It happens on a smaller scale, too. If you're a leader or you own your own business, or if you have any type of public persona, you become a target. You may have clients or followers who like you now but may not always agree with the things you say or what you wear or whether or not you wear make-up (yes, really). You may become “unlikeable.” And if you're selling yourself, that can become a huge problem.
I know this is messed up and needs to stop. But what I'm sharing with you today will help your business to be more successful, more scalable, and make more money while we're working on that change.
On today's episode, I'm going to break down why you shouldn't focus on selling yourself as a brand and what to do instead. Selling your system, your intellectual property, is the ultimate answer to creating a sustainable, scalable business that allows you to focus on the next best strategic move for your company. The Million Dollar Badass Model is my system and whether you like me or not, whether you like my personality, whether you like my belief systems…regardless of what you think of me personally, my system works. Let's get you there, too.
You don't need to sell yourself, and in fact your business will be more successful, and more scalable, and you'll make more money if you're not selling yourself. What you need to sell is your intellectual property, your system, okay? And I'm going to tell you a little bit about that.
Welcome to the Hello Seven Podcast. I'm your host, Rachel Rodgers, wife, mother of four children, a lover of Beyoncé, coffee drinker, and afro-wearer, and I just happen to be the CEO of a seven-figure business. I am on a mission to help every woman I meet become a millionaire. If you want to make more money, you are in the right place. Let's get it going.
So I am reading this amazing book, you guys, that you have to read. It's called Trainwreck: The Women We Love to Hate, Mock, and Fear … and Why it's by Sady Doyle. It was recommended to me by my friend, Susan Hyatt, and I am so glad that I read this book. I'm obsessed, and it really is talking about how we put women on a pedestal just to knock them down.
It's something that is built into our culture and in this book, Sady gives lots of examples. She talks about Billie Holiday. She talks about Mary Wollstonecraft. She talks about Charlotte Brontë, and Brittany Spears, and Sylvia Plath, and Whitney Houston. There are so many examples of women in our culture, celebrity women, authors, just scholars, women who are talented, who are capable, who are living out loud.
We particularly don't like as a culture, women who are living freely, who are expressing their intelligence, who are expressing their big ideas, who are free, really in any way. We want them to not be free. We especially don't want them to be sexually free. We don't want them to be free with their bodies.
A perfect example of that is Lizzo, right? We are looking for those opportunities to tear her down as a culture, because she is a fat, black woman, who is incredibly talented, and incredibly comfortable in her own skin, and that is horrifying to our culture. That is terrifying to our culture. And it's not just men. In fact, it's mostly women, right? It's mostly women tearing down Lizzo, or who were tearing down Whitney Houston, or any of these other women that are profiled in this book.
It is really enlightening to see side by side all of these stories, and to see the pattern of taking someone who is expressing her talents, who is putting herself out there, who is free and acknowledging her, celebrating her work, saying she's amazing, and then the moment she makes any kind of, “mistake,” or has any kind of misstep, let's knock her off that pedestal, and drag her through the mud and tell the world what a horrible human being she is, right?
And what's interesting about this is we do not do this to male celebrities. Up until the MeToo Movement, male celebrities were getting away with any number of bullshit; like did you know that Steven Tyler of Aerosmith got the parents of a 16-year-old to grant him legal guardianship, so that he could live with her and sleep with her at 16 years old? And he was a grown ass man when this was happening. And we don't even talk about that.
There are other examples that she talks about of authors, and movie directors, and politicians, all kinds of men in our culture in positions of leadership, or celebrity, or talent where they stabbed their wives, right? They do all kinds of horrible things, and we don't drag them through the mud. We don't tell them how horrible they are. We quickly forgive them, and go back to celebrating them and their talent.
But when women do it, we drag them through the mud. And this is not just on the celebrity scale. This happens on a small scale too, right? This can happen to you in your business, okay? Hence, the title of this episode is, Don't Join My Mastermind Because You Like Me, because the reality is you may like me now, but you're not always going to like me necessarily.
I may do something that you don't like. I may say something that you don't like. I may disappoint you in some way, right? It's not about that. It's not about me as a human being being perfect, because I can tell you with certainty that I am absolutely not and I do disappoint people, right? And as a human being, I need to have the freedom to do that. It's okay for me to disappoint people. It is okay for you to disappoint people.
You are not perfect. We are not required to be, but our culture makes us feel that way, particularly if we have a public life in any way. Or if we put ourselves out there as leaders. If we are going to be leaders, we better be goddamn perfect, because otherwise burn her at the stake. That is what our culture does to women, and it is fucked up, and we need to stop it.
So that's what I want to talk to you guys. I want to talk to you about what to do instead, right? You don't need to sell yourself. And in fact, your business will be more successful and more scalable, and you'll make more money if you're not selling yourself. What you need to sell is your intellectual property, your system, okay? And I'm going to tell you a little bit about that.
So here's the reality. I've had people tell me they don't like me because of my hair. They don't like that I curse. They don't like that I talk about astrology ever. I recently had a client say to me, “All of a sudden you're wearing makeup. What's that about?” And I was like, “Huh? What do you mean? What are you talking about?” And they're like, “Oh, I noticed that you're always … you've got bright lipstick on all the time now. I thought we weren't living that hustle culture. Now, all of a sudden you're hustling?”
I was very taken aback by that. I was like, “Wow.” There's almost this hyper evaluation of every move you make when you put yourself out there as a leader. And yeah, I do wear makeup, because I just decided I wanted to. I just started getting into it and enjoyed it. So I don't wear makeup every day, but I do. And if I did wear makeup every day, how does that affect my work? How does that affect my client's ability to get results, right?
So when you have this sort of culture where women can have no missteps … and what's considered a misstep will change depending on the person. Some people think it's terrible that I curse, and hate me for it, and other people love that I curse, and think I should curse more, you know? Some people don't like that I wear makeup, or dress up, or wear designer shoes. Some people think I'm showing off, right? And other people think that it's amazing and inspiring that I wear makeup, and nice clothes, and designer shoes, right?
If we allow the culture to twist us into pretzels … we cannot please everyone, and we cannot constantly be evaluating every choice we make, every decision we make, every word that comes out of our mouth based on whether a particular group of people are going to like it or not. Because I can tell you some people are going to like it and some people aren't, right? So you might as well be yourself.
And this is exactly why you don't want to sell yourself, right? It doesn't actually serve you to just sell your brand, right? Don't just sell what you ate for lunch, and what you're wearing, and what you're buying, and who you're hanging out with. Don't just sell that, right? And it can seem that way, like we're all selling this lifestyle on Instagram. I mean we're also out here living our lives, and I will take a picture of my lunch, because sometimes that lunch look good as hell, and y'all need to see that, right? But what we need to be selling is our system, not ourselves.
Because I guarantee you if you sell yourself, if you become any level of successful, if you have even just a small audience or a small following, what will happen is there will be people in that audience, or people in your following who don't like what you do, who don't like that last decision you made, who don't like that social media post, who are offended by something you said, or an action that you took, or the fact that you hung out with this person, or the fact that you're supporting this particular business.
“Oh my God, I can't believe you bought that from that business. Do you know that they have sweatshops in whatever country,” you know? Right? So there's always going to be people who don't like something that you do. And that is why you cannot win selling yourself, right? You can't win that way.
Our culture will just not allow it. I mean, it's hard to fight hundreds of years of culture. We are actively doing it, and that's why I'm talking to you about this, but it is not something that we are going to overcome today, or tomorrow, or in the next a couple months, right? This is going to be a movement for a long time. And we have to ask ourselves too, are we guilty of this? Have I done this? And I can say for sure, yes, right? I have done this. We are not immune to the culture, right? We are aware that we live in the matrix, and that doesn't mean that we ain't still in it, and we're not still acting on it. We have to look at whether we are judging other women in this way harshly, and making fun of women online, picking them apart, picking apart every decision they make, picking apart what they say. It can be real, real nasty.
And I know, you know what I'm talking about. We've all seen it. And I'm not saying every time someone's decisions are being evaluated, it's a wrong thing. I'm just saying that this is what's happening, okay? There's almost a bit of a hero worship or fanaticism that can happen when you put yourself out there, right? And people will look at what other people are doing, right? We look at what other people are doing wrong, so we don't have to look at ourselves, right? It's a distraction, and we are all looking for a distraction from the hard work we know we have to do to get the results we want to get. That is just part of it. I do it too. We all want a distraction, hence why Netflix is so successful.
So what do we do instead, right? When we are women trying to build a business, and trying to be successful, how are we successful in a culture like this that is over evaluating every single thing that we do? And so what I can tell you is what I do, right? My goal is not to train people to become just like me. I don't need to tell them every detail of my life so that they can be exactly like me. That is not the point, right? My goal is to train people to become the best version of themselves using my system, okay? And that's where the system comes in. So what is the system, right?
So my system is called the Million Dollar Badass Model. That is my system. I walk clients that I work with through a nine-step process, right? We have a member site where you can walk through step-by-step each of these nine steps, and the exact process that you need to take to go from a 100K to a million, right? The focus is on building a strong brand and systematically marketing that brand, developing your own intellectual property into a proprietary system, and building a team that can work that system for you when you are not available to work it, right?
Really the way to scale a service business any way is to build a system. Otherwise, you are going to find yourself very stressed out all the time, constantly putting out fires, very, very, very busy, no time to think as a CEO, and figure out what the next best strategic move is for your company, right? You are constantly be context switching, going from having your CEO hat on, to servicing clients needs, to managing the team, to recording marketing content, to manual administrative tasks. You will be involved in every aspect of your business, because you don't have a system set up for your clients to win, and your team to follow for success, right?
I learned in the first year of my law practice … that was focused on intellectual property, I was practicing IP law … that big and small companies, the way that they scale to millions and billions of dollars is through intellectual property. And that's what I teach you how to do, whether you like me or not, whether you like my personality, whether you like my belief systems, whether you like what I wore yesterday, whether you like what I ate, whether you think I'm exploitive, or greedy, or whatever, or fabulous, regardless of what you think of me personally, it almost doesn't matter, because the system works bottom line. And you can engage with this system, and you can learn this system, and you can implement these strategies in your business to grow, to execute your vision, to live out your purpose, to build the company that you want to build, to work with the kinds of clients that you want to work with, to have the offers that you want to have, to take your personal genius, which you 100% have, and turn it into a framework, creating your own proprietary system.
You can do all of that whether you like me or not, or whether you like every word that comes out of my mouth, or whether you also like a bold Fenty lipstick, or not, you know? So liking me and my personality is not an essential requirement, and that is exactly why I say don't join my mastermind, don't become a client of my business because you like me so much.
Become a client on my business because you know that the Million Dollar Badass Model works, because you are excited about this system, and you want to implement it in your business, right? That is the reason to join my mastermind, not because you think I'm awesome. Because I think if you were to join my programs based on the fact that you think I'm awesome, at some point I'm going to disappoint you, right? And what does that mean?
If it's all about me, if your clients are only joining your program because of you, personally, the moment that you disappoint them, now they can no longer be a client, right? Because it was all about their like for you, right? And so if they no longer like you, or if they don't like something that you did, now, they can't work with you anymore, right? So that is not a way to win, for anybody, for your clients, or for yourself, okay? It's not about our clients getting our personal blessing on whatever it is that they're doing, right? That's not what you're signing up for when you work with me and my team is not to get my personal business blessing on your business. No.
What I'm trying to do is teach you how to be an incredible CEO in your own right, so you can make great decisions, so you can share your genius with the world, so that you can become a higher version of yourself, through your own actions, and I'm just going to teach you the strategies, and help you with some of the mindset stuff. That's what my team and I are going to do, and that's what this system does.
So I hope that y'all understand where I'm coming from here. You don't want to brand yourself as the savior for your clients, right? Your system will help them get to where they want to go, not necessarily you, personally, because the reality is, too, that eventually you are going to scale. And the more you scale, the less you are going to be available to work with your clients one-on-one directly, right? It's just not possible to scale, if you are doing all of this one-on-one work. They just don't go together, those two things.
And the way that you can make it so that your clients can win, and get even better results than they would've gotten working with you one-on-one is to develop a proprietary system that takes them through a process that gets them a result. Because let me tell you sister, otherwise, if you don't do that, what's going to happen in your service business is that you are not perfect, and you are going to make a mistake, or you are going to say the wrong thing, or you're going to wear the wrong thing, or where the right thing, but a group of people might just decide that they don't like it, and tear you down.
That is something that is sadly very common in our culture. And when that happens, that can really damage your business, right? It can damage the relationship with your client if it's all about you. So I encourage you to make it not all about you, make it all about a system that you have developed that works.
That is my message for you today. I hope you find it helpful, and inspiring, and exciting. It is a really sad thing that we live in a world that has created this culture where we love to tear women down. It's shitty, right? And we are victims of it, and we are also the carriers of it, right? We judge other women as well. I know I definitely have, and probably still do in some ways.
But it's really … reading this book Trainwreck, which I highly recommend, has really stopped me in my tracks. It's really made me question myself when I'm about to comment on another woman's work, or what another woman is doing, or what another woman is wearing. I really have to check myself and ask myself, “Is this for the purpose of tearing this woman down, or is this for the purpose of sharing my opinions? Is this constructive? Is this useful, or is this for the sole purpose of making myself feel better about myself by talking about with somebody else's doing wrong?” I think we could all ask ourselves that.
I really want to operate where I see the good in people, and assume good intent. I think there's a lot of value and that there's a lot more joy in life that can come from assuming good intent. That is what I'm trying to do, and that can be very scary, particularly when you are a woman of color, and just being a woman at all. If you're a part of this world where we have been marginalized in so many ways, it's very scary to assume good intent, but I'm trying it. I'm trying it out. I'm trying to get out to see if it leads to more positive communication, and I'm not saying trust everybody. I'm not saying hand over the keys to your life. I'm just saying try out assuming good intent, maybe try it out in some small ways, some not as risky ways and see what happens.
But I think that we can all stand to judge each other a little bit less and to assume positive intentions a little bit more. And if you want to extract the business tip and all of that, it is sell your system, not yourself. That's my episode for you guys today. Talk to you next week.
Million Dollar Badass is our advanced business mastermind for six-figure women entrepreneurs. We focus on creating lasting scalable businesses while also addressing the very real issues that are specific to the experience of those who are not men.
MDB is not for all women, or all entrepreneurs. And it is not simply a coaching program. MDB is a system for six-figure earners to scale strategically. I want every woman to know what it feels like to wield economic power. This is my mission.
In order to go from 100K to a million, your business needs an identity that your clients connect with on a deep level and that inspires them to specific action. It also needs intellectual property that can be leveraged to the nth degree to scale your business and generate revenue even when you aren’t working. It also needs an implementation strategy that doesn’t require your constant time and attention.
All of our coaching, materials, and training are designed around these three elements to take you from 100K to a million. If you’re ready to do the work and also crave a community that will support you in your growth, apply right now for the Million Dollar Badass Mastermind by visiting helloseven.co/apply.
Don’t wait too long because our next group of members will begin on March 10th. You’ll have the opportunity to join us in France for our Million Dollar Made Retreat, May 17th through the 23rd, and for a special slay-cation, a Build Your Brand Retreat in Taos, New Mexico, July 19th through the 25th.
If you’re currently running a business that generates six figures or more per year, this is your invitation to learn more and join Million Dollar Badass. Go to helloseven.co/apply and you’ll fill out a short application and select a time for your interview with our enrollment specialist.
And if you’re not at that point in your business yet, let this inspire you and help us spread the word. If there are a few women in your life who are at this level, it’s likely they are looking for something like this too. I guarantee it.
I hope to meet a select few of you in March. Submit your application and secure your interview at helloseven.co/apply.