Are you Running your Business or is your Business Running You?
The never ending To Do list as a Business owner can be downright depressing. Wasn’t the idea of opening your own business was to have not only the financial freedom of living your life the way you want, but also to have TIME to live that life? So do you feel that you are Running your business or is your Business running you?
As an Entrepreneur the pressures that we put on our selves are ridiculous. Bookkeeping, product, customer service, meetings, branding, advertising….. it’s a never ending list.
So what do you do to stay on top of your business and keep from having a mental breakdown?
First, Breathe- stand back from it all for just a couple of minutes and realize it is not as bad as it seems.
Second, Write it down. Make a list of the top 5 things you absolutely HAVE TO DO today. Not the “I want to get done”, or the “I should get done”, but the HAVE to get done.
These 5 items are things that your business is going to suffer if you don’t do or things that are coming close to a deadline. For instance, ordering product to stock your shelves, produce to cook in your restaurant, a paper you have to write, calling clients back, or finishing that presentation.
Ok, so now it doesn’t look so bad. A do- able To Do list.
Now, on a new sheet of paper write the next 5 things you really should get done. These items will include projects that will be harder to do under time pressure. Maybe you have research to do for a presentation, email over your thoughts of the new ads to the publisher, write out the checks for the next round of bills…
No matter what it breaks it down into do- able lists based on importance. Get one list done at a time.
Another thing that we can do, but seems to be one of the hardest for some people, is DELEGATE. You don’t have to do it all. Trust those around you to help.
I know that this is one of the hardest things for some business owners to do including me. I like having that control. I can’t help but think that “it will just be easier or faster if I do it”, or convince myself that I have to be the one to do it so I know what’s going on.
Wrong. If you can’t trust those around you then why did you hire them? You either failed when you hired an untrustworthy person or you failed at teaching them how to do their job.
Now, I’m not saying to hire a part time high school kid and give them the responsibility of payroll or accounts receivables. Use good judgment but don’t be afraid to mentor and teach. That way you will feel more confident as you step back from some of the To Do Lists.
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Don’t do it! As small business owners, we hate to say no to anything that could potentially bring in business. We volunteer on the Local Chamber of Commerce community for every event they put on. We say yes to speak at the local school career day, we have luncheons at the Clubhouse so we can hear a guest speaker talk about something of an absolute no interest. Every time someone asked me to do such things they added, “it will give your business more exposure.” So of course, I said yes. For the sake of my business I went, I did, I listened. Rarely did I see much or any ROI.
Please don’t think that you have to say no to everything. Some of the invites you get will be great exposure. Networking is always a good idea- Some will just be fun and you will want to do them. So do them! Just don’t feel you have to do ALL of them.
As with all Business decisions, use your judgement wisely. Remember you are only 1 person and you can only do so much. Live one day at a time, One moment at a time!
LIVE IT LIKE YOU LOVE IT!
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