Today, Cathy’s excited to share a bit of her REAL DESIGN LIFE. Cathy made a big shift almost 2 years ago, and it changed everything and is one of the biggest contributors to her exponential growth… when she hired a Business Nanny. In this episode, she gives you her exact tips in order to hire the perfect person, and how to afford it. This is How to Hire a Business Nanny: Real Design Life Series.
Hey everyone, it’s Cathy Olson here at a welcome to the secrets of gorgeous design podcast. Oh my goodness. It’s been just a little, it’s been some time since I’ve been on this podcast and I’ve had several of you guys asking me what are you going to do is more of a podcast, wouldn’t need to do more podcasts. Such is the life of a full time entrepreneur, right? We always do this, we get really, really excited about something and we go and do lots and lots of it and then life happens, right? It’s kind of one of those things, but I’m excited to get back in the saddle and um, I actually had a really cool idea the other day about this episode and I, it’s actually a little bit of a departure from my other episodes really. I just wanted to talk a little bit about, have a few episodes where I talk about the real life behind being a designer, being a creative, being a marketer, uh, being, uh, Gosh, mentor, all the things, being a mom, being a wife, right?
Like what does it really look like to live this life? So I wanted to talk about this thing that I actually created or for myself as saying that I do that not a lot of people do. And I’m excited to dive into this today because whenever I tell people this in real life and we’re kind of talking about what goes behind creating this thing for yourself, people are like, wait, what? Like this. It’s like, it’s kind of like that record stop or like erm, you know? Um, but today I’m going to teach you how to hire a business nanny. And I know it sounds crazy and this is a concept that the name of it I came up with just last week, but I’m gonna go through this and tell you some of my best tips and tricks. I’ve told this to countless people and it’s changed lives already for the people that I’ve told it to.
So I am excited to share this with you today and pull back the curtain on this real life entrepreneurial journey that we’re on. So let’s jump into this episode.
My name is Cathy Olson. I’m part of a group of entrepreneurs who are the founders and creative directors of their businesses who have a discerning eye and a ton of heart. If you ask those that get rich quick types, they would say that pretty design isn’t functional and doesn’t sell yet. We are proving everyday that beautiful and thoughtful details do sell and in fact attract unstoppable beauty and wealth. We believe that we can have it all and that sales can be gorgeous. These are the secrets of gorgeous design and we are here to make creativity, lucrative, build gorgeous brands and sales funnels and to make the world of business a gorgeous place to be. Okay, so I know you’re thinking a calf, what on earth is a business nanny?
I am. It’s probably not the best idea or or title that I’ve ever come up with. It’s not like one of my better ones, but it kind of makes sense and it’s kind of like when people say, oh, it’s like the Uber of this or the of that. It’s like the nanny of businesses, right? So many of you know my assistant Lexie, she is so awesome. She’s with me for almost two years. And it’s so funny because she, I originally hired her on as a personal assistant. I still call her assistant. She gets kind of mad at me when I call her assistant because she’s so much more than that. But, um, at first she was my assistant, so I actually hired a personal assistant. So what happened was a friend of mine, I was at a retreat in Nashville outside of Nashville at inspired retreat.
My friend Amber Housley puts on every year. And we were talking about one night, like in our PJ’s, I’m one of the other speakers. And I were talking about how do we, you know, how do we run our businesses and who did we hire and what kind of help did we get? So one of the, also the other speakers told me that she had a personal assistant and I thought, oh my gosh, like what would, what kind of lifestyle, what I need to, to lead in order to actually have a personal assistant. And she told me all the things that this personal assistant did, that she did the laundry. You know, she straightened up the house, she picked up the kids from school when they needed to. Not like everyday, but just sometimes ran, you know, Aaron’s uh, anytime you gotta return random things, right? Like just, just really like a mother’s helper, right?
Just, but really not even having to do with the kids. I just kind of like everything else, all those things that were expected to do. That’s a whole other podcast episode. Right? Um, but those are all those other things that we are expected to have somehow fit into our lives when we are running our businesses. Right? So they kept thinking that, gosh, that would be so nice. Gosh, that would be so nice. And I just thought, well, how on earth would I ever afford that? Right? So that was really, if you’re thinking that right now, understand that was me too. And I just thought, gosh, what we’re going to have a bougie person, what I need to be to have a personal assistant. So I started, I don’t know why. It just got more and more in my head. And I kept thinking about it, kept thinking about it, caffeine about it.
I thought, well, how can I really make this work? How, how could this become realistic for me? And it’s one of those things that I’ve been doing in my life really, that it’s like I see things and I’m like, well, is that possible for me? And then what would that look like? And just kind of crunching numbers, right? So initially I came up with the idea of just bringing on someone part time because I thought even part time would be so helpful, you know, to come out, um, to come, you know, I be say say in air quotes home, right? Because I have my office, but I’m always at home. But, um, you know, to come out of my office, basically come home from a day’s work and not have a whole bunch of work to do, right. With the house and dinner and cleaning and the kids and all that stuff.
Right? So I thought, what would that feel like? And I was having an increasingly a hard time with my husband as well, like this was becoming an area of contingent in our marriage because it’s like we would both be exhausted by the end of the day and it was Kinda like, well, who’s doing this? Like, Oh, am I just supposed to do it because I’m the wife? You know? It’s like, oh, am I supposed to do it? Cause I work from home. Like I, I’m, I run, you know, a really successful business. Like I shouldn’t be treated like someone that’s freelancing on the side or whatever. Right? So it was kind of becoming an area of contention in our marriage. It’s like, whose job is this? So that’s when I was like, Gosh, I feel like we would be happier in our marriage if I just looked into this.
So that’s kind of the genesis of, of where this, this came to be. Um, and it totally changed my life. There’s no way on earth I would be where I am today without, um, Lexie, right. Without my assistant. So it’s morphed into something totally different. And that’s kind of where I wanted, that’s where one’s explained to you, the genesis of it because that’s kind of where I suggest people start. But know that it looks completely different now. And so it’s funny, fast forward two years later, almost two years later, I’m actually hiring another business nanny. So Lexi has actually kind of officially transitioned out of being my assistant to being my junior designer and funnel builder. So she’s like actually grown and changed and morphed into something totally different. Um, as our, as our business has grown. So this is why I wanted to share with you, because I’m going through this all over again.
I’m going through this process again of hiring another business and basically to take over for her for what she used to do that I’m going through this all over again and I’m like, oh my gosh. Like I need to kind of explain to people what this is like cause I’m here again. Right. I’m Kinda like back to back to square one, I guess. Not Really Square one. But um, so like I said, Lexi started with me a little less than two years ago and I both to basically post it on care.com and it was for a personal assistant position, which now it looks like now that I’m reposting and I’m actually changing the job out that it looks like they kind of don’t have that position anymore specifically. So I don’t know exactly, I just like re posted it. So you’re going to have to do some research and on where you want to post it.
Like what category? Cause it used to be its own category, it’s not really anymore, but you can still kind of look for like in home care, like kind of nannyish position. Right? Cause I think that those type of people, they’re just caregivers and they just love to help. So I think that there are still around the same type of people that she would want to help you. And a lot of times are just like some younger people in there that really just want to help. Right. And they just love running errands or you know, doing little tasks for people. Just really simple stuff that just kinda easy. So I started out, you know, part time, super part time, I want to say she started about like 20 hours or so, you know, just a few days a week. Or actually maybe she came in every day and it was just a couple of hours.
But her, her hours are pretty flexible because it didn’t really matter to me when the things were getting done, which on her side it’s like oh my gosh, dream job. Right? Flexible hours. You just kind of come in and chill out and do some stuff and drive around. It was like such a cool job for her on her side. Right. So my first tip for you, if you are looking to hire a business nanny is to number one out the tasks that are not making you money that you don’t have to do. So during the day I was losing a lot of time, like going to target or something and returning, you know, little, I don’t know, whatever I bought that like needed to be returned. And actually more likely I wasn’t returning them. So then I was just losing money, which is like basically throwing money down the toilet because I would never go to return something I didn’t need and then it would just sit there and gain, you know, collect dust and it was just horrible.
So little things like that was taking so much time out of my day that I could have been doing like these high revenue generating activities, right. Because I was had to go to target to buy like supplies for school or I had to go return this or go to the post office for that or grab this or grab that. It was just killing my day. Even like grocery shopping. Just little, little simple things I had to do during the day because when I take my kids shopping, it is like a nightmare. So I tried to do any shopping that I have to do or returning or whatever. Uh, when they are not around when they’re in school. So that was like the first thing was I’m just trying to figure out exactly what the tax, that we’re not making me money that I didn’t have to do.
So laundry, nobody’s paying me to do laundry, you know, cleaning up. No one’s paying me to do that. Cooking, nobody was paying like all those things. Um, and then also like things that I really just, that would have improved my life, but I was never getting too. So I also had a list of things. Um, I called it my sh, you know, what t lists because it was just all of the things that were on this list that I just was never in my life ever going to get to. Cause I was always too busy. So I had this whole list of things to get done, like organize the closet, right. Just stuff like that. So I had this whole list of stuff and so all of these things that I knew that would improve my life, but I just never got around to. So that is the first step to figure out what, what the task or that are not making you any money that you don’t have to do and or things that are on your, you know, kind of bucket list, right.
Um, to get done that you don’t really like think you’ll ever get to. The second thing that I did was I actually figured out what quick money makers were that I could train people to do. So initially I didn’t do this. So this is why I’m telling you like now to do this, to do this initially because this would have saved me a lot of time and energy. But originally I just thought she was just going to free up some of my time so that I could make more money during my work time. But really after a while I thought, gosh, it would be great if she knows she’s an employee of low inspired. Like she can actually make me money, like let alone like me spending money, she can actually return on her investment or do we turn my investment in here in her right.
So that’s when I did like identified some quick moneymakers and I had her designing, we have this thing called brand designer for a day and then we have a done for you service. Basically you buy these templates for $27 and then for $97 upgrade we will like actually customize the template for you. So for basically $97 we can customize a template. So I had her doing those for the clients that we’re upgrading. And so every time she designs she created one. She was actually earning, basically, it’s at $97 and so she did a few of these a week and it was like totally paying for her. It was like such a no brainer of so smart on my part. I should’ve done it sooner, but as soon as I figured out I thought, oh my gosh, that is so smart. And all she had to do honestly was take my course.
All she had to do is actually take the brand designer for a day course and it showed her exactly how to do it and then she just practice and practice and practice. And I would give her some tips and pointers, you know, every once in a while. And she got better and better at it. And it got to the point where I just went straight through to her and she was basically making her own money. So it was pretty awesome. So that’s my second tip is to try to figure out if there’s a quick moneymaker that you can train them to do, like when they’re working on your business. So for me, originally she was working, Gosh, I would say probably about 80% on house stuff and 20% business stuff. And then like I said, over the years it’s shifted into, now she’s doing like 5% health stuff and 95% business stuff.
But it’s gotten to the point where she’s gotten so overloaded on the business side that now it’s like we’re growing enough. We need another person. So now she’s going to be 100% business stuff because she’s awesome. And I’ve trained her like for, you know, two years straight. Um, and we’re going to get another person. But either way, you know, just depending on the person, you’re going to have a different percentage too. And then the third tip I have for you is to actually go to, you know, to do it what I did really, um, and, and just go for a personal assistant position, right. And in house. And what I did is I went onto care.com again, I said it’s a little bit different now than when I originally went, but I’m still, I just posted yesterday looking for this new person and um, I’ve already gotten tons of hits.
So you’re looking for someone who will be a personal juicy can call it a personal assistant, can call whatever you want. Obviously a business nannies sounds a little weird. So probably want to go with personal assistant because the idea is that you want them to be eager to help and, and that’s why I kinda call it a nanny cause they, Andy’s have that like they want to take care of your kids, right? They’re like really sweet. They have a certain disposition of just like being helpers and like that’s what they want to do. On this planet is help people, right? So really like, it’s like a business nanny. It’s like helping you. Um, I guess, I guess you could say it’s a mommy nanny too in a way, but really they’re just there to help you, um, get whatever you can’t get done right. They’re just kind of a, another you, another arm, another extension of you.
And so in my care.com ad I basically said, you know, hey, like we’re a fun family of four. Um, I have two daughters, I have a lot of stuff to get done today. I wear, I’m a graphic designer, I work, work from home during the day. I have a lot of things that are, you know, kind of fallen through the cracks and I just need help. Right? I just was like, it was super honest about it. I said, you know, this position would include, um, some, some doing sort of doing some errands, dropping some stuff off, some light cleaning, some laundry, organizing and maybe even some business stuff. Right. When I said, you know, emails and answering clients and stuff like that. Um, so I said, you know, communication, strong communication is a must, a computer. And I forgot what I said, personal skills or something, a good attitude, self, self-starter, don’t need to be micromanaged.
Those kinds of things, which I say all those things because that is the way that I work. I can’t stand like micromanaging people. I’m like, you’re, you’re a grownup. You know, here’s what I like to get done. You go do that. You Go, you go do Ubu and I’m going to be over here doing my business, right? Like I don’t want to like stand over anybody. So I also wanted people that wanted that autonomy, that like wanting to take on a job and like just own it. Right? And just go and go and do it. Go, go out there and conquer. Right. Um, so those are the kinds of things that I put in my ads. So those are the things I suggested to put into yours. But again, it’s going to look totally different for you. If you feel super weird about bringing someone in your home, I totally get that.
And you don’t have to have them in your home if you want them just like running errands and just kind of like in and out and just kind of doing things for you. That’s totally fine if you want them to work from home. I’m doing emails and stuff. I will say the in-person aspect has made every, all of the difference for me. So I have had virtual assistants in the past and so this whole time you might be thinking, well, can I just have a virtual assistant? But I want to tell you that it makes all of the difference having someone in person. And maybe that’s just my personality, I don’t know. But I’m telling you that she and I get more done in a day than I’ve ever gotten done in my business, you know, in 11 years. So it’s, I don’t know what it is about being in person with the both of us in the dynamic of like me being able to walk out there and say, hey, what’s going on?
How’s this working out? Versus just sending an email to somebody. I Dunno what it is, but we just literally like what, what I would get done with a virtual assistant at the same amount of hours. It’s like tripled, quadrupled. Guajira bold our productivity. So I would just say if you’re thinking, oh, I just couldn’t get a virtual assistant for that, just try this. Right. Just try having this part time person come in and help you in person. I’m telling you, it’s game-changing. It’s life-changing. It’s totally different than what you’re used to. Um, but it’s so awesome. I mean, it’s gotta be someone you obviously trust. You know, at first, I didn’t, she didn’t have a house key or any of that stuff. And then as she, as she went, you know, she gained my trust. Um, but with the cool thing is, I wanted to tell you guys is that now how fun is this?
Now that we are hiring this second business nanny and Lexi’s taking on a bigger role, she’s actually going to be the person that they report to. So I’m having her do all of the interviewing, all of the like phone calls, like actually talking to like, cause she’s the one, she’s basic. They’re basically her assistant at this point and they’re going to report to her directly. So I don’t have to deal with any of that. Oh my gosh. How Fun. I’m so excited about it. Um, and she’s super excited to have like that kind of power, right. Um, to feel like she’s a big being a big part of it. So I just wanted to give all these tips you today to just really encourage you to give you an idea of something if you’re not like there yet. That’s totally cool. Like I said, I started off super duper part-time, um, very like kind of low hourly rate, just basically, you know, just as simple.
I think it was a little bit more than minimum wage. And she, she slowly worked her way up and not really even slowly actually I kept giving her raises cause she was awesome. Um, but you know, then, then we went to full time and then now, you know, she’s, she’s taken on this new position, um, with a much bigger race. So it’s pretty exciting. Pretty amazing. Our business could not have gone anywhere near was like, this is one of my secrets. Like I’m telling you the truth. This is one of my biggest secrets of what has changed my business so much in the last two years is this. So it’s a big deal, right? It’s a big deal for me to tell you this, but it’s also a big deal for me to show you exactly how I did it. So I hope you guys appreciate it and that you actually started thinking about it even if you’re not totally ready today, start mapping it out. You know, do what I said though, like one through three, start mapping out these things and start getting ready to change and shift your life. So thanks so much guys. I appreciate you so much. I hope this was helpful and I will see you on the next one.
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