Annual Review for 2022 – Simplify to Grow

I’m sitting in here Bruges having a mini break with my family. It’s so beautiful here. They make such an effort with the small details. The mistletoe on the door knocker. The fairy lights twinkle in the night. It’s cold, crisp, sunny weather. We’ve been ice skating. Finished up some Christmas market lunch washed down with warm glühwein. Now everyone is napping.
Well, everyone other than me. I’m feeling reflective and don’t get many quiet moments so here I am writing up my reflections of 2022.
Since I started my business in 2020, I’ve written an annual review. It’s a great way to reflect on my progress and challenges. It’s also a great way of sharing an honest real-life version of events for other coaches starting or growing their own businesses.

WORD OF THE YEAR

At the end of 2021, I set ‘Trust’ as my word for 2022.
It did take trust to completely pivot my business this year and say no to the career and executive coaching projects I’d worked so hard to build in previous years.
It was the right thing for me. I’ve loved going all in on one core offer. After a couple of years of factiousness, it felt good to simplify my business model.

REFLECTION QUESTIONS

The following are the three main questions that I ask myself and my clients every Friday and yearly as an end of year review:
  • What am I proud of?
  • What could be even better and what did I learn?
  • What are my priorities for next week (or year if it’s an annual review)?
It’s a wonderful practice as it’s hard to see progress when you’re in it.

WHAT AM I PROUD OF IN 2022?

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INTENTIONS

On 1 January 2022 I set myself these three intentions

1) Continue to create amazing client transformations

I experienced this with several clients towards the end of 2021 and knew I wanted to up my game and facilitate even more client transformations in 2022.
I’m proud and grateful for the amazing clients I’ve attracted this year. I feel blessed that these amazing, clever, funny, honest, warm, loving women chose me to support them to build their brilliant business.
I’ve witnessed them:
  • Gain high-paying clients
  • Pass on work on to each other
  • Clinch corporate clients
  • Launch brilliant brands
  • Be hugely visible
  • Speak on and launch podcasts
  • Publish a book
  • Speak at large-scale events
And let’s not forget the confidence, personal growth, connection, laughter, fun, compassion, and support that they’ve given each other (and me) on this rollercoaster journey of entrepreneurship.
Learning: Group coaching is my ‘thing’ and where I get my energy. It took me a long time to accept this as I had limiting all or nothing thoughts about coaching – you’re either a ‘pure coach’ or not a coach at all. Now I see coaching skills as ONE tool in my unique toolkit.

2) Strategise and automate

In 2021 I wasn’t particularly organised with my strategy. I wrote emails to my list as and when I felt like it. I held a 5-day challenge at the last moment without planning it as much as I’d have liked to. I really wanted 2022 to be more strategic. I also wanted to start using Facebook ads to grow my email list so I could impact more people.
I was super proud that after 9 months of working with Becky Wise, I finally got an automated webinar funnel up and running. I also ran my first Facebook ads which is a wonderful way to quickly grow my connections. I was consistent with a weekly email to my list.
I held some free workshops which I love running as they are a brilliant way to connect, share my knowledge and help people move forward. I had hoped to have a solid annual plan for when I run these but that is still a work in progress.
Running a business pretty much solo is hard because there is no one reminding you of your intentions! My learning is to work with my VA more in 2023 rather than try to do everything myself without accountability in place. Accountability is essential.
Learning: Get help and accountability for your business – it’s too hard to do it all by yourself.

3) To continue the balance and ease I feel

I ended 2021 breathing a sigh of relief after 3 years of intense work, balancing way too many jobs to gain the courage to go full-time in my business.
My prime focus in 2022 was simplifying my offer into one core evergreen offer. I grew my Business of Coaching programme from 2 to 27 clients this year. That’s pretty AMAZING!
It’s especially amazing as for many months of the year I didn’t prioritise audience growth. My learning to share with you is to ALWAYS focus on audience growth. Consistent audience growth and marketing = consistent clients.
Learning: Simplify your business model for ease and flow. Prioritise audience growth.
Okay, now moving on to more nitty-gritty of 2022:

INCOME

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I *almost reached my goal of doubling my 2021 income (*£6K short). Considering I wasn’t as organised with my time as I’d liked to have been, and moved my business to term-time only it’s a huge achievement. For full transparency this was cash-received. I spent a lot of this on business growth, training and coaching. But to be paid to learn, grow and improve my clients’ businesses so more people get coached is a mission worth spending on.
It’s also a major milestone for me personally to receive more money than I received in my previous full-time job. To do this in school hours, term time only is a tough glass ceiling for me to bust through.
Learning: It’s possible for women to make good money in line with their values around their family commitments.

BUSINESS MODEL

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The best thing I did this year was to go all in on an evergreen group programme model. Evergreen means that the programme runs all year round (for me term-time only) rather than the cohort model where everyone has the same start and finish date.
The benefit to my clients is that they can join my programme when the time is right for them rather than when I decide to ‘launch’ the programme. They also get to join women who have been working on their businesses for a while so they gain their expertise too.
The benefit to me is that I never have to turn away a client or tell them that they must wait 3 months before working with me. It’s enabled me to stop trading my time for money and to simplify my business into one core offer. It’s allowed me to move away from all-or-nothing launches.
I also ran a new 30-day sprint programme which proved brilliant for getting my clients out of the back end of their website and into action! They showed up, took huge action and fast-tracked their business growth.
Learning: Do one thing really well if you value simplicity, freedom and excellence.

HEALTH

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One of the most luxurious things I did this year was to join a health club. Since I set up my business it has been all-consuming. Having somewhere beautiful to go has given me free time to practice yoga and feel space in my mind and body.#
I’m a real business book buff but this year I remembered the love of reading novels for pure escapism!
Diet-wise not the best – far too much sugar and wine.
Learning: Prioritise time to ‘be’.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

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Books

I’ve read 19 books this year:
1) Atomic habits
2) Foundations to Lead From
3) Because of You (novel)
4) It’s not about the Money
5) Father Unknown (novel)
6) Get Rich Lucky Bitch
7) Deciding to Coach
8) Don’t let the Fear Win
9) The book you wish your parents had read
10) Content Fortress
11) You Coach You
12) The Survivors (novel)
13) Deep Work
14) $100M Offers
15) The Confident Coach
16) How to Own The Room
17) How to break up with your phone
18) Think and Grow Rich
19) Five Figure Funnels

Podcasts

I adore podcasts. Too many to name them all, but here are my favourites at the moment:
1) Reset – Liz Tran
2) The Life Coach School, Brook Castillo
3) She Means Business, Carrie Green
4) Diary of a CEO, Steven Bartlett
5) The Cathy Heller podcast, Cathy Heller

Programmes and Coaching

I continued to work with my wonderful coach Nick Harris MCC. It’s been 3.5 years now and I value the space we have created so I can grow. I also often use our time as mentoring and supervision to become a better coach.
I worked with Jacqui Jagger 1:1 for 4/5 months in January. It was great to have her challenging yet supportive approach to thinking bigger AND to notice the progress I was making.
I set up my evergreen programme pretty much from free webinars and content produced by business coach, Gemma Gilbert. Just shows you can never give away enough free stuff as even though I already now have a super successful evergreen group programme I joined Gemma’s programme Amplify a few months ago to continue to refine and grow my programme and processes. Excellence is a value of mine so I will always refine my programmes to ensure that they are current and THE BEST place for coaches to grow their businesses.
I met coach Helen Vandenbert at a mastermind day event in London in September. Helen specialises in helping people gain ‘high ticket’ clients. I was intrigued to learn from her 15+ years in her coaching business so I jumped into her short programme in Q4. It’s been a great money mindset experience to see possibility and be braver with my and my clients programme promises.
I worked with coach Louise Lewis on a ‘beat the burnout’ programme this year. I learnt a lot about tuning into my body and how to help my clients when they feel overwhelmed.
I was coached by a brilliant coach Angela Davies in October-December. I focussed on my children as well as my business. Plenty of tears yet a wonderful supportive approach to knowing that I was not alone in the challenges of motherhood and balancing it all.
Learning: The more you learn the more you realise there is to learn. The day you think ‘I know all this – I’ve heard this before’ is the day you stop learning. With every unique angle, there is learning and growth. Embrace a beginner’s mindset!
WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN EVEN BETTER AND WHAT DID I LEARN?

ORGANISATION

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I did far too much on my own with little organisation and this is not the best way to grow your business.
I need to seek A LOT of support and learn to use it effectively.
I’ve worked with my VA throughout the year and it has been wonderful to find someone who I trust to support me implicitly. I don’t think I’ve ever really found that in the workplace, so I know how lucky I am.
Even so, I didn’t delegate enough. It’s hard when I love to learn all the elements of business including all the tech so I truly understand it. But there really is no excuse in 2023 as I know do know the ins and outs of growing a business from building my own Website, Training platform, Facebook ads, Logo, Blogs, Social Media, Accounting and who knows what else! I’ve done the rounds so I can effectively delegate in 2023.
Learning: It’s great to know how to do things so you push through the fear of the unknown. But when your business grows you’ll want to put all your effort into your zone of genius and delegate the rest.

MARKETING

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I ran four live workshops in 2023 and these were my most successful months. Why did I not do more workshops?! Because it was down to me to decide to run them rather than having an annual plan to remind me of my intention to hold a monthly or at least every other monthly workshop!
I didn’t promote my accelerator programme when I ran it in September other than providing it to my current clients. This was down to September creeping up too soon after the summer break (I work term-time only). I could have delegated the marketing of this if I’d been more organised.
I stopped connecting with new people on LinkedIn for 6 months or more as I was worried to do so. There are so many sleaze bags out there doing business coaching I didn’t want people to think I was the same. I now know that it’s actually a disservice not to let people know that I can help them to start or grow their coaching business. If their only option is the sleaze bags then we’re in trouble!
Learning: Stop focusing on yourself and focus on the person out there who needs your help.

WHAT ARE MY PRIORITIES FOR 2023?

I’m excited to uplevel my brand and invest in a truly aligned brand for 2023.
I want to launch a podcast. I have so many ideas and don’t always have an outlet for them. It would be AMAZING to create something to share these ideas and inspiration to help coaches make progress in their business.
I started a book in 2022 to help coaches to start, grow and scale their businesses. I need to get it over the line this year!
I want to get way better at time blocking. To utilise my time effectively so I truly can switch off when I pick the kids up from school.
Given my absolute love of group coaching, this year I aim to launch a programme to show others how I did it. Women making more money in less time is a real passion for me. Whether you’ve got kids or not, women are often the main carer in their families and that means less time to make a living.
Leverage is the answer.
I’m grateful to have stepped back from selling 1:1 coaching (other than inside my group programme) this year. My group coaching community means the world to me and I love being all in with them and their journey.

THIS YEAR’S WORD OF THE YEAR

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Support.
This year is the year to seek out masses of support AND allow me to be supported.
I’ll work with my VA far more. We’re documenting all my processes so I can delegate effectively as I grow.
I have always worked with lots of coaches and this year I’m excited to also bring in other methods such as EFT and hypnotherapy to work on a deeper subconscious level.

FINAL THOUGHTS

This year has been more spacious as I’ve focussed on one clear offer. This really is the simplest and fastest way to grow your business whilst having time to personally grow, reflect and enjoy what you’ve created!

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I’m wowed by ALL my clients in my The Business of Coaching programme. One reason it works so well is the power of an intentional community. It’s a true haven for learning and pushing outside your comfort zone. And everything you want is on the other side of your comfort zone.
I’ve lent even further into my mission to inspire and empower more women to make money around their families.
Because what comes with money for women in business is:
✨Freedom ✨Choice ✨Voice ✨Impact ✨Purpose ✨Power ✨Potential ✨Growth ✨Innovation ✨Equality
And to role model the possibility to other women that it IS possible to have a purposeful and financially successful career alongside their caring commitments.
You can catch up on my 2020 and 2021 reviews below if you want to follow my whole business trajectory.
2020 The Year I Dared To Believe
2021 From Stress to Alignment
I also shared information on my business pivot in 2021 here.
2023 A Year of Growth
Would you like to start or continue to grow your coaching business?

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Hello and welcome! I’m Joanna Lott, and I’m passionate about empowering qualified coaches like you to build brilliant businesses.