The Upside

When You’re Ready to Grow, Focus on These Three Words

Over the past two years, I’ve used the word “focus” a lot in The Upside as a compass for helping our members create easier, more rewarding businesses.

But recently, I was turned on to a new set of words that have reshaped how I view business growth.

I was fortunate enough to have an assigned seat next to Pamela Pekerman at a mutual friend’s party where we instantly recognized each other from shared networks and then proceeded to gab about business (as two entrepreneurs often do).

At one point in the conversation, Pamela spoke three words that gave me that rare AHA feeling. She said:

“I help people edit to expand.”

Whoa.

When I reflect back on my own business, 2023 was The Upside’s best year by far as a result of editing. 

In fact, only when I edited down my…

…Social media channels 

(I now only use LinkedIn)

…Team 

(we pruned expensive agencies and upped our game in-house)

…Calendar 

(I no longer take meetings past 2:30pm)

…Offerings 

(I got super clear on what we do and don’t do)

…Lead gen strategy 

(no more 1:1 calls that canibalize my calendar)

…Product-market fit 

(no more testing and trying)

…was I truly able to expand my business. 

I see this come up with consultants all the time. 

I’ve seen them adding more services, more audiences, more lead gen strategies, more hours to their calendar, more VAs, more, more, more and more. 

When ultimately, their businesses would be easier (and likely more successful) if they put that energy towards editing, not adding. For example…

When you edit your social media, you’ll find yourself in the same room as your audience, meeting them where they already are.

When you edit your team, you’ll allocate funds only towards the people who give you back valuable time and make your life easier.

When you edit your calendar, you’ll open up more time for creativity, strategic thinking and calm.

When you edit your offerings, you’ll build upon what’s already working instead of constantly chasing, testing, trying, launching and starting over.

Edit to expand: I hope you’ll use this golden phrase to help navigate those moments when you’re tempted to do more. 

Because more in business is not always better.

(Thanks, Pamela!)

Erin Halper

About the Author

Erin Halper is the founder and CEO of The Upside and the leading authority on independent consulting. Since launching The Upside in 2017, Erin has helped thousands of professionals transition from corporate life into consulting to achieve flexibility, autonomy, and a renewed sense of purpose in their careers.

Erin has been a frequent speaker at Columbia, NYU, Harvard, and Brown and has been featured as a leading future of work expert on dozens of podcasts as well as in Forbes, Business Insider, Nasdaq, Crunchbase and many more.

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