Join business strategist Tina Tower as she explores how to build your empire by packaging your expertise into online courses, speaking, content, podcasting and credibility.

Tina has over 17 years of experience in starting, building and selling companies, she's a speaker, teacher, mama and world traveller.

She's unapologetic about living an intentionally big life and if you want too, this show is designed to show you many different options to help you gain clarity over YOUR version of awesome.





  • Mastering problem-solving skills to conquer common business challenges

  • Unveiling effective marketing strategies to attract new customers

  • Elevating sales techniques for online courses to boost revenue

  • Navigating the art of managing cash flow in small businesses

  • Crafting productivity systems to enhance entrepreneurial efficiency




I promise you that this episode is more uplifting than it's title implies! Personally, I don't love the messaging that business is supposed to be easy and you can 'get rich in 15 minutes a day'... it means that for everyone starting and building a real business, you can feel like you're missing some magical piece of the puzzle.

If it's hard at times, you're not doing anything wrong! That's business, welcome to the game!

Today I am sharing with you the 10 problems that I know every single business owner experiences from time to time so that first of all, you're prepared, and second, that you feel less alone when you're going through them.

With 20 years in business I will take this set of problems absolutely any day over a different life that doesn't involve entrepreneurship, but eyes are wide open with reality.

Want more?

We have some incredible things happening at Her Empire Builder this year! If you are a course creator, you have to be a part of this incredible community. Jump on to and check it out!

If you loved the episode, I would be so grateful if you shared it on insta or left a review! 

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I know that you're the expert and you've got all of your subject knowledge nailed - now it's time to build the business behind your online course and stop being the worlds best kept secret. 


Show transcription 



Hello. Welcome to episode 240 of her Her Empire Builder show. I am your host, Tina Tower, and I promise you that this episode is more uplifting than the title implies. Personally, I don't love the messaging that we're surrounded with. That business is supposed to be easy and that you can get rich in 15 minutes a day and you can build a six figure business while laying on a beach in a month.

It means that for everyone that is starting and everyone that is building a real business, you can feel like you're missing some magical piece of the puzzle. And I want you to know that if at times it's hard, you're not doing anything wrong, that is business. And welcome to the game. So today, I'm sharing with you the ten problems that I know every single business owner experiences from time to time. So that, first of all, you're prepared, and second, that you feel less alone when you're going through them.

So the other day, I was asked, after 20 years in business, do I still have any problems? And I was like, oh, my gosh, of course.

I don't know any business owner that doesn't tackle problems. I mean, we are in the business of problem solving, and I really think that my success has been proportionate to the amount of problems that I can handle and the level of problems that I'm willing to deal. You know, you hear the saying, new level, new devil, right? And to me, it's kind of like playing Mario Kart when you're going through and you go up a level, and it's like. And you get to go to the next level.

And when you have mastered that level, the universe will reward you with giving you a new set of problems to be able to master that you didn't even know existed. But I remember when I saw the documentary on Warren Buffett, and he was talking about choosing your set of problems in life that you get to deal with. And for me, I will take this set of problems absolutely over a different life that doesn't involve entrepreneurship. And the thing is, everyone has problems in life. You just get to choose the set that's right for you if you're lucky.

So, of course, there's people in life that get problems that they did not choose a lot. But when we're going to choose what we're doing for our vocation, what we're doing with our day to day, that is our choice. And I want to consciously choose the set of problems that I want to be able to solve. And that is the point of this episode, to help you go in with eyes wide open with reality so that you can start to enjoy the game. It's only then when you accept and embrace the suck that it becomes so much easier and a whole lot more fun.

Hello and welcome to her Her Empire Builder show. I'm your business strategist and host, Tina Tower, and I am so happy you are here. My goal with this show is to bring you the inspirational and informative conversations with interesting humans, as well as the tools, tips, and resources to help you build your online business. Since I started my first business at 20, I have built and sold four times. And in 2018, while I was traveling around the world with my family for a year, I tripped and fell into this wonderful world of online courses, and I instantly fell in love.

I'm a million dollar course creator, a world traveler, bestselling author, a mummer of two man children, and a lucky wife. There's no playing small here. It's your turn to grow to run a highly profitable business that makes you wildly wealthy while you positively impact your clients and the world around you and, of course, have that dream life that's perfectly aligned with you. Let's get it.




Main episode 

Okay, so let's get into the ten problems that every business owner has so that you can feel less alone.

Go, oh, my gosh, I'm dealing with that. Okay. Here's how we can overcome it and what to expect going forward. So, number one is marketing new customers. It is the first thing that I think everyone comes up against.

Ironically, when I first talk to new course creators, there is a lot that happens before the marketing, and that can be a sticky point for a lot of people. And I always try and encourage people through the ideation process as quickly as possible so that you can go to market. Because I believe the first problem that you've got to overcome is actually going from nobody knowing you to, oh, you know who you need to solve that problem? This person over here. And so your number one problem is new customers, is marketing is getting out there.

And I think that is for new business, but I don't think that that ever actually ends. So when I was in my mastermind at the end of last year, there were a lot of very, very successful course creators and so many people. The time that they put in and the research that they do and the problem that they're trying to solve is how do we expose our business to more people? We know that there's all of these people that are just there, and we could help solve that problem for them that they're looking to be solved in their business. But how do we actually get them to know that we exist?

And that is a never ending problem. And so you've probably been there before where you're sitting in front of your computer and you're like, the thing that I have, it's amazing. Like, I know I can add so much value to the world. How do I get more known? And that is one of the problems that I think you need to master if you're going to be successful in business.

It is one of the most important. And what I find really ironic, especially in online business, is people that I have to phrase this in the right way. I probably won't phrase it in the right way, but that's okay. So what I find is there is a lot of people filled with integrity that have amazing courses. They've built something that is so educational and so helpful to the world, and they lack the skill or the personality to want to put themselves in front of large audiences and market themselves as a personal brand.

And then on the flip side, what I see is there's a whole lot of people that are willing to talk about how amazing they are and how you need to have this groundbreaking thing in your life because it's just so good. But they don't necessarily have a great back end, but they are master marketers. And so what I find deeply unfair about the online course industry is that a lot of it, like, I would say three quarters of what we do, is marketing. And so you really need, especially in the beginning, especially in the beginning, because you're going from, like zero to hero there. And so I do think that the first thing you need to do is embrace marketing.

Embrace that as a problem that you have to solve, because it's something that will help you immensely. Number two is sales. Who loves selling? I do, actually, because I look at it as we create something, and if we can, hand on heart, say we've created something of massive value that we know will help our target audience. So when you've got your messaging, like, so dialed in, and, you know, this is the person that I have created this for, and I have created something exceptional.

I have created a level of excellence that I know will help people so much inside of their lives, then I think that by selling well and making it easy to buy from you, you are doing your customer a favor. Now, to give that a different perspective, I do most of my shopping on Instagram. I don't go into shops very often, except when I'm traveling and know, always walk down the street and go, I'm never going to be in this little street in Nashville again. I have to get that dress. But most of my shopping is done on Instagram.

And this is where I use this example quite a lot. Is this top that I'm wearing right now is a white knit top. I don't know if they have it at my local shopping center. I doubt it. However, Instagram will give me the ads that I want when I want them.

And I love that because it saves me time and it saves me money. And I can make those decisions for myself when I want to. And I think a lot of people are reluctant to put their product in front of people because they don't want to seem pushy and they don't want to seem salesy. However, that's how a lot of people buy is when it's in the periphery and when you can see it and it's there and you're like, oh, that is so much easier. So I think, number two, the problem to solve is definitely how to get more sales in your business.

Making sure your offers are dialed in so that when your perfect client sees that offer, they're like, oh, my gosh, this is everything that I wanted. Not too much, not too little, because that's something that I find has to be adapted a lot. When we first start in business, I see people, when they're starting in the online course world, not put something out because they're like, it's not quite right, or they'll put it out because they're reluctant to ever have to change. I have changed my offers inside of my business, like yearly since we started. And so never be afraid to change for the different shape that you want your business to take and the different audience that you want to be able to serve.

And so number two, sales offers and getting those sales skills up. There's a lot of different resources that you can use to become good at selling if it does not come naturally to you. But I always think it from the point of view of how can you serve if you love that customer and you've got the set of problems that can help them, how can you serve them to be able to solve that problem for them? And then it never feels icky because it's like, how can I help you? And if you can't help them, if it's not the right thing, then that's totally fine.

Then you go, I mean, when I'm selling, I'm like, this is what I have. And if you are this person, this is going to be perfect for you. If you are not, though. I know enough people that I can recommend you and point you in the direction of where I think that would most serve you next. So selling doesn't mean, like, above all else, you just sell your product.

It's going, how can you get the right people into your product or service? So that you're aligned with your customers and that the community that you create is all aligned together. But to do that, you have to be willing to sell and often sell yourself, which is a bit of a tricky one. Number three, cash flow. One of my favorite money quotes is I used to have it on my wall.

I think, for, like, the first five years of my business is revenue is for vanity, profit is for sanity, and cash flow is reality. Because I don't know about you, but I was not great at money growing up.

I didn't go well in maths in high school, and so I had to learn how to deal with money and cash flow very early and with a lot of trial and error. And when I started dealing with business finances, and I would make all my spreadsheets, and I would read all my profit and loss statements, and I would always see the profit amount and go, where is that money? Why is it not in my bank account? Where did it go? And what I learned was, what can show up on a PNL can be very different to the bank account situation.

And so we would run like our p L, and I would also run my cash flow forecast so that I always knew, where was that money? When was it coming in? What can I plan to do? When can we invest more in the business? Because I do think that one of the most stressful problems to deal with is lack of cash flow.

And so that is something that you need to get good at. You need to know what your comfort level is and how close to the wire you can operate and still feel good about running your business every day. So, for me, when I first started in business, I would run right to the line. So if I had $1,000 in my bank account, I was going, oh, my gosh, I've got money to spend. What can I invest this on to grow?

And so I go, liKe, do I want to place an ad? Do I want to hire a new team member? What do I want to DO with this $1,000? It was huge. It was enOugh.

Whereas now my buffer is substantially higher. And if I go below that, that is my level of discomfort. And so it's interesting to grow with yourself and go, what is your cash flow level of comfort? What do you perceive as problematic? And how can you continue to run and operate your business in a way that it grows at the rate that you want it to grow in while still not leaving yourself too short in cash flow?

So that is number three problem to be able to solve. Number four is I've called it your growth edge. It is often referred to as impostor syndrome. I don't love the whole idea around impostor syndrome because I think that it's a cop out for a lot of people. And I think that it is probably overused, and I think that it's referred to as something bad, of which, often, if you're honest with yourself and you feel impostor syndrome, it's probably not.

I mean, with some people, yes, but in most cases, it's not like I don't feel worthy of doing this. It's probably that you aren't. It's probably that you're in a new situation that you haven't been in before and you're feeling like an imposter, because you are. You're there going, oh, how did I get here? I haven't been here before.

And that is totally fine. As we grow as humans, to me, a life well lived is one that is constantly evolving and constantly growing. And so that's why I refer to it as the growth edge rather than impostor syndrome. I mean, it's all semantics with the language, but to me, getting to the edge of that growth and going, all right, I want to be able to do something I've never done before. I want to be someone that I have never been before, rather than going, oh, my gosh, I feel like an imposter.

I view it as I'm at my growth edge, and do I want to go beyond that, yes or no? And that is a personal problem for you to solve yourself, because sometimes the answer will be no. Sometimes you'll look at pushing yourself. And I think that a lot of success in business comes down to our ability to master things that we've never mastered before, to grow and evolve and do things we've never done before, and really embrace our natural strengths, but also get really good at things that we're not naturally great at. And there are times, though, when you will get to your growth edge, and it's a great option to see what you're made of, see what you can become, and push through to the next level.

And there are also times where it's like, you know what? This isn't for me. I'm okay going through my life and never being that person that does that. And so that's something to look at. I mean, one of those things for me, to give you a personal example, was speaking on large stages, so I don't mind public speaking now.

I hated it at the start. I would get really sick before I spoke, and I would lose the two days beforehand, lose the day after from exhaustion.

I had to get good at it, really. I was like, I don't want this to stop me from the growth that I want in my business. And so I got really good at it. I practiced a lot until I was no longer sick. I still get nerve sided, but I'm no longer sick.

But now that I can do it, I choose not to. So I speak for my own members, my own audience inside her Her Empire Builder. I speak for friends. So part of my program inside her Her Empire Builder is I have guest experts come in. And so a lot of that is reciprocal.

I will speak in their programs. They will speak in my programs. And I owe people favors for coming in and doing that for me. And so I always do that very, very happily. But would I want to create my speakers kit and pitch to a whole heap of people and be on the road for 40 weeks of the year and speak on bigger and bigger stages and try and become like a level of business fame?

No. And so sometimes it takes getting to your growth edge to realize, actually, that's not for me. And for some, it's going to be different for everyone. That's a very personal thing. So, number five is productivity systems.

So to me, this is doing more with less. There will get a time when you have to figure out how to systemize the business that you have created. And this never ends. So as you grow, a lot of it is going okay, how we did that, there's now an easier way to do it, especially with the advancement of AI. What used to take such a long time can now be done in very short bursts.

And I'm sure there's many things that people are still doing in their businesses, myself included, that could be done so much more efficiently and productively. And a lot of that is systems. I am a systems nerd. I love systems because it means that not only can you then prepare to delegate tasks to other team members, but also for yourself when it comes around. I mean, there's things that we as business owners do in our business every week, every fortnight, every month, every quarter, every year.

And we're going to do them on an ongoing basis. And sometimes, especially with the annual ones, it'll get around to it and go, oh, hang on, what am I supposed to do here? How am I supposed to do that? That if you have systemized everything, it means that you can save your brain space for the level of activity that is required for that higher order thinking. And you're not wasting decision making or thinking on things that could have been systemized first.

And so I think as your business grows that a problem to solve is how do you systemize the thing that you do? How do you take the thing that you do so naturally and make it into a system so that it's quicker and easier for you to do and so that somebody else could be able to pick it up and do that in there as well? Number six is existing customers. So we've talked about the acquisition of new customers, number one. Number six will be existing customers.

In going, once you have those customers, like we all know, it is much easier to enhance, increase lifetime value of a customer than it is to continuously buy new customers. And so I think customer service and customer love is probably neglected a lot in people's businesses. And you want to put a large amount of effort, time, money thought into. How do you create a company that is going to continually surprise and delight your existing customers so that they love it and want to stay around as much as possible? And this is something that I think gets more and more difficult as your business grows.

Because when people first come into your orbit, you're going to be time rich. You're going to be able to give them a whole lot more love and attention than you can if you're serving thousands and thousands and thousands of people, if that's the way your business is going to go. And so you want to have that level in going, how can you show people that you care, show people your attention while still having your boundaries and protecting your space and not burning yourself out? So I think that that is a big problem that every single business owner comes up against that needs to solve. Number seven, there's number seven and number eight are both team.

I'll let you know that. Number seven is when to hire and how to hire and who to hire. So when you're getting to that stage and you're like, okay, I am feeling short of time, or your team is feeling stretched. If you already have team and you know you need to add another team member into the mix, it is such a problem to continuously solve of when to bring that person on, because is there ever a right time? Is there ever a time?

Should you bring them on in a busy season, in a slow season, when you have the cash for the first year already in the bank, which I've seen people do, when is the right time for that? Then what role do you hire for next? And inside her Her Empire Builder? I have a whole methodology around this with our job matrix of where we audit every role inside the business, every task inside the business. And then you work out who's doing what, what parts you're still doing, and then what parts you want to delegate.

And then that kind of forms the role inside.

It's when, what, and then who. So what type of person do you hire? Do you hire someone senior? Do you hire someone at entry level and train them up? Do you hire someone onshore, offshore?

All of these different things. They're huge problems that are your responsibility to hold and to figure out. And I think that they can make or break a business many times, and you make mistakes with it, it will set you back a lot. 2023 I probably made more hiring mistakes than I ever have in the history of my business because I was at my growth edge and I was trying to do things that I have not done before. And so that is always going to involve problems.

And this is what I mean with the purpose of this episode is I could beat myself up about that a lot, and I did quite a bit. However, it's a natural problem to have as a business owner. It's something that we're going to go through and we're going to go, all right, I made the wrong mistake here because I was in too much of a hurry or I thought this was the type of person I needed in the business, but it turned out it wasn't. And so it's our responsibility to rewind those decisions before they cost us too much money and before they affect other people too much, because we never want to let people down. And I think that is what makes team.

If I talk to business owners and I say, what's your number one problem? Nine times out of ten, people say team. And I think that what makes it so difficult is that it involves other people, and we want to treat other people's hearts with care and not let ourselves down, not let other people down. And that is really something difficult to learn on the job. However, for most entrepreneurs, they have never hired and managed people before.

So it's going to be a problematic skill to have to master. So that is the first one in relation to team, which is number seven. And then number eight is managing the team, which is a whole different set of skills. I have learned about myself, I am a really, really good leader. I am not the greatest manager.

It is where I am learning the most at the moment because I really love leading people. I really do not like managing people. What I mean by that is I am massive on systems. I am massive on expectations and I will set those. And I have a high level of expectation.

I have an expectation of excellence, of myself and the people around me, and I'm very upfront about that. However, I don't like micromanaging. And so I will create all of our systems, all of our Monday boards, everything on there, beautifully. And if I have a meeting with someone and go, all right, this is how we need to do it, what do you think? We both understand the outcome, how we get there.

I don't really care. I just want the outcome done. Like, go forth and conquer. I pay you well. You're a smart human.

Let's go. So that is my management style. However, then if I ever look at anything and it's not done, I just can't deal. I'm like, hang on. It was there.

It was on the board. Like, we both agreed to the outcome, we agreed to the date, there was no communications. It's like, I assume it's going to happen. I assume it's going to be done. And then if it's not done, it's like, and so what I have learned is that people need a lot more check ins.

Some people, some people are super autonomous, but a lot of people want to have that relationship with a manager where they're like, checking in at different points and they're like, am I on the right track? Can you give me that reassurance? And that is totally fine. But what I have learned is I am not that person. And so I tried for about a year to become that person and learn that skill.

And this is where I go. You go with your really, I think success is amplifying your strengths that you have. And I do think that we have to learn a lot of things that we're not naturally good at, but also not get into a situation where we're constantly fighting our natural ability. And so now I have hired someone that will take on that role of the management, of the cheerleading, of the checking in, of being that steady ship, so that I can keep my head up above the clouds, so that I can keep the creativity and the ideation and the whole big picture and the vision of the company as a whole. And not checking that a certain thing happened on a Wednesday, a m kind of thing.

So that is a big problem for every business owner to solve. And probably one of the most problematic in there. Okay, number nine is energy. Energy as a business owner, right? Are you hearing me?

Are you feeling me with this? So, managing your energy, I think that I said to my coach the other day, do you ever think that I will not have a to do list before I die? That was my question. Am I going to manage my to do list until the day that I die? Because lists are my love language and I often want space in life and I don't seem to have the ability to create it because as soon as I create space in my life, I fill it because there is so much that I care about.

And this is what I find with a lot of entrepreneurs, is you value your different things. And I always think if you want to know your values, look at how you spend your time and your money. But there is a lot that I try and fit in, in going, I want to be a great boss, I want to be there for my team, I want to be a great wife, I want to be a great mother, I want to be a good friend, I want to exercise, I want to eat well, I want to do all of these different things. And inside the business itself, I always, and I'm sure you relate with this, have more ideas than time and energy available to implement them. And as soon as I give myself space, I have more ideas, then I don't like to say no to them.

So I have a board which I have nicknamed where dreams go to die, where I list out all of my ideas so that they stay there to be ready to be fleshed out at some point in the future, if that day shall ever come. And what I have found is over the course of my business, that I have to manage my energy, my business. And so many people, clients, team, family, friends, so many people are reliant upon me maintaining energy. And so I have had to get good at saying no to things. I have had to get good at telling my own ideas to wait, telling other people's ideas to wait, about having boundaries, no matter how that feels.

Because I don't believe that as entrepreneurs, we will ever reach the end of our to do list. I don't think that there will ever be a day where there is like, you know what, there is nothing I want to do and absolutely nothing that I want to achieve. I don't think so, maybe. But I mean, even in my retirement, I want to grow food, I want to write Naughty novels, there's things I want to do. I am not the type of person to sit idle.

And that is the hallmark of an entrepreneur. However, we need to manage our energy massively. And it is a problem that I know that many business owners come up against. Is going one, how can you put time and energy into the things that are going to matter most? And I've talked about this a lot before, but I have a filter of three things.

When I go to make decisions of what to put my time and energy into work wise, is, is it going to make me money, is it going to enhance the customer experience and is it going to bring me joy? Hopefully it will do all three of those, but usually two. If it only does one, it's probably a no. If it does none, it's a definite no. So that's my filter that I go through.

But you need to stop giving yourself a hard time that you're running out of energy. Because what I find is that if we're looking like we're about to go into launch for her Her Empire Builder, we go into launch in April, which, by the way, if you would like to join us, just dm me the word waitlist, or you can go to waitlist and get on there. But as we go into launch, there are so many moving parts, there are so many things to set up and to create. And as I go into that, I know that there is a lot of things that I need to say no to. So I have the energy to create the things that are the most important.

And that sometimes involves letting people down and people that won't understand why I'm saying no to something. And I used to give myself a really hard time about that because I wanted people to be happy with me and like me all the time. And I think that that is something that we have to learn as business owners is not to be. I mean, you hear people say, you've got to get to a place where you don't care what other people think. And I don't know if that's true.

I don't think we as humans should ever not care what people think. I think it's really valuable to care what people think. However, we need to be able to place our needs and our businesses needs and the big picture ahead of those little things that scream out at us and be able to put our blinders on with that. So that is number nine. Number ten.

Our final problem that every business owner has is longevity and sustainability. So the stats on this do not lie. Most businesses do not last longer than three years in Australia, there is only 5% of businesses that last longer than ten years. I think the stat is very similar in America. I can't remember exactly what it was.

I think it's about 3% by memory, but it's low. And so this is why I listed this as a problem is going. I do think that the reason people stop their businesses is exactly everything that I've talked about so far, is that when you come up against problems, you think, this is too hard. Everybody else has it easier than me. Other people aren't going through these problems.

This is me. And maybe I'm not cut out for this. Maybe this is just too much. And I've included this as the final one because this is the game. Having to solve all of the problems and do all of the things and shoulder all of the responsibility and have moments of overwhelm, of burnout, of decision fatigue, of agony is so part of the journey.

And one of my favorite quotes, and again, I say this all the time, I'm sorry if you've heard this like eleven t million times, but one of my favorite quotes is entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won't, so that you can live the rest of your life like most people can't. And this is what I think is so beautiful about business. The first year is so hard. So hard. There is so much to learn and so many problems to solve.

The first few years, it is still really hard, but it gets easier. And then after that, what I find is your problems are there, but your self awareness is so much greater, your confidence is so much greater. You've gone past, like if we use that impostor syndrome growth edge, you have gone through so many edges, you have broken your impostor syndrome so many times that you know that you can embrace the suck. You know you can get to that edge and feel that ugh. Of the problem, and you have total confidence in your own ability to work that out.

And that's what I think creates that longevity. And that sustainability is when you're doing it for the right reasons, because it's something that you love and something that in your soul, you feel called to do. And then you go about getting it done, and you don't let those stumbling blocks get in your way. You make them into stepping stones and you walk on over and you level up like the good old Mario Kart, and you end up having a business that is so aligned with you, that is this journey that you get to embrace, that you get to be hit with all of these problems and go, all right, we can solve them. We can work through them because it's a problem worthy of your time and your energy and your effort, because that is a life well lived.

That is what I hope for you. Hopefully this has made you feel less alone in the problems that we face as business owners. I'd love to know what you think. Send me a message on Instagram at her Her Empire Builder I'd love to hear what you think about this episode and which one of these problems is the one that you face the most or are facing right now. And I have utmost belief that you will get through it all and come out the other side with a business that you love and a life that you love.

This episode was brought to you by my signature group coaching program, her Her Empire Builder. The best online education for female course creators in the world. Check it [email protected]. Along with so many free resources to help you get building your empire and seeing those results that you deserve. If you loved this episode, please don't keep it a secret.

Share it with a friend on social media and tag me at Tina Underscore Tower and give it a review. It really does help us to be able to bring you bigger and better content as we grow. Have the most beautiful day. I'm Tina Tower and I'm cheering you on all the way.