How my husband and I picked Costa Rica for our post-corporate life is a question we get a lot.
There are very practical reasons that I have already explained in past blog posts, including why Costa Rica is a good real estate investment, why Costa Rica is good for our gig-based new retirement, and why we love coming to Costa Rica.
Costa Rica also builds on key elements we had already been putting in place before we both went corporate-free – real estate investing and building up freelance skills.
But why pick a new place at all? Why did I evaluate my career at the age of 40?
Why I was in a business malaise
In 2012, my coaching business was peaking. My business partner and I were five years into the business and had our biggest year yet. I had well exceeded my corporate salary, and I was doing work I absolutely loved.
Things were great but too busy. There was no way I could maintain the clients I had, while still marketing and selling for additional clients. In the services business, you always have to focus on both execution and sales. Too many service professionals experience feast or famine by trading off one for the other.
Too much business is a luxury problem to have and enabled me to experiment with all the typical ways to scale a business. Unfortunately my efforts didn’t solve the problem, and came with their own set of additional challenges:
- I hired additional people to execute the work while I sold the work …BUT… hiring people meant managing people. It also meant selling enough to keep the best people busy. This was a completely different role than what I envisioned for myself;
- I outsourced sales and marketing, while I focused on doing the work …BUT… no one sells as well as you can. We were a multiple six-figure business with good press but still not big enough that we could remove sales and marketing from our personal brands;
- I turned my services into products, thereby continuing to sell something (in our case, audios and course material) while I worked …BUT… a products business is so different than a services business. Information products is big business, so definitely a worthy pursuit. But it’s a very different business, again a completely different role than why I started this business;
- I delegated some of the operations and saved some time there …BUT… delegating operations didn’t save me enough time and put cost pressure on the business;
- I raised my prices to cut down on clients while keeping revenue constant and saved some time there …BUT… raising prices freed up time but it also prevented me from taking on some clients that I liked working with but that couldn’t pay the higher rates, or from doing activities that I enjoyed that were lower-paying.
I was starting to resent my business and looking to make a change. My logical solutions were frustrating me. I felt like I had to choose a less-than-ideal solution and find a way to make it work.
Continue reading at the Costa Rica FIRE blog:
Originally published on July 24, 2018 by SpeakerMatch Speakers Bureau