I asked the questions:

Why is small business so overwhelming?

Why is a failure rate of 90% acceptable?

I’ve worked with 1000s of business owners and I have seen what works and what doesn’t. Most of what we tell small business owners is wrong.

I founded the Business Owners Success Club and the Small Business Academy to help small business owners succeed.

At Blomidon Beach

My name is Frances Schagen.

I am a mother of 4;

a small business owner,

active in my community

and I love traveling.

I owned Crystal Clear Bookkeeping Ltd for 15 years. I learned a ton and had the privilege of being invited deep into 100s of small businesses. I studied the difference between my clients who were wildly successful and those who struggled. The successful ones ignored most of the standard business advice and they carefully designed their business to work for them.

I took everything I learned about why Small Business is so overwhelming and how to make it easier.  This journey led to Your Effortless Business – a book about making your business easier for you so you can give it your all. I continue to research, listen and learn. I’ve learned that most of us are trying to build a successful business in this new economy using an out-dated operating system.

I dove in deeper to find out what an operating system that works for us would look like. I learned that it is about people, not management. Systems are designed to help and support people, not as labour saving exercises. I realized that the 3 levers we have in our businesses to make change are crafting an amazing experience, designing your environment to support everyone and building a value exchange that makes everyone happy.

I have owned 14 businesses. I have partnered with a number of small business support organizations helping people start and grow businesses. I became disillusioned because I could see that we were asking people to do the impossible. What we tell you to do to start and grow your business doesn’t work.

And that 90% failure rate that everyone talks about. I didn’t see why that had to be a truth. There had to be a better way.

Then there is the fact that more and more people are starting businesses because there are fewer and fewer jobs. People are starting businesses, not because they love the idea of a business, but because they need to make a go of it.

I had to figure out a better way.

I discovered there are 6 stages to starting and growing a business. People become overwhelmed because they try to do everything at once. They are told they must know everything before they start. That is wrong. Follow the 6 stages to do the work in the right order and build on each stage.

I help people who don’t have an MBA to start and grow their effortless business.

Get in touch and let’s talk about it.

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31 responsesso far.

  1. Gail Godreau says:

    Great post, Frances!! I’m not near the 6-year mark so have to confess this story concerns me a bit. But hopefully, with people like you ‘breaking trail’ before me, I’ll find a smoother path! 🙂

  2. Hi Gail, thanks. It’s a cautionary tale -albeit, a common one. But it is by no means an inevitability. If you are being mindful of your business, and taking the time to work on one aspect of your business at a time you will find you sail right through.

  3. I loved your tips about successful entrepreneurs – esp “They delegate like crazy”. This is the part I’m learning at the moment.

    xx DeniseDT

  4. How are you doing with that, Denise?

    Delegating is tough for Entrepreneurs because we are more passionate and less patient than most. I loved the book, Gung Ho by Ken Blanchard. I took those principles and practiced on my kids.

    I’m not the best delegator, but I’m better than I was.

  5. Nathan Tate says:


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    Kind regards,

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