Layla’s Lookback Fall 2021: ClickUp Review, Transparent payroll, membership launches, and scaling

Want a sneak peek into how we run our business at ProcessDriven? Layla’s Lookback is our new video series dedicated to going behind the scenes on our membership, our processes, and (of course) our ClickUp account.

This “episode” will cover September 2021 to November 2021.

We’ll talk about the membership platform upgrade to WordPress, defining a transparent salary calculator for our small business, efforts to reinvest in our team, and the growing pains from growth.

Key Topics Today

If you’ve seen some of Layla’s other Lookbacks, you’d know that these are a time to reflect on the business, what happened, and take a look at the past few months. In this Lookback, we’ll be going over three main areas:

  • Expectations
  • Reality
  • Looking Forward

Expectations vs. Reality

Let’s just say that some of our plans were a little optimistic when it came to the last few months.

The plan included:

  1. Increasing intention in marketing workflows.
  2. Completing website upgrades.
  3. Quaterly team planning in Oct – platform agnostic framework?
  4. The Blueprint (v2) on Sept 15.

These plans were ambitious, but let’s talk about what happened and the lessons learned from each attempt.

Updating our Marketing Workflows via our email sequences

We focused quite a bit on our email marketing workflows this quarter. We started by having one onboarding sequence for new subscribers, but we wanted to give them three different “choose your own adventure” paths.

If you don’t know what that means, it means based on what you select in your initial options for signing up for our email list, you’ll get a customized email sequence.

What we learned through this project was that we have a skill gap in our current team, and are now looking to add new team members in the new year. Having someone on staff who could directly tackle this project and get it done quickly was important.

(Another barrier was that Docs 3.0 is buggy as hell, but way better than Docs 2.0.)

Revamping the ProcessDriven Membership and SEO cleanup (all that entails)

processdriven site

This project was absolutely enormous (and continues to be). Ideally, we wanted to upgrade our broken tech.

Some accomplishments:

  • Designer’s help us to “go bold” and inverse our palette
  • Cleaning up every single page
  • Simultaneous SEO clean up which has had outstanding results
  • Still finishing the massive rebuild of our membership
  • And, starting Nov. 19, 2021 we will be switching to publishing videos once a week
    • This largely due to our team feeling overloaded by video upkeep, and to have major changes we can reflect on as we continue to monitor stats.

Lessons Learned (and which lessons we learned the hard way)

Lessons learned from these projects:

  • Everyone needs to commit to creating redundancies and delegation into every project from Day 1. Losing the (awesome) lead on this project at ~3 weeks in set us back 6+ weeks.
  • Layla needs to be more proactive about project milestones
  • Series of course updates were delayed by this delay

Reconstructing our Launches and investing in “Sales Farming”

Overall results:

  • The Blueprint (V2) was admittedly not t Layla’s best presentation – she felt something was off
  • Lower than expected sales from this push
  • Lingering SEO clean up which had outstanding results

Lessons from this project:

  • COVID is still making everything less predictable
  • We built a launch partially around a strength… but too much was built around “default decisions” inherited by others
  • Good news: Evergreen products and consistent content mitigate risk
  • Good news part 2: Hire experts or buy their courses. Like yesterday.

Incorporating a Quarterly Event Planning Half Day

Our idea for this event planning day was to have our employees go in and pick what they wanted to work on. Not only did we plan ahead, but we took the time to deep-dive and look back over the past quarter so we could reflect.

Here’s what we focused on:

  • Kicked off with our own lookback and forward with everyone sharing
  • Layla’s mantra of “Add it to the Ideas list!” finally made sense

The results of this quarterly event planning:

  • We need more of this in every possible way! (In-person?)
  • We identified areas where the team is craving more training
  • I provided the team financial details (“Boss Life”): Everyone’s pay internally and how it’s calculated, earmarked funds for each “squad” to reinvest in itself
  • We’ve planned a stellar Q1 2022 and an outline for Q2-Q4

Key Numbers: August 2021 vs. November 2021

One thing we don’t often hear people talk about is how many hours the team spends working per month. Keeping in mind we lost a team member at some point during this transition, but we wanted to calculate our profit based on how much time people are working. (We calculated it by dividing profit per working hour, for our fellow business owners out there!)

Highs and Lows for the Quarter (401Ks, upgraded platforms and more!)

Some other highs for ProcessDriven:

  • Opportunities to reinvest in our team (401Ks never felt so good!)
  • We’ve built a powerful new foundation for our community
  • “Radical candor” around team ownership and firing Layla
  • ProcessDriven membership – the new name of our membership

Other lows:

  • Losing a key hire early on
  • Layla working over 35 hours per week with filling empty roles over – ops manager, video editor, graphic designer, product lead, etc
  • Delay of major course update due to website revamp stagnation

Looking forward

Here’s what ProcessDriven can look forward to in the next quarter:

  • Hiring newcomers and expanding current employees’ roles
  • Roll out the major course revamps for both How to ClickUp and ProcessDriven
  • Solidify our existing service and sales flows to set us up for… Something 😉
  • Internal consulting initiative
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ProcessDriven helps small teams turn chaos into process. The ProcessDriven Approach™️ combines software expertise with practical process-first strategies that have helped 1,600+ teams build a scalable foundation of business systems.