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IAM1800 – Speaker & Client Generation Expert Helps Entrepreneurs Grow Their Businesses

Podcast Interview with Mary Cravets

Why it was selected for “CBNation Architects”:

In this episode, host Gresham Harkless Jr. interviews Mary Cravets, a Client Generation Expert and International Speaker who helps entrepreneurs significantly grow their businesses without working nights and weekends. Mary shares her journey in entrepreneurship, including how she helps her clients increase their income by 50-100% using her methods.

She also discusses the importance of setting realistic goals and not negotiating with time, as well as the freedom that comes with not having to be the person always working.

Additionally, Mary shares practical tips and advice for entrepreneurs, including the importance of building relationships and generating sales to grow their businesses.

Overall, the episode provides valuable insights and inspiration for entrepreneurs looking to grow their businesses and achieve success without sacrificing their personal time and well-being.

Check out one of our favorite CEO Hack’s CEO Web Shop. Get your free audiobook and check out more of our favorite CEO Hacks HERE.

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Mary Cravets Teaser 00:00

They're not as quickly able to focus on the fact that what they need to do is generate clients. It doesn't matter if you're in the phase of you just opened the doors to your business, or you're looking to scale your business.

The one system that absolutely has to be streamlined and consistent and predictable is your client generation system.

Intro 00:00

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 00:45

Hello, hello, hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast, and I appreciate you listening to this episode. If you've been listening this year, you know that we hit over 1600 episodes at the beginning of this year. We're doing something a little bit different where we're repurposing our favorite episodes around certain categories, topics, or as I like to call them, the business pillars that we think are going to be extremely impactful for CEOs, entrepreneurs, business owners, and what I like to call a CB nation architects who are looking to level up their organizations.

This month we are focused on the visibility game, a.k.a. Marketing, Advertising, PR, and Sales, I often say the name of the game is being found in these tools will help you to do that. We have heard the philosophical question, if the tree falls in the forest and no one is around, does it make a sound? If there's a really, really great product or service and no one knows about it, how great is it really? What impact does it ultimately make? This is where we will go into this month, looking at visibility, branding, marketing, public relations, sales, being the lifeblood of businesses. Building meeting companies and so much more.

This is probably one of the most exciting and probably the most excruciating topics, but we hope this month to demystify, maybe even vanquish the fear, and help and arm you with the tools to be able to increase your visibility. So buckle up and sit back and enjoy this special episode of the I AM CEO podcast.

Hello, hello, hello, this is Gresh from the I am CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Mary Cravets of Simply Get Clients. Mary, it is awesome to have you on the show.

Mary Cravets 02:16

Thanks for having me, Gresh.

Gresham Harkless 02:17

No problem. No problem. What I want to do is just read a little bit more about Mary so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing.

Mary Cravets is a client generation expert, an international speaker who helps entrepreneurs significantly grow their businesses without working nights and weekends. Using her methods, the majority of her clients quickly increase their income 50 to 100%. Clients include the former CFO of Microsoft North America, thought leaders in the coaching industry, and rising stars in a variety of other professions, including doctors, CPAs. Mary is also an avid roller coaster enthusiast and a kayaking volunteer for a wildlife protection program in Morrow Bay.

Mary, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

Mary Cravets 03:02

I am so ready.

[restrict paid=”true”]

Gresham Harkless 03:03

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. The first question I had is if you can build a little bit more upon your CEO story or in your bio and tell us a little bit more about your CEO story and what led you to start your business.

Mary Cravets 03:12

Yeah, absolutely. My pleasure. It was not that smooth sailing, everything was perfect type of story. I definitely grew my CEO legs by discovering entrepreneurship then going, Oh, I don't want to do this. I want to do that. And, along the way, I finally landed on what I'm doing now. It just seems that my brain works this way to organize things and to understand how to speak to people, to draw them in to become clients. But it didn't start like that. It started when I was just running, making the mistake that a lot of people do.

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As I was CEO, I was the dishwasher. I was like everything in my business and so I was running in every different direction and I got quite sick. Actually, I was diagnosed with adrenal exhaustion and it made me do something that probably a lot of people take longer to do, which is really hone in on the easiest, fastest, simplest, cheapest way to grow their business. I did it out of crisis. I had about 4 hours of energy a week, so I didn't really have a choice. I either lost my business or I figured it out.

So from there, that's where from that experience from the crisis, that's where everything else grew from. This is where the client generation system comes from. And from the very early days of my business through the burnout and after the burnout and up to now, my model has been to hire virtual teams. So, I'm still the only employee of my company, but the way that I can stay in my brilliance, my genius, and really be the CEO, is I've got a virtual social media team. I've got a virtual admin team. I've got my PR team. I got these teams, they all work very independently. So we all maintain a high degree of independence and freedom, but we all get to work in what we're brilliant at.

Gresham Harkless 05:00

I wanted to drill down a little bit deeper and hear a little bit more on like how you help your clients. So I imagine that because you have gone through that period, you probably have really good insight into what a lot of the clients that you're working with have gone through and how to help them out.

Mary Cravets 05:13

Yes. Actually in my story, I had an advantage, which was I didn't have a choice. I had to make money. And so I was crystal clear that the answer to surviving in the business was to get clients. What I find is a lot of my clients, they don't have that advantage and so they're not as quickly able to focus on the fact that what they need to do is generate clients. It doesn't matter if you're in the phase of you just opened the doors to your business, or you're looking to scale your business, the one system that absolutely has to be streamlined and consistent and predictable is your client generation system.

The problem is people tend to do it like piecemeal. Oh I'm going to learn how to speak to sell, I'm going to get an online marketing funnel and I'm going to do a little blogging. It's all messy and the only way for a system to work is for each piece fits into the next and they all work together. So if you work in one area, all the other ones are benefiting. So it's like you're getting compounding results. The good news is that it's not like a one size fits all. I don't like to say, Oh, you have to do speaking or you have to do referrals or you have to do anything. It's really providing the structure to bring your brilliance, your understanding of your ideal client, how you like to work your strengths, and creating a system that is unique to you and still consistent.

So it's not about cookie cutter. You just have the people who drive me crazy or the online marketers are like, everybody's doing this and this works for everybody. I'm like, no, it doesn't. You're literally lying. It's just a matter of simplifying it, giving people a simple structure, instead of driving people in 20 different directions, simplifying it down to the essential, what I think of as six essential elements of client generation, and then bringing your brilliance, applying it to the system and then implementing.

Gresham Harkless 05:13

Okay. Perfect. Now I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce, and this is something that you feel like distinguishes you. Some people even call it their superpower, but it's something that you feel about you or your business that makes you unique and sets you apart from the pack.

Mary Cravets 07:21

I think I've already alluded to it and that is that there's not a cookie-cutter system really being able to support people to find their way. Actually, a client hired me recently. She heard me speak a couple of years ago for a group and the thing that stayed with her for those two years while she was getting positioned to be ready to hire me, as she said, you gave me permission to not do things that felt wrong. I didn't feel like I like all these experts and gurus out there saying, you've got to do this and you've got to do this. Mary, you allowed me to trust my gut and still have to apply a system, but bring forward the things that I have the most talent in. I have the most interest in it. The things I frankly enjoy doing, and I don't hear a lot of that.

If you want to look at what successful people do, that's what it is. They play to their strengths. They focus on the areas of least resistance and most opportunity. So there are two pieces. One is that, it's not a cookie cutter and gives a structure, but not a tactical system that you'd have to plug in and try to fit into a square peg into a round hole, maybe. But the other piece is like when I work with my clients and they're throwing 17 different things at me, I can very clearly say, see the three things that are going to move you forward the fastest and say, okay, let's take away those other 14. We're going to put them on a shelf. They're lovely and I'm sure they're precious, but they're not going to get done and nothing's going to get done. I can see the top 3 things that are going to get into their goal fastest.

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What I see a lot of coaches, I'm not technically a coach, but what I see a lot of coaches do is they teach people how to move forward from the inside out. Like you do all this personal work, you dig into your childhood relationship with money, and then you start to see different results. I have an outside approach and that is we take your top most effective, exciting, fun ways of growing your business and then we break it down into the actions that are so simple, so suited to who you are.

So accurately speaking to drawing into your ideal client, they're so simple and clear that you can't help but move forward, and then you'll start to see outward results that are different and then you start inwardly to believe them because you see your outside world changing.

Gresham Harkless 09:38

Exactly. Now I wanted to switch gears a little bit and ask you for what I call a CEO hack. This might be an app or a book or a habit that you have. It might be something you already alluded to, but something that makes you more effective and efficient as a business owner.

Mary Cravets 09:51

The first thing, of course, is my team, just make sure to rely on my team. For me, the thing is always looking at what's the next level. No one else is going to do that. So this isn't so much of a hack, but it's more like the mindset. What is the thing that moves myself forward? I always have to be the person seeing the bigger vision. Okay. So this is a little thing, but I keep my goal in front of me all the time. Literally right now, but it's not this year's goal. It's like the next step. Big goal. So nothing else.

The increments don't really exist for me. I know what they are. I know what my income increments are, but only have that number in mind. I read all kinds of personal development books, and one of the things that says is you can't focus a lot on the how, and this was something I was very resistant to by the way, because I'm very like, here are the stats you have to know. But the thing is to get to things you haven't done before. You have to do things you don't even know to do yet. So by putting the goal, I honestly have no idea how I'm going to get there. I know how I get to the next increment, but to get to the big goal, I don't know how, and I have to be focusing on the goal that I don't know how to get to yet.

So that my brain is working for me to pull me into those solutions that I don't know yet. Otherwise, I will never find them.

Gresham Harkless 11:09

I love that CEO hack and once you start to be and set it out and put in, you're in alignment with it, then you start to manifest and become that person. That you need to be to do that. So I love it.

Mary Cravets 11:18

I will tell you, and you probably know this is that it's not a linear process. I had a spectacular fail. It was like spend 10, 000 and get nothing fail, but I don't have any doubts that it was exactly what I needed. I needed to know that was the wrong path. I kept thinking it was the right path for five years. I thought it was the right path.

Finally, I was able to invest in it and it was the wrong path, but I would not have believed it. I would not have taken my energy fully back from it. I would not have sought out what's the better path had I not had that universal two-by four, that 10, 000 two by four across the back of the head to get me back on track.

Gresham Harkless 11:56

Yeah, it's unfortunate sometimes how life goes where you have to get the lesson first. So you have to go through those difficult times in order to know exactly where you want to go. So I think that's a great CEO hack and I appreciate you for sharing that with us.

Now I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. This might be something that you've already mentioned or that you tell the clients that you work with, but it's something that might be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice you might have for entrepreneurs and business owners.

Mary Cravets 12:21

This might sound very counterintuitive, but you can't negotiate with time. You just can't negotiate with time. The biggest mistake I see business owners make is they think that someday they will have a superpower to transcend time. And so they're to-do lists. It's overloaded. For most of my clients, my higher level clients who I work one on one with, the first thing I do is I do an evaluation and assessment of course, but I look at what they have on their plate, what they want to do. Majority of the time I say, the first thing we do is we have to reduce your workload because it's not possible.

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You can't set yourself up for failure on a daily basis and expect to win long-term. It just doesn't work that way. So whether it's better planning, whether it's more delegation, whether it's overwhelmed becomes a habit. If you are constantly overwhelmed, if you get out of it, you will snap back to it. I watch it over and over and over again. So it's such a simple thing. Keep your to-do lists realistic. That's it.

Gresham Harkless 13:26

That's huge. I think especially for most entrepreneurs and business owners, definitely high achieving people that want to conquer the world and take over the world. Sometimes those to-do lists do get rather lengthy. So making sure that you make it sure it's manageable. So again, as we talked about before, you have those wins that you can continue to build that moment.

Mary Cravets 13:43

You've got to feel a sense of accomplishment. You can't carry over lists day after day, after day, after day, and feel like you're moving forward. Because you have to align with the feeling of success. By the way, I'm reminding myself of all of these things as I'm sitting here.

So if you were able to take their eye off the ball and everything, it's a constant reset. It's a constant coming back to it and coming back to it and coming back to it.

Gresham Harkless 14:08

Yeah. Just like any muscle or any exercise, you have to keep doing it and doing it and then it starts to become a habit. So definitely, I love that. Mary, I truly appreciate your time. Now I want to ask you for my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO.

We're hoping to have different quote and quote CEOs on this podcast and I know you have a team that you're managing as well. So I wanted to ask you what does being a CEO mean to you?

Mary Cravets 14:30

Being CEO means that I'm going to take October 24 off to go ride roller coasters. It means that freedom to not have to be the person that's always working. The wheels don't fall off because I don't show up. It's freedom.

Gresham Harkless 14:46

I love it. And you lose perspective of that when you start to build the business, that you start to work in the business that you're doing so much that you can't get away, but you need to make sure that your cup is filled. So we all have our thing, whatever we need to do to fill up our cups so that we can be even more present so that we can look for the vision, look and see how we want the business.

I truly appreciate your time again. What I want to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, to see if there's anything additional you want to let our readers and our listeners know and how best people can get ahold of you.

Mary Cravets 15:10

Yeah, absolutely. I have two resources for you that are really fantastic. One is my website. It needs a little facelift, but there's a ton of resources there. There's my blog. There's free and almost free page. It's got a lot of other things. It's got tools, curated tools. So you can go there if you want to. If you like to dig, if you like the straight shot little education on how to simplify your client generation, best place to go is moreclientslessmarketing.com That has a short video where it introduced what you're going to get.

So if you want it, you just go over to the other page. There's a webinar about how to simplify and systematize your client generation, just making it really simple. Some education, a lot of value. It's not just fluffy. It's not theory, the stuff works for my clients and for me. So you can get a good knowledge of what it is that we do. So more clients, less marketing, that's the real streamlined approach. You can go to simplygetclients.com. If you want to look at the expanded view of what we do.

Gresham Harkless 16:09

Awesome. We'll make sure to have those links in the show notes, but Mary, I truly appreciate you for everything that you're doing. This was an awesome chat that we had, and I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Mary Cravets 16:17

Thanks, Gresh. I appreciate it. You too.

Outro 16:19

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.


Dave Bonachita - CBNation Writer

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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