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  • Ange

Why I almost pulled the pin on What Lies Beneath (and why I'm so relieved I didn't)

I know it looks like I galivant around in my hooded towel, awaiting the next ocean adventure, but what you don’t see is the effort I have put in to creating, tweaking and executing my What Lies Beneath vision.

We offer a brand new service proposition, so I had to educate the market as I sold to it, which I knew would be more expensive and a slower route to profitability.

I thought I had prepared for this, but I actually hadn’t.

Momentum took much longer to build than I anticipated and it was S.T.R.E.S.S.F.U.L.

I had moments where I was shit-scared that I was going to have to pull the pin. I’d wonder if I had strayed too far, too fast outside my comfort zone and that I’d be forced to retreat back into it.

I've shared this diagram so many times on different forums. It's self-explanatory and thought-provoking.

I’d suffer crippling self-doubt, wondering if I was delusional thinking I could invent a new methodology that offers genuine value to clients, in return for a good price; that we could have fun while we work AND live a healthy and flexible lifestyle.

I’d have the odd cold sweat that my marketing was just too bold, too out there, especially for LinkedIn!

But thank GOODNESS I didn’t act on that negative chatter in my head, because Tracy and I never once doubted the value of what we do.

Just like in a movie, everything came together at once. We landed a couple of long-term projects and people started seeking us out, ready to commit to projects quickly because our positive reputation now precedes us.

We had finally cracked the sales pipeline.

At the same time as our signed and sealed contracts extended well into 2020 (oh the relief I still feel!) we participated in the Design Thinking Xperiment, which involved talking to our past clients to learn what we did well, and how we could improve.

In essence, we did to What Lies Beneath, what we do for our clients!

The WLB DTX Team: Jono our AMAZE coach, Tracy from What Lies Beneath, Trent from Design Buro (responsible for our awesomely bold brand) and Grace from Fuel Agency (a WLB client).

I experienced how it felt to have external people talk to my clients about my business and it was nerve-wracking and exciting.

I had two other pretty full-on experiences in September so I can tell you that the thought of feedback was much more daunting than sitting in an ice bath but not nearly as frightening as being hassled by five silky sharks in Niue (OMG!).

I am so pleased I did all three of these activities; they each enhanced my life, personally and professionally.

The Design Thinking Xperiment (DTX) deserves a blog post of its own, it was SO intense and some of the best time and money I’ve spent because the client feedback we received gave us unshakable confirmation of the value of what we do. We left with a clear mandate for improvements, and this, coupled with our chokka pipeline has meant that we are finally in a whole new realm of business.

We are no longer a start-up. I don’t have to prove the methodology to myself or our prospective clients, it sells itself.

People can feel our certainty, that we are reputable and we know our shiz; it emanates off us because the feedback has given us proof, which gives us mojo.

I feel like I’d spent an eternity in the Learning Zone and gosh it’s tiring being in there for too long.

The Growth Zone is WAY more fun.

Whether your business is two or twenty years old, if it isn’t currently in the Growth Zone, let our feedback short-track your journey there, just like it did ours.

Be bold, be brave, get out of that comfort zone and get amongst it!

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