How are you? “Busy!” seems to be the answer I get from so many business owners. In fact, we say it so often and frequently others around us think we’re so busy they don’t refer any work our way – thinking we’re too busy to handle more work. So often we maintain this frantic pace, day in and day out and just don’t seem to ever have a breather.
Work with a business coach to guide you.
Here are my top five tips on how to slow things down on business so that you’re not frantic and actually able to increase your business and business profits:
- Stop Being a Firefighter. Avoiding disasters and putting out fires can be so time consuming and unproductive. If you are regularly playing the part of a ‘fire fighter’ and averting disaster by fixing up mistakes, errors, problems and other issues in your business, then you need to identify why these challenges are arising, and then of course put in system and processes to ensure they don’t happen (or happen a heap less often). Every business is different, but as a business owner, I’ll bet you have a good idea where the fires are likely to occur; so pre-empt them and avoid them.
- Tidy Mind & Tidy Desk. Firstly each morning give yourself time to think. It might be whilst you cycle, take the dog for a walk, meditate or simply whilst you’re in the shower. Clear your mind, relax and clear your head. Physically, where you work, tidy up. This not only gives you the feeling of organisation, but if you are organised, then you’re not wasting time searching for things or worse, losing things.
- Don’t take on too much. Taking on more than you should, of course, will lead to overwhelm and being far too busy. Learn to say ‘no’ … it’s a simple little word but one which we all often find hard to use. It might be no to a charity, or to a client, or to our family. Be selective and deliver it in the right way. Before you take on the next new exciting project, have you finished the last? Are you a starter, but struggle to finish things?
- Plan your day for interruptions. I love working with a planned day, but don’t over-stuff it. You may have 7 hours (account for a lunch break) and appointments are say 1 hour each so in theory you could book in 7 appointments. Don’t! You know the phone is going to ring, emails will come in, staff will see you “just a sec” (which turns into 20 minutes) and so forth. Plan for this, and my formulae is to plan to fill only 60% of your day with specific activities, appointments or meetings (including travel time). The rest of the time will be taken up with dealing with the day to day items.
- Don’t multitask. When you do two things at once, you tend to do neither well. It’s a fallacy that it’s a good thing to multitask. What does work well is combining a high end task with a very low end task. For example, if you’re on the phone with someone, then walking (exercise) or pulling weeds (both which require no brain power) still allows you to focus fully on that phone call. I used to work with someone who would continue to type and do emails whilst speaking to me. Besides the fact I could hear his fingers on the keyboard and the “woosh’ of a send email … I could also tell he wasn’t with me fully and responded slowly. I wasn’t impressed and in fact offended; he didn’t respect me and value my time.
So, consciously slow your pace down, cull the activities which are not productive, necessary or income producing. Get organised, delegate, plan your day and don’t over fill it. Slowing down will allow you to work more effectively, feel calmer (and help those around you feel calmer) and ultimately make you more productive. If you’re feeling overwhelm in your day … give me a call. I’d love to chat to you about how I can help you be more productive in your business, with less stress, hassle and pressure and improve your business bottom line.
Call me at 1800 776 561 or email firstname.lastname@example.org!