Easier said than done for most but as with everything, a little bit of organisation, some discipline and a plan will get you in to the best habit of your life… and your business will thank you for it.
This is an area that most business owners will admit to struggling with, but it is absolutely crucial that you spend time working on the business rather than the day to day ‘in the business’ work. The reason it is so difficult to justify is that the day to day brings in the money, it pays the bills and puts food on the table. So, step one is to think about this from a different perspective.
“We must never become too busy sawing to take time to sharpen the saw.”
– Dr Stephen R. Covey
This is a useful analogy and comes from the fabulous book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Dr Stephen Covey. It is the story of the woodcutter who is sawing for several days straight and becoming less and less productive. The process of cutting dulls the blade, and the solution is to periodically sharpen the saw.
Essentially step back, think about what you are doing (this applies to your personal life as well as the business), where you are trying to get to and what needs to happen to get there. The bits that realign you and keep you on the right path may not put food in your belly directly, but they will contribute to the tasks that do and ensure they are more efficient and productive.
If working on the business really does keep being put on the back burner then a simple solution is to put it in your calendar or diary. Treat it like a very important business meeting. It does NOT get moved no matter what. For some an hour a day works well and for others half a day a week is more effective. Which ever works for you is fine.
The best trick to get the most out of this time is to plan. Always know what you need to do each session and preferably a week or two in advance. This bit is flexible so that you can react to changes in your business but if you do not put down on paper what needs to happen, I guarantee it will not get done.
This time should be used to do anything that works towards your business goals – this is NOT the time to be doing admin. Work on your research, strategy, and marketing. By habitually working on your business in this way you will see significant progress in your business within months
If moving your business forward is a priority for you then check out this handy tool that will help support your vision and action plan.