In September 2017, following 22 years of employment in the pharmaceutical and management consulting industries, I had the courage to establish ChrisMillerCoaching when my mindset took a giant leap from ‘safely employed and following a semi-predictable career’ to ‘self-employed and riding a roller coaster every single day’! One of the ways my mindset has changed is in appreciating the difference from being part of an economy, to creating and growing my own thriving economy. An organisation of CliftonStrengths in a Thought-Based Leadership practice.
Fundamentally, my personal economy is built on my ability to add maximum value to those I can help the most, be they strategic partners, clients, team members, my family, or those I meet through every day life.
Before anything else, an economy begins with multiple sources of income which all have the capacity to grow. When I left employment, I had the wisdom and good fortune to not burn any bridges with my last employer, who is now a valuable strategic partner and one of my largest clients. Other strategic partnerships over the last 2.5 years have brought mutual value, and a consistent stream of positive income and interesting relationships.
My current client network not only provides a growing stream of revenue for my practice but is also the most significant source of new clients out of all the sales and marketing efforts that I have invested in. When I think of my personal economy, I don’t just reflect on the value exchange between myself and my client, but also the upstream and downstream value that my business coaching/mentoring relationship might have on the client’s suppliers, strategic partners and their own clients.
I feel grateful and amazed that the breadth of my economy includes a client and prospect base in the last 12 months has created impact in Hong Kong, Singapore, Tanzania, London, Tokyo, Sydney, Melbourne, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. My local business client economy has included digital development, rehabilitation solutions, agricultural consulting, IT infrastructure consulting, dentistry, government agencies and Ministries, insurance services. On top of all of this, I have have had the privilege of guiding the careers of a variety of CliftonStrengths Coaches in Australia and New Zealand.
As an employee, at times I used to resent tax, as many of us do. As a business owner, I now see tax as more of a value exchange with my country and community. GST comes in, GST goes out; personal and business income tax pays for the national and local infrastructure and services. If I don’t like how my money is spent…I get to vote, and influence my personal economy to vote a certain way through sharing my opinion publicly or privately.
On a very personal level, our personal and business spending locally, and the re-allocation of wealth through taxes helps me and my family in our:
Health & Well-Being:
- local GP surgery and pharmacy services; specialist services through health insurance when needed
- health and fitness through spending on supplements and gym membership
- funding the sport of springboard diving, including the investment in national and international competitions (Wellington Diving Club)
- mindset and mindfulness coaching from Lotty Roberts and Stuart Walter
Thirst for Knowledge:
- over the years, substantial investment in a private library dedicated to personal and business development, autobiographies of role models and strengths coach training
- my love of learning new skills has led to investments with Results.com, The Coaching Academy (UK), Gallup, Tony Robbins, Dale Beaumont, Thought Leaders Foundation Programme and many more
- mortgage and house maintenance, including local rates
- car maintenance, petrol and public transport
- food and drink (desperately trying as a family to reduce or eliminate single-use plastic!)
- public school donations, material & equipment and school-related trips and activities
- holidays (big and small)
- family leisure – sport (diving, golf), music (streaming and live concerts)
I am SO grateful to my team for delivering the following services:
- Gilly’s amazing services as graphic designer – 2020 branding change
- Anna’s excellent management of my website and blogging
- Francesca’s leadership of my social media strategy
- Antonia’s awesome strategic planning support and special project execution
- Lisa’s reliable and professional accounting and bookkeeping services
- Stuart’s gift of helping me be at my best, with optimum energy to get my business and life to the next level (and appreciate the level I am on!)
In the end, a personal economy is all about the people you meet along the journey, and who you choose to add or receive value from. I look forward to the coming years of mutual Success with my growing network of extraordinary individuals!