Welcome back to She Sells Radio with your host, Elyse Archer. This week, Elyse is sitting down with Lisa Woodruff, productivity specialist, home organization expert, and founder and CEO of Organize 365®. Lisa provides physical and motivational resources teaching busy women to take back control of their lives with functional systems that work. Today, Lisa is sharing with us how she built a million-dollar business in a way that felt right to her, and how we can apply that mindset to our work.
At the end of 2011, Lisa quit her job and decided it was time for her to land in her ‘forever career’ as an entrepreneur. She’s a 4th generation female college graduate and 4th generation female business owner, so it’s in her blood. She knew she had be hiding behind ‘traditional’ positions, and even though she was going in not knowing what she would sell, she knew she would scale online. However, she noticed that people in her space were making money from ads, which she couldn’t as she didn’t have the traffic to her blog. From there, she started her podcast, which now has hit over 10 million downloads. She realized over the course of this time that she is a teacher at heart. She runs everything like she is an educator, and in order to provide transformation, she had to impart actionable knowledge–which manifested, in this case, as a partnership with an online community, course, and physical product. That way, her pricing is up to her and she can quantify the value she is bringing on her own scale.
Lisa understands that she could take all the good things she’s learned and knows the impact her course, community, and product can bring. Because of that, she can cater the value she brings to women, as she understands that more often than not, women have a unique goal in their heart that they either can’t find the time to pursue or are made to feel bad when they do take action. Lisa is there to solve that. With her organization process, she can facilitate that growth.
Lisa’s business revolves around an organizational $97 “Sunday Basket.” There are 3 things you need to organize your home. The first is to eliminate your to-do list and kitchen counter paper pile. You can get 5 extra hours of your day by doing just that. Once you realize your brain is not a to-do list maker, and you can delay your decision-making to one day a week (Sunday) you find free time throughout your day. Then, throughout the 100-day course, Lisa offers, you go through your house and get it organized. For most people, it takes 3 rounds or 1 calendar year. If you remember that 5 hours you got back, that is now transformed into 12 hours a week that you didn’t use to have.
Lisa’s journey to success in sales is full of key decisions. The first thing she learned is that she didn’t want to do is set up a recurring payment model. Lisa found that the women she’s working with already have a lot on their plate that they’re trying to organize–adding a monthly payment to that only adds to the stress. A flat rate is simple, one time, and out of mind. Her pricing is high enough to deter non-interested buyers but low enough to be doable if you’re invested for life.
Number two: the value she is bringing is probably worth more than what Lisa is charging, but she avoids the “and you get THIS added on!” marketing tactic. When she started her business, she decided the price and charged it, even though she knows the true value. In not giving a discount, she solidifies her model without question. By doing this, she never needs to run sales nor teach her potential clients that you never charge full price. It’s worth having folks put off a purchase if they come when they’re 100% ready to invest in the growth they’re getting. Lisa doesn’t pressure people into buying! It’s so effective, Lisa’s only had 2 refunds–ever.
Lisa’s background in direct sales has provided her with a lot of perspective and insight into running her business now. She learned 4 things every business does:
Pink–leads & marketing
Purple–the product & VIP customers
Blue–team & personal development
Green–P&L & admin tasks
She figured out that many people are REALLY good at one of these aspects, but because you may not have time to improve the other sections, your business doesn’t grow. This is a holistic approach, you need all parts of the puzzle. These are completely different skillsets, so it’s important to allocate time and energy to each color.
For Lisa and many other women, the guilt of the to-do list comes with being a woman either in a household or not. It’s not wife & mother to carve out a day to impart a system to a business. There is a mental block for some generations of women that disallow for that to happen. Once you realize you’re not a professional duster, the mental shifts towards passions. What business owner is going to listen to your podcast and worry about you cleaning baby bottles? It’s about the impact you can have on society without detriment to other aspects of your life.
Breaking through that six-figure mark for Lisa was all about those pink and purple parts of your business’s foundation. Find your weakness and reframe your perspective. Focus on sales & marketing and the leads will take care of themselves. Share and share authentically on a platform that you’re comfortable on and where your audience is.
In addition, sell your physical time. It’s that simple. From there, sell your team’s time, your business’s time, whatever. Have that space.
Hey, Lisa, I’m so excited to have you on. She sells radio. Welcome. Thank you so much for having me. I’m super excited about this conversation. I am too. And you know, we were just talking in the pre-chat about, I would say a very different approach to sales that you have, that’s been really successful for. You helped you build a $1.5 million company doing the opposite of what so many people are teaching about how to sell online and how to create funnels and all the things. So I’m so excited to kind of hear about your approach to sales, but I also want to give some context first. So for any listeners who are new to you and you haven’t experienced the magic of organizer 65 yet, tell us a little bit about your backstory and what led to you creating your business and then we’ll take it from there.
Yes. So I started following blogs probably, well, 2004, 2005 was when I was in an, a lot of online message boards, researching different diagnoses that my kids were getting. And then I got onto some mommy blogs, and I even started a blog in 2009. And I was in Cincinnati, Ohio in a blogging group. And some of the big mommy bloggers started here in Cincinnati. They’ve since moved all over the country, but they all were living here in 2008, 2009. And they were coupon bloggers. Like some of our local bloggers were on extreme couponing show and stuff like that. And so I watched how they were growing a following and they were making money. I started a blog that I let go in 2010 and went back to work at the end of 2011. I quit my job. And I knew that I was about to turn 40.
I was going to start my forever career. I was finally going to be the entrepreneur. I was raised to be I’m a fourth generation female college graduate, but I’m also a fourth generation female business owner. Like my great-grandmother in the depression had four different businesses. Like it’s, we’re just weird. We’re just so weird. I love it. And I knew that I had been hiding behind, like being a teacher, stay at home mom in direct sales, all of these things as about to turn 40 again. So I was going to start my business. I had no idea what I would sell or how I would monetize, but I knew ultimately I would scale online. I knew SEO was important. So I picked organized three 65. I knew it would be organization related. I didn’t know what it was. So the first three years I was an in-home professional organizer and Cincinnati blogger learning about SEO, putting into putting in all the things that I knew, but all the bloggers I was following, they had great product brand deals and they had affiliate links and they had they were making money from ads on their website and I just didn’t have the traffic.
So I didn’t make the ads. I can never find the right partnership with a brand. I wasn’t making any money from my blog. It was very frustrating, but I know all of the best things to do online. So three years in, I started my podcast and the podcast has been going almost six years or a little over six years as of January, we’ll have about 10 million downloads overall. So it was pretty popular medium for me. I like to talk. So I said to Lisa, I’ll go on any pivot you want. I like to talk, but all the way in the nine years of growing this business, I have, I guess, been more of a bricks and mortar business mindset with an online delivery. So the unique thing about organized three 65 was all of the fast ways to cash that I saw all my friends doing, affiliate links, Google ads, partnerships, any of those things, even being paid to speak.
I never got traction in any of those. And because I never got traction in any of those, I kept going back and pivoting like, all right, well, if I’m going to do this forever for the next 25 years, this is going to be my business. What do I want to be doing 25 years from now? And a lot of those businesses, I was modeling my business after have since gone away or the way they made money has dried up. And what I finally realized over the course of all of this time is that I’m a teacher at heart. That’s what I am. I’m an, I run my business like a classroom. I’m the principal. And then the teachers are like the managers and those students, I run everything. Like I am a teacher. And in order to have people get true transformation, which is what teachers always want is to take the knowledge.
They haven’t imparted on their students. And then their students internalize it so much that they can teach it to someone else. That’s what a true teacher does. The best way to do that in today’s day and age is to partner a physical product with an online community and an online course. And so all of my products have all three of those. So my pricing is unique. So online business owners will say, you could charge so much more because your courses are worth so much. My manufacturers and distributors, they’ll say, how in the heck are you selling a box for $97 when they know the cost of the box? And I said, yes, but it comes with the community. It comes with training. It comes with the virtual coworking space and they don’t know how to quantify that dollar amount. And I seem to sit here right in the middle from watching my dad grow his business. And all the women in our family grow their business and watching all these different industries I’ve taken the best from everything. And I’ve put it into this organization that specifically caters to overwhelmed women who are trying to get their home and paper organized so they can get more time because they have something that’s on their heart that is unique to them that they want to go out and do, but they can’t find the time to do it. And their house is making them feel guilty when they do get out there and try.
Okay. There’s, there’s so much of what you just said that I want to ask you about. And, and one of the, so before we go into that, so just so there’s some context for our listeners, your primary businesses run around this concept of a Sunday basket, right? So when you talk about like the product with the community, with the course, just give us some context. So it’s my understanding. It’s $97 product and yeah.
Context on that. So there are three main things that you need in order to organize your house. The first is to eliminate your to-do list and the kitchen counter paper pile. We do that in the $97 Sunday basket. It takes about six weeks for that to become a habit and for you to get five extra hours every week in your life from doing that habit once.
But she good. So once you do that and you, that your brain should
Not be a to do list maker, and you understand how to delay your decision-making and make decisions. Only on Sunday, you get five hours a week before you spend that somewhere else. I want you to give it back to me and put it into the 100 day program that is $500. It’s a lot of money. It’s $500. It’s a lifetime membership. And we will go through your house in 100 days. You will not get it all done. The first time it’s a lifetime membership. We will do this three times a year, and it’s been going on for, I don’t know, five years now, w we’re just going to keep doing it. So you keep going through the living areas of your space. You get that organized in the 100 day program for most people that takes three rounds. So that’s one calendar year, and now you get an extra seven hours every week from that.
So now if you’re adding up, you have 12 hours a week that you didn’t use to have before you met me. Then we take that and we organize your filing cabinet, your hot mess room, your kids, or your photos. You take that time and do that in all access. That’s another $500 purchase. And then you go on from there you go out and do what you’re uniquely created to do. Or 10% of people decide, this is what they’re now uniquely created to do. And they’re on the mission with me to reach more people, to get their home and paper organized. Gosh, it’s so methodical. This is where I can tell that you are a teacher because it is, it just makes sense. It’s so methodical. So you’ve built a $1.5 million business off of this very, very simple methodical approach. Right. It’s and it’s not like, so it sounds like if somebody went all in and bought everything, you have, it’s a little over a thousand dollars.
Yeah. Their payment plans, like you can do it all for less than a hundred dollars a month. You keep going through the different payment plans, right? Yes. That’s not even if we think about it, it’s, it’s not that high ticket either. Right? So clearly you’re, you’re playing the volume game. You’ve built a huge audience. You’ve got almost 10 million downloads on your podcasts. Now, one of the things that really intrigued me that I want to hear more about from you is you shared some in our preacher that you’ve done everything, maybe not everything, but a lot of things differently from what you’re taught to do about how to sell. And you, so I want you to talk about that because part of my mission and my intention with the show is to help women learn how to sell in a way that feels authentic to them and feels right to them.
So tell us about your journey there and what are, what are some of the key decisions you made about how you were going to sell that we’re making? So they’re like, I dunno, probably five of them. I hit, these are all the things you’ll hear about selling online that I don’t do. So the first one is you need to have a recurring revenue model, meaning that people pay $35 a month to do the 100 day program instead of lifetime access. And I started mine that way. It was so stressful for me and the people who bought in. And the reason why is because my target market are females at home who are trying to get over the guilt of what their house looks like and wanting to leave the home and do what they’re uniquely created to do. But their mental mindset is because of their upbringing or their spouse.
And mostly it’s just their own mental trash that they shouldn’t be allowed to. And so when you then put a $35 a month ticket on that every single month, you see that payment come through the credit card. It’s like, Oh, it’s still not only have I not done this course, but I haven’t gotten out. So, and then I felt like, well, I have to provide more and more value every month because now you’re still spending $35. I was like this ridiculous. I’m a professional organizer. It costs $5,000 for me to come organize your house at that time. Great. I’ll give it to you for 10%, for $500. I’ll give you everything I would’ve done. If I came into your house, step-by-step two-minute videos every single day for 100 days straight, you can watch it over and over and over again. You have to do the work.
We’ll create a Facebook group. I’ll give you a planner. I’ll teach you how to find the time and do it. I will give you the curriculum. You just have to do the work for a 10th of the price. It’s high enough that no one buys in just because, Oh, just buy $500, right? But it’s low enough that even if money is an issue or $96 a month payment plan is doable. Especially once you’ve done the Sunday basket and realize it works. And I click with you, you’ll invest $96 a month to do the 100 day. So it’s a lifetime. The other thing is unexpected events are going to happen. COVID is going to happen. Can you imagine if you just signed up for this and you were like on day 50 and then COVID happened, like, I don’t need to add any extra stress. I don’t add any emergencies.
So that’s number one. Number two, the 108 program is worth way more than $500, but I don’t do that. Sales tactic of like, you get this for a hundred dollars and this is worth $5,000 and this is worth $8 million in my program is worth $10 million. But I’m going to give it to you today for this one load right now it’s 500 bucks. It’s a lot of money. It’s not a lot of money. This is what it is. And then 20 years ago, when I started my direct sales business, I offered my mom a discount on what I was selling. And she said, no, I’m not going to take a discount. And since I don’t take a discount from you and I’m going to pay full price for the rest of your career, you can always charge full price. Cause you didn’t even give your mom a discount.
So when I started this business, I was like, yeah, I don’t discount my products. It’s worth $500. It’s worth way more than $500. But I’m always going to charge $500. And in not giving a discount to people one-on-one we also don’t run sales. Like we do not run sales at all. And people, we had one sale like three years ago and everybody still talks about it. And they’re like, yeah, she’s not going to have a sale. And the reason why I don’t have a sale, we used to do a launch model. But now you can buy the 100 day program. All of our products, anytime that you want, when you’re ready to organize, we’re ready to help you. Just black Friday just happened as of the time of this recording. And I had bought something full price the week before, and this company that never runs a sale, it ran a sale for black Friday.
I was like, darn it. I lost $40. And so then it’s annoying. You feel like shoot, I should have waited. And then I’m watching a, another friend of mine that they’re running sale after sale. And now this is on sale and that’s on sale. And I was like, wow, you’re really training your people to never buy full price because they’ve seen so many sales in the last eight weeks and all different kinds of sales forever. I mean, every day is a holiday, if you want it to be. And so we don’t have sales and because we don’t have sales, true, people are going to put off making a purchase from organized three 65 because something else will always come up to use their money. But when you do make the purchase, you’re a hundred percent ready because you don’t feel like the clock was ticking down, like on a webinar the other day.
And I said, I’m answering the questions. I said, I don’t know if you guys noticed, but there is no countdown clock at the top. And they’re like, yeah, we noticed. I said, yeah, because you could buy now you buy next month you buy next year can not buy at all. I’m not going to pressure you into buying before I’m done talking. They’re like, we love you. We’re going to give you all the money. I think that’s true. And then as a business owner, my team got a four day weekend for Thanksgiving. Like we left Wednesday afternoon. We came out Monday. We had a lot of orders to ship. We had no sale. We had no emergency emails. We had no customer service running on Thanksgiving evening. It’s a company I want to run. It’s it’s who, how I want the people who I employ to feel. It’s how I want you to feel as a customer and you buy. So I don’t tell you it’s this bazillion dollar amount and sell it off. I don’t have different sales. I don’t have a stop go. I don’t have a launch thing. We are your solution to getting organized. When you are ready, we are here to support you 365 days a year, jump in. You won’t get a better price later. The transformation is worth this price.
It’s so good. What I love about this is you’re showing you’re modeling how we can be successful in a way that feels really good to us. And I’m curious too. So I’m just curious your take on creating sense of urgency, because that is so much of what is taught in sales training is you have to create a sense of urgency. Hence the countdown timers that sometimes are real. Sometimes it really is, Hey, this ends at midnight, but then you’re somehow being successful without that. So what’s your take on creating a sense of urgency for your customers?
Well, if you build a company my way, it’s going to take longer, but you aren’t going to have, we have zero refunds. We don’t even have a refund policy. I think we’ve had two people in nine years ever even asked for a refund because by the time you make the purchase, you’re over ready to purchase. So we don’t have a refund issue. And so it’s going to grow slower, but your fans are going to be so loyal. And then in my podcast, and we do do email marketing funnels three times a year, when it naturally makes sense to start the 100 day program, those emails that are designed to help you take action on your own internal desire to get organized. So I’ll explain like, okay, we’re going into January. You’re going to set a new year’s resolution anyway. And the marketing that I’m doing right now, and I’m telling everyone for quarter one of 2020, and I don’t know when this is going to be published, but there’s a vaccine on the horizon.
We are not going to have it in quarter one of 2020. Everyone is going to still be at home. So the marketing I’m now doing is saying, well, you’re at home. You know, you want to do this. You know, you’re going to want to be out of your house in the summer. So let’s buckle down and actually get going on the 100 day program. And I’m going to each of my Facebook groups, I’m saying, here’s where you are. Here’s the action you’ve taken. Here’s the next step. Sign up for the next step. Like classes starting in January, what’s your next level of organization you’re going for? Here’s specifically what you should be buying and what you could see by the end of the quarter. So you’re helping people really just feel supported. You’re helping your women feel supported, feel held because already they’re dealing with overwhelming.
I think part of what I want to pull out from what you’re saying is regardless of if you’re selling a professional organizing system like Lisa is, or you’re selling, I don’t care what it is. A health system like your clients are feeling overwhelmed. So the easier you can make it for them to just take the next step, take the next step and not feel super stressed to have to like take action or do something that they’re not totally sure about, or be afraid that they’re making the wrong choice. The more they’re going to fall in love with you. And I love what you said too, just in all honesty, it is going to be the longer game doing it this way. But two refunds and nine years is almost unheard of. I’ll take that all day long. I’ll take that all day long. So I would imagine you’ve bumped up against situations where you’re either working with a coach or consultant or new team where they’re like, Hey, we’re, you know, everyone is saying, you need to do a black Friday sale. You need to have this, you know, you need to have a countdown timer on this and you’ve stuck to your gut and trusted your instinct. How did you learn how to do that in the face of everyone telling you that it’s not necessarily the smartest move?
So it’s awkward to talk, but he loved my conversations. Okay, good. I’m pretty intuitive. And I’m very visionary. So as COVID was happening, I knew we would end up in a lockdown. And the second we ended up in a lockdown, I started communicating to my team and I took ownership of our company and I started doing things. And then I started finding some of these great webinars from these really big companies that counsel people in fortune five hundreds and things like that. And I’ve started signing up for all their free webinars and 90% of the time, whatever they counsel these huge CEOs to do. I intuitively knew what to do. Like we set up an 8,000 square foot warehouse this year. We moved to a new warehouse and I set up a system with these home Depot bins and bookshelves. And then I learned about the Kanban method.
And I was like, Oh my gosh, I did that naturally. Like I just, I’m very intuitive. I’m very analytical. I’m very math oriented. I’m very entrepreneurial by nature. And I’m a big out of the box picture person. So when can I think being a million dollar business owner helps, like as soon as I hit a million dollars and I realized there really are not that many, especially female million dollar businesses, like it’s almost impossible for me to find any, to model my business after I realized, Oh, okay, well they may know what worked for them, but I know what’s already worked to get to a million dollars. So clearly I know what I’m talking about. And my people love me. And our Facebook groups are Uber positive. Even during the pandemic, there’s no negativity. If you want positivity, come in our Facebook groups and they’re helpful.
And there I’ve just cultivated such a community of giving, loving women of multiple generations who send me emails and messages every day, about how much organized three 65 has changed their life. That I know that I know better how to market to this subset of women than old formulas that probably don’t even work after COVID has started or how men have sold the last decades and decades and decades. I mean, there aren’t that many women leaving leading companies right now we have to trust our gut. Like I remember, I think it was rent. The runway gave insurance to all of their employees, even when they only had like 20 employees, because that’s the right thing to do. And I was like, Oh no, I’m not saying I’ve done that yet. I have seven employees. I haven’t been able to do that yet, but I thought, okay, well, you know what, for women, I primarily hire women.
So for women with school-aged children, the right thing to do is not have them worry about work on Thanksgiving weekend is to have them be able to put up the Christmas tree on Friday and do the shopping with their kids and play board games and not worry that at least it’s going to come up with some fire that they have to put out when they really want to be spending that time with their kids. That’s the kind of company I want to have because that’s the kind of company I want to have then I have to make different choices.
Yeah. Yeah. It’s so powerful. And I love just doing the right thing for people. And the other thing that I think you clearly shows that you have as you talk, because you have such an abundance mindset around customers, around investing in your people, how did you cultivate that? Have you always been that way? For me, it’s something I’ve really had to work on over the years. And I I’ve struggled for years and years of scarcity thinking like, have you always thought that way? Or has it been something you’ve had to hone?
Oh, I definitely learned it in direct sales. So when I was in direct sales, I sold scrapbooking creative memory scrapbooks. And there were like eight people in my neighborhood that sold scrapbooks. Four of them were on my team and like two were on another team. They were like Arab people in our neighborhood. I was like only know eight people in our entire neighborhood. It has like 200 houses in it. Like we never bumped into customers. And in creating memories, I could only service a hot 200 customers. Well, as far as keeping up on their scrapbooking projects and having workshops for them and the fun line is there are a lot of disorganized people in the world. Like we can present my hand, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of professional organizers. There are not enough of us. The baby boomers are aging quicker than we can get professional organizers on board.
Like I’m not worried about it. I’m just not worried about it. And so we have a certification program and I push my audience out to the certification program as much as possible. I’m running masterminds for them. We are training them. We are getting them their businesses up and running. So they can be the boots on the ground for the organized three 65 community around the world. If they do need that, one-on-one help getting organized because I can’t do it. Like my vision is bigger than I can physically do with one person, both in my team and in professional organization. Mm. I love that. What would
You say? So from your time in direct sales, and that can be direct sales could be scrappy, right. And, and a fair number of our listeners are in direct sales. What was, what would you say your sales super power was when you were in direct sales that helped you be successful?
Okay. So I was in direct sales for 20 years. I’ve been in 32 different companies. I’ve been an, a leader of a lot of them, right?
Yes. Oh my goodness. Okay. I’ve done a few direct sales.
So one of our work boxes, similar to our Sunday basket, it’s $150. And it walks through how to organize a direct sales business and other kinds of businesses as well. But it is based on what I did with my team. I did not have a single kitnapper on my team. If you know what that means. Like indirect sales, 85% of people never get started. Every single one of my people had a business, every single one, because I didn’t recruit them. If they work and have a business, I’m so weird, but it’s because I learned what I had done to be successful. And I taught them so indirect sales in the work box, there are four things that every single business does. They’re just called different, no matter what your business is. So it is pink purple, blue, green. So pink is your leads and marketing purple is the product you’re selling.
And your VIP customers, blue is your team and your personal development and green is your PNL and your administrative tasks. And they go in that order, if you don’t have leads, you don’t have customers. If you don’t have customers, you don’t need self development, a team. If you don’t have that, there is nothing to put on a P and L. So in business that would be sales and marketing operations, HR, finance, like. So I figured out again, just like, I, I just, I just know that I don’t know how I know this stuff. I figured that out in direct sales, and now I realize, Oh, Lisa, this is in every single business. There is. So in direct sales, if you just take pink and purple, so sales and marketing and customers, you’re naturally better at one of those than the other. And you focus all your time on the one that you’re good at and you ignore the other one and you never have time to get to the one that you aren’t good at.
And because you never have time to get to the one you aren’t good at your business never grows because if you don’t have leads or do the parties or the shows or whatever they’re called, you don’t get customers. If you take the customers, you haven’t stopped having new, new leads, then eventually your customers just die out. Or if you’re great at shows, but you’re not good at selling. So you’re not good at servicing a customer service. You can do show after show after show. And it’s just a sieve. Like the people are just running straight through your company. And so you have to get really, really good at balancing pink and purple and pink and purple and pink and purple until you have enough leads coming in to keep your customers happy. And then you’ll get to the point where you have too many customers and too many shows.
You don’t know what to do with. And then you add in blue. That’s when you recruit, that’s when you add in an assistant, but then you have to balance in that leadership versus the sales and marketing and servicing your customers. And to balance those three is super hard. Very few people can do it mostly because they don’t know that’s what they’re doing. And then when they are doing it, it’s really hard. I mean, that’s three completely different skill sets. And that’s why you have so few people that are successful in direct sales. Not because direct sales is it’s because they don’t realize all the roles that they’re playing. They don’t allocate enough time to each role. And they don’t make sure that all three colors are being done every month. The green will take care of itself. If you can balance these three colors.
Wow. And again, it comes back to just clearly, this is why you do what you do. You’re saying, this is your super power, right. Is helping people organize and just make sense of what to actually focus on now versus trying to do all the things which automatically is going to create overwhelm.
I think. Yeah, yeah. As I’m saying this, here’s the thing I am able somehow to see the system that is going on and most people just see the actionable to do’s that need to be done. So everything in direct sales is an actionable to do, but I see them by color, by bucket. And this one has to prioritize before this, and then this one goes to this, and if you don’t have enough, this, then you go to this. And like, I could see that when I see a room, when I see a, to do list, when I see how you run your house. And and so those are a lot of business principles. I’m now finding out that I just kind of figured out as an analytical person, and I relate those to the house or direct sales or things that have primarily been female-driven up until this point.
Yeah. Yeah. And it’s it probably, obviously it comes naturally to you, but I think for, for many women, it does a myself included, like I get caught up in today. I need to do this, this and this versus looking at what would be a better system overall. I do want to ask you, so this actually creates a question for me. How do we get past the guilt of stepping back from all of the to-dos to take the time, to create a better system? How do we,
You get over the guilt of it? For me personally, I’m 48 years old. For me personally, the guilt came from being raised to be a wife and mother. And so anything that is not wife and mother is taking away from my family and selfish is how I feel. So for me to carve out a day to put it in the system that my business needs, even today with employees like I’m working from home people. I still struggle with this every day being that working takes away from my role as a wife and mother and homeowner. I don’t think that that thought is the same for every generation I’m gen X. So I think baby boomers are like that. And then some, and I think millennials are like, wow, that is an old way of thinking. But it is the way that I think, and I found a lot of millennials as they have their babies. All of a sudden these thoughts come into their head and they’re like, no, no, no. That’s not how our generation thinks. Yes it’s yes. Once you have the baby, all of a sudden, like you just get put into the Brady bunch somehow. True. By the way, Ellis was the housekeeper you’ve modeled your life after the housekeeper, Carol was the mom. I don’t even know what she was doing the entire time.
Ooh. That’s a good point. That’s a good point. Yeah, we can. We think differently. Yeah. Right.
And so this is what I do. I’m like, look, no one knows that you’re dusting every week. Stop it. It only has to be done every six weeks. Like it’s true. It’s true. Just shows up on week seven. Why are you doing it every week? And that’s what I try to shake women out of is that, I don’t know, we get it through osmosis that we have this entire list. That’s where the guilt is coming from. And once you realize, Oh, I’m not alone dressed in a duster, I am a whatever. So I was so excited. The woman who created the COVID vaccine was a woman, Catherine. I was like, yes, I knew it because I kept saying, what are you uniquely created to do that by dusting and doing laundry? You’re not doing. And I would say I’m pack. Yes. I sure hope whoever’s going to invent the COVID vaccine is not doing laundry.
And she wasn’t, she was in bed. I was like, yes, yes. What perspective on that realized it’s like, like Elise, what business owner is going to listen to your podcast and then go, Oh my gosh, I have the freedom to build whatever I want. Instead of, I don’t know, cleaning all the baby bottles, you know, like it just puts it into perspective. It’s that longevity of your life and the impact you can make on society while impacting your kids and your husband and your house, not to the detriment of wow. So it sounds like to me continually holding a bigger vision for yourself. And even if it’s not what you were, you’ve been told by your parents or by media, just really it again, it sounds like it comes back to listening to your intuition and your gut and trusting yourself that, Hey, if you’re feeling called to do something bigger or to do things differently than what you’ve seen, done, follow that and trust that.
And at least see it to the end. Because one of the things I found in my own life, Lisa is even if I think I’m going towards a certain door and that door is not the door, I thought it was as you walked down the hallways, Oh, there’s this other door on the left. I never saw that ends up being that big break or that aha or that million dollar idea that transforms your life. Yes. Yeah. Oh man, this is, this is so good. This is fun for me because I’ve gotten to work with you, but I didn’t know all this about you and, and just your, your mindset with this. This is so powerful. You know, I I’d love to, I want to hear your perspective on two things. And then I want you to tell women where they can connect with you. So a lot of our listeners are looking to break through their first six figures in sales, and you’ve done that.
And then some so I’d love for you to share what was the number, one thing that helped you break through first six figures in your business, and then what had to change for you to go from six to seven? Okay. Yeah. I thought a lot about this. So to get to six figures is all about pink and purple. You have to learn to go after whichever one is your weakest. So I just did the survey on a planning day. I just had the other day and I thought everybody was better at leads and marketing and not as good at customers. And everyone said they were better at purple. I mean 99%. I was like, Oh, nobody wants to sell in market. So reframe selling and marketing is sharing. Like, share your story, share the transformation you’re offering. Just as a story, like not as a sales tactic or whatever you have got focus every single day on sales and marketing, the customers will take care of themselves. You will love the two birds in the Bush, as long as you get the one in the hand. So just talk and share your message and share it authentically. So pick whatever social media you like. Like we have huge Facebook groups, but I personally am on Instagram. I love Instagram stories. And so I, everybody knows I do puzzles. They know I’m taking a bath at like five Oh one.
Wait til I get, I just say that I love you. And I only do dishes
Three times a week. And I say, I don’t know what you guys are worried about. No one else around here is doing them. It’s not like they’re like the dishes aren’t done or they’re going to do them because mom took so long. Hey, they could care less. So every three days I might, this is ridiculous. And I did the dishes. The rest of the time, the kitchen looks terrible and I share all this on Instagram. So, so when I share that, then people will say, because I always say, I am your functional organizer. I am not Pinterest. Perfect. If you’re looking for the home, edit, go to the home, edit. I I’m not that person. I’m not a decluttering person. I’m not Marie Kondo. I am your real life. Functional middle-aged woman. Who’s your best friend. That’s like, no, you don’t need that. Yes. Keep that
In the bath by five Oh one. These are, these are my goals. I want to use all of my extra time. Now I use for puzzles and bats. It’s just amazing to me.
I know it’s great. Also it comes with middle-age, which isn’t as bad as people say it is. So that’s number one, like just authentically share who you are and how you’ve gotten, where you are and your audience will naturally find you. And they will grow with you. It will take longer than you think it will take longer than you think, but it will be better than you ever imagined as it happens. And then as you’re getting to sit six, figure specifically sell your physical time. Like that is going to be the number one way to get to six figures. So I sold in-home professional organization time. I built people’s websites. I was a house cleaner. I tutored kids. I did I was a personal assistant for someone. I had her computer at home and I went through her email every single night. I did.
People’s scrapbooks for them. Like that’s how I got to six figures is I physically went out and had people pay me for my time. I started at $25 an hour and I ended at $75 an hour. And by the time I got good enough at that, I was selling my team’s time at $75 an hour and I wasn’t even going to the jobs. So that’s how I got to six figures. It’s usually going to be through some kind of a service. And then the shift to get to a million is you have to equip a team to either do the service that you provided and then scale that, or find a way to take whatever you’re doing physically and be able to teach it online. So that’s what we did. We took the in-home organization. We continued to do that for three more years while I grew the, the courses that we’re going to do online.
And then in 2017, the end of the year, I hired seven people in seven weeks. They were like five to 10 hours each. They were all contractors to take all of the products that were in my head and make them into physical products in the next six months, all the courses, the physical Sunday basket, the binders, all of that found a manufacturer. And I actually went into debt to do it. So I had the in-home team organizing and Cincinnati bringing in the money to fund the business. And then on a credit card, I ran through all of those employees and I hired seven and seven weeks because I’d done direct sales before I’d recruited six people in a month. I’m a teacher. And I just used it as a classroom. I was like, okay, team, this is what we’re doing this week. And I told them in an email and then I would have one-on-one meetings with them, just like a teacher would with all of her assignments. I just kept handing out assignments. And that’s how I got that part of the business done. And now it’s a self-managed company, so I don’t need to do that. One-On-One but that’s okay.
I did it credible. Okay. So now I do have to ask one more question. This is, this is so good. That’s usually my last question, but I do want to stop. Cause you said something so important and I want to hear your thoughts on this and then we’ll wrap. So, so many women, I talk to have a hangup around going into debt to launch their business, to go to the next level, to accomplish their goals. How did you get past that?
We’ve always been comfortable using debt, Greg and I have always been comfortable using debt. So we have a mortgage on our home. We have credit cards. So we we’re comfortable with debt. Both of our parents have had debt. We are confident in the fact that we will pay it off. My motto is always, I’ll earn more faster. There, you know, I follow Dave Ramsey and I’ve tried to do his, his programs, but business debt is not the same as personal debt. And a lot of people look at, you know, being on shark tank and giving away a portion of their company in order to get money in order to grow or in order to get connections. That’s one way to grow your company. I don’t see very many women doing that, not just that the offers aren’t made to women. I think women are smarter than that.
Honestly, I don’t want more people getting venture back funding. I want more women, a hundred percent owning the company. So I, 100% own my company and I’m willing to take a risk. So for example, for 2021, we have physical products and or 2020, we have physical products and I saw the supply chain breaking before we even had locked down in March because I don’t know I’m a nerd. I know all this kind of stuff. And I saw what was coming. And I said, Oh, this is, this is not breaking for this month. This is breaking for the next two years. And I immediately placed huge orders of all of my supplies and pulled out our home equity or our equity line. We had on our business a hundred thousand dollars. And I said to my fractional CFO, I want to use it all to get a year’s worth of inventory in this new warehouse we’re moving to.
And he said, okay, I’m totally fine with that. So we did, I am literally sitting on 50 weeks of inventory in my warehouse. And now the supply chain as of December, 2020 is really breaking, like being able to ship it from our warehouse to the end user, but even to get things within the States in or in our country, like it’s all, it’s all falling apart. It’s not going to fix in the beginning of 2021. So anything I can control, I control, I even ordered boxes and everyone I know in the industry, they’re like Lisa, we see no shortage of corrugated cardboard. I was like, yeah, I don’t care. I want them in here. All of my boxes, I have everything I need cause I control what I can control and it’s just cashflow. So I took we’ll have a paid off by the end of this year, but all of our profit will have gone to inventory.
So I will have to pay taxes on that inventory. And I’m totally fine with that because now I am in control of my inventory. And what I will say is a lot of those black Friday sales you saw, I think we’re actually going out of business sales and you’ll find out in January, 2021, those businesses are actually out of business and they were capitalizing on that. Yeah. Yeah. Wow. Well, I think just the, one of the things that I’ve pulled from what you’ve shared today is giving yourself permission to do things differently and to trust your instincts and to leverage money and debt as a tool, right? Like even when you, you hear something differently from other people, I think sometimes we can get so just paralyzed by looking outside for advice and saying, well, Dave Ramsey says, do the debt of all debt is dumb.
Cash is King. And, and yeah, like you said, there is a big difference between business debt and personal debt. And at the end of the day, like money is energy, right? And it’s a tool to bless our lives and to be used not to be hoarded and set on fearfully. So I just really appreciate how you’ve shown an example of creating a really successful business and doing it in a way that’s felt so good to you. That’s what I really want to inspire women to do. You know, whether they’re selling in corporate or whether they’re running their own business, finding a way to achieve their goals in a way that feels ethical to them. That feels right. And that helps them, helps them accomplish their goals and sleep at night. So thank you for all of this. I know this isn’t your normal like interview topic per se, but this been, Oh, I love it.
I mean, this is what I want to hear. Like, this is what I’m looking for. Like who are the women who are going to tend to 25 million? What are they doing? What should I be doing next? And I think it’s a lot of trusting your gut. And if you’re a mom for a long time, that’s what I would teach people. Trust your mama gut, as far as your kid’s development or being behind, or you know, what you think they need versus what other people tell you. They need newsflash. You always know what they need. Other people will think they know what they need, including doctors, lawyers, teachers, whatever. They do not know what your child needs like you do because you’re supposed to, that’s your child. You have a mama gut for that. This is your business. You have a gut for your business. You know, you know what you’re supposed to be doing next. It may not look at what like what everybody else is doing. That’s good. And do that. Thank you for that. This is it. It actually, it moves me because it gives, it gives permission to not be in so much conflict about I’m doing the wrong thing and guilt about all my gosh, you know, this is I w the mold doesn’t fit me. And does it feel right? So thank you because I think this is so liberating for everyone listening.
Lisa, tell us where we can connect with you, where we can find out more where we can listen to your podcasts. Like I want you in my ear all the time, all the time, not just from an organization standpoint, but just like a business mentor. This is incredible. So please tell us where we can connect with you. And and then we’ll wrap.
Sure. So if you like any of these kinds of, out of the box ideas, you will love the organized three 65 podcasts. They’re all kind of out of box ideas, different ways of looking at your home, your productivity, your life, your purpose. So that’s organized three 65. I’m on literally anywhere you can find podcasts. The website is organized three 65. I’m organized three 65 on all social media. I’m most active on Instagram. Personally. Our groups are most active on Facebook. And then yeah, listen to the podcasts, see what works for you. We usually tell people to start with the Sunday basket, but if you’re like, I’m in direct sales, I need that direct sales box. You can start there as well. Yeah.
Beautiful. Thank you so much, Lisa. This has been so much fun for me. And like I said, it’s almost like a weight has been lifted, which I would imagine that’s how all your clients feel. So I guess it’s no surprise, but just learning from you and listening to you, feels empowering, feels freeing. And I really, really thank you for coming on and sharing all of your wisdom with us today. Thank you so much, Elise.