Cash Flow

  • Revenue Goal: $5,000
  • Total Revenue: $5,965 (55% increase from last month)
  • Total Expenses: $1703.18 (46% increase from last month)
  • Net Profit: $4,261.82 (57% increase)
  • Owner Draw: $3,500

This was almost a record-breaking month in terms of revenue. At the same time, it was also (somewhat unexpectedly) a record-breaking month for expenses. I ended up investing in two major education and business development opportunities, both of which I’ll be working on in March but paid for in February. I also got my first two invoices from my new team member (worth every PENNY which I’ll get into below in the Time Breakdown), paid for a Timeular Pro subscription for my time-tracking app, and paid my annual ConvertKit subscription. I’m very happy with all of the investments I made in my business, and also realized I needed to raise my rates to be able to continue this growth trajectory. I took a larger owner draw than my previous $1,500 and put it into our retirement savings. I’ll probably look at permanently adjusting my owner draw upwards after this month.

Time Breakdown

Work Time

  • Hours Worked: 70.2 
  • Weekly Average Work Hours: 17.55
  • Billable Hours: 38 hours
    • Course Creation: 24.2 hours
    • Web Design: 8 hours
    • Marketing: 5.25 hours
    • Web Maintenance: 0.6 hours

Non-Billable: 33.2 hours

Billable Percentage: 54% (24% increase from last month LOL)

Volunteer and Personal Work

  • Writing Class (live classes and readings): 6 hours
  • Actual Writing: 5 hours (ish…probably more, I didn’t track my writing time very carefully)
  • Mochi: 8.3 hours

I’m actually a bit surprised at how high my hourly tallies were this month because we lost 8 days of childcare to illness and snowpocalypse 2021. (Here in the Midwest, our houses and infrastructure are built to tolerate the weather trying to kill us 8 months out of the year, but 10 inches of snow in 24 hours is still…a muchness.) I ended up working in the early morning and after bedtime more often than usual, which might be why I feel a bit ragged.

Hourly Rates

Overall Hourly Rates

  • Billable Hourly Rate Before Expenses: $156.36/hour
  • Overall Hourly Rate Before Expenses: $84.97/hour (43% increase from last month)
  • Overall Hourly Rate After Expenses: $60.70/hour (58% increase from last month)
  • Target Overall Hourly Rate: $60/hour

Compared to last month, my overall hourly rate is quite a bit higher not just because my revenue is higher but because my total time worked stayed more or less the same. I was able to do that because my team member did work for me that I otherwise would have had to do myself, which would have cut into my billable time. (Bonus: contract labor is expensable while your time spent fucking with admin or marketing is not!)

Hourly Rates By Project Type

  • Hourly Rate Web Design: $1325/8 = $165.63 (some of these projects will spill over just a scootch into March so the final rate for these projects will be a bit lower)
  • Hourly Rate Course Creation: $3750/24.2 = $154.96
  • Hourly Rate Marketing: $890/5.25 = $169.52/hour

Monthly Achievements

I started:

  • Pitching and submitting my fiction and creative nonfiction
  • Delegating to my team member!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • A personal writing project that involves interviewing my parents about their lives

I finished:

Reviewing the priorities I set for February:

  • Finish (aka start lol) production on my video course for Terrain.io 
  • Improve my sales funnel for Why You’re Undercharging – I’m consulting an expert on this in March
  • Speak on at least 1 podcast and 1 IG live with a collaborator I recorded an episode on Deliberate Freelancer with Melanie Padgett Powers and did an IG live with Patricia Figueroa of Career Glowup
  • Follow through on my blog and social marketing strategies I’m very proud of how well I got systems in place to delegate a lot of this to my team member!
  • Write 5,000 words in my WIP novel – No, but I think I got maybe…2800? I need to learn how to use the word targets feature in Scrivener better because I am nothing if not a sucker for extrinsic motivation.
  • Pitch *something* for publication I actually sent *two* pitches, both to AAPI-interest publications.

How I succeeded:

  • I wrote and managed production of my client’s ebook course in exactly three weeks, which WHOOF hello whiplash, but also YASSSS I HAVE ABSOLUTE POWERRRR. We even started a full week earlier than originally planned and BOY am I glad we did
  • I am now officially part of the Embrace Change team and look forward to going after big honking projects together with my fri-ent Cynthia Pong
  • I successfully networked my way into a space where I can generate demand for my course creation services and I’ll be presenting there in March
  • I used my own pricing workbook (lol) to figure out what I need to charge in order to be able to maintain our current standard of living on my business income alone, and realized I’m not that far off, if I can commit to my own pricing. (Physician, heal thyself!)
  • I generally feel really competent at managing my time, project pipeline, and income

How I could have done better:

  • I do feel as if I am a bit more fixated on earning money than I would maybe like to be. I’m operating under the premise that if I hit my yearly income goal by the end of October, I will take November and December off completely to work on my novel……..but I’m not convinced I will follow through on that level of delayed gratification. (Witness the spectacular collapse of Nope-vember and Dont-cember last year where I booked three projects in three weeks. -_-) So, I might look at building in some more intentional time off throughout the year.

Priorities for March:

March is a week short because of spring break, and there is still the risk of weather- or COVID-related child care implosion, so I’m trying to build some extra margin into my workload. (Something I mostly failed to consider the first 6 weeks of the year until there was an inch of snow falling per hour and I realized I had maybe overcommitted slightly.) 

  • Improve my sales funnel for Why You’re Undercharging
  • Create a lead-generating presentation for my course creation services
  • Commit to nudging my overall hourly rate after expenses toward $70/hour, which is only $10 more per hour but requires a lot of attention to billing and expenses
  • Continue working on my personal writing projects; maybe 3000 words in my WIP in addition to whatever other short stories and essays I come out with
  • Take the week of spring break TOTALLY OFF from my business and spend any work time on my personal writing

How about you, how was your February?

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