If you’re the CEO of your company, you’ve likely used what I’m calling,  “entrepreneur intuition,” to get there. (And if you’re not quite “there” yet, wherever you want to be – you’ll need this mindset to get going!)

I believe entrepreneurs are inherently different. We have a gift for seeing things from a unique perspective.

Which means, our best step forward is following our instincts, i.e. intuition. 

“Entrepreneur Intuition” refers to the gut-feeling or “knowing” you experience when it comes to making a decision or solving a problem. (I’m not sure how to describe it any other way!)

You likely know the answer to most of your questions… 

The problem comes when we get too busy with the day-to-day (or too overwhelmed without systems + processes!). 

Because that makes listening to our gut response a whole lot harder. 

When you’re barely surviving in business, reaching for intuition can feel impossible. That’s why I’m saying, “You have to make SPACE in your day-to-day life for intuition to show up + guide you.”

Entrepreneur Intuition comes naturally… but only when you invite the possibility. 

In this episode, I’m taking a practical look at the “woo-woo” concept of intuition, which means I’m going into details about… 

  • How to open up space in your day + why this REALLY matters
  • Why INTUITION is your key to better decision-making 
  • And why this mindset creates PROactive solutions (v reactive ones!) to the real-life problems you face

Tune in for 20-minutes of business advice – with examples from my own experience!

If you’re ready to partner with a team like Hirsh Marketing, visit HelpMyStrategy.com to go through our application process! We only accept clients who we know we can help – but even the application is an invaluable experience in clarifying your next steps.  

And if you’re curious about how I made more space in my day by deleting social media from my phone, episode 127, “Why I (pretty much) quit my personal social media,” is a MUST-LISTEN!

Key Points: 

[3:01] You’re born with this. But your busy-ness makes it harder to find.

[6:09] I can see things from a 30,000 foot view… which means I can easily pull out any problem areas

[9:26] And now, even my Team is learning to follow my intuition… 

[12:12] This lets us be proactive v reactive with problems

[16:10] You can’t do this well when you’re bogged down in the day-to-day… and that’s where I was a couple years ago

[17:53] This means Team Hirsh is able to deliver WORLD-CLASS service to clients! Head to HelpMyStrategy.com to fill out your application.

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Episode Transcripts:

Hello, everyone. Welcome back to the podcast. Today’s episode is going to be a fun one. I really feel called to talk about this, because it’s been a huge theme for me the last couple of months, and I think that it’s something that you should focus on if you’re a CEO, and you should pay attention to, and also something you should… a place that you should strive to be in your business, in this mindset and in this brain space. So I want to share this, because it’s a conversation I’ve been having with some of my friends.

My dad’s an entrepreneur, so I’ve talked to him about it. If you’re a CEO, you probably know what I’m talking about, if you run a company, where you hear something or you hear your team talking or you’re thinking about something, and you just know what to focus on. I don’t know how else to describe it, but sometimes there are days where I just wake up, and I’m like, “We need to look at this,” or, “We need to look at this team member,” or, “We need to look at this process,” or, “We need to look at this project,” or, “We need to change this,” or, “We shouldn’t hire this person,” or, “We should hire this person.”

I believe there is an entrepreneur intuition, and one really cool thing… and this is not meant to be like “woo” or anything for you. It’s like, I really believe that this is true for everyone, no matter if you believe in that or not, and you believe in like the universe and another form of energy guiding things. But, I believe that as a CEO, you’re here and you’ve been able to build a company, and you’re an entrepreneur, that you have this different way of looking at things that’s very gifted and very special. In order to get to where you got today, you’ve listened to some sort of intuition, and you’ve listened to some sort of… whether you call it an inner calling or an inner voice or something that’s kind of telling you the direction to go.

I think that as we grow a business and as we get busy and as we get bogged down with things and team members and just like, all of the pieces of growing a business that are very stressful, we lose this a little bit, because we can’t see past today, and we can’t see past this week, and we don’t have this mental clarity and brain space to listen to our entrepreneur intuition. I believe, I really do, that if you are an entrepreneur, you’re born that way. There’s no way I was taught what I was taught. I was born this way, I tell people that, “It’s in my blood to be an entrepreneur. I don’t know any other way. I don’t know how to turn it off.” I’ve never actually had a real job. I just know how to start businesses.

A lot of times people will ask you, and you may have experienced this, too, “How did you do it? How did you start your business?” And you can’t lay it out. It’s like, “I followed my intuition.” I mean, obviously, there’s a lot more to it, but it’s like, “I found a need that people needed, and I built a business around it. And I kind of know the next step.” And my husband and I have this conversation, because he’s definitely not as extreme of an entrepreneur as I am. He doesn’t want to work for somebody else, so for that reason he doesn’t, but he’s not as driven and crazy as I am with building a business. It’s not a fun thing for him.

For me, I love working, and I love building my business. It’s like a game. I just love it. I’m obsessed with it, honestly. And with that, it’s like, I was born with that, and there has [been] this intuition of like, what the next steps are. My husband will be like, “I don’t know how you have these ideas that are in the cloud, in space, and you go make them happen, and you know the steps to take to make them happen.” And I’m like, “I really don’t either. It comes naturally to me. It’s definitely a super power that I have.”

But where I’m going with this is, I believe every entrepreneur has this intuition where they know what to focus on. And here’s how it comes up for me, and here is what I think your goal should be, to be in this brain space if you’re a CEO, to be in this mental place where you are able to tap into this and listen to it. And if you are not, and you’re so overwhelmed, you’re going to miss things. And then also you should listen to it.

And so here’s an example… I also believe that, truly, in this thing… I believe that with this [“role” in your company], there is nobody else who can actually do this in your company and have this level of intuition, and that’s why it’s important that you spend your time here, and you delegate everything else, and you get everything else off your plate. Because I have this 30,000 foot view of my company that I’m able to tap into, this intuition and just gut feelings that nobody else in my company is [able to see]. And they won’t be able to, because they don’t have the perspective, the free brain space… because they’re doing their day-to-day job… that I have, and it’s so crucial to get yourself here as an entrepreneur.

So here’s how this has been coming up for me in the last two months. And really, tapping into this and paying attention to it and making it so that I have free mental clarity… a big part [of that] is getting off social media myself. If you haven’t listened to that podcast episode [episode 127, “Why I (pretty much) quit my personal social media”], I would tune in to that. I have way more brain space to be thinking about things and ideas and following this intuition.

Every week I go to an ads team meeting for my whole ads team, and it’s the entire ads team. It’s run by the head of the ads team, and I sit on that meeting on mute, most of the time. If they ask me a question or they want my feedback on something or I really feel it’s necessary to weigh in, I will, because it’s a great opportunity for me to give my voice and my opinion and how I want our brand represented in front of the entire ads team, but for the most part, I’m definitely not driving it, and for the most part I’m not really contributing, because it’s not about me. It’s not about me saying like… I don’t lead my team where everybody’s looking to me for direction. I lead my team where they know what to do. They’re given the tools to do their job, and they are given the freedom and the space to be able to voice when something can be done differently or better or that they should change the way it’s done.

So, I sit [in] on that meeting, for the most part on mute. It’s actually one of my favorite meetings to go to, and I sit there with a notepad, and I just observe. I observe the conversations. I observe the things that the ads managers are saying. We ask very open-ended questions like, “Where did we do well last week, and where did we struggle? Where were you guys uncomfortable?” And they’re just kind of talking it out, and I listen. Then I just take notes during that time, and from those meetings I then the next day, have my weekly meeting with the head of the ads team. She’s my one direct port, the one contact that I have, to the ads team and everybody else. She’s like a liaison for everybody else, for me.

Out of those meetings somebody is able to say something, not necessarily directly relevant to a problem I see, and I can tell you exactly, coming out of those meetings and just any of my interactions with my team, where there are potentially bigger problems, a place we need to put a focus, a process that’s broken, a project we need to work on, a team member issue, like any of those things. I can pull that out of [very] little conversation, because I… The only way to describe it is… it’s intuition. I’m sensing energy, and I can see things from that 30,000 foot view, and I have that perspective to go like, “Wait, that made me a little uncomfortable there. Let’s look at that deeper.” Or “Wait, that’s a problem that we haven’t addressed yet. Let’s figure out what we need to do there, and let’s look a little more at that or create a project around that,” or any of those things. I’m able to pull that, not out of directly… It’s really because I have the view that I have of my company, and I can look at it from that high perspective and go deeper.

We’ve learned over the last six months… there’s been times where I’ve said something like, “I really think we need to look at this,” and then the team doesn’t get to it right away, or they keep doing their job, like their day-to-day job and their day-to-day projects. They’re busy, and so they don’t get to it. And then like a week or two weeks later, we have an issue surrounding that thing that I said. We kind of have this joke of like, “Well, if Emily says that there’s something we need to at least like look deeper at, for a process or fixing a problem or improving the way we do something, we have to do it, because it’s always right.” It’s almost always right! I don’t think I’ve ever been wrong where I say like, “There’s something off over there. There’s something we need to fix. There’s something we need to look deeper at.”

And so my team has learned to just listen to that and follow that, and I’m trying to also teach my leaders to do it, because they do have that level of intuition. And really it’s whenever you notice something that just doesn’t flow right or doesn’t totally make sense, or it didn’t feel right when you heard it, you can go dig a little deeper, and you usually find something. That’s kind of where you need to focus.

I was just on a meeting. We were doing monthly planning, and I was sitting with the ads team. Actually, I was on a meeting where we were talking about monthly planning with… I was talking to the head of the ads team and our two senior strategists who manage ads managers. We do a weekly 30-minute or 60-minute leadership meeting where I wanted to come, so I had that, again, same thing, that viewpoint where I could ask open-ended questions, I could hear their responses. They are busy in the day-to-day, but I’m not, and so I have that different perspective.

I came to that meeting, and I was like, “What do you guys think we need to focus on for the next month, because we’re going to be doing our monthly planning? Let me hear where you think our gaps are, problems are, room for improvement, projects should be…” And they kind of went through it, and I was like, “Here’s my summary of what I feel like [are] the places that we need to focus.” I kind of laid them out. I think one was like, our weekly reporting. We’re going to redo it, which we have in January. And I had like, different areas. I was like, “Here’s where I think we’re missing [things].” It was like, after that, yeah, that’s it. And I’m like, “I’m telling you right here, here is where we need to look.” And I was right.

The cool part is, I’m able to be in a spot where I’m very proactive about it, so none of these things have become glaringly obvious issues, because we haven’t let it get to that point. They’re just places where it’s like, you’re always improving. And I’ve had to also teach my team, we want problems! I literally love problems. I’m like, “I want you to tell me where there’s things that are broken, because no business… like, we will never flow perfectly and never [not] have a project to work on or a process to fix or a transition that we’re going through.” As hard as that is for me to accept, we never will be in that place. And so I want the problems. I want to know where we’re stuck. I want to know where things might be not exactly where we want them to be, so we know where to put our attention.

And I’m able to, because I have that high-level view, listen to my own intuition, get very little information and know what needs to happen, pass that to my team, and then they go implement and delegate it. I work on teaching my team the same thing, because the goal is… We constantly say this, too,. The goal is that we’re proactive instead of reactive. So we want to have the mindset of, “Let’s go in and ask ourselves, ‘How can we do this better? Where are the problems?’ Let’s question these things a little bit more before it gets to the point where it’s really bad, and we have to be reactive to it, because we have real issues, unhappy clients, or whatever comes of those issues.”

And so we train our ads managers, our senior strategists, our entire team [as] that proactivity instead of that reactiveness, and look at things in that way. And so that’s how I use my own intuition and my own viewpoint, and I go in and I can listen to conversations or sometimes even our huddle. Our huddle is eight minutes or 10 minutes every day, and I’ll hear just a few things. I’ll, afterwards, have a message to the head of the ads team. I’m like, “We need to look at this a little bit deeper. Just trust me, just go dig there a little bit. There’s something there we need to improve. There’s something broken, something not working.” And she does, and then she always finds something.

And so your goal, the summary of this is that, if you are an entrepreneur, you are a CEO, especially if you’re managing a team, you need to be in a clear enough brain space that you can listen to this intuition, and you can have that 30,000 foot view of your company, and that space and that mental clarity, to be up here and then look down at the team and look down at the business and the way it’s running, and know where the next projects are, anticipate where the next problems are, look at where you need to put your time, your team’s time so you can stay proactive. If you get to that place, business is so much more fun, because if you’re in a reactive place, where you’re getting fires thrown at you (and we’ve all been here at one point), fires thrown at you every single day, whatever that looks like, upset students or upset clients or loss of sales, whatever, and you’re getting these fires thrown at you, that’s never fun.

So if you can get your place to that high-level view, where you can be proactive, and you can just pinpoint like, “Hey, I know we need to focus here,” and really listen to that intuition, really listen to that gut feeling… which you can’t do when you’re bogged down in the day-to-day. It just disappears, because all you can think about is like, “What do you have to do to get through today? What do you have to do to get through this week?” And that’s as far as you can see. And a couple years ago, that’s where I was. I didn’t have a team. I didn’t have systems, processes, or any of that to really guide me, and I was in that place. It was really hard.

Everyday I woke up with like, “It feels like I [am] drowning,” and I could barely get my head above water. So your goal is to get to that place where you are looking at your company through that lens, anticipating where the next problem is. Because remember, there’s always going to be a problem. There’s always going to be something to work on, and that’s something you embrace instead of try to resist. I had to learn that, because I hate it. I actually hate that there’s always a problem. I want my business to be perfect [or] I think that I want that, but then on the other hand, I’d be, probably, very bored if there was no project or anything that we had to work on, or no problem I had to solve. So we don’t really want that, but we think we want that. And so, we are trying to achieve that in our business and with our goals and things we do, but you’ll never be there, and you have to teach your team that, too.

Because to them, they think… I’ve gone through this experience that, as a team member, you don’t want there to be problems. You don’t want people to find problems. But I have to teach my team… I want to find problems, because I know they’re there. So if I don’t find them, they’re just covered, and then it gets to the reactive place instead of proactive. So that is your goal.

Now, I think that because I have this viewpoint, because my team’s in this place, because I run my company this way, we are able to deliver an amazing, amazing service. I’ve spent the entire month of January auditing and digging through our client delivery, and we didn’t have any problems. We had, in December, a 95% client retention rate. We don’t have a lot of problems… but we do actually, because I go in and find them, because there’s always a way to improve. There’s always a way to be better. We’re always going to be making our resources, our processes, our systems, the way we show up for clients, the way we do training for our team… better. And so I spent the month of January in this very proactive place, auditing and looking at my company and digging deeper and questioning why we do some things and just updating it, because there are things that we maybe haven’t looked at in a while, and so you can always improve them.

If you want to work with that type of a team… I think it shows in our delivery so much. It’s why we have high retention rates, it’s why we have such happy clients, and it’s why we’re known for that level of service and communication and systems and process that we can provide clients, which is essential in the service industry.

So you can apply to work with us at HelpMyStrategy.com. We’d love to work with you in 2020. We have an awesome application process that you go through. We really don’t take on clients that we don’t believe, truly, that we can help, which is how we maintain that high retention rate of our clients, because we are very strict about who we take on. So if you go through our application process, you’ll be told if we are the right fit, and then again on the call, we’ll explore where you are and then help you with the next steps to go from there. So HelpMyStrategy.com. Thanks so much for tuning in today guys, and I hope this gave you a perspective of where you’re trying to get, if you’re not there already, as a CEO.