Jaime and her husband David own Tier One Services, an accounting firm that specializes in serving not-for-profit organizations and mission-driven for-profit organizations in the $1M-$50M range. About a year ago, Jaime posted online that she was looking for someone to help her tell her story in a useful way in a business context.
As she put it, “If knew if I could tell my story, I could help more people, and make a bigger difference”.
At the time, her main marketing tactic was answering questions about accounting on Facebook live. The feedback she usually got from people whose questions she answered was “thank you, that was useful” but she sensed she could have much more impact. She knew her perspective on money could be so valuable, but she didn’t know how to express it, how to put it into words that would land. “All I could give were answers, not stories. I had NO earthly clue where to start. I wasn’t even trying to say the deeper things I felt and believed about money and accounting.”
She saw a high cost to this inability to write and speak in a way that touched and inspired people. As she put it, “It put a lid on the impact that my business could have. It put a lid on the financial health of my business. People who give answers only make so much money. For people who change lives, there is no limit.”
She felt she had all this goodness to share bottled up inside of her, but didn’t have the mechanism to make that goodness apparent and visible to others.
When Jaime asked for recommendations for someone to help her tell her story, she got a number of suggestions. When she went to my web page for my Words on Fire Transformative Message Development training her immediate response was, “oh my gosh, did Isabel bug my office? How does she know me this well?” She saw the first tangible evidence of a new possibility that she wasn’t alone in her struggle to communicate her deeper story and that there was in fact a way to get where she wanted to go.
As she put it, “I’ve never run so fast to drop three grand in my life! I didn’t see anywhere else this challenge was being addressed. And unlike other high-priced programs we had invested in previously, I saw that with the approach you teach, the softer approach to sharing your value, there was no sacrifice of effectiveness and there was no jamming your message down people’s throats.”
The True Spirit of Jaime’s Work
Like so many of my Words on Fire participants, telling her stories and then articulating the True Spirit of her work was game-changing.
When her True Spirit came into focus, Jaime’s first reaction was “Holy shit, I wrote that?!?!?!” She saw clearly, “Because of this training, I am now a person who speaks in an inspirational way. That has been the foundation of a significant and permanent shift in how I run my business.”
Here’s the True Spirit she wrote:
The True Spirit of my Work is to invite budding leaders
Into the curiosity and wonder and awe
Of discovering the sacred space within where they affirm: “it’s marvelous to be me”,
Locating the source of goodness and strength within themselves,
Finding the safety and security in the logic of a consistent system of rules and boundaries and in a commitment to integrity
alongside the freedom to invent, cultivate, and attract the resources needed for them to shape the world they live in,
all to co-create a meaningful future for themselves, for their organization, and for the world.
What Changed As A Result
Since completing Words on Fire, and as a result of this new clarity and new confidence about how to communicate the deeper levels of meaning in her work, Jaime opened a new branch of her business called Bookkeepers Rising, where she offers leadership training for bookkeepers who believe that they are ready for a bigger future. The community she created was designed for bookkeepers who are ready to be acknowledged and listened to as advisers to their clients, to be compensated commensurate to that higher level of service, and to grow and build their team. As she puts it, “They go from being geeks to being leaders of geeks. The world doesn’t believe that bookkeepers have that capacity. But I do.”
Bookkeepers Rising is structured as a group offering that can be easily scaled and create recurring passive revenue for herself and her founding members. As she builds and grows the group, she now has ten people using the powerful language she created to spread the word and promote and grow the community.
Jaime’s core business also blossomed as she learned to honor the stories I had her tell as part of the Words on Fire program. She says, “I now have a three-person sales team in Tier One Services, my accounting firm. I have never had sales training in my life, but I designed a sales training for my team based on their own authenticity. A six-phase sales training program in which I ask them to develop their own stories. To talk about what they stand for and what they want to see the world look like. They establish their niche by finding the organizations that are creating those changes and then looking for how our services can help them be financially sustainable. One member of my new sales team has closed two new deals in a short time and another is lining up so many appointments on her calendar with prospective clients.”
The Words on Fire training helped Jaime step into her own leadership, activating her ability to write and speak inspirationally and to show the people on her team how to do the same. She said “I am now delegating a lot more of my billables to my team. I need to be a leader more than a geek. I am spending less time in service delivery and more time in conversation, where things happen. I am spending more time in relationship with clients and in relationship with the team and less time saying ‘let’s go over financials’. When I didn’t know how to connect with people and inspire them, all I could do was deliver the financials.”
Why Take This Training
When I asked Jaime what she would say to someone taking this training, Jaime offered this: “Whenever someone is perceiving something as a big investment, what they are really saying is, ‘I don’t know if I have the time, energy, and resources to get a return on that investment.’
This program is something that is designed to accelerate you getting to what you want with all of your heart.
Work the program and be open to confronting the things you really are. If you are ready to do that, you will reap a return from that. If you are ready to take a look in the mirror, even if you didn’t make an extra dime, you will live the rest of your life differently.
If there are truths you are NOT ready to face that you are denying deep inside yourself, then don’t waste Isabel’s time. She’s not a therapist, she’s a business woman, whose work is based on complete authenticity and sharing that authenticity in a business context.”