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I’m a Millionaire Black Woman #1 Advice │ DiversityComm

By Rachel Rodgers  

“What’s my next move?”

At the beginning of 2020, that’s the question that kept me awake at night. As the pandemic began, everything felt shaky and precarious. Especially for business owners like me. During the first lockdown, dozens of clients emailed to say, “Rachel, I love working with you and your team, but…”

“I’m worried about the economy.” “I have to trim my budget.” “I need to cancel my services.”

Overnight, my client roster dwindled as one person canceled, then another. Revenue took a nosedive. My stomach lurched every time a new message came into my inbox. Another cancellation. I have a team of employees who rely on me for their paychecks. People with kids, mortgages and student loans. I needed to find a way to salvage my company (which felt like a sinking ship) and continue paying my team. Not to mention, pay my own salary! With four kids of my own, I’ve got bills too.

I stood in my shower as hot steam surrounded me. I needed to be alone and hear myself think.

“What’s my next move?”

The question kept echoing in my head. With the pandemic raging, my business model wasn’t working anymore, but I wasn’t sure what to do next. That’s when I had a moment of clarity.

“We need to talk to our community, find out exactly what they want and give it to them. And we have to move fast.”

My company, Hello Seven, provides business coaching. Want to start a six-figure side hustle? We’ll show you how to do it. Ready to expand your business and make your first million? We’ve got a path for you to follow. Tired of over-working and under-earning? We’re here to guide you through your own personal Glow Up.

Our clients are women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA and folks from other historically excluded groups. Because when people like us have more money, that means progressive leaders get elected, new laws get passed, civil rights get protected, equity becomes a reality (not a trendy buzzword), senseless wars come to an end and the world becomes a vastly better place.

Back in 2020, as cancellations rolled in, I spoke to my sales team and asked, “What are people in our community saying? What do they need right now?”

My lead salesperson told me the facts. She was blunt.

“Rachel, every week I talk to people who want to work with us…but can’t afford our prices. They want a more affordable option.”

“Okay,” I replied. “Then we need to pivot. Let’s deliver exactly what they’re asking for.”

My team and I acted swiftly. We did not dilly-dally for months. We made immediate moves. Within a matter of weeks, we rolled out a brand-new offer called We Should All Be Millionaires: The Club.

The Club includes education on how to build a successful business, coaching to reach your financial goals faster and a diverse community of people who look like you—all at a budget-friendly price.

We did a quiet launch and had 300 enrollments immediately. Soon after that, we had 2,000 members and a wait-list. We grew so quickly, we had to hire additional team members just to keep up with the demand!

In spite of the pandemic, our revenue grew exponentially. Since then, we’ve become an eight-figure company and hit the Inc. 5000 List three years in a row.

Here’s what I learned from this rollercoaster ride:

  • There is Always Another Move: No matter what’s happening—pandemic, tense political climate or anything else—you have options. You can make more money no matter what’s happening in the economy. There is always a way.
  • Things Never “Settle Down”: We lie to ourselves and promise we’ll go after our goals “when things settle down.” When the pandemic is over. When the kids are older. When x, y, z is finished.

What I learned in 2020—and every year since then—is that things never settle down.

There’s always something getting in your way. That’s why you have to decide, “I’m taking action on my goals now, not later.”

There will be challenges now. There will be challenges later. You may as well act now, because:

  • The Sooner You Act, the Sooner You Win: When coaching my clients, the main issue I see is delaying action. This is tragic because the sooner you act, the sooner you get results. Start a side hustle today and make an extra $10,000 this month and every month thereafter. Or wait two years, start then and meanwhile that’s $240,000 you could have earned if you had just started sooner.

Here is my #1 piece of advice for anyone who wants to have more money:

  • Stop Waiting for Conditions to Be Perfect: Stop waiting to launch your side hustle. Stop waiting until your website is “perfect” to start promoting and selling your work. Stop waiting for permission. Stop procrasti-planning. You can research, plot and plan all you want, but nothing changes until you make a move.

Whoever is reading these words, take action today. Before the stroke of midnight, hire that business coach, sign up for that financial literacy class, download an app to start investing. even if it’s only $300 for now.

As we head into 2024, I hear the rumblings of change again. Our clients have different needs. They want less Zoom and more in-person experiences. My company is listening. We’re ready to deliver. And, we’re moving quickly.

You want to have a million in the bank—and all the freedom that comes with it? The best time to act was yesterday. The second-best time is today.

Rachel Rodgers is the CEO and founder of Hello Seven, a female-run company specializing in business, marketing, financial and legal training. She is an investor and eight-figure business owner, mother of four and the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of We Should All Be Millionaires: A Woman’s Guide to Earning More, Building Wealth, and Gaining Economic Power.

Read more articles from the Black Community here.

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