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How to "Lean Out" Your Business

For Next Level Growth

Transcript 

Kathy (host):  
Welcome back to Help! My Business is Growing, a podcast where we explore how to grow and build a business that is healthy and sustainable. I'm your host, Kathy Svetina. Today we're going to be talking about how does the lean business model looks like? And we're not going to be talking about the generalities of the lean model. We're going to be talking about the specifics. How does that look like through a lens of a small business, a small business that is growing? Why is it important to operate in a lean way? And most importantly, how it affects your financial performance? Because if you do it right, it will propel your business. So you're probably asking yourself, how do I do this right? And how does that look like in practice, really? If you've listened to any of the episodes on this podcast before you know that I like to go into the weeds and into the details, and I do like actionable items, so you will definitely get those on this episode. 

Kathy (host):
My guest on this episode is Crista Grasso. She is known as the business optimizer and Crista has the ability to quickly cut through the noise and focus on optimizing the core things that will make the biggest impact on is scale of business simply and sustainably. She specializes in helping businesses gain clarity on the most important things that will drive maximum value for the clients and maximum profits for their business. From working with Fortune 50 companies to working with small business owners, Crista has used her Lean Out Method and her 90-day Lean Out Planner to help her clients achieve accelerated results and increase profitability for more than two decades. Crista is also a host of the Lean Out Your Business podcast, which I highly recommend you go and listen to because she talks a lot about strategic planning. She talks a lot about how you actually implement this lean in the business. So we have a lot of ground to cover here. And let's get to it.

Kathy (host):  
Welcome to the show. Crista.

Crista (guest):  
Thanks so much for having me. I'm really excited to be here.

Kathy (host):  
And I'm super excited that you're here. Because we're going to be talking about one of my favorite subjects. And that is how to lean out your business. But before we go into the house and woods, I'd like to take a moment for you to first define what is a lean business? And how does that look like? Because a lot of people when they think about lean, they think about manufacturing, they think about Toyota. But how do the principles of lean apply to the businesses that are not in that manufacturing space?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, one of the big things I set out to do with my lean-out method is to bring lean to all businesses in not just really massive businesses or manufacturing or technology. And if you think about what lean really means for anybody who might not be familiar with it, it's about increasing value in productivity in decreasing waste. And I don't think there is any business. I don't care, the industry, the size, the type that does not want to increase value in decreasing waste and increase productivity. That really is what leaning out is all about is identifying those things that actually matter. Those things that are providing value to your clients’ profit to your business, those things that are going to help you get to your next level, optimizing and doubling down on those and then eliminating everything else because everything else is not value add.

Kathy (host):  
And I think this is especially important as the business is growing because you're going to be bringing in more people you're going to be bringing in more clients. How does that look like in a business that it's significantly growing in a very short amount of time?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, when you think about growth in general, right? Growth, typically, you're growing through experimentation. You usually are taking some educated guesses of what you think is going to work in your business, but you're trying different things. And you're like, "Okay, I'm going to add this person and let's see if it can help us double our sales like we think we're going to, or we're going to add this program or we're going to test this in this different market." You're doing different things to grow your business. And what happens, especially with businesses that have that accelerated growth that you mentioned, is you end up with a lot of noise in your business. 

Crista (guest):
There's a lot of things that need to be leaned out, in that need to be removed, especially as you want to eventually really scale your business and focus on increasing your profitability. Because you just have too much, usually people are wearing too many hats. You might have too many offers, which could be difficult for you and your team to maintain and deliver with high quality. But sometimes it's also really confusing for your customers as to what do you actually do? I thought you did this but I see you also do this in so when you're in those periods of accelerated growth, I think it's very natural to say yes to a lot of things that you might not say yes to otherwise into experiment with a lot of things, and a critical piece of that has to be leaning out because you always want to keep things laser-focused on what actually matters most is what's in alignment with where you want to take your business next.

Kathy (host):  
And you have a saying, which I absolutely love. And it goes that, and I'm sorry, if I butcher this, it's "What do you say no to is just as important as what you say yes to." And I think this is such an important business lesson. Because there might be clients, there might be products that you want to implement in your business, but they're just not the right fit for your model, for your profitability, for whatever you want to be where you want to grow to. Can we talk more about why is this important? And how do you implement that in your business practices, because it's so hard to say no to things, right?

Crista (guest):  
Oh, completely. Leaning out makes total logical sense. I mean, who does not want more value, less waste? But the act of actually saying no to things and letting things go or even worse, this is like the hardest thing I think for entrepreneurs, is to say no to something, not to replace it with something else, but to create space for something else like entrepreneurs don't do well with free space. And so saying no, in general, can be really, really challenging and really difficult to do. And to me, it all comes back to I think you really need to be super clear in your business on what is important. And what is that vision look like? What's next? What's next for you, as an individual, as a business owner in your own life? What's next for your business? And what do you want to be known for? And how do you want to make an impact help people and what legacy do you want to leave with your business? And what's next for your customers? And what are they going to need from you in the future?

 

Crista (guest):
And I think when you have that clarity of your vision, that is how you actually get to the point of being able to say no, because if you know directionally where you want to go, sometimes it just becomes plain as day that the things that you're investing your time in right now are not the things that are going to get you there. And I think you know, the challenge there is you recognize you already have programs, or team members or customers, or things that you're currently invested in committed to that are not in alignment with your next level, I think you have to look at a realistic transition plan to phase those out of the business in a way that with integrity, you're still meeting the commitments in letting people get whatever value or whatever they were expecting, but that you are allowing your business to be able to scale in the way that you want to. And so I think that is honestly it's like part art and part science.

Kathy (host):  
And I think this is where it gets really hard is especially if you're constantly in the business and you do not give yourself that free space to think about it really strategically where you want to go. And it gets overwhelming because you really want to implement it, but you have no idea how to do this. What would you say are the steps that people can take to get them to that level where they're closer to leaning out their business? What would be step one or step two for them?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, absolutely. The very first thing I do anytime I work with clients, and for all of your listeners. If you want to do some homework, here's a good place to start. Number one is to define your vision, right? As I mentioned, and look at the three facets of vision, I think there are three facets, and I usually do not see people including all three. You want to be thinking about your business in the future. You want to be thinking about yourself in the future, and you want to be thinking about your clients and your customer in the future. And I think that's really important. And so then that becomes step one. And I think that helps you answer the question in your business, am I working on the right things? Am I directionally correct in what I'm investing my time, my money, and my energy into with the offers that I'm putting out in the clients I'm working with. 

Crista (guest):
But number two, and this is a fast follow in this goes really close to that is I think you then have to look at your business model. Because your vision informs your business model. And that's why I think it's important you look at all three of those facets in your business. Because I think so often what happens is we start off and we're like, "Oh, that person has kind of a cool business model. I'll try that." Or you start a program and you start doing what this person is doing over here. And then you hear that, "Oh, you should be unreal, and you start adding that" and then you hear that, "Oh, you should do this and you start doing this." And before you know it, you have this like hodgepodge business model, and it's not actually delivering the results that you want for your business. Maybe it's not delivering the results that you want for your clients or there might be a more lean, strategic kind of streamlined way to do so. And most importantly, sometimes it's just not something that's personally fulfilling anymore for you. And it kind of drifted away from the things that actually fuel you in that you really want it that kind of leads you up in your business.

Kathy (host):  
Yeah, you don't want to end up with this Frankenstein model. And you took the pieces from other businesses, and it just does not work for you. And this is interesting to me because this is something that I've struggled with in my business as well, is when I first started, I was doing all of the things that were on all the social media. And then I realized that the customers that I want to serve, they're not on those platforms. They don't interact that way. It's a waste of energy. It's a waste of time. It's a waste of resources.

Crista (guest):  
One hundred percent. And I see that so often, it's so common, and I think the other thing that I think people struggle with, with leaning out and with letting things go is that fear of but what if.

Kathy (host):
Yeah.

Crista (guest):
Well, maybe my primary clients are not on Instagram, but I put all this time into Instagram. What if I stopped doing it, and all of a sudden, that's where my next client was gonna come from, or that's where the industry changes and Instagram is the place I need to be. And I don't want to let it go in. It becomes really tough to let go of those things. But the reality is this, you've got 24 hours in the day. And hopefully, you're not dedicating all of those to work, right? You need to carve out some of that space, aside from the essentials like sleep and eating and things for the other things that are important to you in your life. And I think you need to have a really clearly defined capacity around how much time you want to invest in your business. And there's only so much you can do in that time. And of course, we all want to do all the things all the time who doesn't really, but I think you have to be smart and strategic and say, "If I've only got realistically five hours today to invest in things, what do I put those five hours on that are going to take me the closest to my goals in that vision that I have and that are going to get me the best return on investment in a way that's in alignment with the kind of just personally lights me up, fuels me, and helps my customer the most?"

Kathy (host):  
That's such a good point. And when you were talking about the social media and the Instagram reels that reminded me of the whole clubhouse craze that was going on last year. If you remember that in 2020, everyone was on it. It seems like people were just there for hours and hours on end. And when I was watching this from the sidelines, like this is just not something that's sustainable. You cannot run a business, be available for your clients, be available for your employees and hang out in a clubhouse for six, seven hours a day. It's just impossible. Right?

Crista (guest):  
And I think there are some people out there who did have success on the clubhouse. Unfortunately, I think those numbers were relatively small, which is why it's lost some of its lusters.

Kathy (host):
Yeah.

Crista (guest):
But the thing is, the people who did have success with it had one of two things - they went all-in in focus their effort on the clubhouse, and that's why you saw them there so much, because they probably deprioritized where they spent their time on other platforms or on other things, or they had a team or they hired people to help them to give them the extra capacity. But there's a whole lot of people that invested a lot of time that didn't go anywhere. And it was probably because they were trying to do clubhouse in addition to the 45 other things that they were trying to do at the same time.

Kathy (host):  
How do you prioritize? ... The way how I prioritize and way to tell my clients who prioritize you just always go back to the data, follow the data, whenever you're you're in doubt, just go back to the data, see what the data tells you and put your energy into where you get the most bang for your buck? What would your advice be?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, I think that's so spot on. And in the lean-out method itself, I have four pillars, and the fourth one is Kaizen. And Kaizen is a lean concept. It's all about making small continuous improvements in change for the better. And in the lean-out method, this is where we actually put your dashboards in place. We look at what you're going to measure, we look at kind of your KPIs and your metrics that matter and things of that nature. And I do think that you need that vision. So you know long term where you need to go, you need a plan for the next 90-days with clear goals. So you know what to be focused on more in the immediate term. 

Crista (guest):
And then a combination of being very observant and looking at what's working, and kind of using your expertise as a leader in your experience, to kind of be able to see things balanced with all of that data. You need your data to be able to make informed decisions. And generally speaking, you're probably savvy enough that you're going to be able to create a plan, you're going to be able to work within for the most part, but things change all the time. Things pivot. We have things come out of the blue that we never saw coming. And that data really helps you to make those informed decisions and when you have like most entrepreneurs, the 45 brilliant ideas before breakfast. 

Kathy (host):
Yeah.

Crista (guest):
And you're constantly trying to change your plan because as visionaries, we're always like, "Oh, I just love this. I should do this instead. Maybe I should try this." Your data kind of helps you stay focused and reminds you of what's important and why you're doing the things that you're doing.

Kathy (host):  
And that is a very important point. Because if you constantly pivoting, if you're constantly shifting, you yourself, you get energy from it, but your team doesn't. They can be exhausted because you're constantly moving, what was good enough last month is not good enough this month anymore. They have no idea where you going next, and that's absolutely exhausting. And you can use a lot of good people that way.

Crista (guest):  
100%. And sometimes I think it's pretty darn exhausting for your community and your customers too, especially if the things that you're doing are visible and kind of customer-facing.

Kathy (host):  
And when it comes to teams, how does leaning the business work with hiring? How does that look like? Can we talk a little bit more about that topic?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, absolutely. I have, you know, one of the things I focus on a lot with my clients is building out your lean dream team. And I think when people hear the words lean and team together, they usually picture like a bare-bones team and people wearing 75 hats and don't hire until you absolutely have to. And that to me is exactly the opposite of what I propose. So to me, a lean dream team is really your looking again, this all goes back to vision ... what's that next level you're trying to get to in your business. And you're looking at what's your next strategic hire. 

Crista (guest):
And typically, when you're looking at your next strategic hire, I see it as two things. It's either somebody who's going to be able to take something off of your plate or other people on your team's plate so that they could do more revenue-generating activities or somebody coming in who themselves are going to be able to do revenue-generating activities. But at the end of the day, as you're hiring, you're building up capacity, and you're building up profit and revenue potential in your business by bringing that person on. 


Crista (guest):
I think the best way, the most effective lean dream teams are where you, as the founder, as the business owner, are able to spend as much of your time as possible in your zone of genius are doing those things that you are uniquely skilled to do. And you also have the people on your team doing the same, so they are in their unique zone of genius. And collectively, you've got this really great ecosystem. It doesn't mean that people don't wear multiple hats, because most of us don't have the luxury of hiring a team of 100% specialists who spend 40 hours a week just doing one thing, people are going to be kind of wearing a lot of hats and contributing and working as a team. But if you can align people to their natural strengths, and the things that they enjoy doing the most, it's gonna free you up to do what you're best at, and to really scale the business. It's just going to create a much more productive and just happy, long-lasting ecosystem for your business.

Kathy (host):  
Yeah, and I do the same thing when I talk about the subtopics with the businesses that I work with. And I call this the talent inventory. Before you go and hire any people, take a look at what you currently have in-house or what are strengths? What are the weaknesses, and ask them what is something that you want to work on? Is there any particular task or any particular area of the business that you want to get more into it so that the people are naturally aligned to those spots, they're the best at? And then looking at the team and figure out whether you need to hire more people. And you're so right when you talk about lean, and even I was in corporate for so long. And every time we talk about lean in corporate, we think about cutting headcount, cutting staff, and its bare-bones team. I'm glad that you're busting all these myths about lean.

Crista (guest):  
Completely and entirely. I think that when you look at what a lot of big corporations do, and a lot of corporations use Lean really effectively. I think the key for us as small business owners and entrepreneurs is let's look at the principles and the practices that work really well, and then let's adopt them and make them right for our type of business. The reality is us doing that like heavy cutting and massive efficiency-like type things just isn't really practical or worth the time investment for a small business. We're going to get much more out of it by doing an approaching team more in the way that I walked through.

Kathy (host):  
When small businesses and the clients that you work with implement these things are there any common mistakes that they make, that they see when they go on this path that when they're trying to implement it something that can easily be avoided if they just knew about it ahead of time?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, one of the things that I always joke and I prepare my clients for this, and so for all your listeners pay attention to when you say this, or when you think this, and what happens is people get started and they start working towards it and all of a sudden what I call the Yeah-Buts to happen."Yeah, but like nobody said I was gonna cut this but yeah, but I really said I was going to and yeah, but you know, this person really is relying on me to do this." The yeah buts come up. And as soon as that happens, that's usually a sign that you previously committed to something, you previously made the right decision. But now you're starting to face some resistance around it. And its change is hard. 

Crista (guest):
Change is really hard. And I think like an entrepreneur, being decisive, and being willing to unapologetically say no to the things that are not right, for you, are two of the best skills that you can kind of develop and hone over time. Because generally, for a lot of us, they are not natural. We want to say yes to everybody. We don't want to disappoint anybody. And so I think that is one of the most common things that I see that I wouldn't necessarily say as a mistake but it absolutely slows people down. Sometimes puts them in a state of churn and frustration. It's they've got this great vision at one point, they were really excited. But then they start to actually implement, and they get the "Yeah, but I'm not sure" and then they get really nervous. And then they almost get deer in headlights and freeze. 

Crista (guest):
So what I found is by preparing people for the fact that they're going to have the yeah-buts, and the what-about, by kind of preparing them for the fact that it's going to come. When it does, they recognize it, and they say, "Alright, you know how you said this was going to happen? Let's talk." Sometimes just going into it, I think more with open eyes and recognizing what that transition and what that journey is going to be like, helps you to push through, when you experience those things.

Kathy (host):  
Change management, it's such a hard topic, because you're not only managing the change in the business, you're also managing change for yourself, as a business owner, you're the driver of that change. You have to be 110% on board with this so that you can give that energy to your employees, to your team. Otherwise, if you're waffling about, and you're like, "I don't know if I want to do this." The team's gonna pick up on that and it just loses the momentum. And I feel like it's almost like a feedback loop. Because you're getting that feedback from your team, you're taking it on yourself, and then you're internalizing it, whether this is a good path to go down, and it just kills the momentum.

Crista (guest):  
One hundred percent. Yep!

Kathy (host):  
If someone gets into that deep hole of "I don't know, if this is the right path to go down, this is too much work. I don't know", what would you tell them?

Crista (guest):  
To me, it always comes back to that long-term vision. And it's always about the why. Why are you making this change? What is it that it's going to do for you? Typically, people are saying no to something because there's something very specific that they want to create space for, and so I think it's really, really grounding them on why they made the decision in the first place and what's next. These are a lot of the conversations that we'll have in that sometimes things do legitimately shift. And it's like, "You know, I did think that was important. But the more I think about it, I actually think this." And sometimes those things legitimately do change, and you shift your plan accordingly. 

Crista (guest):
But 99% of the time, it's that you stopped thinking about why you're doing it, and kind of the benefit of doing it. And you get kind of stuck in the turn of it. And I think that's some of the difference between working on your business and working in your business when you're in that place of yeah-buts, but you're very much in the business. When you're in the place of making the decision about what to say no to, you're very much on the business. And I think it's a matter of making sure that you're creating that space to actually step back and make those decisions very strategically so that you are continuing to scale and move to those next levels.

Kathy (host):  
I call that looking at the forest, but not the trees. Instead of walking among the trees, where it can get dark sometimes, obviously, because of the shade, you're above the trees and you flying over and you can see the terrain, you can see where paths are going. That visual always helps me in my own business. And it helps the clients as well. Like where am I in the business right now? Am I walking among this tree or I'm actually looking up above the forest?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, that's a great analogy. I love that.

Kathy (host):  
As the company grows, and you're implementing these lean strategies in your business, how do you stay true to this lean operational way when you're growing? You know where you are right now, let's say a year to $2 million business, but is lean going to be looking a lot different when you hit like $5 million mark or $10 million mark?

Crista (guest):  
I think that the core components are pretty similar, right? I think when any business is scaling, you kind of need a combination of four things. You need to have the right strategies in place. You need to be leveraging some form of planning. I always talk about leveraging lean strategic planning, which is a lean way to do strategic planning without all the overhead and over planning but a lot of strategic planning systems out. It's about the right systems in the right team. I think those four things stay consistent in your business as you scale, I think they just look a little bit different as you scale. 

Crista (guest):
Your team shifts right, in the beginning, you start hiring doers. And you start hiring people who can take things off your plate. Over time you start hiring thinkers, and you start hiring people who can help with the strategy and own the strategy and manage the people. Eventually, you start building out a team that can actually run the entire business. You can play more in that true visionary leadership role. Right? And so I think you always have the team, but I think the look of that team shifts and changes a little bit as you continue to scale to those new levels. 

Crista (guest):
And I think the same thing is true for those other pillars, right? Even the systems that you have. In the beginning, the systems that you're creating are going to be different. Whereas when you're really at those, multimillion-dollar levels, you've usually got pretty robust company assets. You probably have a playbook, right? There's just, it's just so embedded in how everybody works. Whereas when you're first starting out, and you're at that six-figure, or like on your way to seven, or your early seven figures, sometimes you're like, "Oh, yeah, we've been doing that forever, we should create a system for that." It's just not as deeply embedded as it is in those later levels of business.

Kathy (host):  
It's more of a term of continuous improvement. The point is, you're never done with it, it just grows with you, and as your business grows, it just shapes and evolves in different ways. Correct.?

Crista (guest):  
Hundred percent. And I think that's critical, right? Is if you're still doing the exact same things in any facet of your business, whether its team, system strategy, or whatever it is, let's say six figures as you are at multi seven figures, there's something wrong, right? Things always shift and evolve as you do and they often shift and evolve, I think, before you actually see the financial results of that. It's like you need to put those next-level things in place before your business kind of catches up, and you're starting to generate the revenue and bring in the clients in the way that you want to.

Kathy (host):  
Yeah, and everything eventually, I always say everything eventually ends up in your financials, from the way how you operate from the way how you hire, how you lead people, it all shows up on your profit and loss statement, your balance sheet, cash flow. You can see everything in your finances. You know, what I always like to hear when we talk about topics like this is the successes of other businesses, because I think that is so inspirational, especially for someone who's just starting on the journey, and they know that they have to lean out, but they don't know whether it's going to work for the business and how that's gonna look like. I would love it if you could give us an example of how someone of your client base was implementing this lean and how it impacted the growth potential in their whole business in general.

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, absolutely. I'll share one of my clients who I talk about all the time because she is just a total rock star. But we started working together at the beginning of the year. And she really came to me thinking really strategically about what comes next in her life. She's like, "I want to sell my business. I think in about 10 years. I've got some big goals, I want to write another book, I want to launch a podcast, there's some things I want to get done. Before I do that, and I really want to make sure I'm focused on the right things. And at the same time, I am exhausted, I am working way too much. I don't love the way I'm working with my clients. I'm spending a lot of time on things that don't really matter." 

Crista (guest):
We got together and we did a one-day and we kind of built out what her kind of long-term was. And then we reverse-engineered it to what should she be doing now. We really dove really deep into her schedule and how she's spending her time and her business model in her current business model was in alignment with where she wanted to go and what wasn't. We made some shifts there. 

Crista (guest):
I think the biggest shift we made was to her schedule. And what she ended up doing was she went from working all the time and being exhausted and frustrated all the time to only working Monday through Thursday. She now takes three-day weekends every week, and she only sees clients in the afternoon. She protects her mornings for more of that time for strategy and working on the business. And a lot of it was she had people scheduling appointments with her all over the place like things were really scattered in her schedule. We just blocked things off and said, "No Tuesday afternoons are when you see clients. On Thursday afternoons or when you do podcast interviews and PR and media appearances. In Wednesday afternoons is when you do this." We put some things in place to really protect her time so that she could stay laser-focused and could do those things that were going to get her where she wanted to be and take on some of those strategic projects. But for her, she had in Q1 done more in sales than she did in all of last year. And she's on track to be 2.5 times what she was last year by the end of this year. It was a combination of cutting out the stuff that didn't matter, kind of restructuring the stuff that was left, so that she was being as efficient and effective as possible, and really making sure that she was investing her time in the things that she needed to do. We delegated a whole lot of stuff to her team. And it really made such a big difference. And she's just so much happier with her business right now, aside from the amazing results that she got.

Kathy (host):  
That's amazing. That's absolutely amazing. And having that focus is something that shifts the business so much, and I have just done another episode on productivity on how you actually put that productivity and focus together with Dawn O' Connor. And if you're listening to this, you can go listen to that episode. It's an amazing episode. It actually tells you how your brain shifts between these different tasks. And it's really hard to go from being creative to actually having meeting. Protecting that space, it's really, really important. Crista, this has been absolutely fabulous. I love all the tips that you gave us. What I would also like to ask you is if someone wants to go and implement this in their business, and it's a process, it’s not happening within the next month, it's a process. What is the next tangible step that someone who wants to implement that in their business? What can they do today, or something they can do over the next week that is tangible, and still going to give them that result?

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, to me, again, it all goes back to that vision. Honestly, however, you like to brainstorm, get your colorful sticky notes in your whiteboard out, pull up whatever your favorite project management tool is, some people brainstorm in a really structured way. Some people like to be more creative. However you brainstorm, just really give yourself the space to truly think about what you really want. Look at and reflect on what you want long-term, again, for yourself, for your business, and what you think your clients are going to want next from you in the future. Pick a period of time 10 years in the future, five years in the future, whatever kind of feels right for you, and do that activity, and then look at your current business model and look at where maybe you're not in alignment with that. Because more often than not, your business model or your schedule, are probably not completely in alignment with that. And if you can identify both of those, you are going to be miles ahead of most other people who really just kind of stay stuck in their business with their head down, working really hard. And getting that clarity is going to be what's going to enable you to actually lean out your business.

Kathy (host):  
Great Crista. Where can listeners get in touch with you? 

Crista (guest):  
Yeah, absolutely. My website is leanoutmethod.com. And if you you know love podcasts, and you're listening to this one, I talk about all of this and more over at Lean Out Podcast, and you can find an interview with Kathy there as well.

Kathy (host):  
Yeah, Crista. those really kind she had me on her into on her podcast when we talked about the finances and in the lean out method and how that actually works together. Thank you so much for being on the show. I really, really appreciate it.

Crista (guest):  
Thanks so much for having me.

Kathy (host):  
I hope this episode was useful to you and that it gave you a lot of food for thought because as I mentioned before, and during this episode, looking at your business through a lean lens is something that will make a big impact on your finances, because you're going to be using the resources in the most optimal way. If you're new to this concept, my recommendation is that you sit down and think about your business, identify one to two areas of where it will make the most impact for you to implement it, and then start implementing. You're going to be learning things about yourself and about the business as you go through this process. As Crista mentioned, this is a continuous improvement process, and it takes time, but the results are really going to be worth it. 

Kathy (host): 
To help you with this process, I've also included a blog post and a transcript for this episode. And you can find them both in the show notes. You can always go back, reference them later as you need it as you go through this process so that you have something to guide you through it. I also highly recommend as I mentioned before, that you go and listen to Crista's podcast called the Lean Out Your Business podcast. She gives a lot of good advice and tips, how to do this in a step-by-step process and a step-by-step approach and how to be strategic about your planning. I do have a favor to ask if you're listening to this on Apple Podcasts. If you could please go to the show, tap the number of stars that you think the show deserves because it helps other people find it and it really helps other businesses as well. Thanks so much and until next time!