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Kadena Tate, contributing author of the New York Times bestseller, “Business Model You,” believes that authenticity has no competition. For the last decade, Kadena has taught service-based entrepreneurs how to how to take who they are and what they know, and package that into multiple offerings.
As a business acceleration alchemist, Kadena’s work is designed to help you leapfrog the market and make the idea of competition irrelevant. Kadena helps women gain the confidence and clarity necessary to attract clients, cash and clout. Enjoy her exclusive Business Heroine interview…
BH: Tell us your story! How did you develop a career around brand monetization and strategy?
Kadena: It was born from my friends saying to me, “I need some extra money to do A, B or C.” And I would say, “What do you like to do? What are your passions?” I would take the thing that they loved – that they thought they couldn’t make money from – and I would help them to create ebooks, videos and digital products, and physical products. It’s about taking the things you love to do and packaging them so it feels like it’s you, and making it beautiful, and sexy and fun!
People would call me all the time for help with this and, eventually, I just became exhausted. I wondered, “Why am I giving away for free what I should be compensated for? I’m not walking my talk!”
It actually took me a long time to monetize my own business, and then I started really realizing that a lot of women had the same problem. They didn’t know how to ask for the sale in a way that really honored the truth of them without sounding salesy – without feeling like they were imposing upon people.
I had already learned a lesson in my first business – I was giving more than I was comfortable giving, and I was saying yes when I didn’t want to say yes because I thought I needed to be nice. And I went spiraling into bankruptcy. So this time I realized I HAD to get it together and learn how to run a business like a business.
BH: Your story speaks to how difficult it can be to see the picture when you’re in the frame. No matter how good you are at what you do, we all need a little outside perspective, don’t we?
Kadena: Yes. Not being able to see ourselves oftentimes makes us undervalue our own gifts. We all have SO much value to bring, but we’re so busy thinking we’re inadequate. “I can’t be enough, do enough, have enough…” some kind of worthiness drama.
Once you actually get mentorship you’re like, “Wow! I can really add value to other people’s lives.” It’s a beautiful feeling when you know that you’re making a positive contribution. And it’s even better when you feel like you’re being compensated for it in a really fair way. I see people who work really really hard, and they’re not nearly compensated for what they do.
BH: Speaking of money, how can the Business Heroines tuning in amp up the money in their lives?
Kadena: The first thing about money is that money is a mindset. You have to believe that you deserve to be compensated for the value that you bring, because if you don’t feel deserving of it, you won’t open the door to receive it. And when you’re talking about trying to achieve a lot of money in a short period of time, like 10, 20, 30,000 dollars in 30 days – you have to be a pure vessel in order to receive it. A lot of women have problems receiving. We tend to be better givers than we are receivers.
Also, you need to solve an urgent problem. Small problems have small compensation. This is why we have to be large problem solvers. Discover what the urgent problem is and get out in the marketplace to connect with people. I so often hear, “I don’t have a list so I can’t make any money.” That’s not true. At all. When I didn’t have a list, the first thing I did was look at the networking groups where the people in those groups needed me.
So, sit down and see what people need in your area of expertise. Then bundle this offer. Next, tell people about what you’re creating and ask them what they think. Ask, “Who do you know who would need this?” You would be shocked at how many people say, “I need that. How much is it?”
You also have to be in integrity – you must walk your talk and talk your walk. Once people are happy with you, they are going to run through the streets! Ninety percent of my business is referral-based. I’ve been in business since 2005, and I want you to know, almost of all my clients promote for me. To me, you can’t beat word-of-mouth promotion because they’ve had a personal, heart based experience with you.
Another thing I think is that a lot of women don’t really realize the value that they can provide. If you come to me and say something like, “All I know how to do is cook,” I’ll say, “Have you ever heard of celebrity chefs?” Even personal trainers can be paid hundreds of thousands of dollars.
We need to have some self-esteem – I think that’s what it boils down to. We often don’t really look at the total value that we bring. There are a lot of things that you can do. The question is what do you want to do? What honors you?
BH: You have a unique formula for jump-starting a business. Will you share it with us?
Kadena: I have this thing that I call the Power of 88. When I was first getting started in my business, I pulled out my address book and counted the people I knew I could ask for support – people who would run through the streets shouting my name. That number came to 88 people. I picked up the phone and called those people, and told them I needed help. I told them the problem that I solve and asked if they could spread the word.
From this, I hosted my very first event (in my living room!) and 60 women showed up. We had wonderful conversations about how to package your talent and your expertise, and in that group my first clients were birthed.
It has evolved into this: Ask yourself how much money you want to make. Then imagine 88 people are outside your door saying, “I’m going to give you X amount of dollars. What will you do for me?” Ask yourself – What are you willing to do for the money that’s going to help somebody else live a fuller and richer life? You will be shocked at the creative ideas that come up.
BH: You have mentioned several times the importance of acknowledging our value. What are some tips for discovering that? How does someone find out what their value is?
Kadena: I’m so glad you asked that question! Here’s what you do: Pull out a sheet of paper and you draw three columns. In column number one, write down everything that you absolutely love to do – but you don’t think you’ll be paid to do. In the second column, write down the stuff that you think that you have to do or you should do. Write down all your ‘shoulds.’ At the top of that column, write “should,” then draw a big red X over that, and write the word “outsource.” In the third column, sit down and say, “If I really believed in myself, what is possible?”
The bottom line is, until you can get to a place where you can look in the mirror and say, “I am worthy, I am loved, I am loving, I am loveable,” it’s going to be tough. Because you can package your stuff into audio, video, multi-media products, membership associations, and TV shows to make money all day but, where the rubber hits the road is you HAVE to love you.
So give yourself permission to engage in self-care. That means affirmation, meditation, visualization, spiritual mind treatment, yoga, walking, bubble baths – whatever you have to do to love on you.
Also, when you put yourself out there, I challenge you to make it a little bit uncomfortable. Because if you decide, instead of charging $125 an hour, you’re going to put loud and proud on your website $1,000 an hour, you better believe you’re going to get your stuff together so that you can actually deliver on that. And at some point, you’ll come to the realization that it is just as easy to receive $1,000 as it is to receive $100. There’s no difference. It’s all perception.
When it comes to business, you need to be uniquely and unapologetically you. Be your own guru! My favorite quote is, “When you believe in your dreams they may come true, but when you believe in yourself, they will come true.” We’ve got to start believing in ourselves so that we can be of service to more people.
BH: What is one action step for the Business Heroines listening to do today to move their money goals and their dream business forward?
Kadena: Do this today: Put aside 90 minutes and record either an audio or video where you are teaching one thing that can transform someone’s life. Send it to Vervante.com to package that into a product. Start promoting it on your website or social media sites.
Because you don’t make money unless you sell something. When you actually step into your power, you give all of the people in your life permission to step into theirs.
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