Will Your Challenges Still Be Challenges Tomorrow?
November 22, 2012
by Justine Parsons
We deal with challenges every day that hold us back from growing our business. That’s completely normal. However we don’t want these same challenges we face today to be with us tomorrow, next month or in a year’s time. Here’s how to make sure that doesn’t happen.
What are your challenges today?
Speaking to business owners and managers, common challenges are a lack of time and having the skills across the wide range of tools, networks and systems used in today’s business.
Will they still be challenges tomorrow … or in a year’s time?
While each of us have our own set of challenges it’s important to constantly work towards turning these into opportunities. It’s a constant journey of improvement and change in order for your business and your own working life to be one of success, that you enjoy.
How to address these challenges?
Identify: Over the following week, jot down the challenges you are facing.
Analyse: Sit down and work through the following questions
- What makes these challenges?
- What affect do they have on your business?
- What will happen over the next year if you do not overcome these challenges?
- What solutions can you see?
- What needs to change?
Challenge: You get caught up in day to day administration which doesn’t leave you time to start on the projects you need to work on.
Solution: A lot of your administration can be automated.
- Look at your templates to cut down on duplication in your documents
- Set up email rules to control your Inbox
- Outsource your monthly accounts
- Draft an office procedure manual to identify areas where you could be saving time and enable you to easily delegate tasks
WRITE DOWN your measureable goal: By the end of 2013 I will be spending one third of my working day working on the two projects needed to take my business to the next level.
Implementation: Turn the above solutions into an action plan. Set time targets, work out your budget, identify milestones and break these down into daily tasks.
Case Study: One of my own challenges
When working on building up my client list a couple of years ago I spent a lot of time on LinkedIn; creating connections, raising my profile and engaging with identified demographics in group discussions.
This worked wonderfully, resulting in more clients who in turn referred their own connections. The days of having an hour at the end of the day to spend on social media quickly became a thing of the past as client work became priority. I no longer had time to spend on LinkedIn.
Not wanting to stop working ON my business I realised my challenge was to find time to participate in discussions.
I decided to allocate one of my contractors one hour each week identifying relevant discussions. This is a service popular with clients and the little lightbulb in my head (finally) clicked on … rather than spending time, and getting distracted by all the content on LinkedIn looking for relevant discussions, why not use my own service. I now receive a weekly list of links to great discussions – no more sorting through the various group digests. My time is spent effectively and productively and I am back enjoying LinkedIn .. and enjoying the fact that I am still working on improving my business.
Sometimes you need to step back to see the obvious!
Your Turn: What challenges do you feel are holding you back?