Entrepreneur Shari Aldrich is on a mission to relieve pain for one million people by 2025. Founder of BodyMechanics, Shari has innovated a process for training massage therapists, and better yet, training them to run their own businesses. She shares her inspirations, challenges and her go-to advice on how to leverage adversity to your advantage.
Melinda Wittstock: Welcome to WINGS, Shari.
Shari Aldrich: Hey. Thanks a lot. Excited to be here.
Melinda Wittstock: I am so excited to talk to you, girlfriend. I want to start with: what's inspiring you right now?
Shari Aldrich: Great question. What is inspiring me right now are the opportunities that I'm seeing in front of me. I have so many different directions that my business could go, and I'm just super excited for the opportunities that I have and the direction that my business is going.
We're just really at this growth phase right now, and I finally have gotten the correct team around me to help me drive my business forward, so I'm just super excited at the opportunities are coming my direction.
Melinda Wittstock: So you are leaping out of the chicken and egg … Couple steps forward, a couple steps back, but into the actual growth-scaling mode. That's so exciting.
Shari Aldrich: Yes, and it's been such a long time coming, I'm just super excited right now. There are just so many great opportunities. Yeah, just trying to decide which direction to go first.
Melinda Wittstock: But you know what's so funny is with growth often comes different sorts of challenges.
Shari Aldrich: Oh, yes.
Melinda Wittstock: Right? They're different. So, what are yours right now?
Shari Aldrich: My biggest challenge for the last year has been really in finding the right team to get around me. I went through a couple of different people that just didn't work out. So, getting the right team around me has been instrumental in that. So right now my biggest challenges, honestly, is time. There are so many different directions that my business can go and so figuring out how to manage my time to take my company in the direction I want it to go, is where I'm struggling the most right now.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, it's really tricky to figure out the hiring piece. I mean, that's actually hard, 'cause you want to make sure to bring people in that are different from you and do things that …
Shari Aldrich: [crosstalk 00:02:08
Melinda Wittstock: … yeah, that their super powers are different from your super powers.
Shari Aldrich: Yes. Yes. Oh My Gosh, yeah. I just recently did the Kolbe test with myself and three of my four leadership team, and that's actually been really amazing to see how we are different and how we can support each other to keep taking the company forward.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, that's a really, really smart thing to do, whether StrengthsFinder, Kolbe, any of these tests. And also, getting, I guess, really clear with yourself in terms of what are the things that only you can do and the things you truly love to do.
Shari Aldrich: Yeah. Well, I think the biggest part was that … My daughter works for me and she is kind of like my second in command, if you want to think of it that way, and we are so instrumentally or incrementally different that I would come back to the office with something exciting and she would kind of shoot me down. And so we were both extremely frustrated and trying to figure out how to work together, and so doing the Kolbe test gave us both really good tools on how to work with each other so that we didn't get frustrated.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, that's actually really good advice, which segues into our advice section.
Shari Aldrich: Awesome! Go ahead.
Melinda Wittstock: What are your top three go-to pieces of advice for women who are already entrepreneurs or thinking of taking the leap?
Shari Aldrich: Great question. I love this one. Number one for me is: Life is short. Do what makes you happy. I've just experienced just so may different challenges in my life with deaths in my family and an accident that I had that really caused me to change direction, and so just really, ultimately figuring out what it is that makes you happy is just … you know, it'll make you happy.
Melinda Wittstock: So that's really such good advice and a perfect segue into our advice segment!
Shari Aldrich: Okay.
Melinda Wittstock: What are your top three go-to pieces of advice for women who are either thinking of becoming entrepreneurs, taking that leap, or already are entrepreneurs at any state of this growth curve, I'd like to think, or perhaps the rollercoaster?
Shari Aldrich: Yeah, so number one for me is I always like to tell people that life is so short and you need to find what makes you happy and go with it.
Just different things in my life that have happened, deaths in my family and a traumatic injury that I suffered, has just made me evaluate the fact that you need to be happy in whatever it is that you're doing so that your time on earth isn't wasted and you're not miserable.
Melinda Wittstock: Right. And that traumatic injury, I want you to share what happened, because that's what put you on your current course.
Shari Aldrich: Yeah, so I suffered a traumatic finger amputation, so I lost my pinkie finger on my dominant hand. And I was a massage therapist at the time, massaging 25 to 30 clients a week, and it caused me to change direction, so I wasn't focused on my business anymore. I had to grow my business instead of working in my business.
Melinda Wittstock: And that's a huge, huge thing that a lot of entrepreneurs have to make that leap and this injury, forced you to it.
Shari Aldrich: Yeah, it did. Yeah, I like to say it became a catalyst for change. It helped me to focus on growing my business instead of just being down in the dirty of working in my business.
Melinda Wittstock: Right. That's so, so important. So what would be advice number two?
Shari Aldrich: Number two would be: model success. Find those who've already achieved what you're trying to do and copy them. Somewhere I've heard that success leads a roadmap to follow. So don't try to do it on your own. Find a mentor or a group, somebody that you can look up to and ask questions of and model it. Don't try to do it on your own.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, that's very smart. What about number three?
Shari Aldrich: Number three. Adversity happens to everyone. With my injury that I had, I had to figure out how to overcome that injury. So find the lesson that there is in that adverse situation and learn and grow from it.
Melinda Wittstock: All right, okay. So Shari, how can people find you and work with you? I'm sure there are a lot of listeners to this podcast that may want to learn how to create their own massage businesses.
Shari Aldrich: Well, the easiest way is to shoot me an email, and my email address is Shari, S-H-A-R-I @bodymechanics, all one word, school.com.
Melinda Wittstock: That's wonderful, Shari. Thank you so much for putting on your wings and flying with us today.
Shari Aldrich: Super exciting! Thanks a lot, Melinda.