Thursday, December 10, 2020

Grow your business even in tough times … through collaboration!

 Grow your business even in tough times … through collaboration!

I truly appreciate you joining in on the idea of using collaboration to grow our businesses in a smarter way. The fact that you are here reading this means you are like me and you know there is a better way, you know you can achieve abundance and growth in your business without the stress and strain even I challenging times. And so right up front I want to give you a little gift to say thank you.

I’m going to give you a free copy of the recording of the grow smarter mastermind workshop- so you can just relax and take this all in because you already are recieveing your own copy, plus a free copy of the eBook coming out on Amazon on January 9th called Grow Smarter… Collaboration secrets to grow your income and impact.

Stick around till the end and I’ll tell you how you will receive all this stuff and I will also share how you can take part in the complete 4 module crash course: Grow Smarter. OK?

Today I want to take us through my journey to using collaboration to grow my business, The 5 steps to going from stuck and alone in your business to Abundance through collaboration, by developing an outstanding network, without being salesy and without spending a ton of $$$. I know this is possible, I’ve lived it and I’ll share with you.

I’m sharing this with you because I know you are just like me. If I could wrap myself in a bow and send myself to you to sit beside you and hold your hand through each and every one of your business challenges I would do that. The reason I say that is because I know what you have to share with the world is important.

-         You have done the inner work and also the outer work on your business

-         You have amazing talents and abilities

-         When you are with your ideal clients it’s like a symphony

-         BUT

-         You could stand to increase your impact and income…

And you are probably thinking that collaboration might seem like a great tool to grow your business but there are so many things that could go wrong:

      Competition vibe

      Lack of trust

      Not sure each person will pull their weight

      Unsure of the competence of the other

      “I’ll just do it myself,: -Control issue

      Not wanting to let others in

      Not wanting to appear vulnerable

Let me explain why this is so important to me and why I feel as strongly as I do about all of this: I’m DR. Davia Shepherd. Being a patient care physician is a second career for me. I started out working for big pharma and a crisis of conscience and 14 years  later I was on a different trajectory, leaving labs and rats behind to help actual physical patients. My timing was atrocious. I’d just had my baby, and he wasn’t sleeping through the night so I wasn’t either. Some of you have already heard the story of how my health suffered as a result of all my trials at that time and so I won’t go through all of that here. What I will share that I have never shared before and what I’m in a weird way so hesitant to share weird because I am usually such an open book on all topics .. What I’m sharing today for the first time is that I struggled financially.

We all come into our businesses with a plan to hang our shingle and have visions of customers, clients, in my case patients just pouring in, but for me it did not happen exactly that way. Do y’all remember 2010? It was sort of the middle of the economic downturn, there had been a housing bubble collapse, people were losing their homes and stuff. Tough time. That’s the exact time that I joined my practice. Between reduced reimbursements from the insurance companies, Patients losing their jobs and their health care benefits and us losing our Medicaid credential our patient pool shrunk to less than half.

I’m like you. I’m not a quitter, I work hard I do all the things. I hired a business coach, I was out there networking at every event…literally thousands of events, no exaggeration, I had a blog, articles in the paper, email campaigns, social media, website, videos… you name it I was doing it all. And we grew a little but the bills were still piling up.

Then the unexpected happened. You know how they say when it rains it pours?

I remember walking into the office one morning. I was the first one in and it was a Monday morning, it was kind of dark because we were in the late winter and as I opened the door to the office I felt a whoosh of coldness cover my feet up to my ankles and I thought calmly, hmmm I wonder what now?

Turns out we had a flood. Lots of damage to the office itself, equipment…. But wait, there’s more!

We rallied- looking back it was a magic trick how we made that all work. And then a short while after wee had moved back into our offices, the unthinkable happened: We had flood number two! Our upstairs doctors office had a leak in their pipes and water came flooding, this time from the ceiling into our office!

 Bills were piling up, there was even a time when I had to suspend student loan payments just to keep my staff. And while all this was going on I was still diligently out there marketing and networking my large behind off.

I remember it as if it was yesterday.

It was a Monday. It was the third Monday in the month to be exact. I have always been a connector. Back in high school and in college, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I always ended up with friends from varied backgrounds. Thinking back, I realize that I was always able to bring them all together with little or no effort. That day without even thinking about it, just doing what came naturally for me, I invited five of the women that I had met at various networking things to come have lunch together with me.

One was managed a a non profit, one was a videographer, there was a woman who sold greeting cards, a banking vice president, a real estate agent and myself. I tell you their professions because I want to emphasize that they were not necessarily in allied fields, there were not obvious areas for collaboration; networking with each other maybe, but the ways that they could form joint venture partnerships wasn’t just leaping out at us. What is interesting is these women had one thing in common. They were all focused on growing; whether it was a practice, a client base, the position in their corporate career; They were all driven focused women, and like recognizes like.

We all sat down to lunch. This may have been one of the best hours plus that I have ever spent. We talked about our jobs, we talked about our lives. What was interesting is that even though we were all in different fields, we all understood each others’ frustrations, we all rejoiced in each other’s triumphs we all could relate or even give advice for another’s problem or concern. By the time we left that lunch we were fast friends. To this day, if I’m on the side of a road and need help these are some of the women that I know I can call on because their concern is REAL, and they always know they can call on me.

That day at that table: when someone had a concern we were able to mastermind to a solution. Connections, referrals and collaborations were happening left and right. People were pulling out their phones and making connections on the spot.

There was an intentionality about it that had been missing from every single networking event that I had ever attended, even the ones that said they were focused on the giving part.

It was my first experience with this sort of thing. I had stumbled upon it completely by accident and I craved more. So did my friends. Amidst comments that we should really do this more often, ever the practical one, I realized that unless someone did something in that moment a 2nd meeting would literally never happen. It had taken so much time and effort to arrange this date, to get everyone’s calendars to agree, as it was and so I suggested my idea. “Here’s what we’ll do, we will put it on the calendar. We will meet once per month. Let’s make it the third Monday of the month at 12:30 pm.” And so dear one, in the dining room of a Ruby Tuesday on Rt 6 in Bristol CT the idea of what has now grown into Ladies Power Lunch (LPL) was born. LPL has become more of a movement than anything else. It’s a growing space for women in business to connect with each other for free and we only have one rule:


What I learned from this is: Collaboration is amazing because


      Combined reach

      Each person brings their strengths

      Mastermind: 2 or more minds coming together


      Big vision

      Big values

      Safety in numbers

      Increased energy

      More ideas

      Learning from each other

      Increase abundance thinking (mindset)

But it can be challenging! Just thinking back to the main things that people complain about when we talk about collaboration:

      Competition vibe

      Lack of trust

      Not sure each person will pull their weight

      Unsure of the competence of the other

      “I’ll just do it myself,: -Control issue

      Not wanting to let others in

      Not wanting to appear vulnerable

      Being afraid of being steamrolled / not listened to

      Not being confident enough in one’s own abilities


So what if we could get past all these obstacles.

I’m going to invite you to take a minute to tune in Imaging that you are in a void. White pure and clear. Take a couple of deep breaths and get grounded in that feeling of spaciousness and nothingness, that feeling that anything is possible. Now imagine that you have the easy button in your hand and you can literally just think of what you want and hit that easy button and that it will show up in your clear void.

Imagine your business is in the perfect place for 2021. Exactly where you want it to be. Just imagine what you would like and imagine yourself hitting that easy button and seeing your heart’s desires appear:

      What do you need?

      How could collaboration help?

      What hesitation/ obstacles are preventing you?

If it feels right for you, go on over to our LPL Facebook group and share what your creation looks like at the prompt.

During my time in the RED, I learned the five steps to an outstanding collaboration:

1)    Ask –it’s not what you think

2)    Alignment

3)    All in

4)    Asignment

5)    Apps/Resources

I’m going to share with you my perspective on the first three:

Ask: Am I intentional

      Spend some time in contemplation

      What would your ideal collaboration look like

      What pieces of the puzzle are necessary

      Are they all necessary

      What is my next step on this staircase? 


      What is my inner knowing saying about this opportunity

      Do I trust the other person

      Am I trusting the universe

      Am I open to what is available

      I am I open to what is possible

      Am I open to learning

Am I all in

      Brining my best talents to the table

      Working in my brilliance

      Truly feeling there is abundance for all

      Letting go of competition mind set

      Being open to the abundance being delivered perhaps in unusual ways

I’d like to offer the opportunity to continue exploring this topic together, with the Grow Smarter Crash Course. We are going to cover over our 4 weeks together:

      The competitive Vs the collaborative mindset;

      The pros and cons do's and don'ts of collaboration;

       Small business and big business collaboration secrets;

      The 5 steps to going from Alone in business to Abundance in collaboration and

      Integration specifically for the environment we will find ourselves in  during 2021.

I’m a giver and basically we would usually offer this course for $1497, I wanted to give it away for free but basically we realize that the energetic incentive to complete a course is $37

Here’s the link:

I want to close by saying that I truly believe that what you want is possible for you. But ask yourself:

Are you ready to choose a different, easier way to grow your business, even in tough economic times????

      Do you crave a larger audience for your offerings?

      Do you believe the power of the collective is greater than the sum of its parts?

Only you can answer these questions. And if you are a Yes, please know that you can find the support you need with us at “Grow Smarter.”

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