“Success means being in a place where I am able to prioritize my Energy.” This week we had the pleasure to speak to Emylee, the co-founder behind Boss Project and the co-host of the chart-topping podcast, The Strategy Hour. Tune in as Emyleee talks about getting organised to free up your time and how to follow the breadcrumbs so you can scale your Income.

About the Guest:

Abagail and Emylee are the business fairy godmothers behind Boss Project and the hosts of the chart-topping podcast, The Strategy Hour. They’re internet-famous for their program, Trello for Business, which breaks down boring and complicated systems into bite-size chunks. They have helped over 10k creative small business owners create simplicity and ease in reaching their goals. After getting their start in 2015 serving clients in the marketing and branding space, they now help other service based business owners reignite their offer, create systems for client experience, and get more of their time back inside their program, The Incubator. Featured in Forbes, HuffPost, Marie Claire and INC. The team at Boss Project is truly revitalizing the service based industry through strategies that don’t require flashy marketing, a huge audience or full-time hours.

https://www.instagram.com/bossproject/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/thinkcreativecollective/

https://www.pinterest.com/bossprojecthq/_saved/

https://www.youtube.com/bossprojectchannel

https://www.tiktok.com/@thebossproject

https://view.flodesk.com/pages/5efbba28caabca0028b83eb5

https://bossproject.com/

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-strategy-hour-podcast-online-business-blogging/id1186889023

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Transcript
Blair Kaplan Venables:

You ever wonder what success actually means?

Theresa Lambert:

How do you get it?

Blair Kaplan Venables:

And how do you keep it?

Theresa Lambert:

We all want it yet sometimes it feels only some of us get to have it.

Blair Kaplan Venables:t's be real for a hot minute.:Theresa Lambert:

Can you put it in a box?

Blair Kaplan Venables:

How can you get it?

Theresa Lambert:

Can people take it away? Or are you the one with the power?

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Does it mean the same to all of us? Or are we the ones that create it?

Theresa Lambert:

From PGA golf pros to doctors, CEOs, entrepreneurs and spiritual mentors. We get together to meet with successful people from around the globe to dissect success for vibrant conversations and interviews. Make sure you click the subscribe button on the app store because each week we will drop a new episode to bust through the myths around success and dissect its true meaning.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Welcome back to another episode of dissecting success. It's me, Blair Kaplan Venables, and I'm here with the one and only Theresa Lambert. Hello. And today we are joined by Emylee. I'm really excited because I didn't know Emily until this very moment. And I'm super excited to get to know you, Emylee, like this is awesome. And you're one of two people. Well, you're yourself.

Emylee Williams:

Yeah I'm one of two people.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Yes Me, myself and i There are three of me. You know Abagail and Emylee are the business fairy godmothers behind boss project and the hosts of the chart topping podcast the strategy our their internet famous program Trello for business, which breaks down boring and complicated systems into bite sized chunks. sounds extremely fascinating. Especially because I use Trello. I use click up I use Monday, I use Slack, I use all the things. I love this, they've helped over 10,000 Creative small business owners. They've been featured in media like Forbes, Huff Post, and ink. I love ink. And I'm just super excited to dive in. So Emylee, welcome to the show.

Emylee Williams:

Hello you get just me today. My other half my business partner, Abagail decided to ditch us all today for a networking event local here in Kansas City. So we haven't been out in the world, and many times and so we got invited to this event. And I was like, I will represent us at home. And you go out into the public. So she's doing that for us.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Oh, fair, fair. You know what, like, networking is so important. Like my business is almost 15 years old. Most of my business comes from referrals. And a lot of that it's from relationships that I make at networking events. So you go girls. So, Emily, what does success mean to you?

Emylee Williams:

Yeah so, you know, here at boss project, we've really leaned on what we deem as an internal and an external value. We call it our life first, business model, philosophy, value, whatever. And we have lived that way and have grown our business for the entire time having that top of mind. But when I saw this question pop up, I was like, Okay, well, if we're super particular about making sure we're designing and actually maintaining a lifers business, like, how do I know that we're doing that? Or what is you know, what does checking the box really look like for me? So I'm sure Abby would have a different version of this answer. But for me, as I don't know, if you're interested in like human design, and Enneagram, and all of the things. So I'm a projector INFJ Enneagram. Three. And so specifically as a projector, I do not have like untapped energy, like a just endless supply of energy, I have to recharge, I have to step away, I have to do something different in order to get that energy. And so it was like looking back this past couple months or a year. I mean, honestly, since like, the pandemic happened. And I'm like, Okay, well, how have I been working and living and enjoying work life. And so to me, success is when I'm able to, and I'm supported to, and it's available to me to get to prioritize my energy and creative flows. So that means being in a space financially, that I get to say no to things that I don't have to say yes to every project, being in a space professionally where I like my job and I like the things that I get to do within my job and I have space to be able to show up creatively in the different roles that I have here at boss project and also within my personal brand, but then also making sure I have the personal support to do that. So a partner who supports me taking time time away from me leaving the house to go do certain work for me not having to drop off and pick up work kiddo, and everything in between and just getting getting supported in my journey of being able to hold those boundaries and maintain

Theresa Lambert:

them. I love this. I love this Emylee, I'm free five, many Jen, over here, Blair, she's also a free five manifesting generators, so, but she has a sacral authority, I have an emotional authority. So we are definitely big on the human design over here. So I appreciate the projector vibes in the house leading the way for all of us. I love what you just shared around, you know, success being the ability to be in a place where you can prioritize your energy. I think that, to me personally, that resonates, I've been on a journey for a very long time on really putting our energy first and living our life that is aligned with with where we are energetically not just from a human design perspective, but really, more so from that physical perspective, I really think that so many of us are, have been taught that we have to just grind all the time and be booked out of time, you know, to be able to create the success like that a lot of people believe what success is, is I think this this idea of a title, the money the thing, you know, for a lot of people, I think we were taught this old story of success. And as everyone goes through life and realizes that there is more to it than that. You know, it's always amazing to see how we come to the other side. So I love that you're prioritizing your energy. One of the things I found really interesting about what you said was having the ability to to have, you know, like being in a space where you can actually do that. Yeah. And that was such a, I really love that. And I wanted to like ask you, you know, do you think about this more? What advice would you give people that maybe are not in a space right now to prioritize their energy, because I have found for myself, like, my energy comes first. And like, I am no longer willing to sacrifice my health, especially for anything, even if that means making tough choices on the other side of it, like Yeah, if I like I will not sacrifice my energy to work with a client that is robbing me off my sleep. And if that means saying no to that client or firing that client, I will literally do it. And that has financial repercussions, of course, right. Um, but I know that sometimes we'll a lot of people, the money can sort of keep them trapped. And like now I know, you know, this isn't like, you know, maybe like your your expertise area,

Emylee Williams:

I still have opinions.

Theresa Lambert:

You know, I was like you said it, and I wanted to to have you to talk about that. Yeah. Thoughts on

Emylee Williams:

that? Well, because like, I think it's one thing for people, you know, I could come on here and be like success means like getting to do all these things and making sure you have slower mornings and journaling and having space in time for whatever activities light you up. But if you literally do not have the support financially, physically with a partner, in business, or personal, whatever, you can't do those things just because you want to doesn't mean that you are set up to be able to do those things, or you sometimes are in the transition of maybe you can do them, but it means money is going to be tight, or it means you're going to have to say no to this thing that you do really want to do in order to set yourself up to be able to do those things. So there's definitely growing pains to get to that end goal, that end outcome. And so to me, like the the success is kind of checked is for me to guilt free get to be able to prioritize those things, but how do we actually get there? To me, all of it truly comes down to boundaries, not just stating them, but holding them and setting yourself up for success to maintain them. Because I think it's one thing to say, my boundary is I'm not gonna, you know, work on client work at night or on the weekends. Well, that's great and less like, you're not going to actually be able to say no to that if you don't have the systems in place for you to make sure that you're finishing projects on time and great client communication so you can stay on schedule, and that scope is clear and your contracts are clear and whatever. There's 10,000 Things that could set yourself up for success to be able to actually do that thing. But to me even looking at boundaries and being like okay, we'll just create some boundaries seems kind of elusive or difficult sometimes. And so actually read this article recently and we talked about on our podcast was the concept of coming up with hard boundaries versus soft boundaries. Hard boundaries are your non negotiables. Right? So for example, I will not take recurring client meetings if they happen on Fridays. So if you're a client, and the only time that you can meet with me as a Friday, we're not going to work well together, that's my non negotiable Fridays are my free day, I like to have that flex space, I will say no to a client, that's the only option. My soft boundaries are more of an aspiration. So like, maybe one day I want to be able to like work through only three to four days a week, or a certain amount of hours in a day, or I want to like work remotely in another country, or whatever it might be. I might not be able to say tomorrow, I'm only working three days a week or next month, I'm flying to Europe, and I'm not coming back. That might not be realistic. But I can aspire to have that as a boundary as a goal. Right. So the issue with aspirational amount I'm not issue but the interesting part of aspirational boundaries, soft boundaries, is they typically require other people to help you make them happen. So like in my business relationship with Abigail, if I wanted to work remote from Europe for the summer, great, we can do that. But I have to get other people on my team on board with that, how can we support me in that goal? What needs to be set up in place? Now in order to make that happen? What communication do I need to have with my partner, my child's school or childcare here, whatever the selfish version of that would be, I'm just gonna go work remote. See, you guys, you guys figure it out, I'm gonna leave because this is what I want to do. That's not actually realistic. And I sometimes when we think about boundaries in that way, that's when we don't hold them because we think they're hurting other people. But in reality, you could literally just loot people into that aspiration that you have, and get people support and making it

Blair Kaplan Venables:

happen. Is that is that like, you know, the Trello course you created is that like, what you teach in systems really, so

Emylee Williams:d, etc. Well, we made that in:Blair Kaplan Venables:

That's fine. I like that. I'm like, oh, I want to use that. I was using Trello and I just moved everything from Trello to clickup. And one of my clients is using monday.com actually like monday.com So anyways, I'm always kind of ebbing and flowing. Yeah. Like Were you always really organized it into systems like as a little girl and like that. Yeah, like how did you get to this point in your life? Yeah.

Emylee Williams:

So what's really funny is that so Abigail, and I have I have a lot of very similar tendencies. We're both art school kids, she went the more graphic design route, I went the more photography art route. But we still think a lot of the same ways. In the artistic side, I am the very traditional creative. I mean, if you could see the other side of my office, it is a disaster. I am very much that person that's like there's, there's a messy version. And I know where everything is. And that's kind of how my system works. But when I met Abigail, and there were two of us, like, you just have to be a very different, intentional, organized person, when you're working with someone else relying on someone else, I would do part of a project and she would step in and do another part. So we needed to know where the other person was at access to files, like all of the very simple things that are very boring, but helped make a business actually run. So when her and I got together, it was like, Oh, now we like, I get to be the vision of here's what I think it should be. And here's how I think it should work or my ideal situation for how this client process or client experience or behind the scenes system works is this and her brain is like, Oh, well, then we need to connect this system to this system. And that's how that's gonna, like make it actually happen. So I like to think we're, we're a good little duo in that sense.

Theresa Lambert:

I love that. I love that. And I also feel like I mean, I I'm like a very organized person, I've also scaled a business to eight figures and double the size of a team. And so we understand the complexity of having multiple people talking to each other and everything like working, I think that was one of the things that I've really learned being in the hotel industry was that, you know, when when one piece doesn't talk to the next piece, there isn't processes and systems in place to do things. It's just not gonna work and the client experience is gonna stop them and the client experience is going to suffer quite honestly, you're never going to have a long term sustainable business. And in the hospitality industry, you're dead. Yeah, so

Emylee Williams:

well, and now we're a team of seven and use the site exclusively, Asana was slack and a little bit of notion here and there. But we don't, we don't use Trello anymore for our day to day because it didn't, it didn't grow with us as fast as we needed it to. Because when you are managing hundreds of clients, and a team of seven full time employees and benefits and a leadership team and all of it, it gets hairy.

Theresa Lambert:

Yeah, it's different. But I love one of the things that you said, and I wanted to highlight that, that I really love about what you and Abigail do is that you're also helping people break down the steps, you know, because I think sometimes it's easy to say, oh, we'll bring in a system or we'll bring in a process or you know, just do this or even have somebody teach it to you. But the reality is that as creative soul or whatever, you know, anyone that's listening is doing, you will create creative, you're a writer, you're maybe a virtual assistant, you're a photographer, you are, you know, a coach, your whatever it is that you do, and that is what you are an expert at. And somehow as entrepreneurs, we have this tendency to just be in this do it yourself, like buy, right, especially at the beginning, but I think that as you grow, and I do a lot on helping people upscale their businesses, and that is about bringing in systems and teams and processes and all that stuff and looking at what gets in the way. And I think that it's so key, that you're not only, you know, offering people to teach it to them how they use something like Trello, but actually also can help them breaking down. What does that process actually need to look like? What is that journey that the customer goes through? Like, you know, what do we need to actually hit. And I think that's so essential, and I love that you're doing that and that that ultimately ties into freeing up people's space. So they can hold their boundaries and leave the office and everything is connected, right, which will then give you or be able to put you in a place where you can prioritize your energy because you are more organized on the back end and not actually floundering. So I really love that because it really is like, such a beautiful way what you do allows you to really live out success in the way yeah, that it holds meaning for you. Yeah, definitely.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

So cool. When Um, okay, so you've moved to Asana Are you going to be on a courses like what a you know, like, because obviously there's the people who come into your world. And maybe they also outgrew Trello the 11,000 people, which is a lot of people like That's insane. Even patented a lot of

Theresa Lambert:

regulation. We're like, can we just celebrate the fact that 11,000 people it's a very weird?

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Good, it's good? Yeah. Like, a lot of businesses you're organizing or

Emylee Williams:

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So right now we have a sauna for teams. It's a program that's included inside of our coaching program that incubator because we help you. Ultimately, we help one on one service space business owners scale past 10k months to cut back their hours, double their income, grow a team, that's an alignment with how they want to grow their business and their life. So we organize all of their project management system and a training called Asana for teams. We're also going to be debuting Asana for business when we rework Trello for business, so you'll be able to choose your platform as a solopreneur. You can pick Trello, you can pick a sauna, and then when you're ready to upgrade for teams, you can unlock the asana for teams inside of our

Blair Kaplan Venables:

program. Ooh, I just want to say like, Theresa and I are like business besties besties business partners, like we have, you know, a podcast and a group coaching program, but like, and we're both very creative, but she's the organized one, like, Ah, you saw my desk, you can only see what you see. But there's notebooks and posted notes and highlighters and doodle and

Emylee Williams:

food and water bottles.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Yeah, yeah. And like, I mean, I'm like, we're working on systems. And as we scale and grow, like, we, you know, we're getting better and we're, we're communicating and whatnot. So, yeah, you know, it's definitely, like, really good to, you know, if anyone's listening and you're in a partnership like, it's, it's okay, if one of you is not as organized. Yeah, that's

Emylee Williams:

100% I definitely don't think it can be both of us. And I think I think it's best that only one of you thrives in that area, because there's no reason for both of you just be really good at the same thing. Like you're that view here that Theresa,

Blair Kaplan Venables:

it's okay that I'm not organized. Okay, it's okay.

Emylee Williams:will meet We only live about:Theresa Lambert:

I think that's such a critical point that you're bringing up, you know, that like as business owners, we, you get to the point that as you have more clients, you do start to need to balance the time that you can spend running your business, working on your business, promoting your business and the time you spend serving clients. I always I'm a big advocate for having at least one day a week that you keep clear. We tried to do all day, that is a day to work on your business a day to be clear about all the things but I think that's so like, it is so fascinating, just like hearing to like hearing you share your story, what you're doing, how you're helping businesses get organized and scale. It's like you're speaking my language. I really really love it. And I feel like you know, one thing that I had realized for myself going through that was that I I love handwriting everything so when I transitioned from my corporate career into my coaching business full time, I also sort of transitioned from doing everything on the computer from using a lot of tools that I use my hands with because it works really well for me but then this summer I found my way, transitioning my life dismantling my life dismantling my business realizing that I was at capacity between like clients needed to bring in a team and and get organized and literally take what's on paper. Yep, and put it into your system that communicates with people around the globe. I'm in Buenos Aires, Argentina right now I'm now a nomad entrepreneur for an unforeseen time. So I literally have to be able to communicate what needs to get done. Yep. Not on

Emylee Williams:

purpose. Yes. The amount of business as we work with to do that, who, you know, they've grown these local based businesses that are, you know, in the millions, they have a great team, they have a great service, they have a great product. But it's typically like the owner who's looking ahead at wanting to retire in five years, 10 years, there's no one really to pass it on to but what if they sell it, and everything lives in their brain or on paper in their desk in a Rolodex, like an actual paper Rolodex, or just these like discombobulated files that mean nothing that have no organization? And I'm like, bro, you, you could do your job so much faster? Even if you had all this organized, let alone like, how do you expect to pass this on to anyone? If this is how it's structured? So,

Theresa Lambert:

so juicy, I love this. So I'm really like, what would you say? Like, if somebody is getting ready to, to bring in these systems to change the way they're succeeding in their businesses to systemize? Like, where? Where do you even start? Like, where would you suggest they start?

Emylee Williams:

Yeah. Well, so typically, we work with service based business owners. So that's what I can speak to the most. But my favorite, even if you're not even looking at systems, which you should be, but if you're like, I know my business needs something, but I don't know where to start. Maybe it's maybe it's systems, maybe it's project management, maybe it's a team, maybe it's task management, maybe it's client delivery, or client experience, I don't really know. So what we like to do is what we call is chase the breadcrumbs. So it's like doing an actual audit about identifying your biggest area of opportunity. So what is the space that brings you either the most income or has the ability to so like, what's your client clothes or onboarding process? Like? What's your lead your prospect to lead process, like, what's your lead to client process, like, like, pick apart all of them and identify the area that is your biggest opportunity, meaning if you pour time and energy into that, it will increase in its results, therefore bringing you in more money, I want you to just pick the one that's going to actually bring you in money first, like, eventually, they all need fixed, but there's some that are just like kind of an annoyance. But for example, we have clients who will go into their CRM, and they're like, Man, I'm like, I'm losing money this year. Like, I'm definitely not bringing in as much money as I was last year, like, I don't know what's going on. And we head into their CRM, and I'm like, Well, you have 75 Open Invoices right now. So like, what's your process for following up about people who haven't paid do have your reminders turned on? Can you turn on automatic payments? Do you have some clients who need to actually invoice and close out so you can make money? Like, what's the, why is this broken? Here? What do we need to set up because that will literally make you 60, grand, 70, grand, whatever, however much money is sitting there, right? So that might be an area that you need to pay attention to. We had another client who came to us and she was like, I'm just not getting any leads. This year. No one's booking a discovery call. I don't understand what's happening. I'm not booking clients like what is going on. So she thought her pricing was off, or her offer was off rushing to talk to new people. So we chase the breadcrumbs and did an audit, every button on her website was broken every button. So like you had to do digging to find one link that opened up a calendar to book a discovery call. And when you finally got to that she was all booked out through the remainder of the year because she just hadn't edited her availability. So it's like little stuff like that, that like unless you investigate and do the digging and stop making assumptions about what needs your attention, actually chase the breadcrumbs to find your opportunity and like sometimes your bleeding wound, then that's where you need to actually start and create the system

Theresa Lambert:

around. So good. Chase the breadcrumbs people chase

Emylee Williams:

CHase the breadcrumbs.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

Oh my gosh I'm like, I'm like a show hire you.

Emylee Williams:

We do this.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

I got lots of crumbs. Yes. A lot of people do. A lot of people

Emylee Williams:

do. And it's it's really easy to become overwhelmed about all the areas that you could perfect in your business. And, you know, we even got this kind of feeling of overwhelm when we first started because it was like, I don't know if y'all remember, but maybe like five or six years ago, it was really popular to just like create an SOP for everything. Like if you don't have an SOP for this, you're failing. And then a lot of people like you would make it and then the next month, the next quarter, the next time you launched the whole process was moot like it didn't matter because it changed. So you just spent all this wasted energy creating a binder of SOPs that no one actually uses. So when instead of like pigeonholing yourself to like, I'm not doing this thing. And that's what I need to do. When you actually spend the time to investigate, you can pour your energy where it matters, because maybe it's in this day, you'll always have a hot ass mask when it comes to you the onboarding process, for example, okay, if that doesn't actually going to help you bring in more money, bring in more referrals, get amazing testimonials or case studies that are going to help you land more clients than don't pay attention to it right now. It's okay, if it's messy, because we can't make everything perfect. But I want you to pay attention to the things that are gonna make a difference.

Theresa Lambert:

Yeah, I think that's so critical. And you know, I think one of the key things about finding new programs, and I talk about that a lot, too, is that we have this tendency to look outside, broken, instead of actually going into our businesses and being like, let's actually see what is working and what isn't lacking and find out. What's stopping the flow of cash coming in, what's stopping the growth from happening? Because it's so funny how most of us are just like, Oh, I just need a better offer. I need this or I need to have more knowledge, or I need another

Emylee Williams:

sport because I'm not good at sales, or my offer isn't good enough or whatever.

Theresa Lambert:

Totally. And it's really that internal peace, like looking on the inside. And yeah, I love I love that so much. And I really hope that everybody listening is like, like, look

Blair Kaplan Venables:

inside, follow the

Theresa Lambert:

breadcrumbs in and bread crumbs out.

Emylee Williams:

You don't need to go viral on Tiktok for like your whole business to turn around and shift and grow and scale and whatever. Like you have way more control over it than you think that you do.

Theresa Lambert:

I love it. I love it. Emylee. So how can people get in touch with you? How can people find you if they're like, Heck, I need Emylee and Abagail and my life I need to get organized. Find these bread grandmas? How can they find that breadcrumb trail to you?

Emylee Williams:a week every week since like:Theresa Lambert:

I love it. I love it. Oh my goodness. Okay, well, we will make sure that all the links to everything you just mentioned is in the show notes. So it's very easy for everybody to find. That is how we are keeping our show notes. Oh, I love it. I'm like, Look, we're organized.

Blair Kaplan Venables:

We are organized. We have a good system with the podcast we have you have.

Theresa Lambert:

Thank goodness. Emylee, it was so amazing to have you on the podcast. I really loved this conversation. And I know it's gonna resonate with so many of our listeners around just organizing. And so yeah, with that being said, thank you so much for being here on the dissecting success podcast. And this is a wrap for a another episode. We're so excited to be back and go find the readcrumbs.

Emylee Williams:

Thank you

Theresa Lambert:

that's a wrap for another episode of dissecting success. enjoyed this episode. Make sure to subscribe to black goblin Venables and Theresa Lambert's podcast dissecting success on the App Store.

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