RCC 105: Straighten Your Crown with Alison Begor

As I’m sure you know very well, there are times in life when you get knocked off your throne. Whatever derails you, whether you hit a rough patch in your coaching career, or you get into debt, or you get sick, what really matters is that you get back up, you straighten your crown, and be the queen in your business that you know you’re capable of being.

My guest this week has built a career as a professional crown straightener. Alison Begor is a coach who puts the human back into human resources. She works with female leaders around the process of hiring and working with their teams in a way that actually eases the burden of being a CEO.

Tune in this week as Alison and I discuss where so many entrepreneurs go wrong when hiring and working with a team, and how Alison can help you get it together. I love this woman because she has such a big heart, and I know you’re going to fall in love with her too because she teaches and embodies an anti-hustle attitude towards work hours and your workweek that I think is key to success.

No matter how shaky things might feel right now, you can create a major turnaround in your business by registering for Finish Strong. It’s happening virtually this October, and this event is going to help you whip a plan together so you can finish 2020 feeling proud, powerful, and successful with extra money in the bank.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • How Alison has made a career for herself as a professional crown straightener.
  • Why it’s so common for entrepreneurs to hire team members but still end up doing all the work themselves.
  • What Alison believes it means about you if you’re not getting efficiency and results from your team.
  • Why we need to do the work and put the human back into human resources.
  • How Alison helps her clients get more out of their teams without being an overbearing boss.
  • The amazing results that Alison’s approach to HR can yield and how it helps bosses fall in love with their business all over again.
  • What makes Alison’s crown slip, and what she does to straighten it out.

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Welcome to the Rich Coach Club, the podcast that teaches you how to build your dream coaching practice and how to significantly increase your income. If you're a coach and you're determined to start making more money, this show is for you. I'm Master Certified Life Coach Susan Hyatt, and I'm psyched for you to join me on this journey.

Hey, coaches. As you know very well, there are times in life when you get knocked off your throne. Maybe something happened that derailed you, you went through a divorce, you hit a rough patch in your coaching career, you got into debt, you got sick, you experienced some kind of loss or setback.

Or maybe nothing major happened, you just kind of fell in a slump. And now, you feel blah. Your confidence has taken a hit, you don’t feel very powerful. You’re a queen but you’ve forgotten who you really are. Your crown has slipped off.

It’s time to put that crown back on. By the end of this episode, I want to make sure you feel like your crown is firmly atop your beautiful head. So, get ready for a confidence boost. Keep listening.

Those of you who follow me on social media know I am obsessed with my Peloton bike. I was never ever into spin before. But once I discovered the world of Peloton, I was hooked. Every class is so much more than a spin class. It’s like a mindset masterclass.

You hop off that bike feeling really ready to conquer the world. And my all-time favorite Peloton instructor, it’s actually a tie between Cody Rigsby and Robin Arzón. But I really, really, really adore Robin Arzón. She’s the lead instructor and VIP of fitness programming at Peloton, the queen bee.

And Robin is constantly reminding us that we are queens too. During a really tough moment in each Peloton class, like when you’re climbing up a steep hill and pedaling hard and sweating your ass off, right at that exact moment, that’s when Robin will say, “Did your crown slip? Fix your crown.”

What she means is, are you feeling discouraged? Are you speaking negatively to yourself? Did you temporarily forget how powerful you are? If so, adjust that attitude, adjust your thoughts, get your crown back on.

So, I want to tell you a quick story about a time when my crown slipped off and how I got it back on. A couple of years ago, I was promoting one of my favorite coaching programs, which is called the Summer of Yes. This is one of my favorite programs because it’s all about pleasure and joy and fun and hedonism, saying yes to yourself, saying yes to your dreams right now instead of postponing things until later. It’s all about creating your best summer and life ever.

So, the promotional cycle was happening, and I was doing all kinds of marketing. I was sending emails to my mailing list. I was posting on social media. I was doing all the things. But for whatever reason, something just wasn’t clicking, and people just didn’t seem as interested as they had the year before.

They were not enrolling. We had a few enrolments, but not many. And sales were lower than usual, way lower than previous years. So, I wasn’t even close to reaching my sales goal and I started to feel pretty discouraged.

And I remember sitting at my desk and having all these frustrated, self-pitying feelings. Why is this happening? How come this isn’t working? Boohoo, poor me. Alright, it was not my proudest moment. I felt powerless and stuck and I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to turn this thing around. I did not feel like a regal queen.

I assure you; my crown had slipped way off, and I needed to get it back on. So, here’s what I did. I took a break. I amped up my self-care. So, you guys know, I talk about self-care is a business plan, and that’s what I did. I doubled down on getting extra sleep, making sure that my workouts were on point, I was eating well, I was getting coached on my thoughts. I reconnected with my why and the reasons for doing the program. And I got my crown back on.

And when I did that, I came up with all kinds of new ideas. I returned to my desk the next Monday with a new attitude. I talked to my team, rallied my team. We worked out a new marketing plan. We made some quick pivots. And then boom, things shifted.

And ultimately, we not only reached our original sales goal, but we exceeded that goal. We were all just blown away with how things came together after just taking a little break, revisiting, coming up with new creative ideas. It was a total comeback moment and we were so stoked.

Alright, boo-berry, what about you? Can you remember a time in the past when your crown slipped off? Back then, what helped you get your crown back on? And what about right now, this week, today? Has your crown slipped off? How could you get that crown back on? What do you need to do? Do it.

Straighten your crown, polish those gems, stand up tall. Remember who you are and feel your power. And then, use your power to lift up somebody else. Help a friend or a client get their crown back on too. Because that’s why you became a coach, to help people get their crown on and lead their best lives.

So, go lead by example. Like, the queen or kind or non-gender-specific royalty that you are. Pep-talk complete.

Alright, it’s time for an interview. And today’s guest is Alison Begor. So, Alison is a coach for female leaders, and she specializes in bringing the human into human resources. I love this woman because she has such a big heart, and I know you’re going to fall in love with her because she teaches and embodies an anti-hustle attitude towards work hours and your workweek. So, let’s dive in with Alison.


Susan: Welcome to Rich Coach Club, Alison Begor.

Alison: Thank you so much, Susan. I’m so excited to be here.

Susan: So, for those of you listening, just so you know, this is the second time that Alison and I have recorded this segment because, just like everybody else, we were just saying, this has felt like a 45-day week. So, just like everybody else, we had technical difficulties, the audio didn’t work out. So, she has graciously agreed to help me straighten my crown and come on here and record another podcast episode. So, thank you, Alison.

Alison: Oh no, thank you, Susan. I have tech difficulties more times than I care to announce, I guess.

Susan: And sometimes, just like life, in business it doesn’t make any sense, sometimes, when things happen. And you just have to be resilient and keep going.

Alison: That’s right.

Susan: So, let’s talk about what you do because I have been enamored with what you do since you attended Finish Strong and you stood up and so beautifully said, “I help…” who, who do you help?

Alison: I help women leaders who are overworked and overwhelmed and feel like they have a team and it was supposed to make their lives easier, and their lives are not easier yet. And I help them figure out how to work with their team to free up that time that they want and do what they love so they have the time back that they crave.

Susan: So, you’re like a professional crown-straightener.

Alison: I am a professional crown-straightener.

Susan: So, many of Rich Coach Club listeners are either in the midst of working with a team or dying to hire their first team member. But there certainly are plenty of you listening who have a team – because I hear it from you and you’re like, “I my life isn’t any easier.”

Alison: Yes, I hear that all the time, “I’ve hired these people and I’m still doing all the work.”

Susan: What does that mean to you, when you hear somebody say, “My life isn’t any easier?” What are these people doing What does that tell you?

Alison: So, that tells me that that person’s delegation game is not strong. And they probably don’t have great boundaries. And there’s probably a good chance that that leader is the bottleneck, that they’re having all work still go through them as opposed to letting their team do the work.

Susan: Isn’t that interesting. And so, when the CEO is the bottleneck and you go in – let me back up and ask you, when do people typically want to hire you? What’s going on in their businesses?

Alison: People typically want to hire me when they have teams, either they feel like they can’t hire the right person, they just keep losing them or they’re just not working out. Or like you said, it’s just not getting any easier, “I’m still doing all the work. I’m working 10, 12, 15 hours a day seven days a week, I can’t take a vacation. This is not what I signed up to do when I became an entrepreneur.” So, they’re usually looking for some type of help, “How do I get the team to do what I want them to do so I have my time back?”

Susan: And so, when you go in, what are the things you’re cleaning up? What are the types of things you’re helping them do?

Alison: A lot of what I help people do is learn how to delegate and delegate effectively. And then also figuring out if they’ve actually hired the right people for the right skill. So often, people think, “I just want to clone myself, then everything will be wonderful.” But if you have a clone of yourself, then really there’s still nobody to do the tech stuff that I can’t do, so that doesn’t work.

Susan: I bet so many of you out there listening have thought – I know I thought that I just need to clone myself.

Alison: Everybody says that.

Susan: What a disaster that would be. I mean, that would be a Yoko-No-oh.

Alison: Yeah, I don’t need another me.

Susan: And so, there’s something else though about how you describe what you do which I think is really different than most human resources people.

Alison: I mean, I obviously use processes and HR tools to help people do what they need to do. But I’m really into the strategy and recognizing people as the ultimate resource, with the first ultimate resource being you as the CEO or the entrepreneur. And I just really love getting to the heart of why people love doing what they’re doing and aligning people to the right jobs so that everyone just feels super-happy about going to work.

Susan: And when people are on a team and they aren’t happy, what do you notice is typically the reason?

Alison: Most people would say the reason is that their boss is a micromanager. Nobody likes working for a micromanager. And I would guess most people would say, “I don’t micromanage. That’s not me.” But it probably is.

Susan: What does micromanagement look like?

Alison: To me, it looks like having to know every single thing your team member is doing, being that bottleneck where you feel like every approval needs to go through you, managing how they spend their time, feeling like, “Oh, they must not be working if I can’t see them working,” or, “I don’t see the product,” or them logging in or whatever your strategy is for tracking people. Don’t track people. People don’t want to be tracked.

Susan: Speaking of tracking, I had a friend, and years ago, she was a top salesperson in pharmaceutical sales and I’ll never forget, she decided to go into multi-level marketing because they put a tracker on her car. And she was producing, she was one of the company’s top producers, but it was company-wide, they put trackers on cars. And there were all these rules like we don’t want to see your car parked for longer than – like, it was so ridiculous.

And so, the online version of that, given the virtual time that we see ourselves in, it’s interesting that you use those examples, like, “I don’t see you logging in. You’re going to have to…”

Alison: Right, or not responding to me, you know, you didn’t respond to my email fast enough or you weren’t right there when I chatted you. I actually just recently wrote a policy for a client who had switched to more virtual, so it was for telecommuting. And we had in there that the work and how successful this arrangement was going would be evaluated by the products that were being done, not time.

And he was like, “You mean we don’t care how many hours someone works?” I’m like, no you shouldn’t care how many hours someone works. You care about the goals and the product and that they’re getting done what they need to get done.

Susan: I think that’s such a refreshing way to look at it. And I was actually talking with a woman named Gina Catalano who has been part of my Summer of Yes program, and she has an interesting business where she calls herself a fractional COO. It’s like a COO timeshare or something.

And it sounds exactly like what you’re talking about. She was talking about directing your team with outcome-based request versus task requests. And actually, that is my preference because I don’t want to manage people. I’m the CEO that is probably a problem child for you. I don’t want to manage anyone so I’m just like, I want a YouTube channel. I’m much more goal-focused. And then I’m like, go make that happen.

Alison: I actually operate very much the same way. When I hire people, I let them know, you know, I hired you because you are very, very talented and skilled and smart and intelligent and can do this work. So, I’ll give you direction if you ask me questions. Otherwise, you just go. I have expectations. You just get it done.

Susan: Do your freaking thing. So, one thing that you know I’m pretty adamant about is approaching business from a pleasure-based philosophy versus willpower. So, I’m anti- hustle culture, which I think you are too…

Alison: I am too, yes.

Susan: And we’ve talked about some of this, and something that we have implemented in the company is fun Fridays, that I don’t care what the workload is, I really don’t believe humans need five days a week to do it. I think, if you tell yourself you have four days, you can get it done in four days. And I don’t mean 16-hour days, I mean four regular workdays…

Alison: Yeah, I agree. I think – I mean, the work is going to fit the time that you give it. And so, if you give it four days, you’ll get it done in four days.

Susan: I know, if you give it seven days, it will take seven. Because I’ve done that early in my working career in my 20s, I can remember sitting at my desk and just being so overwhelmed and my mom calling me at like 8pm because my husband had tattled on me to her. And he was like, “All she does is work,” kind of thing. And my mom was like, “What are you doing?”

And I started rattling off my to-do list that was left undone. And she was like, “Don’t you realize there’s always a to-do list? It’s never all done.”

Alison: Yeah, it’s never all done. You always have a list of things to do.

Susan: So, from your perspective, one of the things that I love that you say about how you approach HR for small business, for female leaders, is you put the human back in it.

Alison: Yeah, because we do have to realize that these are people. Everyone has their own lives, feelings, thoughts, experiences. And I think too often, HR forgets that and just looks at forms and numbers and hours work. So, I really like focusing on the people, the human aspect.

Susan: And so, what have you noticed with the companies the female leaders you’ve worked with when they start to listen to you and become more, like, what’s actually getting accomplished, versus how many hours people are working? What do you notice happens for a company?

Alison: At first, there’s usually a little bit of resistance and fear as they start to let things go. But oftentimes, once they start to let things go, they’ll get better, manage their team, communicate more, and even actually hold people accountable in a new way. They just have their time back. So, they’re working less hours per day. They’re able to go on vacation and trust that their team can work without having to be there to approve everything and check every email. And the whole reason that they went into business really lights their fire again because they’re not so dragged down by all of the other work.

Susan: I want to know a time – so, we’re talking about keep your crown on. You know I’m obsessed with Peloton.

Alison: Yes.

Susan: And Robin Arzón is always talking about, like, straighten your crown. And our crowns though do slip. And it happens to everybody. So, I’m curious, what do you do if you notice your queenly crown is slipping? What do you do to get back on track?

Alison: My queenly crown slips when I don’t schedule very well. I like to pretend that I’m spontaneous, I don’t need a schedule type of person. But really, I’m far happier and have much more pleasure when I schedule. So, what I do is I actually sit down and list everything that I think I have to do and then schedule it out, put it away, and then go do something fun.

And usually, that resets. And then by the next day, when I sit down to my schedule and just start working through what I’ve blocked out, I’m far more productive and I’m far happier, and I’ve straightened my crown back on.

Susan: I love everybody – one of the reasons I love doing interviews is because I learn so much from my guests. And I just love the variety of answers I get from just different questions. And I’ve asked a couple of different people that question, like, what do you do when your crown slips? What gets you back on track?

And your answer of scheduling, I love it. And somebody else will be like, “I need to have another orgasm…”

Alison: That helps too.

Susan: That helps too, scheduling orgasms.

Alison: I haven’t scheduled my orgasm, so I guess we’re good there.

Susan: But what if you did, Alison? What if you did? So, who is your ideal client?

Alison: My ideal client is the woman business leader who is overworked, overwhelmed, whose team is just not doing what she wants them to do and wants more time back in her life.

Susan: And how long does it typically take you, when you go into a company, a team, and you start getting the lay of the land and you’re like, “Okay, here’s what the hell is really happening,” how long does that typically take you?

Alison: I would say you’re able to really see good results in about three to four months. So, not too long. And I think you can even really start seeing some of that impact pretty quickly, you know, in a few weeks to a month.

Susan: And so, when a team is operating properly, they get their time back. What are some of the other benefits?

Alison: They start having fun again and their productivity usually goes way up because when team members feel motivated and encouraged and valued, when they really feel valued, they’re more productive. And when you’re more productive, your money goes way up. So, you’re making more money, which is what everybody really wats, right?

Susan: Always my favorite.

Alison: Bring on the money.

Susan: So, Alison, if any of your ideal clients are listening, what are some of the signs of readiness that they need to bring somebody in, to clean up their team?

Alison: I’d say there are a few signs. One, if you have a team but you’re still working 10, 12 hour days or you feel like you can’t take a break because the company can’t go on without you, that’s a clear sign. Another one, if you have a team and you just can’t hold onto people, you lose people, they quit a lot or you don’t feel like you’re hiring the right people, that’s another sign. But those are probably the two big ones. You’ve got a team, but they’re not helping you in the way that you thought they would help you or you’re not feeling any relief.

Susan: Right, I definitely hear that one the most, that I’m paying all of these salaries, I have all these people, why is my crown slipping?

Alison: Right, why am I still doing all the work? My crown’s nearly falling off onto the floor.

Susan: So, Alison, what’s something that’s free or almost free that makes you feel rich?

Alison: So, the thing that I love that I actually loved way before the pandemic that now really feels important is online ordering. Either my groceries or dinner or Starbucks, I just always felt like a queen when I could order and have my food delivered to my door.

Susan: Girl, you and me both. Like, what’s funny is that I was so prepared for quarantine. I mean, online ordering, are you kidding me, toilet paper, that’s my feel rich to get rich thing. I’m always laughing about y’all just now catching on that being overstocked with toilet paper…

Alison: Good toilet paper too…

Susan: Good toilet paper. Don’t you be coming at me – Scott Hyatt and I get irate. He will go buy the Costco office supply cheap-ass toilet paper. I’m like, “Don’t you bring that into this home. You better have the Charmin Ultra Soft. Don’t you skimp on that.” But online ordering, yes, that is an almost free luxury that I cannot live without.

Alison: I can’t either.

Susan: Have you seen – gosh, what’s the comedian? He’s a Chinese-American comedian. It’s like Jimmy Choo – those are shoes. It’s not him.

Alison: I don’t think it’s him.

Susan: I can’t think of his name, but he takes on America and he does this whole bit about American culture, how we are so addicted to instant gratification, which is so true. And he was using Amazon as an example.

And he lives in, I think, New York City and he was saying, you know, in major market, first it was two-day delivery that was a big deal. Then it was next day, everybody’s like next day… And these days, in major markets, it’s like an hour. And he’s like, “You know what I want? I want Amazon before. I want it delivered before I knew I wanted it.” I’m like, oh my god, that is so me, Amazon Before. I’m like, why is this not here yet? Because you literally just thought of it.

Alison: See, that’s why your team comes into play. They can bring it to you before you know you need it.

Susan: Exactly, that’s called Bianca. She’s going to listen to this and be like… she actually is here. She’s in my house right now getting things ready. I don’t know if you can see all this mess behind me. But we are renovating Susan Hyatt Inc Headquarters. In a few days – my painter basically came in here and he was like, “When are you getting out of here?” because all these books, all these Summer of Yes…

Alison: Stuff everywhere.

Susan: He’s like, oh my god, you’ve got to get all this out And I’m like, “Bianca…” But I have…

Alison: You’re painting the whole inside of your office?

Susan: Oh my god, so this house was built in the 20s, so this is old cherry paneling that has like a coating on it. So, he has to sand it all. He has to take all these shutters down, sand it all, spray everything. All these curtains are coming down. Everything, the carpet, the paint, the curtains, the furniture. I’m telling you right now, I was telling all my clients today, this is going to be boss ass bitch headquarters like y’all have not seen.

Alison: It’s going to look awesome.

Susan: It’s going to look so good. And, you know how much more money I’m going to make by having an environment I’m super-jazzed about?

Alison: Tons more money.

Susan: Tons more. That’s what I keep telling Scott Hyatt.

Alison: Is he buying it?

Susan: He’s sort of like, he has kind of learned to not say too much.

Alison: Because he knows it’s true.

Susan: Because then I’ll just be worse about it. Then he’s like, “I’ve got to stop talking because it’s like she’s going to do it twice and then put it on Instagram just to show me. So, that’s that. Alright, Alison, how can people find you and play with you and hire you?

Alison: They can find me - the best way is on my website, which is alisonbegor.com and then I’ve also been hanging out on Instagram lately. It’s just fun over there. So also Alison Begor. That’s pretty much where you can find me on any channel.

Susan: Yeah. I love Instagram. I love Instagram stories. It took me a while to figure it out, but I’m all in.

Alison: It still takes me a little time to figure it out, not going to lie.

Susan: And now they have reels. Have you seen?

Alison: I have, but I don’t get it.

Susan: Oh my god. I don’t get it either. I think it’s TikTok.

Alison: That’s what I thought. TikTok for Instagram.

Susan: And I just made my first TikTok.

Alison: Good.

Susan: Actually, I didn’t make it. Kana, my makeup artist made it on the RV trip. And it’s like, spoofy and hilarious but I did not make it. But I was like, oh, I kind of get it.

Alison: Yeah, TikTok is fun.

Susan: I got to get into it. My daughter Cora says she’s off TikTok. She deleted her TikTok account just so everybody knows because they were censoring liberal advocates on there.

Alison: Really?

Susan: Yeah. She said she’s done with it. So I’m sorry TikTok lovers, I don’t know anything about it.

Alison: I’m going to have to talk to my son about that.

Susan: So alright, well thank you, thank you, thank you Alison. I will put all your info in the show notes. I so appreciate your time.

Alison: Thank you.

Oh hey, one more thing before we wrap up. Coaches, I want you to think about one person, a friend, colleague, maybe a client, who’s been going through an especially tough time lately. And today, I want you to contact that person and send them some love.

Tell them maybe you’d forgotten or maybe you can’t see it right now, but I want you to know you are royalty. Or tell them I admire you so much and here are three reasons why. Do it now. Tell them they’re amazing, why they’re amazing, why they’re strong, why they’re powerful and valuable and worthy. Reach out and help them put their crowns back on. Your gesture will mean so much.

Thank you for listening to today’s episode. I hope this episode has inspired you to straighten your crown. Look, your crown is probably going to slip a little bit every single day. Discouraging things happen in your coaching practice, in your household, in the world, and every little blow can knock your crown off kilter.

That’s why it’s so important to do things that make you feel powerful every day. So do that meditation, do your self-coaching, do your workout, do your gratitude practice, do things that make you feel regal and powerful so you can run your coaching practice from that place. Have a beautiful week and I’ll see you next time.

Thank you for listening to the Rich Coach Club podcast. I’ve got one final question for you. Are you ready to finish strong? Look, 2020 has been a challenging year full of disruption. Lots of challenges we’ve never faced before. And maybe you’ve been struggling to adjust, struggling to pivot, struggling to find clients and make money.

Well, guess what coaches. 2020 ain’t over yet. Not even close, even though this year feels like it’s been 500 years. This year is not over. We’ve still got plenty of time left in the year. This means you’ve still got plenty of time left to get your coaching business back on track, launch a fantastic new service or program, get plenty of clients, bring money in the door, and finish the year feeling strong financially.

No matter how shaky things might feel right now, you can create a major turnaround in your business. A comeback victory. I want you to Google Susan Hyatt Finish Strong and register for an event called Finish Strong.

This is an annual event. I do it every October. It’s happening virtually this year, so you can join from anywhere in the world. The Finish Strong event will help you whip a plan together so you can finish 2020 feeling proud of yourself, feeling powerful, feeling successful with extra money in the bank.

Each year after attending Finish Strong, many coaches go on to their most profitable quarter of the whole year. This event is a mindset boost and a money boost that you need. Again, just Google Susan Hyatt Finish Strong. You can get the exact link in the show notes because you are not going to throw up your hands in defeat and just coast into 2021. No way. You’re going to finish strong. I’ll see you there.


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