Now, when I say your business, I mean Your. Unique. Business. Not mine or yo’ mamas or that internet guru who makes you green with envy. I mean yours.
I know, I know: it sounds impossible.
I mean, you’ve been trying to get your business off the ground for months or even years now!
You signed up for Squarespace, but got overwhelmed by all those templates. And color palettes. And fonts.
You were asked about your offer, but you couldn’t find the words to concisely explain it. Or have it resonate with your right people. Or make you not sound like a flake.
You’ve bought the marketing course(s), but didn’t actually have a business to apply it to. Or a list to send anything to. Or a chosen social media platform to engage with.
There’s an idea for a business in your head.
And this business, well, it’s the key: to the lifestyle you dream of, to work that feels engaging, to being valued day-to-day, to choosing who you get to work with and when and on what, to getting back in the driver’s seat of your career.
And yet, you’re so stuck.
You’re trying to do this all on your own, and you’re drowning in busy work. What’s even important to have upfront, and how do you prioritize?
You’ve been doing your darndest to combine all the things you love to do into one business, but there’s not a clear message. How can you find the umbrella theme so there’s a internal compass for you to follow *and* a compelling elevator pitch?
You’ve been attempting to put together an offer, but you just can’t figure out the particulars or the pricing. What would make a client say Yes and hand over their money?
You’ve been collecting all the freebies from successful business owners, but you’re just more confused than when you started. How can all these notes actually lead to action and not just a bunch of ill-fitting “should”s?
You’re probably thinking of being a coach, a designer, an artist, a healer, a teacher, a writer, a leader. You’re creative and multi-passionate. And yet…you yearn for the feeling of focus around your business.
You want an online empire on your own terms (eep!), but you’ve always wound up in the same place, with the same questions:
- What makes me unique?
- What can I do for people?
- How can I easily communicate what I do?
- How do I get started?
- How do I make money short-term and long-term?
- What should I offer?
- How should I market it?
- How do I prioritize everything I think I need to do?
- How do I get my first clients?
You worry that you’ll never get the answers to these questions and be able to start a business that will feel good to you. Here’s the thing, though:
I’m Michelle Ward, PCC, and if you have 10 hours a week for 3 short months, I can guide you to launch your business in 90 days.
As The When I Grow Up Coach, I’ve helped thousands of creative women discover, launch and build their dream businesses since 2008. You may have seen or heard me in New York Magazine, The Huffington Post, Etsy, Newsweek, Freelancers Union, the Forbes Top 100 Websites for your Career List or 150+ other media outlets. I’m the co-author of The Declaration of You, which was published by North Light Books, and the teacher of Create Your Dream Career and Ditch Your Day Job, which were watched by tens of thousands of people live on CreativeLive.
When I decided to become a career coach for creative people (of all silly things for a grown-up to want to do as a job!) back in 2007, I put the wheels in motion to transition out of my job as an Account Manager with a verbally abusive boss who made me psychosomatic. My breaking point was having to run off a rush hour train to dry heave into a trash can at one of the busiest NYC subway platforms… and feeling fine when I was heading home and knew I didn’t have to go into work that day. Talk about a wake-up call!
Soon after, I got a “bridge job” as an Executive Assistant for a financial consultancy company so I could take back my nights, weekends, and personal energy to devote to my coaching certification and business. It took me two years and seven months to get certified and build my business up enough to be comfortable making the leap, but I was able to give notice in March of 2010 to become The When I Grow Up Coach full-time. I’ve never come close to having to put my Plan B into motion, and I now have a consistent six-figure business and feel more authentic in my day-to-day than I ever have before!
As a creative, multi-passionate woman who did all I could to fit in a traditional, “secure” career box, I’m just like you – 10 years into the future. Your Future Self in 2028 is hoping you’re finally at the point where you’ll really listen to the quiet voice in the back of your mind (or your heart) that’s telling you to make your business dreams a reality.
I’ve already co-crafted seventy-seven (!) 90 Day Business Launch plans since the summer of 2016, helping clients shortcut through years of “figuring it out” and allow them to take action on their right thing, right now.
With 90 Day Business Launch, you’ll not only know exactly how to launch your unique business, but I’ll have your back until you launch. You’ll wind up on Day 1 where I didn’t get to until Year 3.
“I quit my job & built a 6-figure business”90 Day Business Launch is what took me from being absolutely overwhelmed with my business to launching the website, booking 20 consults, retaining 5 clients (and growing!), joining the local chamber of commerce and a co-working space, and quitting my job. I now have the confidence that my knowledge and service is valuable and important, and the results to prove it. Less than 15 months after working with Michelle I went on and built a 6-figure business. Trust Michelle – that gal has got your back.
“Devoted full-time to growing and running my business”I immediately gained a sense of clarity around the steps I needed to take to get my business off the ground, and a timeline to do so. Michelle’s concrete plan after our daylong planning session, broken down into monthly tasks, was such a lifesaver. I immediately felt like this was a viable, marketable business and that I could absolutely succeed as a badass business lady! Less than 5 months after my One Perfect Day, I quit my day job and am devoted full-time to growing and running my business! On my own I’m not sure I would be where I’m at now.
“2 clients before I launched and verbal commitments from 3 others”I work much better when I have a plan put in place and that’s exactly what Michelle’s strong suit is – pulling together a plan and helping with awesome feedback and defined goals. We created a path that felt very doable, and she held me to the plan and gently pushed me when I needed it. I was able to secure 2 clients before I launched, and in just 6 weeks I got verbal commitments from 3 others. Michelle is part business coach part psychologist with a side of cheerleader 🙂
Let’s Do This Thing
Here’s how the magic happens:
You complete a detailed brief about your business (as much as you know) and hand it over 1-2 weeks before our One Perfect Day. I do as much prep as possible and come to our session ready to both rock and roll.
Using your brief as the jumping off point, we create your custom 90 Day Business Launch plan together from 10am-4p in NYC, Montclair, NJ, or virtually over Zoom (your choice!). You leave with your business message, marketing plan (and future marketing ideas), month-by-month milestones, elevator pitch, tagline, business name, ideal client profile, first offer (and future money-making ideas), your onboarding process, your website outline, even your opt-in! More on that below, but trust me – it’s epic. This is where your fuzzy ideas transform into a real business.
If our One Perfect Day is Day One of your 90 Day Launch Plan, we’ll put one-on-one sessions on the calendar close to day 30, 60, and 90. It’s here that we make sure you’re moving forward with the homework, consulting on how things are coming along (yes, I’m happy to give you my comments on your copy, design, opt-in, etc.), getting you past any roadblocks that are holding you up, etc.
90 days after our One Perfect Day, you’ll be live on the web and ready to take a payment from your first client or customer! I’ll feature you on my Instagram feed and as a Client Case Study on my blog so you can get thousands of eyes on your business straightaways.
All of the above is $4497 or 4 monthly payments of $1125. Pricing goes up on August 28th!
You can also add on:
You’ll receive a totally customized typographic logo, font selection and color palette by Rebecca Pollock, my one and only graphic and web designer since 2010. This comes with one revision, and will be delivered by Day 60 of your plan so you have plenty of time to build your site with it.
Let my husband Luke Ward, a senior copywriter with 15 years of experience in advertising, hand off your Home, About and Work with Me pages. This also comes to you by Day 60 and includes one revision.
Dani Garaci, a Squarespace Circle Member, will offer you a one-hour private Squarespace tutorial session and an additional hour of troubleshooting. This way, you’ll minimize the learning curve while also becoming proficient as a Squarespace user. This is imperative so that you can know how to make changes in your site as your business progresses and evolves.
All of the above is just $6497 total, or 4 monthly payments of $1625. Pricing goes up on August 28th!
Your Custom 90 Day Business Launch Plan
After our One Perfect Day together, you’ll walk away with a totally custom 90 Day Business Launch Plan. This will include:
What business you should start, who you work with, what you do. Think: Big Picture, Who You Help, Elevator Pitch.
What makes you different, the foundation of your brand, what you stand for. Think: Business Name Options, Tagline, Language to Use, What Makes You Different.
What offer(s) to start with and what to charge. Think: Your First Offer, Pricing, Future Possible Offers.
All about your website, social media platforms, relationships, and networking. Think: Website Nav, Opt-In Content, Social Media Start, Future Possible Marketing Tools.
Your custom action plan so you know exactly when to do what. Think: what to do in Month 1, Month 2, and Month 3 – line by line, step by step.
Once our day has wrapped, we’ll get our 3 monthly one-on-one sessions on the calendar along with your Launch Day celebration! If you choose the option to work with my designer, copywriter, and tutor, I’ll share your plan with them so they can get to work straightaways.
Carole Ann Penney
“Went straight to having a clear, real business of my own”By working with Michelle, I got to skip over the “learning it all the hard way on my own” phase and went to straight to having a clear, real business of my own. Michelle gave my business personal, detailed attention. I felt like I had a business partner to keep the momentum moving and to lay out a roadmap to make it all happen. I came to her with a lot of ideas of what my business could be, and she zeroed in on the key elements that made it cohesive, clear, and manageable for a launch. She was decisive when I couldn’t be.
“I understand the foundation for my business”While I knew I wanted to start an online business, I didn’t exactly know what that would look like and how I was going to get there. Thankfully, Michelle created a unique business plan that brought all of my ideas together and showed me exactly what I needed to focus on first. She helped me understand the foundation for my business and taught me the importance of leveraging my unique qualities to build an authentic brand. Every time I feel doubtful of my business goals or overwhelmed by the tasks that lie ahead, I look to my business plan for clarity and guidance.
“A real live business that is exactly right for me”In 90 Day Business Launch, I took the business model I designed in Discover Your Dream Business and turned it into a real live business. A business that is exactly right for me. I felt supported and understood every step of the way. Michelle has a super power, she really quickly sees what makes her clients unique and special and makes sure that is reflected in their business. She is super responsive, so smart, lots of business savvy (or acumen to be more serious, ha!), and funny as heck. I also have learned a ton about building a business – from the tech, the creative, the payment side, writing, motivation, and showing up. I am more confident. I am a business owner. (YAY!)
I’m currently booking September and November 2019. Only
6 5 4 3 spots available before prices go up and I’m booked through February 2020!
The application is obligation free, and if we mutually decide to move forward you’ll make a payment of $4497 (or 4 monthly payments of $1125) or $6497 (or 4 monthly payments of $1625) for the copywriting, design, and Squarespace tutor add-ons. My October spots are booked, but I’m happy to extend a 6 month payment plan to confirm a November start now. Pricing for both packages goes up on August 28th!
You’re better off spending your time running your business than figuring out how to launch it.
If you’ve been wishing for a coach-consultant fairy to fall from the sky with her magic wand and sprinkle launching dust over your laptop, slap some wings on me and I’ll throw the glitter.
A perfect 6 hour day together will leave you with:
- Your business’ mission statement and/or umbrella theme
- Your first offer, including logistics, pricing, who needs it most, and expected results
- Your business name, best url, and social media handles
- Your ideal client or customer and their demographics
- Your initial marketing plan to best reach your ideal client and work with how you want to engage with them
- Your client onboarding/sales process, so you know exactly what to do from first inquiry until you’re all wrapped up
- Your newsletter opt-in, including the title, so you can build your list straightaways
- Your website structure, so you have the layout you need to launch quickly and impactfully
- Your month-by-month action plan, so there’s no waffling on what to do when it’s time for your homework
- Future offerings and marketing ideas
- A circled launch date, 90 days later – complete with a reservation on my blog and Instagram feed to celebrate and promote your business to thousands of new eyeballs
90 days after that One Perfect Day, you’ll wake up a business owner.
You’ll not only have a professional website, but you’ll have a way to make money.
You’ll feel proud of the work you’re putting into the world, because you can tangibly see it online and know it’s something you can immediate deliver on.
You’ll feel confident in your ability to find and serve your first clients.
You’ll know how to answer the “So, what do you do?” question as it relates to your business, with a clear and concise elevator pitch.
You’ll know how to make time for your business no matter your limitations, since you’ve spent the last 3 months showing up over and over again.
You’ll have both a simple and effective marketing plan so you’ll know exactly what you need to do week-to-week to attract your ideal clients – and have them hire you.
You’ll have a bigger belief that you can actually make this work, since you’ll know not only how to talk about your business to yourself and others, but how to tackle it without getting lost in the weeds.
You’ll (finally!) be out of your head and taking action instead of overthinking.
You can truly see how you can make real money from this, and start to make a plan around leaving your day job that’s based on a real timeline.
You’ll be on the other side of Phase One and working in the business instead of on it.
You’ll have tapped into what your heart and gut have been telling you you need to do for yourself and your future – and you’ll be listening.
“Helpful information and ACTIONABLE steps”My launch plan was full of helpful information and ACTIONABLE steps so that I could really make my business and site come together within 90 days. I had permission to not worry about all the other things that I was stressing myself out about. I got some much needed tough love and accountability to actually get shit done. Also, my mindset shift was HUGE. I don’t think I’ve ever been part of a business program where I’ve had this kind of shift.
“First clients and first guest appearance”
I grew up with so many limiting beliefs about having your own business, that I didn’t even think it was manageable. Michelle brought me to deeper thinking in a fun way and cleared me from this fog of questions and doubts. In just 3 months I have a clear business plan, my own business cards, my own website, and a program to offer. Soon after launching my business I got my first clients, quit my job and found a new one that better supports building my business, and had my first guest appearance in an online talk show! So many people out there pretend to give you quick fame and success for their own sake. Michelle does it because she believes in us and encourages us.
“Utterly invaluable”My 90 Day Business Launch Plan caused a deep exhale – everything that had been a convoluted muddle in my mind, leaving me uncertain about where to begin, was now laid out under five key headings, clearly stepping out the actions I needed to take over the next 90 days (and beyond). My Plan has been utterly invaluable in finally getting my business idea out of my head and into the real world – I am so grateful!
Have a question before you fill out the application? The answer might be below:
Ready to launch your business in 90 days?
This is not leap-and-the-net-will-appear advice.
This is not jump-off-the-cliff risky.
These are bite-size steps to launch your business that builds confidence and creates action.
In my 11 years as The When I Grow Up Coach – and through the seventy-seven (!) 90 Day Business Launch Plans I’ve co-created since 2016 – I’ve seen a lot of businesses come and go. I know what’s a trend and what’s here to stay. I know what makes you different from what’s already out there. I know how to intersect the thing you want to offer with what’s missing from the market (aka your big opportunity).
- You’re going to know the name of your business.
- You’re going to know how you’ll make money.
- You’re going to launch your business three short months later.
- And you’re going to be able to do it in 10 hours a week.
“I had everything I needed to start taking on clients and making money!”After 90 days I had everything I needed to start taking on clients and making money! I’ve continued to grow my business using the 90-day timeline. It’s such a good way to outline everything you need and want to do, while also allowing you to zoom out and take stock of the future. It was such a relief to sit down everyday and know exactly what I was supposed to be working on next.
“I gained a lot of clarity and confidence in what I have to offer”I now have a fully functional, professional website that I am proud to direct people to. It includes my offer, which I have an on boarding process for so I know what to do when someone contacts me. I have a name for my business and brand that exudes fun and creativity. I’ve also gained a lot of clarity and confidence in what I have to offer, even if it is still a work in progress. Michelle is seriously the best cheerleader, there when I needed her, telling it like it is, and having so much optimism beaming out of her that it is literally impossible to finish a session and not feel like you’re ready to be the bad ass boss of your own damn life. With all of her knowledge and compassion, she’s the perfect person to have in your corner when you are going through this total career/identity/life change.
“The best investment I could have ever done”90 Day Business Launch was an investment, but the best investment I could have ever done. It was the beginning of taking charge of my career and my life on my terms, and I’m so glad I had Michelle by my side throughout these three months; from the idea development on our One Perfect Day to getting the work done, to my regular freakouts, to finally launching the business. She kindly guided me along the way, and I seriously couldn’t have gone through it and launched without her. Michelle is the kind of person that sees through it all and will help you wholeheartedly. I could not recommend her more, and I’m looking forward to continuing working with her!
Make the first step towards your 90 Day Business launch by filling out the no-obligation application below. I’m currently booking Sept and Nov start dates, and only
6 5 4 3 spots are available. Lock in your spot *now* before they’re gone – and before the pricing goes up on August 28th!
“It gave my businesses instant direction”The One Perfect Day in New York was phenomenal, jet lag aside. It gave my business(es) instant direction. Each business has a role to play in my life, and I was thrilled that Michelle helped me see that. I thought I had a rather complicated problem, of who I saw as my audience. Michelle helped me see my problem wasn’t really a problem, and that it was something that can work to my advantage. Now, my website is finally up after years and years of trying to get it off the ground! I feel a security in knowing the work I do is real. I’m more confident working with my current clients, not noodling around with pricing, deadlines, expectations, but just saying, “Hello, this is what I do! Thanks so much.” Thank you, Michelle, for your calm, absolutely confident and enthusiastic coaching and communication. It was such a joy to work with you!
“A business concept I’m excited to think about every day”90 Day Business Launch allowed me to forge ahead and create a business concept that I’m excited to think about every day. I learned the key steps needed to move forward in my adventure. I felt supported, I felt special and I felt like I had a real teammate with my best interests at heart.
“It captured everything I wanted but couldn’t create myself”Immediately Michelle was able to take my jumbled thoughts and ideas and turn them into an organized business plan that was not just any plan, it felt like it captured everything that I wanted but couldn’t create myself. It felt absolutely true to me. It was like a fog had cleared and I could finally see the path forward that I had been looking for. I saw the steps so clearly and instantly felt energized and ready to make things happen… I am putting myself out there and taking action in my dream business. I AM DOING THIS!!!
I have launched my business with confidence and excitement. I have a website I am proud of and a strong sense of who I wish to work with and how we can work together….all concrete elements of a business that I didn’t have before. I have a stronger foundation for growing the business and growing myself as an entrepreneur through the business, facing the challenges and being in creative movement with the process. “Launched my business with confidence and excitement”90 Day Business Launch let me dive with less fear into my business.
Michelle knows business in-and-out, but she presented her knowledge with lightness and humor. She provided positive feedback which encouraged me to grow, not think that I was clueless building a business (even though I had zero experience). She kindly pushed me to create a killer business that I am so proud of. Things can only get better from here. The foundation is set. Now I can focus on coaching and creative writing and programs. “The foundation is set”
I loved Michelle’s direct approach. Her feedback is concise and to the point, and her knowledge solid. I was able to get clarity in the direction I am going and get it done. I launched my business with the solid foundation in place. Michelle helped me feel relaxed in the decisions I am making. Helped me take action. Forget perfect. Just get it done. I trust myself more and I have more confidence in myself as a result. “I was able to get clarity and get it done”
“Brought my blurry ideas into focus”Just the experience of writing up the business brief was enlightening, but receiving the business plan took it to another level. This brought my blurry ideas into focus and outlined doable monthly milestones that led to the launch of my business.
“Exactly what I needed & better than I expected”Each time I read my plan I see something new. This has been both exactly what I needed and better than what I expected. I got something I could act on, instead of spending months trying to find that path myself. The level of detail in the plan clearly showed an understanding of what I was saying and was tailored to my business goals.
“So much more than a plan”This is more than a plan written down on paper; this is breathing life into an idea that was only in my head as jumbled thoughts. My Launch Plan has been my bible for the last 90 days and with that plan I have been able to create a business for myself that just a few months ago was just a thought in the back of my mind. When I sit back and admire my website, actual tears tug at my heartstrings and I am SO glad I didn’t change my mind to do this program (because I almost chickened out last minute!)
“Very true to myself”You managed to simplify and streamline the core business concept in such a way that it feels much more manageable to get things off the ground AND much easier to communicate and promote. I now have an “Alright, I can do this / Yes, it’s finally going to happen” feeling. This plan feels very true to myself and my original concept. I’m tons more confident than I’ve felt about the business in ages!
“A clear and strategic plan”I knew I was going to get something awesome but when I opened my plan and started reading it was like Christmas! My rambling brief was laid out as a clear and strategic plan. For the first time in months I felt like I knew what to do and that I wasn’t crazy thinking I could make this business happen. I felt like I had a team in my back pocket. My favorite part was the messaging which took what was in my head and turned it into a single sentence that said it perfectly.
“The kick in the pants I needed”A HUGE overwhelmed heart THANK YOU for the Business Launch Plan. I laughed out loud, I happy cried, and I’m super blessed. I can already see this coming to life and am super excited. It feels spot-on and I think it was the kick in the pants I needed to get myself out there 🙂
“Comfortable, easy and natural every step of the way”I wanted the accountability, help making decisions, clarity, and focus to make things happen faster without second guessing my decisions, so I signed up for 90 Day Business Launch. I’m so glad because Michelle listened/heard me. She saw me for me. Supported me and my ideas. And she helped me run with it! It was a scary process to start. She made it feel comfortable, easy, and natural every step of the way. I am more confident in my coaching and my business, and am so grateful for my time with Michelle!