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IAM210- Lawyer, Photographer and Business Consultant Helps Creatives Initiate and Implement Strategic Plans

Podcast interview with Rachel Brenke

As a lawyer, photographer and business consultant for entrepreneurs, Rachel helps creative industry professionals all over the world initiate, strategize and implement strategic business and marketing plans through various mediums of consulting resources and legal direction.

  • CEO Hack: Scheduling everything
  • CEO Nugget: Be strategic and figure out where you fit in the business at the point of business trajectory you are
  • CEO Defined: (1)The brains and the face of the operation (2) Having the knowledge to create a culture.

Website: http://www.rachelbrenke.com/

Instagram: www.instagram.com/rachelbrenke
Facebook: www.facebook.com/rachelbrenke


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Transcription:

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Intro 0:02

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:27

Hello, hello hello! This is Gresham from the I AM CEO Podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I've Rachel Brenke of rachelbrenke.com . Rachel, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Rachel Brenke 0:37

Thanks for having me.

Gresham Harkless 0:38

No problem. No problem. And I'm super excited to have you on and what I wanted to do was just read a little bit more about Rachel so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing. And Rachel Brenke a as a as a lawyer, photographer, and business consultant for entrepreneurs, Rachel helps creative industry professionals all over the world initiate, strategize, and implement strategic business and marketing plans through various mediums of consulting resources and legal direction. Rachel, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

[restrict paid=”true”]

Rachel Brenke 1:05

I'm ready, I'm always scared when you lead with a lawyer because people don't want to listen to lawyers. But that's okay.

Gresham Harkless 1:11

Exactly.

Rachel Brenke 1:12

It will be fun. I promise.

Gresham Harkless 1:13

They may not want to listen to lawyers, but they definitely want to listen to Rachel. So I know you're doing some awesome things. So I'm super excited to hear more about it. And what I wanted to do was start everything off with what I call your CEO story, to hear a little bit more about your story and what led you to start your business.

Rachel Brenke 1:27

So all of it actually started with cancer. I was like 20 years old, and my husband was on active duty Army, we had one kid, and super young to have cancer. And I realized with that, you know, I had been working through undergrad I had been tinkering with some online business stuff. This was like the MySpace days, Facebook wasn't even around. And I was realizing in that time going through the cancer treatments and all of that how much I really enjoyed being able to work for myself and being able to be near my family. And you know, not to work a nine to five to pad other people's dreams and achieve those for them and their goals that I could do it for myself.

So from there, you know, I started dabbling in some different online and local community, you know, brick and mortar type businesses, I went on to get an MBA because I thought that would be such a great asset to be an entrepreneur, don't freak out. If you're listening, I am one of those who will be the first to tell you, you don't need an MBA to run a successful business. Do I think it was a value add? I mean, I think it helps from my qualification standpoint with me consulting businesses and such now, but as far as actually running my business, I don't think the degree had any direct impact. But I was working on my business consulting business in tandem with an apparel company and a couple of other businesses, including photography, and I realized that there were all of these questions being asked all the time of me because people knew that I love to research I love business strategy.

And you can remember guys, when I'm talking about this, this was before this will freemium model thing exploded, you know, you didn't really have opt-ins you didn't have blogs, were really only personal in nature. At this time. I'm dating myself on all this, but you really only could find business information. It was all gated behind like long-form really crappy web pages, right? And so 999! But wait, there's more. And I laugh, but I was part of that as well, you know. And so people were coming to me asking me questions because the freemium model didn't exist.

And that's when I realized that there were there was a market. A lot of other people have realized this too. But there's a market for helping others become entrepreneurs. And for me, specifically, it was for other moms, just how I got my start other moms who wanted to have a quality of life, but also have a piece of the entrepreneurial pie to be present with their kids, also to have something that's their own.

So I ended up you know, did the MBA and went to law school thinking that would be a great value add, which it has because I also own a law firm now and I have culminated all that into the different brands that I have online, I had different legal niche sites in different industries, a very specific, same idea from the very beginning, helping others get their businesses set up, making sure their business strategize, and also legally protected. Yeah, so that's my long-winded answer of how I got to where I'm at, but we're looking at like 15 years of this. So a lot happened. And it didn't happen overnight, but I'm quite enjoying where I'm at.

Gresham Harkless 4:32

I know! I know you touched on it a little bit. I wanted to hear a little bit more about like what you're doing to kind of support the clients that you're working with.

Rachel Brenke 4:37

Yeah, so from my legal perspective, and education and experience, I really am helping entrepreneurs to focus on key protection things that you can do. First, is just liability protection we put ourselves out there and are trying to make money there's liability we're in a litigious society and need to have that on lockdown. The second step and making these are not in priority order, but you know, gotta start thinking about all of the marketing assets or the assets that you're selling intellectual properties, whether it's your business name, it's your logo, it's your images, it's your podcast, right? Anything that you're using, and you're creating, to help market and or to sell in your business, all of that intellectual property is so valuable.

And so many entrepreneurs overlook this until it either gets ripped off, or they get pinged for infringing someone else. And so the next step after you know, getting your business protection, stuff under control, is really making sure that you have an understanding of the intellectual property that you have in your business, how you can leverage that and also make sure that you're respecting other people's intellectual property. Because you know, this the thing like when I first started this business path, if you had asked me, Oh, will you ever sell your business? I was so hardy tweety. I was like, never this is me, I could never sell it off, right? Because I was so impassioned, not that I'm not now but it was so impassioned.

And so engrained, and I couldn't see a long-term picture, because I was still just trying to climb that first mountain, right? But as I've gotten over that, and as I've worked with legal clients of my own, you get to a point where you realize you're not going to do this forever. You know, the reality is, we have a finite number of years, some of us are shorter, some are longer, you may just wake up one day and realize you had a passion for it yesterday, but you don't today, in any of those situations, if you're looking to close your business, or to sell it, which is a great another income stream to look forward to what is the key thing that you sell customer lists, maybe right? But its intellectual property is the branding that has been associated with that business.

And maybe if you're a business that sells intellectual property like you're a logo designer, or photographer or videographer, a musician, all of those things, you're selling intellectual property, licensing it, and then there's the core of what you offer. And so this is a liability. And the intellectual property stuff on the legal side is really the biggest focus and nestled in that business protection. And some intellectual property is the use of contracts in business, you know, setting expectations with your customers, or your employees or other people you're working with, really, really important to have all that unlocked down. And I share that information not because I'm aware, I share that because I'm an entrepreneur who also values what I've built in my business. And I want to protect and safeguard that, you know, we all only have a certain amount of hours a day. And I want to be able to have those other extra hours outside of work to focus on my family.

So that also comes to the business strategy aspect that I am sharing with entrepreneurs you get this legal stuff under control. So you don't have to spend hours on a phone with a lawyer no matter how fun I may be. You don't want to have to pay me to have to fix any problems, right? So business strategy is being proactive and doing everything you can do to develop a really good brand, identifying one, what your unique selling proposition isn't, and who it is that you're talking to. And then circling back to the legal stuff, protecting all the brand that is built to facilitate the messaging and the products or services, whatever type of business that you're running is just to be strategic and protected.

So it kind of all intermingled together. But yeah, so that's the major things business strategy, legal protection, and then also balancing, which I hate the term balance. But I don't think that true balance exists. It's kind of all give or take in life, but being able to have a successful business. But for me, I want to have a life more than business no matter how much I love being an entrepreneur, I love life even more.

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Gresham Harkless 8:29

Yeah, absolutely. And I love that perspective. You're definitely it's like a triple threat with all this strategic part with being able to make sure that you have your legal in order. And of course, making sure to bring everything together is definitely you know, of importance for most entrepreneurs and business owners. And you might have already touched on this, but I want to ask you for what I call your secret sauce. And this is what you feel kind of distinguishes you and or your organization apart.

Rachel Brenke 8:49

Oh man, I think it is being very strategic and actions all in my advice to people is not just this is what is right under the law. It's what is right but also what's going to be best for you in the future. And so that's for what I when I teach other people and even when I make my own actions in my own business, how strategic can I be, because again when you sit down to work, the actions that you take, you want to get the most out of those. And this is kind of I feel like I don't know if it's the secret sauce, I've just kind of done this from the beginning because I remember being burnout and I remember taking the approach of you have a to-do list you put it in priority order and you check it off and the days were burning my the husband was deployed to Iraq. We were on kid number two and three and four. You know, I have like 500 children.

You don't know what shows up every day in the house. I'm just kidding. We have five but then I realized that that process of just going through listening to podcasts like you and me and then making notes, okay, I need a contract. I need this. I need that that may not be beneficial for you. When I took this three-to-one approach then it was I was getting through tasks quicker. I was able to be more strategic when I'm choosing to do and also if you guys are like me, I'm a multi-passionate entrepreneur, I get very excited about shiny things all the time.

And my team tries to keep me grounded. But sometimes that doesn't work. But when I do the three-to-one, it will show me, okay, that's a really good idea. I may be passionate about X, Y, and Z, but it doesn't fit into what I need for my to achieve these business goals, right now. We're gonna write that down. We'll come back to it later, and so helps to keep me focused and maximizes my hours. And I just feel like that's the secret sauce to being able to build and grow multiple businesses. But even if you're just looking at just doing one, it can help to maximize the hours in your day.

Gresham Harkless 10:37

Yeah, absolutely. I love that, you know, an example of a secret sauce. And I think that it rings true and everything that you're doing because everything seems like it's in alignment. And that kind of makes sense, based on what you said about how you've kind of strategically made decisions on everything that you're doing. So that it's all in alignment with you know, who you are, and what you value. And I wanted to switch gears a little bit and ask you for what I call a CEO hack. And you might have already touched on this. But this is something that you feel makes you more effective and efficient as a business owner.

Rachel Brenke 11:01

I think scheduling everything is. I don't know if that's the right answer. I'm kind of a free spirit. But I really do thrive on pressure and timelines. At the same time when it comes to business-type stuff. So for us, and I say us because we're very team-based, now. I wasn't always, we are very strategic on this day of the week I work on this day of the week is this business this day, that week is that business.

And even within those days, it's like the first of the month, the first week of every month, each of those days has its own specific admin tasks for whatever specific business I'm working on that day. Because I was finding when I was switching gears, I wasn't getting squat done. I was overwhelmed. I wasn't able to focus. I work the same way with like batch-creating content, I'll do a whole bunch of my own podcast interviews crammed into one day, it's exhausting, but then they're done for like the quarter, right? And I don't have to worry about it for three more months.

And so being busy does not equal business. And I guess the follow-up to that is asking yourself, now this doesn't always work. But ask yourself, do my fingers have to be the ones to press the button? Right? And that's a question that I asked myself with my team all the time because I'm one of those, who love web design. I'm not a web designer, I know enough to be dangerous, but my team will say why are you doing it? Your fingers don't have to touch that. Now I'll come in and finish out the copy and that kind of stuff. But do I actually need to be the one uploading the logo that goes at the top? No, I know sorts of things.

So it's figuring out where you fit into the business at the point of your business trajectory that you're at. Like in the beginning, I wore all the hats, I did all the things. And but now well, and I think part of that was mistaking this see for business, but also because I didn't have the money or know how to hire other people. And once you have that and you start investing you really forcing yourself to say do I have to do this task now don't take that as this elitist response of I'm the CEO, I'm too good for that. It's not about that. But if you look at it, like with this podcast, I couldn't ask anybody else on my team to come to do this. Why? Because they're not me. So in order for me to have time to come to things like this, I have to give them tasks or schedule for me to do later tasks that don't necessarily mean my fingers are touching and doing

Gresham Harkless 13:20

Absolutely no, I love that. And I love that kind of idea and reminders. And definitely, you know, with so many things moving, you want to make sure that you're aware of what's going on how long it might take and be able to kind of put that in the right person's, I guess, inbox or whatever, their lab so they can make sure that to get it done. And I know you touched on this a little bit too. And I wanted to ask you for your definition of what it means to you to be a CEO.

Rachel Brenke 13:42

Oh, man, it's the brains that are the brains of the operation. Now for someone like me, all of my staff are smart, and I've chosen that. And they all have entrepreneurial mindsets. And that's actually a very specific skill set that we look for. And I do recognize that I could lose them one day since they are so entrepreneurial-minded, but it's being the brains. And in my case, it's also being the face. Now not all CEOs are the face, right? We can think of some large corporations with very smart CEOs. And there are multiple of them that were the brains and only maybe one is the outward face. So I just get the pleasure of being both. And then I don't know I don't want that into the question. But it's having the brains and knowledge to strategically run the business but also to create a culture within your company amongst your staff and your team and also surrounding the brand that you've created. I think that is what an effective CEO is.

Gresham Harkless 14:44

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Yeah, I definitely love that definition. And Rachel I truly appreciate you for taking some time out what I wanted to do was pass you the mic just to see if there's anything additional you want to let our readers and our listeners know and then of course how best they can get a hold of you.

Rachel Brenke 14:57

Yeah, actually that's what I was going to share. You guys can find me At rachelbrenke.com, I have a free legal checklist that you can go through doesn't matter what industry you're in, it'll walk you through the steps. We kind of touched on it a little bit here, but it can really flesh it out a bit more for you. I want you guys to take the time. Listen, my recommendation on legal stuff is so that you can not have to deal with legal issues later on down the line and focus on growing the business. Focus on having a life outside of business.

So if you have any questions at all, please feel free to reach out to me. rachelbrenke.com is the hub for everything. You can find all of my different niche sites there as well as the podcast. And again, I'm happy to answer any questions. I'm the only Rachel Brenke on all social media. So just reach out. I do all my social media myself. Yeah. And yes, I did ask myself- do my fingers have to be the one that touched that? The answer was yes because I prioritize and put great value in interfacing with my audience. So it'll be me if you guys reach out.

Gresham Harkless 15:55

Nice, nice, nice. Well, I definitely appreciate you Rachel so much for giving so much insight and all the awesome things that you're doing. We're gonna have the link in the show notes as well so that anybody can follow up with you, listen to your podcast and you know, get that checklist as well. And I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Rachel Brenke 16:09

Thanks, you too!

Outro 16:11

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co

I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Intro 0:02

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Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:27

Hello, hello hello! This is Gresham from the I AM CEO Podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I've Rachel Brenke of rachelbrenke.com . Rachel, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Rachel Brenke 0:37

Thanks for having me.

Gresham Harkless 0:38

No problem. No problem. And I'm super excited to have you on and what I wanted to do was just read a little bit more about Rachel so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing. And Rachel Brenke a as a as a lawyer, photographer and business consultant for entrepreneurs, Rachel helps creative industry professionals all over the world initiate, strategize and implement strategic business and marketing plans through various mediums of consulting resources and legal direction. Rachel, are you ready to speak to I AM CEO community?

Rachel Brenke 1:05

I'm ready, I'm always scared when you lead with lawyer because people don't want to listen to lawyers. But that's okay.

Gresham Harkless 1:11

Exactly.

Rachel Brenke 1:12

I will be fun. I promise.

Gresham Harkless 1:13

They may not want to listen to lawyers, but they definitely want to listen to Rachel. So I know you're doing some awesome things. So I'm super excited to hear more about it. And what I wanted to do was start everything off with what I call your CEO story, to hear a little bit more about your story and what led you start your business.

Rachel Brenke 1:27

So all of it actually started with cancer. I was like 20 years old, and my husband was active duty Army, we had one kid and super young to have cancer. And I realized with that, you know, I had been working through undergrad I had been tinkering with some online business stuff. This was like the MySpace days, Facebook wasn't even around. And I was realizing in that time going through the cancer treatments and all of that how much I really enjoyed being able to work for myself and being able to be near with my family. And you know, not to work a nine to five to pad other people's dreams and achieve those for them and their goals that I could do it for myself. So from there, you know, I started dabbling in some different online and local community, you know, brick and mortar type businesses, I went on to get an MBA because I thought that would be such a great asset to be an entrepreneur, don't freak out. If you're listening, I am one of those will be the first to tell you, you don't need an MBA to run a successful business. Do I think it was a value add? I mean, I think it helps for my qualification standpoint with me consulting businesses and such now, but as far as actually running my business, I don't think the degree had any direct impact. But I was working on my business consulting business in tandem with a apparel company and a couple other businesses, including photography, and I realized that there were all of these questions being asked all the time of me because people knew that I love to research I love business strategy. And you can remember guys, when I'm talking about this, this was before this will freemium model thing exploded, you know, you didn't really have opt ins you didn't have blogs, were really only personal in nature. At this time. I'm dating myself on all this, but you really only could find business information. It was all gated behind like long form really crappy web pages, right? And so 999! But wait, there's more. And I laugh, but I was part of that as well, you know. And so people were coming to me asking me questions because the freemium model didn't exist. And that's when I realized that there were there was a market. A lot of other people have realized this too. But there's a market for helping others become entrepreneurs. And for me, specifically, it was for other moms, just how I got my start other moms who wanted to have quality of life, but also have a piece of the entrepreneurial pie to be present with their kids, but also to have something that's their own. So I ended up you know, did the MBA went to law school thinking that would be a great value add, which it has, because I also own a law firm now and I have culminated all that into the different brands that I have online, I had different legal niche sites in different industries, very specific, same idea from the very beginning, helping others get their businesses set up, making sure their business strategize, and also legally protected. Yeah, so that's my long winded answer of how I got to where I'm at, but we're looking at like 15 years of this. So a lot happened. And it didn't happen overnight, but I'm quite enjoying where I'm at.

Gresham Harkless 4:32

I know! I know, you touched on it a little bit. I wanted to hear a little bit more about like what you're doing to kind of support the clients that you're working with.

Rachel Brenke 4:37

Yeah, so from my legal perspective, and education and experience, I really am helping entrepreneurs to focus on key protection things that you can do. First, is just liability protection we put ourselves out there are trying to make money there's liability we're in a litigious society need to have that on lockdown. The second step and making these are not in priority order, but you know, gotta start thinking about all of the marketing assets or the assets that you're selling intellectual properties, whether it's your business name, it's your logo, it's your images, it's your podcast, right? Anything that you're using, and you're creating, to help market and or to sell in your business, all of that intellectual property is so valuable. And so many entrepreneurs overlook this until it either gets ripped off, or they get pinged for infringing someone else. And so the next step after you know, getting your business protection, stuff under control, is really making sure that you have understanding of the intellectual property that you have in your business, how you can leverage that and also make sure that you're respecting other people's intellectual property. Because you know, this the thing like when I first started this business path, if you had asked me, Oh, will you ever sell your business? I was so hardy tweety. I was like, never this is me, I could never sell it off, right? Because I was so impassioned, not that I'm not now but it was so impassioned. And so engrained, and I couldn't see long term picture, because I was still just trying to climb that first mountain, right. But as I've gotten over that, and as I've worked with legal clients of my own, you get to a point where you realize you're not going to do this forever. You know, the reality is, we have a finite number of years, some of us are shorter, some are longer, you may just wake up one day and realize I had a passion for it yesterday, but I don't today, in any of those situations, if you're looking to close your business, or to sell it, which is a great another income stream to look forward to what is the key thing that you sell customer lists, maybe right? But its intellectual property is the branding that has been associated to that business. And maybe if you're a business that sells intellectual property, like you're a logo designer, or photographer or videographer, a musician, all of those things, you're selling intellectual property, licensing it and then there's the core of what you offer. And so this is liability. And the intellectual property stuff on the legal side is really the biggest focus and nestled in that business protection. And some intellectual property is the use of contracts in business, you know, setting expectations with your customers, or your employees or other people you're working with, really, really important to have all that unlocked down. And I share that information not because I'm aware, I share that because I'm an entrepreneur who also values what I've built in my business. And I want to protect and safeguard that, you know, we all only have certain amount of hours a day. And I want to be able to have those other extra hours outside of work to focus on my family. So that also comes to the business strategy aspect that I am sharing with entrepreneurs is you get this legal stuff under control. So you don't have to spend hours on a phone with a lawyer no matter how fun I may be. You don't want to have to pay me to have to fix any problems, right? So business strategy is being proactive and everything you can do so developing a really good brand, identifying one, what your unique selling proposition isn't, who it is that you're talking to. And then circling back to the legal stuff, protecting all the brand that is built to facilitate the messaging and the products or services, whatever type of business that you're running is just to be strategic and protected. So it kind of all intermingled together. But yeah, so that's the major things business strategy, legal protection, and then also balancing, which I hate the term balance. But I don't think that true balance exists. It's kind of all give or take in life, but being able to have a successful business. But for me, I want to have a life more than business no matter how much I love being an entrepreneur, I love life even more.

Gresham Harkless 8:29

Yeah, absolutely. And I love that perspective. You're definitely it's like a triple threat with all this strategic part with being able to make sure that you have your legal in order. And of course, making sure to bring everything together is definitely you know, of importance for most entrepreneurs and business owners. And you might have already touched on this, but I want to ask you for what I call your secret sauce. And this is what you feel kind of distinguishes you and or your organization apart.

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Rachel Brenke 8:49

Oh man, I think it is being very strategic and actions all in my advice to people is not just this is what is right under the law. It's what is right but also what's going to be best for you in the future. And so that's for what I when I teach other people and even when I make my own actions in my own business, how strategic can I be, because again, when you sit down to work, the actions that you take, you want to get the most out of those. And this is kind of I feel like I don't know if it's secret sauce, I've just kind of done this from the beginning because I remember being burnout and I remember taking the approach of you have a to do list you put it in priority order and you check it off and the days were burning by husband was deployed to Iraq. We were on kid number two and three and four. You know, I have like 500 children. You don't know what shows up every day in the house. I'm just kidding. We have five but but then I realized that that process of just going through listening to podcasts like you and me and then making notes, okay, I need a contract. I need this. I need that that may not be beneficial for you. When I took this three to one approach then it was I was getting through tasks quicker. I was able to be more strategic when I'm choosing to do and also if you guys are like me, I'm a multi passionate entrepreneur, I get very excited about shiny things all the time. And my team tries to keep me grounded. But sometimes that doesn't work. But when I do the three to one, it will show me, okay, that's a really good idea. I may be passionate about X, Y, and Z, but it doesn't fit into what I need for my to achieve these business goals, right now. We're gonna write that down. We'll come back to it later, and so helps to keep me focused and maximizes my hours. And I just feel like that's the secret sauce to being able to build and grow multiple businesses. But even if you're just looking at just doing one, it can help to maximize the hours in your day.

Gresham Harkless 10:37

Yeah, absolutely. I love that, you know, example of a secret sauce. And I think that it rings true and everything that you're doing, because everything seems like it's in alignment. And that kind of makes sense, based off of what you said on how you've kind of strategically made decisions on everything that you're doing. So that it's all in alignment with you know, who you are, and what you value. And I wanted to switch gears a little bit and ask you for what I call a CEO hack. And you might have already touched on this. But this is something that you feel like makes you more effective and efficient as a business owner.

Rachel Brenke 11:01

I think scheduling everything. I don't know if that's the right answer. I'm kind of a free spirit. But I really do thrive on pressure and timelines. At the same time when it comes to business type stuff. So for us, and I say us because we're very team based, now. I wasn't always, we are very strategic on this day of the week I work on this day of the week is this business this day, that week is that business. And even within those days, it's like the first of the month, the first week of every month, each of those days has their own specific admin tasks for whatever specific business I'm working on that day. Because I was finding when I was switching gears, I wasn't getting squat done. I was overwhelmed. I wasn't able to focus. I work the same way with like batch creating content, I'll do a whole bunch of my own podcast interviews crammed into one day, it's exhausting, but then they're done for like the quarter, right? And I don't have to worry about it for three more months. And so being busy does not equal business. And I guess the follow up to that is asking yourself, now this doesn't always work. But asking yourself, do my fingers have to be the one to press the button? Right? And that's a question that I asked myself with my team all the time, because I'm one of those like, I love web design. I'm not a web designer, I know enough to be dangerous, but my team will say why are you doing it? Your fingers don't have to touch that. Now I'll come in and finish out the copy and that kind of stuff. But do I actually need to be the one uploading the logo that goes at the top? No, I know sorts of things. So it's figuring out where you fit into the business at point of your business trajectory that you're at. Like in the beginning, I wore all the hats, I did all the things. And but now well, and I think part of that was mistaking this see for business, but also because I didn't have the money or know how to hire other people. And once you have that and you start investing you really forcing yourself to say do I have to do this task now don't take that as this elitist response of I'm the CEO, I'm too good for that. It's not about that. But if you look at it, like with this podcast, I couldn't task anybody else on my team to come do this. Why? Because they're not me. So in order for me to have time to come to things like this, I have to give them tasks or schedule for me to do later tasks that don't necessarily mean my fingers to be touching and doing

Gresham Harkless 13:20

Absolutely no, I love that. And I love that kind of idea and reminders. And definitely, you know, with so many things moving, you want to make sure that you're aware of what's going on how long it might take and be able to kind of put that in the right person's, I guess, inbox or whatever, their lab so they can make sure that to get it done. And I know you touched on this a little bit too. And I wanted to ask you for your definition of what it means to you to be a CEO?

Rachel Brenke 13:42

Oh, man, it's the brains is the brains of the operation. Now for someone like me, all of my staff are smart, I've chosen that. And they all have entrepreneurial mindsets. And that's actually a very specific skill set that we look for. And I do recognize that I could lose them one day since they are so entrepreneurial minded, but it's being the brains. And in my case, it's also being the face. Now not all CEOs are the face, right? We can think of some large corporations with very smart CEOs. And there's multiple of them that were the brains and only maybe one is the outward face. So me I just get the pleasure of being both. And then I don't know I don't want that into the question. But it's having the brains and knowledge to strategically run the business but also to create a culture within your company amongst your staff and your your team and also surrounding the brand that you've created. I think that is what an effective CEO is.

Gresham Harkless 14:44

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Yeah, I definitely love that definition. And Rachel I truly appreciate you for taking some time out what I wanted to do was passyou the mic just to see if there's anything additional you want to let our readers and our listeners know and then of course how best they can get a hold of you.

Rachel Brenke 14:57

Yeah, actually that's what I was going to share. You guys can find me At rachelbrenke.com, I have a free legal checklist that you can go through doesn't matter what industry that you're in, it'll walk you through the steps. We kind of touched on it a little bit here, but it can really flesh it out a bit more for you. I want you guys to take the time. Listen, my recommendations on legal stuff is so that you can not have to deal with legal issues later on down the line focus on growing the business. Focus on having a life outside of business. So if you have any questions at all, please feel free to reach out to me. rachelbrenke.com is the hub for everything. You can find all of my different niche sites there as well as the podcast. And again, I'm happy to answer any questions. I'm the only Rachel Brenke on all social media. So just reach out. I do all my social media myself. Yeah. And yes, I did ask myself- do my fingers have to be the one that touched that? The answer was yes, because I prioritize and put great value in interfacing with my audience. So it'll be me if you guys reach out.

Gresham Harkless 15:55

Nice, nice, nice. Well, I definitely appreciate you Rachel so much for giving so much insight and all the awesome things that you're doing. We're gonna have the link in the show notes as well so that anybody can follow up with you, listen to your podcast and you know, get that checklist as well. And I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Rachel Brenke 16:09

Thanks you too.

Outro 16:11

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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Mercy - CBNation Team

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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