Momentum Podcast: 427

Surviving The Seven Figure Transition

by Alex Charfen

Episode Description

When I hit one million dollars, my life changed. But, not in the ways that I had expected.When you start a business, the most important person is you. You have to do everything. You are the company.The challenge as you grow your company is that you have to go from doing everything to being able to lead everything. It's not clear to most people what a dramatic transition that is.My goal is to see you grow your business to seven figures and beyond, don't stop for anything.If you're ready to grow your business fast and stop doing everything yourself, reach out to us –  We have coaching programs for businesses from around 300k – join us

Full Audio Transcript

I remember when I was younger. I had this goal that I wanted to make $100,000 in a year, my whole life would change. Then I made $100,000, and I didn't even know it. I was so busy at the time and so overwhelmed, and you know, my life really didn't change that dramatically. I remember realizing it and thinking, "When I hit a million, everything will change." Well, it did, but not in exactly the way I thought.

I'm Alex Charfen, and this is the Momentum podcast, made for empire builders, game changers, trailblazers, shot takers, record breakers, world makers, and creators of all kinds. Those among us who can't turn it off, and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed with creating momentum, so we can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution.

Sure, we pay attention to their rules, but only so that we can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will. We don't accept our destiny, we define it. We don't understand defeat because you only lose if you stop, and we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately to the status quo, we are the minority, the few who are willing to hallucinate there could be a better future. Instead of just daydreaming of what could be, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real. We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most important people in the world because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent positive human evolution, and we always will be.

Today there are so many entrepreneurs driven by outcomes, driven to hit goals, driven to hit numbers. One of the biggest numbers so many of us chase is the 2 Comma Club, one million dollars. In fact, yesterday, I opened a box that has my membership in the 2 Comma Club from ClickFunnels, from Russell Brunson, for our Billionaire Code Grow and Scale program. My wife and I together have made probably close to $100 million together in our businesses that we've owned in the last 15 years, but there's something about the million dollar 2 Comma Club that I just got from Russell that was even more special, and more amazing.

However, here's something I want you to understand about hitting that million dollar mark. If you've never hit it before, if you're approaching it, if you think you're gonna it it for the first time, this is one of the most intense transitions that entrepreneurs will ever go through. It's not because you're rolling in money, it's not because you've finally hit it, it's not 'cause you're gonna go out and buy your MTV Cribs house, it's because million dollar businesses are right ...

When you hit a million dollars in a business, it's where it exposes every crack, every fissure, and shows you all of the work you have to do. In fact, the million dollar transition from approaching a million, to passing a million and sustaining growth is a huge undertaking for entrepreneurs, and there's really three major ways you have to grow in order to cross a million dollars.

To get to a million, you have to do. Here's what I mean by that. When you start a business, the most important person in your business will and always will be you. It's today, is and always has been, and always will be you. But when you start a business, in order to successfully start a business, you have to do everything. You're literally doing all of it. You're making the calls, you're talking to the clients, you're setting up the strategy, you're executing the strategy. You are the company.

The challenge is to grow a business, you have to go from doing everything, to being able to lead everything. That's not clear to most people what a dramatic transition that is, because when you're doing everything, you're responsible for yourself, you communicate to yourself. You will know more about your business when it's just you, than you will at any point in time after you hired even a single person, because the second you start hiring people, you start making increasingly difficult decision in your business with less and less information.

As you grow your business, you do, you execute, you make things happen, you put it out there, you move the business forward. But when you start approaching a million dollars, and all business owners are different, you might approach this at 700, you might be at 1.2, you might stretch it to 2 million, but there's a point where you realize, you can't do everything anymore. The only way your business is gonna grow is if you can lead the people around you to execute, and grow, and make things happen.

The transition from doing to leading is absolute. You're still going to execute things in your business as it grows, you're still going to have to take care of things that are you responsibility, but you also have to take on this new discipline of leading the people around you, because what happens is at a million dollars, you're not going to be able to do everything. If you try, it's going to damage the business, damage your clients, damage your reputation, and make you feel exhausted, and probably make you want to quit. The transition is you have to understand you're no longer gonna do everything. You have to become a leader, which means you have to get really good at something that you and I probably are ... Well I know I'm not, and you're probably not that good at it. It's asking for help.

One of the biggest transitions is you go from doing it to leading it, and then you have to overcome the entrepreneur's dilemma, which is all of us, every one of us needs more help than the average person to get to our full potential, and to get to where we want to go, 'cause we want to do so much more. But any request for help from the people around us leaves us feeling vulnerable and exposed.

The first thing you need to learn how to do is be transparent, tell people what you want, and have them help you. We do this with process, system and structure. That's how you get past $7 million and make it stick.

Now the next major transition, first is from doing it all to leading it all. The second one is from knowing it all to communicating. Oh, what a massive transition. When it's just you and the business, you can literally know everything that's going on because you're the only person there. There's no confusion because there's no one else to confuse things if you're literally the only person who's running the business, the only person who's involved. Well when you grow your team, when you hit a million, when you start bringing in more people, here's what happens.

What you know is now no longer as important as what you can communicate. What you communicate, and what you're willing to share, what you tell your team, what they know about what's going on, that is far more crucial than what you know. In fact, having what you know be expanded across the population of people that work with you, it's what's going to move the business forward. Now knowing and understanding doesn't matter as much as being able to communicate so that everyone around you knows and understands what's going on.

This is one of those transitions that are so hard for entrepreneurs to make because so many of us built out business by having knowledge, by being subject matter experts, by understand what's going on. We expect to be able to continue to build our business by doing those things. But the reality is, once you have a team, it's no longer about what you know, it's about what you can communicate. It's no longer about what you personally can put into place, it's what you personally can put into place with a team. It's how you communicate to the team, how effectively they hear you, how effectively you are able to transfer knowledge to them that is going to grow the business.

First transition, from doing it to leading it. Second transition, from knowing it to communicating it. The third transition, and I think one of the most significant transitions in the entrepreneurial lifetime is the transition from me doing it all, to we doing it all.

See around a million dollars, the transition from me to we is absolute. There's a point somewhere around there where you have to understand that it's no longer about what you can do, it's about what we can do. It's no longer about you, it's about your team. One of the biggest issues with being an entrepreneur and making this transition is that if you don't fully realize that it's about the people around you being able to execute, it's about the people around you building a cohesive team where people feel safe, it's about the people around you understanding what they're doing, getting out in front of you and not having you as a bottleneck, you will fail to grow.

The numbers are real. Seventy percent of businesses are out of business in 10 years. Why? I believe that this happens because so many entrepreneurs don't make these transitions. Far too many entrepreneurs stay in the place of doing it all, or trying to do it and not lead. In fact, when you hit a million dollars, when you start building a team, your goal should be to aggressively transition as much as you can do as possible, to the point where you're only doing what you're good at, what excites you, and what gives you energy. That will help you grow your business ongoing.

Then you have to go from doing it all to leading it, which means you have to understand how to go from being the person in the chair to helping other people ascend to that chair, and then being able to deliver the same value you do. You have to go from knowing it all, to communicating it. The way that we know how to do that, and the only way I've seen entrepreneurs do it successfully is in a system, with a process, and a cadence so that everyone knows when they're going to hear from you.

A million dollars is an incredible milestone. I'm so pumped to have hit it again, and to have gotten this 2 Comma Club award that's sitting across from me here in my office, and is going to go on the wall. However, I'm also conscious that hitting a million dollars is just the beginning. It's where the work really starts, it's where you dig as an entrepreneur.

I have news for you. If you're there, or approaching a million, or you're past it, and you're putting together the infrastructure, the team, the systems to be able to grow, I am so excited for you, because as entrepreneurs we grow when we hit new thresholds, we grow when we stretch ourselves, we grow when we break new barriers. Getting past a million, you're in the 3% club. Only three out of every hundred businesses ever created will ever even see a million dollars in a year.

If you've already done it, you're ahead of 97% of the businesses around you. If you're on your way, you're going to make this happen. Remember the transitions, from me to we, from doing it all to leading it all, from knowing it all to communicating with your team, and you will get there so much faster, and go to a million and beyond, 'cause my goal is to see you grow your business to seven figures, and keep going, and don't stop for anything.

If you're ready to starting growing the business you have faster than you are now, and you want to stop doing it all yourself, contact us, reach out, go to We have coaching programs for businesses that start around $300,000. We make exceptions for those that are less. But if you're building a team, and growing the business, and looking to communicate with your team in a way that you are heard, and your business grows, join us,

One of the most common comments I get about the application at is just going through the application helped me understand more about my business. What are you waiting for? Go to

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