Accountant/Financials. Delegating all financials and tracking so that you can be spending your time in your zone of genius. As others are doing these tasks for you, you can have reports sent to you daily/weekly so that you know exactly where your business finances stand.
Social Media Management. Social media and online visibility are the future — and can be delegated! Creating content, managing your content, growing your audience, repurposing your content, and more.
As part of my series about the “How To Delegate Effectively and Be Completely Satisfied With the Results”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Melissa Lin, a previously successful chemical engineer turned multiple-six figure business coach and business owner. She is a business, sales, and content expert in the online space. She went from stuck in her 9–5 to making multiple-5 figure months and working for herself. Now, she helps other women do the same with their online businesses!
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?
From a very young age, I was taught that in order to be successful, I needed to check these items off my bucket list: go to college, study engineering, graduate, find a successful job, and marry somebody that can also support me financially. This was all that I knew so naturally, I did as my parents and teachers advised me to do. I graduated college with my B.S. in Chemical Engineering, found a nice job with great benefits, and started to build my success story.
The trend I found in my life: as I was getting promoted, my work days grew longer, my income was barely growing, and my happiness level was shrinking. I had so many things I wanted to accomplish but didn’t see how it could happen in my lifetime. I was the girl wanting to travel 6 months out of the year, fund charities, start my own charities, and more. My dream bubble was growing bigger each minute of the day, but my 9–5 wasn’t. I knew I had to make a change if I wanted to create a different life for myself.
AND I DID THE DARN THING! I started my first business as a side-hustle while in my 9–5. I quickly grew my business to six figures and left my 9–5 to run my business full time — and yes, I was so terrified to leave a job that for 20+ years I was taught was the only way to be “safe and secure” in life. But today, I run my own multiple-6 figure business as an Online Business Coach for women ready to start, build, and scale their online businesses. I get to serve my clients while working from home, on the couch in my pajamas, or while traveling abroad to Bali and Italy.
Can you tell us a story about the hard times that you faced when you first started your journey? Did you ever consider giving up? Where did you get the drive to continue even though things were so hard?
As I was starting, I had people in my life that didn’t understand my desire to start my own business. Most in my life said it was, “too risky”. They said I wouldn’t be making a smart decision by leaving my 9–5, it was “my security blanket”. From the outside, it looked like I had made it in life but deep down I knew that I wanted more. I wanted to create a bigger impact, I wanted to help more people so I started my business. It was difficult at the time, starting something that so many in my life didn’t believe was possible for me to create but deep down I knew I could create anything that I put my mind to. I grew up driven, it was a trait my parents instilled in me at a young age and the one thing that really kept me going was surrounding myself with others who understood. Joining Facebook groups, joining programs, listening to podcasts, going to live events, surrounding myself with other like-minded entrepreneurs. This showed me that if somebody else could do it, they had created evidence for me to believe that I could do it too.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?
I laugh at this now, I thought I was going to be the best “one-woman show” in the entrepreneurial space. I told myself the story that, “I was going to be a self-made millionaire on my own, no help needed” and that was one of the biggest mistakes, thinking I could build a successful business on my own. After being a one-woman show, solopreneur for a few years, I was in constant burnout and started to understand that it’s not necessarily that I “have to” hire to continue to scale, it’s that I “get to” bring incredible people onto my team that have similar values and see the vision that I’m holding: to help women find freedom through entrepreneurship.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
Inside of our programs/services, we’re always sharing and showing how we can all become Fierce CEOs. There are certain qualities of a Fierce Business Owner that we attract in both our clients and team members and want to share with women that they can do the same. We strive to be Fiercely Inspirational, we empower others to see the possibility that we already see in them. We inspire them to step outside of their comfort zones. We strive to be Fiercely Powerful, we help our clients stand their ground and create boundaries in their businesses. We strive to be Fiercely Authentic, we show that while talking the talk, we get to also walk the walk. We live a life of integrity and teach our clients the same through our programs. We strive to be Fiercely Profitable, we help our clients generate both profits in their businesses and profitable experiences with others by adding loads of value each day. Inside our products and services, we strive to create a community of entrepreneurs that embody this so that we can all together, do better and be better in the world.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
To avoid “burn out”, I suggest adding these into your life and business: boundaries, play, and preparation. Over the last few years, I’ve created boundaries in my business to prevent me from reaching “burn out” such as creating business hours, boundaries with clients, turning off all social media notifications, and removing all business tools from my personal phone and only allowing them on my laptop. I’ve added play into my daily routine such as an afternoon walk, date night, bike ride, massage, etc. to make sure that I’m always filling my own cup. I’m always prepping ahead so that we don’t fall behind. We’re always working 2–3 months ahead on our launches, podcast episodes, video content so that if we need to take some time off, we don’t fall behind.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
My boyfriend, Ryen has been the biggest supporter and partner in crime throughout my business journey. He was one of the few that pushed me to follow my dreams and is always challenging me to step outside of my comfort zone. When I first considered leaving my 9–5 to pursue my business full time, he was the one that challenged my limiting beliefs and pushed me to go for it. When something feels hard, he reminds me that everything is going to work out exactly how it’s supposed to, that there’s nothing to worry about. Without him constantly challenging me, I can say that I wouldn’t be here today. I’d probably still be in my 9–5, wishing, dreaming, and hoping.
Ok thank you for all that. Now let’s shift to the main focus of this interview. Delegating effectively is a challenge for many leaders. Let’s put first things first. Can you help articulate to our readers a few reasons why delegating is such an important skill for a leader or a business owner to develop?
During my first few years as a CEO, I truly felt that I was the best one-woman show. I thought I could do it better, I felt that it would take longer to train somebody else, I felt that it would be impossible to bring somebody in to help. My business was my baby, I needed full control! It wasn’t until I had hit full burnout that I realized all of those beliefs were false — in order to continue to scale and create a bigger impact, I couldn’t do it alone. Delegating is a critical skill for a leader and business owner for many reasons, such as: it’s critical for your own growth, it empowers your team, and gives you time as the CEO to stay in your zone of genius.
Can you help articulate a few of the reasons why delegating is such a challenge for so many people?
I see many business owners take a ride on the delegation rollercoaster loop. What happens is, a business owner will typically hire their first team member, such as a Virtual Assistant, to take over Administration Tasks. The business owner will delegate a few tasks but when that new team member doesn’t meet expectations to the task, business owners tend to take over and redo all of the work, leaving them to ask themselves why they hired in the first place, and eventually fire, until they burn out and hire again, going right back into the same loop and eventually firing.
In your opinion, what pivots need to be made, either in perspective or in work habits, to help alleviate some of the challenges you mentioned?
To avoid the delegation rollercoaster and delegate powerfully, as the business owner you get to set clear expectations, guidelines, examples, instructions, Standard Operating Procedures, video trainings, and feedback. Choose the right person for the job and explain the vision behind the task or project and their key role in this growth. Delegate the responsibility and authority so they feel empowered to make decisions. Empower and trust your team to take on these tasks that you’re delegating so that you can spend your time in your zone of genius.
Can you please share your “Five Things You Need To Know To Delegate Effectively and Be Completely Satisfied With the Results?” Please share a story or an example for each.
The first few items we get to delegate first typically fall into one of these two categories to help you stay in your zone of genuis:
- Things that you dislike that you’re good at
- Things that you dislike and are not good at
Delegating items such as customer service, client onboarding, client offboarding, data analytics, scheduling calls. Those day to day tasks that don’t necessarily need you, the CEO to do.
Delegating all financials and tracking so that you can be spending your time in your zone of genius. As others are doing these tasks for you, you can have reports sent to you daily/weekly so that you know exactly where your business finances stand.
Unless you’re a tech pro — this gets to be delegated very quickly. Website and graphic design work tend to give entrepreneurs the biggest headaches.
Social Media Management
Social media and online visibility are the future — and can be delegated! Creating content, managing your content, growing your audience, repurposing your content, and more.
Delegate the tasks that will also help the business generate more income. This could be a sales team, Facebook Ads Manager, Events Planner, etc.
One of the obstacles to proper delegating is the oft quoted cliche “If you want something done right do it yourself.” Is this saying true? Is it false? Is there a way to reconcile it with the importance of delegating?
In my experience, this statement is false. All tasks and processes can be delegated; however it must be delegated properly. We must provide clear instruction, guidelines, trainings, resources, and feedback on the work. I’ve delegated 100+ hours of work each month to my team members who are completing tasks that in the past, I felt “only I can do this best and the way I like”. I’ve created the evidence that it’s possible for you to do so too.
Thank you for all of that. We are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
If I could start one movement, it would be a movement around self-worth and valuing yourself. What I believe to be true is that lack of self-worth is one of the biggest causes of hardships in our lives. I saw it in myself growing up, I see it in new entrepreneurs, I see it everywhere.
How can our readers further follow you online?
I can be found all over social media, here are the direct links to my website, Instagram, free Facebook group community, and Podcast with weekly episodes!
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/fiercebusinessbabes/
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this!