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Entrepreneurs are everywhere these days. It’s almost too easy to create your own brand, position yourself as an expert and sell something to others. Unfortunately, this means that there are a lot of crappy programs out there created by people who see an easy way to make a buck, and if you buy what they’re selling, you get stuck with a crappy program that’s not worth what you’re paying for. This is not what I want any of you to experience, yet I have had entrepreneurs tell me time and time again about how they invested thousands of dollars into things that yielded them virtually nothing in return.

It’s time to take back control of your education and really know what you’re getting before you make a purchase. Whether it’s a virtual program, a one-on-one business coaching program, a class or conference, here are some things to consider before sliding your plastic to make sure you’re not paying for a crappy program.

1. Consider the timing

It is possible to pay for a truly great program that ends up being crappy for you simply because the timing is not yet right. Before paying for any program, consider where you are in your business. Do you have plans to take your business globally? Great! But if you are in the first few months or year of your business it may not be time to launch that strategy just yet. You have to build your brand and earn the right to be heard before people will pay attention to you. So if you invest in a program that teaches you how to launch internationally, it may be too soon for you to digest and put to use the information you will gain. Don’t buy something now that you might need a year from now – even if it’s a really good deal. Good deals usually come back around. Instead, focus on what you need right now and the experts and programs that will help you build from your current position.

2. Ensure it’s the right fit

There are tens of thousands of coaches, experts and consultants out there to choose from. Why settle for someone that doesn’t fit you? When considering which program or learning to choose, ask yourself if the person you would be learning from shares your core values and beliefs. Do they live a lifestyle that is congruent with what you want? Do they operate their business in a way that inspires you? Do you resonate with them and the message that they bring? If you don’t like the style of the person you will be learning from, don’t learn from them. There are other people and programs out there that might be a better fit. Not only that, but every program is not made for everyone. Consider your own skill level and current knowledge and make sure that what you’re buying is targeted to you. If you have all the basics down don’t sign up for a program that goes over what you already know. By the same token, don’t purchase something that is going to jump past a foundation you have yet to set up. Ask your questions beforehand to make sure you know what you’re getting and from who before making a decision.

3. Consider your budget

It’s exciting to invest in your business – especially when you want to grow! But if you are struggling to build a profit why would you spend thousands of dollars on a program? There may be simpler, more inexpensive ways to start investing in your business. You might be able to start simply by buying a book. Get very clear about what you really NEED for your business right now. Is it something you can learn from mentors and others around you? Or can you learn the basics simply by searching for information online? Sometimes you need to take a risk in your business, but be very mindful of your timing and your budget before you jump in. Even a great program could lead you to close your doors if you invest money that you don’t have.

4. Watch out for crappy programs

Unfortunately, there are a lot of crappy programs out there, and it can be difficult to separate the good from the bad. When considering a program, first understand what you personally need. Do you need someone one-on-one to guide you every step of the way? Or are you someone who can be given step-by-step instructions from a video or workbook and can make the changes on your own? Look at where you are with your business and consider the type of learning you need. Ask yourself if this program will answer the questions you have and give you the step-by-step tools or process you have been searching for. Also ask yourself if this is something you can keep forever – like a video or workbook – or if you only get one-time access to it. Be very selective with the program you choose because ultimately, you should walk away feeling like you got more than what you paid for.

Bottom line, investing in learning for your business can be invaluable if you make sure you are investing in the right things. Give yourself every opportunity to pick the best fit for you and be willing to walk away from something that seems good but will ultimately not be what you need.

If you are an entrepreneur ready to invest in growing your business in 2017, consider joining me for The Grow Grid Intensive. This 2-day conference will educate you on: growth strategy, branding, marketing, communication, finance and legal. You will learn how to build and launch your own programs while scaling current and future revenue streams and learning how to market your brand strategically. This is a hands-on intensive workshop complete with workbook and exercises to complete from six experts. If you are at a place in your business where you are ready to go to the next level, this conference will get you there. Learn more and register today!The Grow Grid Intensive


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