Working ‘on’ your business – where to start

 In Growth Strategies

This time is so valuable.

Getting back to basics in our business; remembering what we are trying to achieve; being true to our values and ethics and working with our ideal client as much as possible. If not working with them, then are we actively spending our time working to engage more with them?

Taking roughly two to three hours focused time out each week or every second week, can change how you think about your business. The key word in that sentence is ‘focused’ time out. You are not heading for coffee and relaxing or daydreaming without a practical objective. This focused time is to ask yourself some key questions and let your mind think creatively about the answers.

I knew of a business looking at these questions once a year (!) Depending on where you want to take your business (and how quickly) you can work on these once a fortnight, once a month or once a year. How quickly you want to make change or improvement will determine how often you work on your business. If we aren’t actively changing our business for the better, are we stagnant? Will our customers be better looked after elsewhere? Are we staying ahead of the curve, or simply coasting along with the middle players? Is that truly where we want to be?

I don’t believe anyone sets up a business because they want to be like everyone else. Business owners I talk to always set up as they know there is something they do better than everyone else in their field. After a few years in business though, we can lose focus and drive for all sorts of reasons. Remembering our passion and why we started out on this journey can bring the fire back (if you feel its been lost).

Suggested questions for your time out session:

  • Looking back on the past two weeks, what has worked great for us or for our ideal client? (Identify one thing that didn’t work so well also).
  • If we got any new customers, did we find out how they heard about us? (We need to know where to spend our marketing budget or time going forward).
  • Thinking about our service offering to clients / customers, is there anything else we could do to enhance the customer service experience? Are we truly adding value in what we do? Did we record and comments or feedback from customers?

Conclusion question (allow an hour for this)

  • Can we introduce any new procedures based on the answers to above going forward, to consistently apply what works well and remove what didn’t work?

If you manage to list about ten different items and start to feel overwhelmed, take a step back. Which two items on the lists (if acted upon immediately) will have the biggest impact on your customer service level and in turn, your bottom line (as attracting your ideal clients)?

Focus on two items each week if you feel overwhelmed.

Making changes and getting out of our comfort zone is just that, seriously uncomfortable.  By taking time out every two weeks and asking these questions, you act quicker and are less likely to get stuck in that comfort zone.

Don’t look around at what others are doing. Focus on YOUR personal ideals, goals, ethics and values and create your own business.

Take time out to make consistent improvements in your business, be quick to change, up your service offering and add value. 

Steve Jobs – “The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do”.

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