Could a 30-Day Challenge spark growth in your business? In this week’s episode, Anne and Pamela talk about how being consistent can be a game-changer. Listen to these two VO mavens as they discuss the importance of accountability, why multi-taking doesn’t always help you get things done, and staying focused. Listen for how you can join upcoming VO BOSS 30-Day Challenges!
Quick Concepts from Today’s Episode:
Anne challenged herself to spend 30 minutes every day working on her blog and was able to get a blog out every week in the month of September
Pamela challenged herself to Livestream from Facebook every day in September and streamed every day
Making a challenge public encourages you to actually follow through and is an important factor in success
Chances are, if it’s not scheduled, it won’t happen
Put time to accomplish your goals on your calendar
Do the hard tasks at the time of day when your brain is most active
Anne’s next challenge will be improving her activity on YouTube
Pamela’s next goal is to learn how to use Livestream with an intention of growing her business
Join us on our new Facebook Group “The VO BOSS 30-Day Challenge” to keep up with our monthly challenges, and start your own!
Share ideas with your own network ++
Referenced in this Episode
Direct links to things we brought up ++
Check out Anne’s Blog
Recorded on ipDTL
Editing by the team at Tim Tippets Audio
Full Episode Transcript
>> It’s time to take your business to the next level, the BOSS level! These are the premiere Business Owner Strategies and Successes being utilized by the industry’s top talent today. Rock your business like a boss, a VO BOSS! Now let’s welcome your host, Anne Ganguzza.
Anne: Hey everyone, welcome to the VO BOSS podcast. I’m your host, Anne Ganguzza, along with the amazing maven [laughs] — I don’t just want to call you a maven. The amazing, content-marketing, 30-day challenge co-host maven —
Pamela: Crazy person.
Anne: — Pamela Muldoon.
Anne: Pamela, how are you?
Pamela: I like being a maven though. It’s got kind of a — I mean, it sounds like I have wisdom. Maybe —
Anne: A maven.
Pamela: Maybe I’m fooling myself that that’s a good thing.
Pamela: But I will take it. Hello, Anne.
Anne: Hello, Pam.
Pamela: Good to see — good to quote, unquote see you. [laughs]
Anne: I know! I’ll tell ya, so it’s been a great 30 days.
Pamela: It’s been a busy month of September. And — yeah.
Anne: It has, it really has. And we have put forth the challenge, our 30-day BOSS challenge.
Pamela: We did.
Anne: And today we are kind of going to wrap up and talk about our findings, what we learned, and all about maybe how we can continue onward with more challenges in the future. So Pam —
Pamela: I’m telling ya, I learned a lot. [laughs]
Anne: Yeah. I’m going to say for me, it was eye-opening. There were a lot of things that I learned about —
Pamela: Back up and tell us what you did.
Anne: Oh, so —
Pamela: Yeah, what was your challenge task?
Anne: Ok, so my challenge was to spend 30 days every morning working on —
Anne: — getting my blog back, back in line, back in posting every week. Because I had done it for awhile, and then I kind of got busy, lost my way. And then I decided because it was bringing me some good feedback and some positive results in my business, and so I wanted to get back in the track of publishing a blog every week. And I just found that I didn’t have time — or I thought I didn’t have time, and so I committed to 30 days of 30 minutes every day working on my blog to get it out every week. I’m proud to say that I was able to get out a blog every week in the month of September —
Anne: And I’ve gotten some great feedback on it. And I’ve learned a whole lot. What about you, what was your challenge, Pam?
Pamela: Oh my goodness. I decided, because I’m the crazy person — maybe that’s what maven means — to do live-streaming on Facebook every single day for the month of September. And yeah, I’ve got all sorts of learnings to share, Anne.
Anne: And I saw. I was checking up on you, and I think that might be one of the first things that both of us learned, right, because people — we were accountable to people.
Anne: And that was an important factor in making this a success for me especially, and I’m quite sure for you too, Pam.
Pamela: It was — you know, I purposefully chose something that was a very public task, that once you do it, it’s out there, and people are aware. Whether or not, you know, I got tons of views was not really my goal. I think that was the other thing that was really important was I just picked it, and I didn’t worry so much about all the moving parts and pieces of why I was doing it. I just knew that this was something I wanted to get better at doing, recording, you know, the whole video stuff, and streaming. And I just had to do it. And making it very public had a whole different level of accountability, which you’re absolutely right. I needed that. I needed that kick in the butt to — I’m not kidding when I say — if you look at my videos at the end of the month, it’s like, “it’s day 25 already, it’s day 28?” Where did the time go? Because it did go by very quickly, but that accountability was very much a part of why I was able to do it every single day.
Anne: Oh yeah.
Pamela: And I mean every single day. This was no easy task. [laughs]
Anne: And I think that helped you to kind of stay true. The fact that we had the challenge, we committed to, both each other the challenge and the BOSSes out there, we’ve committed we were going to do this. We were accountable. And for me, it really helped every morning, because there were times I was like “no, no, no, no,” something just came up, and I have to like address that, and I can’t spend the 30 minutes. If there was a challenge every time that came up in the morning, I basically — the one thing that I’m going to say that I did that helped me to stay true to this challenge was to get up earlier. And that’s what really helped me to find that time that I didn’t think I had.
Anne: And when I got up earlier, I didn’t let other activities kind of flow into that getting up earlier, meaning I didn’t check social media, I didn’t check my email. I found that I struggled during the first part of it, because I would kind of start my 30 minutes, and then I would just quick check my email. Well, that was the biggest mistake that I made, was to do something else —
Anne: — while I was trying to concentrate on my 30 minutes. I found that by the end of it, if I truly focused for 30 minutes on just that, and nothing else, and I didn’t have my social media open, I didn’t have my email open, I could actually just focus. And my God, Pam, it’s like I forgot what it was like to focus on one thing at a time.
Pamela: Right, right.
Anne: Because I’ve been multitasking for how long?
Anne: And in reality, multitasking doesn’t really help me get things done.
Pamela: No, it’s always been a misnomer. It’s always been this myth that multitasking is — we as women especially joke about it. “I’m a multitasker.” But at the end of the day, we actually cheat ourselves. And there’s been statistics and data proven around all of this, like if you just focus —
Anne: Oh, I believe it.
Pamela: Right? If you focus and do one thing activity and one thought for a certain amount of time, you get further faster, and I —
Anne: It’s incredible, Pam.
Pamela: There is something to that. Yeah, yeah, shutting everything else out.
Anne: It’s incredible how I’ve forgotten that over the years.
Anne: And I kept thinking, “I’m so busy, I’m doing too many things,” and in reality this helped me to hone in on a focus. And literally just shut down. I had to shut down every other window in my browser. And anybody that knows Anne Ganguzza and has come into a call with me on Zoom knows that at any given time, I probably have about 50 tabs open.
Anne: So I literally just had like my tab open in my blog editor, and that really helped me to focus.
Pamela: Well, I think what you’re also kind of touching on is something I learned, which was “schedule it or it won’t happen.” Right? So I created, I ended up, I looked at my calendar — because as many of you know, I work full-time as a senior consultant for a marketing agency. So my day hours are filled with the expectation of that role, right? So it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t have time here and there to go ahead and jump on my Facebook live and just do it, but I also know myself that “here or there” means it might not get done, right? So I was very cognizant of putting this on my calendar every day at 3pm Pacific time. I literally marked it — if it’s not scheduled, it won’t happen, kind of philosophy. I put it on my calendar every day and blocked 30 minutes, even though I wasn’t going to need the full 30, but I blocked it off at 3:00. And it was really interesting to go through this process, because there were some days I’d have client calls until 3:00. So I’d have to jump onto my other computer, and then I realized I didn’t even know what I was going to say. But I promised every day at 3:00. And it might be 3:05, 3:07, but I was right there —
Anne: And there’s your focus, there’s your focus, right?
Anne: You had a time.
Pamela: Yes, and I did it.
Anne: And if you’re streaming, if you’re streaming live, you certainly can’t lose focus when you’re streaming live. I mean, that’s all you can be doing.
Anne: Right? So that really helps you to focus on the one thing.
Pamela: Yes, yes.
Anne: I’ll tell you, for me, the other thing that I kind of knew about myself anyways before all of this is that earlier in the day, I’m much more productive. The hard things, the things that I need to think about, which are like writing, those things I do really well earlier in the day. At the end of the day, it’s a little more difficult to clear my head and be able to focus. But yeah, earlier in the day for me is better. That’s definitely something —
Pamela: Yup, very similar. For writing or creative, focused energy work like that, I know later in the day, I joke it’s going to take me 10 times as long to write an email at 4:00 in the afternoon than it would at 6:00 in the morning. Right? I just can’t function. The other thing that I learned about this, consistency, because that’s the other piece of this that’s been really important, is we didn’t just do this 30 days, which was from day one to day 30, what did we learn about ourselves and how did it help our business or our personal life, but that daily consistency was really important, and I purposefully chose, as I mentioned, something that was really outside my comfort zone. Because I hide behind a microphone like so many of us do. We don’t put ourselves out on little screens very often. And for me, that consistency of every single day, it actually led to so much more comfort around this process. I had to get comfortable, right, because I was doing it every day.
Pamela: And I’ve learned [laughs] — so Anne, I’ve learned — this is a little, tiny thing. It’s not tiny though in the video world, but it is tiny in how I got used to that little green light, what I now lovingly refer to as “that damn green light!”
Pamela: Which is going to be the name of my book, I think.
Anne: “The Green Light.”
Pamela: “That Damn Green Light.” And how now I’m so much better, whether it’s a Zoom call, conference call. I’m not looking at the screen when I talk to people. I’m looking at my light, and that makes a world of difference with how your video comes across.
Pamela: You’re actually looking at your audience then, not at a screen and people are seeing your eyes down. It’s a tiny little change, but I got really comfortable with that, and I realized I needed to do it every single day, right, just —
Anne: To get comfortable with it, yeah.
Anne: It’s a practice thing. It’s like our performance in voiceover too, right?
Pamela: It totally is. Yeah.
Anne: I mean, you have these performance techniques that you practice to help you to just get better and better and better at what you’re doing, and Pam, I know myself, my next — well, wait. I may be getting ahead of myself, but my next challenge is I do need to up my YouTube, and so I’m going to be doing some videos for my YouTube, and I’m gonna have to be looking at that green light [laughs] you know?
Pamela: Yes, that damn green light.
Anne: And you know, because I can’t really create a good recording without looking at that damn green light.
Anne: Because it’ll be just silly. I mean, people will be looking at me looking somewhere else.
Pamela: Yeah, and I think we do so many Zoom calls and conference calls, and we don’t, we just kind of, our heads are all over the place looking at that screen or that screen, and you have to remember what you’re trying to accomplish is connect with your audience. And if you’re not looking at them, but you’re looking down [laughs] or looking away, you know, it’s — I didn’t realize how bad I was at that until I got better at it. [laughs]
Anne: Oh gosh, Pam, I’ve already been in the middle of it, I’ve already tried to record something for my YouTube channel, and I already know. And I mean, and it’s funny because I do live things all the time. But recording something like for YouTube versus being live on Zoom, it’s a little bit different.
Anne: So you know, I feel like if you’re really speaking personally to the person, you know, that’s watching on the other side of the camera — if I’m on a Zoom call with a bunch of other people, people’s attention might be on somebody other than me for a moment.
Anne: So I don’t feel I have to be as focused into the green light, but yeah, you’re right. I’ll tell you, for me, you know, I always live by my Google calendar. The fact that you say schedule these things, it’s super important, because as you know, I — something was not on my schedule this morning, Pam, and I had to change my time to talk with you because it wasn’t on my calendar.
Anne: But it’s so important to put that on the calendar. And I’ll tell you, another thing that I really found to help me was to, during this month, was to be able to work with — let’s just put it this way. I work with a few people. So being able to delegate responsibilities that allowed me to focus on my challenge has been very helpful. So if you do have multiple people that you work with, or you have maybe a virtual assistant, being able to delegate things to get them off your plate so that you can focus on your challenge is very, very helpful. And these are people that I trust, that I can say you know what? Finally I can let this go. Please take care of this for me, because I’m focusing on my challenge. And ultimately at the end of the day, you hope that overall it’s going to make your business run more efficient so that that can just be a well oiled wheel, so to speak, or gear.
Pamela: Yeah. I think that’s a really interesting insight, right, because we, as business owners of our own stuff, we tend to be control freaks, that nature.
Anne: Yes, that’s me.
Pamela: Nobody can do it better than we can, right? And when you start to put certain specific tasks into your day, you have to — we talked about this a few weeks ago, law of vacuum, right? You’re going to have to release something to make that work, more than likely, alright? So it really forces you to kind of take this inventory of what tasks actually are “I have to be the one to do them?”
Pamela: And what can I delegate or outsource? Because yes, of course I can do it better than anybody in my business. However. [laughs]
Anne: And don’t forget that it takes time to delegate too.
Pamela: Yes, or teach or train.
Anne: That’s the thing. Sometimes you go “it’s off of my plate. I don’t have to worry about any of that anymore.” No, you still have to oversee. You still have to project manage.
Pamela: Yes, absolutely.
Anne: And that’s one thing that I, in a blanket thought, I’m like, “oh, they’ll just take care of it now.” No, you’ve got to kind of check in, and you’ve got to manage the project too that you’re delegating, and there is some time involved, so that has to also work out into your calendar.
Anne: So that really became even more evident to me, to be able to delegate and let go of those things that I can, and that, boy, that’s like tough for an A type like me.
Pamela: It is tough, it is tough.
Anne: Because I want to control everything, but I find that once I’m able to let go and delegate so that I can focus in on the things that matter to push the business forward, I grow exponentially, as opposed to you know, this kind of, everything seems to be stopping me when I’m the one that wants to be in control of it all, then it stunts my growth.
Pamela: Right, right. And we’ve talked too about, this conversation we had about law of vacuum was intention, right? That was really obvious to me when I put it into my calendar to do this activity every day and to be very intentional about that. This time’s going to go by regardless. That 30 minutes is going to go by regardless. The bigger question is, what am I going to do with it? Am I going to use that time with some sort of intention? And kind of a bigger rhetorical question would be, what if you did that with more activities? [laughs] We’re just talking about one basically simple idea of taking one task or one item and every day being very consistent and intentional. What if you did that with two, three, or four items? How would that change your business? How would that improve your personal development?
Anne: Well, there’s a good question, Pam. No, so the question is, are you going to continue, right, with your challenge —
Pamela: I am.
Anne: And am I going to? I’ll tell you, I am for sure because it’s now created a positive effect in my business. And so now I’ve — and it’s become kind of a habit, right? Every day I’m doing this task to help progress my business further, and it’s really working. And so for me, I’m going to continue to do it. Are you going to continue to stream on a daily basis or will you maybe do something else, or how’s that?
Pamela: I think I’m going to do a little bit of a hybrid. So you know, the daily stream, and I was very clear with myself, the reason I chose this was to get past the comfort zone stuff. I can do this, just do it, right? Now that I’m there, I’ve been thinking about how to use it smarter and better with some of the goals I have for business, right? So I don’t know if I’ll do it every single day, but I definitely feel I’m at a level where I can now do this with much more intention. And I am — Content Marketing 360 is my kind of personal brandish stuff, right? And I am starting my own Content Marketing 360 Facebook group, because of this, where I will, inside of that group, have some type of consistent streaming process. Still working through the details on how that will continue, but yes, absolutely. And I think it’s also shown me more importantly than anything that whatever I choose, I really can be consistent with it, if I’m intentional.
Pamela: So I’m going to continue 30-day challenges for myself and my business. Absolutely. What I have to be aware of, Anne, because I tend to be a Type A person, my mind is like “let’s do 10!” No. [laughs]
Anne: Yes. Keep it simple. I think keeping it simple and keeping it focused —
Pamela: Just choose one more! [laughs]
Anne: I think one thing at a time, I think one challenge at a time is kind of cool because —
Anne: — now we can set different aspects of our business. We can say, alright, I’ve got 30 days that I have this particular goal that I want to achieve. I have to say that, I think that, you know, after discussing this with you throughout this project, Pam and I have become so enamored with our 30-day challenge that we would like to continue that 30-day challenge not just for our own selves, but we’d like to invite all of you BOSSes out there with us into a more of a accountability 30-day challenge by actually having you join us every month or every 30 days on Facebook in a group for a 30-day challenge.
Anne: We’ve actually created a Facebook group called the VO BOSS 30-Day Challenge, and we will be doing every 30 days, we will be accountable to each other. We will be keeping each other inspired. We will be helping you to be inspired and to accomplish your goals and stay focused on accomplishing those challenges.
Pamela: And so you asked about the livestream. Almost definitely, but both of us will be livestreaming inside of this Facebook group, right, too.
Anne: Maybe not every day.
Pamela: Maybe not every day. We’re still working — we’re gonna kind of grow into what makes sense, right, for the group.
Pamela: But I think one thing we can both commit to between the two of us is for a good challenge we will consistently every day engage in the group.
Anne: Absolutely, absolutely.
Pamela: That, whether it’s a livestream or not, what’s great about having done the livestream is I now have all these really cool ideas, and it’s really sparked creativity around how to use a video medium smarter and better and with a group of people, right, and to get them engaged.
Pamela: I want to bring those learnings to this Facebook group, and I think we’re, yeah, we’re all onto the —
Anne: I’m excited.
Pamela: — need of some accountability, so this is a good way to do it.
Anne: I’m excited, you guys. So you guys, we’re going to be sending out an email with a link to that Facebook group to join. You’re going to have to answer a few questions to join, but we certainly invite all of you out there to come with us and take the challenge, the 30-day challenge every 30 days. And we’ll keep each other accountable, and be inspired, and motivated. And Pam and I will be engaging —
Anne: — in that group every 30 days to help you guys, help you guys in any way that we can.
Pamela: I love it.
Anne: VO BOSS 30-day Challenge. Pam, I am so excited.
Pamela: Me too.
Anne: I’m actually, I’m going to continue on my blog 30 minutes a day, because it’s really been helping, and it’s fit into my schedule nicely. So I’m excited about this new 30-day challenge that we’re kind of expanding on and taking out to the ethers with all you BOSSes.
Pamela: Yes. I’m excited to see what other challenges the BOSSes come up with, right?
Pamela: It’s inspiring. You know, the inspiration you’re giving me is this reminder of the importance of blog and blog content as part of a content strategy.
Pamela: So I’m noodling around on some of that for myself as part of the future challenges that we’re gonna do.
Anne: Yeah. And I got to look at the green button, coming up. So you know.
Pamela: Yes, that damn green button. It’s in your future, Anne.
Anne: I’m so happy we did this.
Anne: And super excited for what’s coming in the future. So BOSSes, get ready. Join us in our VO BOSS 30-day challenge online, and we’ll be sending you information coming up shortly.
Anne: Thanks so much, Pam.
Pamela: Thank you, Anne. It’s been fun.
Pamela: It’s been a blast. Yeah.
Anne: Big shout-out for of course, one of — my favorite sponsor that helps us to connect and take these 30-day challenges and be accountable to one another, and that is our friends at ipDTL. You can find out more at ipdtl.com. You guys have great week, and we’ll see you next week. Thanks so much.
>> Join us next week for another edition of VO BOSS with your host Anne Ganguzza. And take your business to the next level. Sign up for our mailing list at voboss.com and receive exclusive content, industry revolutionizing tips and strategies, and new ways to rock your business like a BOSS. Redistribution with permission. Coast to Coast connectivity via ipDTL.