my, on my website that I did not put up yet, so that it's all nice and polished and everything, but I'm a known quantity in terms of helping people who are entrepreneurs and you know, whatever group I happened to be in, even though even though it may not be an, uh, an entrepreneurial group, if there are business owners in that group, they tend to gravitate to me anyway and ask me questions to help them. So, um, so people come to me anyway with questions even though I have not like formally, um, talk about this particular program on my, on my business website, on my personal website. Um, so it's just folks that have seen things that I posted, um, on Facebook and people that I have helped in the past who are coming to me and asking for more structured helps so that they can get off the brown, make some real money.
Nick Hauser: And so are you, are you going into like Facebook groups and just, just posting, posting something or are you seeing other people's posts? And then writing, you know, some helpful feedback. Like how does that look too?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yeah, it's all of the above. Uh, there are various groups that I'm in where I have helped different people, where I have given them a different perspective of what they're facing. Mostly it's the work is done on my own personal Facebook page. Um, I feel that I can stand strong enough on my own that I don't have to, you know, try and find customers and everybody else's. Whoops. That's not the way I built my, my, my first business. That's not the way I'm intending to build this program either. Um, I do have a lot of really good relationships with people and what I do is add in the open. Like when I help somebody, it's out in the open. The advice I give them is out in the open so that if anybody else and find that useful, um, you know, they can, they can find that and hopefully they want to do business with me at some point. We do business together. If not, there's plenty of fish in the sea. Um, and in terms of being able to manage my business now as compared to before, um,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: being able to find a better way to scale has been great for me because there's been a lot of things hitting the fan in the rest of my life. Um, in terms of things that we have to do and things, you know, things that happened outside of our control. And yet I was still able to, you know, get, does this number of clients onboarded within 30 days, um, as well as make a decent amount. It's not as much as I would've liked, but then again, I really did not have time. I really did not do much in terms of prospecting. Um, so I did not even, I don't want to say I didn't put a lot of effort into it, but even, even though I was busy with other things in life and was not like full throttle 100% all week, every day, all week to do it, I still got that number of clients. I still made a decent amount of money. Um, so I, I was very grateful for the structure that I learned from Sam and as somebody that I'm very, as somebody who's very structured myself, I appreciate, um, learning how to do that better for myself, so it's better for me and it's also better for my clients.
Nick Hauser: Yeah. Are you, are you getting them onto a, well, I guess the first thing to do just have a big network on Facebook already or are you kind of adding people in and then then posting your own stuff? Like are you, I kind of feeding that at all?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes, I am feeding that. Um, I think it is important to do that to, uh, continually to expand your reach and expand your message. Um, but yes, I also do talk to people directly. Um, I think that's, you know, we don't have to be afraid of people and afraid of their titles. Um, and I think one thing I teach my clients is that you cannot think of yourself and thinking of your clients at the same time. If all you're thinking about is your insecurities and, but I don't have this and I don't have that. And I'm not perfect and you know, this is not great and whatever and all you're looking is that that that means you're not really paying attention to what your client's needs are and figuring out how to get them unstuck, how to get them from point a to point B. So I think it's very important to redirect that inefficient, not useful thought into something that's actually beneficial and profitable.
Nick Hauser: It's a good point. I hear that come up load on awesome coaching goals. Those two with people when they're on strategy calls and they're so worried about their own like thing like what if this person asks me this question or what if I say something stupid that they miss out on like an important piece that they're, their perspective client is communicating to them on the call, like about what they may be need or you know, why something didn't work in the past for them and then because they didn't listen to them when they go to make their offer or their pitch, they don't say the thing that resonates because they were only focused on themselves and in turn they get that question anyway. Whereas if they just, you know, put everything onto the other person, uh, in the good way, you know, like they're trying to like help them as best as they can and serve them, then typically when the person says they understand, the better
Kareen Delice-Kircher: the person, you know, it resonates with them. So they don't have those questions. They just see the person is someone who can help. Yes, yes. And we have the capacity and I've told this to my client, if I was intimidated by my one client that, um, you know, their company is making $235 million a month. If I started looking at my shortcomings, I would never have been able to go in and make a difference and take their business up another notch. So, um,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: it's not to say that you don't matter, it's not to say that you need to ignore the other things that are going on with you. Um, but how you choose to prioritize how you choose to, um, focus is what's going to get you from contemplation, from beating yourself up, from saying that, um, you know, this didn't really work and I need to do something else with my time now. Um, you know, the quicker you can get out of that mental log jam, as I call it, um, the quickly, the more quickly you're going to be able to be more effective and be of service. And My, um, I made a very conscious
Kareen Delice-Kircher: decision that this year my goal was to help one person every day. Now I'm not looking at every person as a potential prospect for my business because I'm picky. I'm particular, I can be difficult. Um, I'm demanding when I'm working with somebody. So I'm not looking for, I'm not looking at everybody as a potential client, but if there is somebody who was on their own entrepreneurial journey now and they need some insight, many times in a very short call, I've been able to pinpoint exactly what they need to do to get, to get unstuck. Um, and as a consultant, I have to be able to think on my feet and find solutions for people when they say, this is falling apart. What am I supposed to do? And I'm like, do this. I mean like, oh, like how did you come up with this so fast? Like this is so brilliant. I'm like, well, that's the, that's the result of experience that's the result of having made that mistake. That's the result of having, um, beaten my head against a wall before, uh, or brute force, um, repetition to learn, to improve, to adapt, to observe, to quantify too. Um,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: do you have like an instinct? You're not, not give myself a path when I'm evaluating myself, I'm not letting myself off the hook, essentially. So it's, it's the result of those experiences that can really help me help people here quickly. And I said, now I'm making this program available to you forever. Upgrades forever. No license fee. We're not going to get through the program with me 75% of the way and I'm going to upset lead to something else. Um, which is what a lot of people do. Um, you get my help and they're like, oh, but how come it's only this much for this long? Because I'm like, because I intend to get your functioning on your own two feet as quickly as possible. I'm not here trying to drag it out and drip it over the course of two years or three years and make you dependent. A lot of coaches, a lot of consultants, they want people who have a dependency on them forever instead of allowing people to fly. I don't believe in that. I believe in helping people to, to get their sea legs or to get their wings grown enough so that they can, they can go in and they can fly on their own.
Nick Hauser: Well that's important for the sustainability part cause because if you, if you do walk away tomorrow and you're like, Hey, I'm done with what I'm doing. Like you know, let's say you go to a certain revenue mark and you're like, I just want to hang out on the beach and that person just like solely to sitting of it relied on you to sustain their own business. Then like, what are they going to tell their friends and family? Like, oh, the person who was like, you know, we're pretty us running my business for me. Like they were tired. So like, I don't know what to do now.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And um, unfortunately a lot of people are up a creek precisely because of that. They were not adequately served when they were looking for a business coach. They were not adequately served and now they've gotten to a point and they're like, I already spent 10,000, 20,000 for help and now I'm stuck and I walk away from all this money that I spent to build this. Or do I try to get to a point where I break even and then walk away or do I just not through good money after bad? Um, so it's, it's really sad for me to see people who have been in that situation where they really had high expectations of themselves, but as reality hit, the expectations got lower and lower and lower and lower. And I'm here to tell people it doesn't have to be that way. Um, and that's what I help them do.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Because I know what it's like to have, you know, a small business and, and um, you know, it's not a $20 million business or anything like that, but it is definitely something that is quite substantial and, and something that's in the top, you know, I don't know what percentage, um, income wise, but it's definitely not, you know, bottom 50% or anything of the sort of, um, so it's, so that's what I want for people. I'm not here to help people make $7 a couple of times a day. That's not what I'm here to do. I'm there to help them build a real business with the business fundamentals that have helped me with things that have been sustainable for me over many years. And, um, and as I gained more wisdom in how I run my business better, I tell him that I'm, you know, I was kind of the queen of spreadsheets. I've always been known for creating spreadsheets over the years to solve different problems and whatnot. And I said, and I, I shared that with my clients. I said, hey, this is what I use to do this. This is what I used to do, that you have access to it in this program. Um, so
Kareen Delice-Kircher: yes, we have eight weeks of material, but we have the ongoing coaching calls. And that direct access to me is really what they're paying for.
Speaker 4: MMM.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: What's in the program is great and it's going to help sustain them. But at the end of the day, if they have a specific problem, I'm here to help them with their particular issue.
Nick Hauser: Yeah, yeah. Well it's, you know, the phrase we use in the training, like you can give, give a man fish or give them a fish or teach them how to fish and then, you know, they'll like they can eat the rest of their life and sustain their business. And that example, I guess too, you mentioned, you know, coming into up level, help you figure out a better way to go about scaling your business. So I want us kind of just like a two part question as far as maybe some advice you'd have for, for the person who is, um, maybe a not a member of up level and you know, they're, they're running their own coaching and consulting business, they're doing work with clients or they're meeting them in person one on one, they're, they're kind of hitting that glass ceiling. Uh, what would your first piece of advice be for that kind of person?
Speaker 4: Okay.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: I wouldn't invite the person to consider that if what they're actually doing for client is something that is hard. Hitting is something that really solves a problem. We have to become more efficient at solving that problem for a client. The first time they had a problem, they had a client with that problem. It may have taken them, you know, x amount of time to do it, but now it's x minus. So there's, there's this, this velocity in terms of how quickly they can serve. They can serve more clients, how quickly they can solve problems for their clients. So they should be leveraging that,
Speaker 4: mmm.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: To create a better structure for themselves instead of still going the route of an hourly coaching read or anything like that or even hourly consulting rate
Nick Hauser: and then forward is, you know, is member of up level right now because you've been going to the trading, what would your number one piece of advice be for that person?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Um, for any current members of level of, I've been great grateful that not only have I gotten help in the group, but I've also helped a bunch of people in the group. Um, and you know, some of them have called me for, for help and you know, I help give them some direction and what they need to do next. Um, I would say if you need help open your mouth, don't suffer in silence.
Speaker 4: MMM.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: You know, all my life, whether it's for business or other things, people have come to me for things that they have not gone to their spouse about, they have not gone to their religious leader about, but they have come to me and said, I have this problem. What should I do? Or they just need to vent or they just need to like say, I'm having this frustration.
Speaker 4: MMM.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: People have, I'm really honored that, um, even people that I have not met in real life, quote unquote have the sense that they can come to me and talk to me in confidence and know that I'm going to give them my, my best advice.
Speaker 4: MMM.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: But not abstract advice. I really hate abstract advice. Whenever I've done workshops in person or online workshops, I always make sure that it's tailored to give people something can we size that they can do within the next week, not someday, something they can do within the next week to get to get them a little bit closer to their goal. So, um, if they have any question, they can post a question, they can tag me and I will help them. Um, again, I don't look at every single person that I help as a potential customer. It should happen. Great. If it doesn't happen, um, you know that I'm okay with that also because, um, I believe God is my provider. Um, he's my source and people are resources and he has other resources. Um, so I'm not that kind of person where I feel like I have to, like I'm desperate to grab every person that comes across my path.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Um, many years ago I had a sales trainer and I talk about that in my book where he said, don't get too high on your good days and don't get too low on your bad days. And that was tough because some days you feel like you're on top of the world, you can't do anything wrong. And some other days you're like, oh my God, I'm so good at this anymore. And um, you know, you need to find that balance. I'm really good at helping people to find that balance. That's actually something that I help my clients with. Um, I call it the, the mindset relocation. Um, it's a document where my clients can go and sort of figure out what's happening with them and how to get from point a to point B so that they can get back to work. And my clients have a checklist that they have to check off every day. So when I say I eliminate the guesswork for my clients, I really do. Because all you have to do is say, okay, let's look at your checklist. How many of these things that he checked off? Don't say, I feel this. I feel that. Let's look at the evidence of what you're actually doing in your business. That's what you should base your feelings on, not on what somebody says to you, not on what your own head is telling you. Yeah,
Nick Hauser: you're like that. What's what they too, because you would to been taken action with the steps in the program and creating, you know, version 1.0 of your course and such. What's maybe something that you can also share with members here that maybe something that you stumbled with or you, you took a different approach and you realize, hey, you know, maybe I made a mistake here and something that can help them, you know, maybe avoid that as they're going through the training. Whether that's the way they set up their, their program for the first time or you know, anything like that that you've found so far that could help a member. It was just coming into up level.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: MMM,
Speaker 4: okay.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: I'm a fan of education. I went to Yale University. Most people say I'm smart and I've done a lot in my career and then in my business. But a lot of people get stuck with thinking that what you know now, what you know today is all you have to offer a potential client and that is so wrong. And that is one thing where I was going wrong. And um, the course helped me come to that realization. And the program also helped me come to the realization of a time in my career where, um, I had a client, I came in to do something else as an architect and I, I came in to do something else and they had this need and it had been making the round two different engineers, different lead developer with default, you know, et cetera. Um, and a CTO really was not getting what he needed.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: And he said, can you look at this? And I'm like, I have no idea what this is. And I said, I'll find out. So I did my, I did the work in terms of talking to people to figure out how big was this problem. I didn't simply take his word for it. Um, I did some research to find out how big this problem was. What are the work arounds? Have we exhausted everything we can possibly do to fix this problem before going out and to try to find another solution. And it turns out that my, um, my solution ended up not being something that I created for that for them, but something we bought. So being a consultant, it's not necessarily about you solving a problem, you personally solving a problem, but you are able to find a solution that you craft or that somebody else crafted and you bring that to your client. Sometimes people think that I have to be able to do everything and that's what's going to impress people. It's not, they want their problems solved. Whether it's directly through for something you do or something provide or that you lead them to the water, that's your job. That's what you need to deliver for your clients. So, um,
Kareen Delice-Kircher: don't look at your own personal limitations. Um, and you know, allow allowed me conversations you have with your niche to lead you to the potential solutions that you can create for someone. It's, it's not necessarily something that's predetermined. Oh, I'm a fitness coach. That's all I can offer. You know, I'm a nurse, that's all I can offer. I'm an attorney, you know, all the services I can do can only be in the legal field, maybe not. So, um, that's like, that's slightly different approaches. Something that really helped me, that I got from the program, um, to be able to not look at things, you know, head on, but also take them, uh, more, um, be bigger perspective of what's going on.
Nick Hauser: Yes. And I guess the close it out to where can people find out more about your lawyer? Do you have a website or anything like that?
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yes, actually people think Google my name and find me pretty easily. That's why even though I don't have this program yet, I'm on my website where they can sign up, but they can sign up with me. Um, they can find me on Linkedin as Korean culture. I don't use my maiden name on, on Linkedin, on Facebook. I am Korean deletes culture. Um, they can find a lot of helpful posts on my Facebook page. They can friend request me. Um, and I'm happy to help them. And if they need a more structured held that we can't resolve it in a short conversation, then we can have a longer conversation to see if that's an exact fit. But um, yeah, so that's how people can find me. My business website is Dev ops advisors. It's Dev ops advisors.com and they can see some of my past clients that I've worked with. Um, and they can also see, um, my other [email protected]
, um, which is a blog where I'm going to have an additional sub domain to talk about this program where people can watch a video to learn more about what I'm doing to help them with and how I can get them the kind of results that they're looking for.
Nick Hauser: Alright. Awesome. Well, few options there so they can find you no matter what. That's a good thing.
Kareen Delice-Kircher: Yeah. Just more Corinne, Corinne
Nick Hauser: speaking with you and, uh, really look forward to seeing more of you. Just us. I know when we were chatting earlier for anyone else said there too, like, um, you know, Corinne Corinne has been going through some things lately and she's still found the time, like she mentioned too, they're really, you know, stick to putting some sort of work into our business and, you know, landing clients and keeping the sustainability flowing. So
Kareen Delice-Kircher: I think that's a really great example.
Nick Hauser: So, uh, I really, I really liked what you shared with me earlier and I think the toughness and the grip that that you showed by doing that, um, you know, we don't have to get into it here, but for now it's out there too. It's definitely a great quality that green has, and hopefully from this conversation you can pick up on that from her. And I learned that from her as well. So we're look forward to seeing more success moving forward here as well. Okay.
Speaker 5: Okay.
Nick Hauser: Now we just froze right at the end. Um, all right. It's been great speaking with you. I'll, I'll tell you, I'll see you later. All right, I'll see you soon. Bye. Bye.