Ali Schwanke is the founder of Simple Strat, a diamond HubSpot partner and the team behind the HubSpot hacks channel with over 1 million views.

Today, Ali takes us to a time we’re familiar with — March 2020. 

It was a time when many lost half their business in a day.

She had applied to receive PPP funds through her bank to support them through this time. 

Sitting in the laundry room — which was her make-shift office — Ali was talking with other founders online. 

As the final hours to get funds started creeping in, she was calling her bank who said they would have more information soon. To keep her team informed, she let them know.

She did this several times. 

On Twitter, she saw that the funds were going down. She knew that her company wouldn’t get it. 

And finally, in the last hour, Ali got an email to say the bank decided not to participate. 

Ali declares herself as type A. She plans ahead and is proactive in her decision-making. 

But this was out of the blue. 

She had no idea what was going on. And neither did the people in the bank. She had done all of the things that she needed to do to be ahead. But she was in the wrong place at the wrong time. 

It would have been easy to get caught up in spending energy negatively here, like slating the bank on social media. Or she could choose to fix the problem. 

So, she called the banks in her region, who all had the same response that they were only helping their customers at this time. 

Then she reached out to people in her network. 

And eventually, a friend responded and said their bank would help her. This was the 15th call she made in that time period. 

For Ali, this was a lesson of persistence. And controlling what you can. 

Adapting to Changes in Times of Uncertainty

Ali recounts going through life thinking that the people “above” you have it figured out. Parents, teachers, bosses… but when you become a founder, you realise that they don’t.

Everyone is walking around blindfolded, finding the best solutions. And this was particularly true during the pandemic. 

You had to be willing to admit that you don’t know what’s going on. And adapt. Because there is no X, Y, and Z to succeed.

During the pandemic, Ali focused on the small wins that started piling up which gave her the confidence that things would work out. 

Networking Tactics and Mindset Coaching to Will Yourself to Succeed

Ali’s biggest saving grace in this story was her network and her mindset.

As she grew her business, Ali also grew her network in a very unique way. She offered help to other people where she could and became an asset, not just in business but in their personal lives too. 

As a type A person, Ali is very organized and methodical in this approach. She keeps an Evernote file and makes a note of where she could offer something valuable within a 90-day period. Because she is known for this value, she knew that she could ask for help when she needed it. 

Having retold the story, Ali makes a point to highlight that she sounds way more in control of this time period than she was. Victimhood played a big role in her thought process. 

Having worked with coaches and therapists, a big focus for Ali has been transforming this through mindset coaching and working consistently to challenge thoughts as and when they arise. 

In this episode, we dive more into Ali’s networking tactics and what she learned about mindset along the way.

We discuss

  • Mindset coaching, mental fitness, and the importance of maintaining it
  • Ways therapy has helped her to reach her potential as a founder
  • The camouflage that founders often wear

Ali took an experience that she had no control over and transformed it into an opportunity to learn, grow and better serve her business. 

Tune in to hear how she did it.