working ON your business, not in it

May 16, 2011

Can you not see the forest for the trees!

In his classic book The E-Myth, Michael Gerber identified the No. 1 challenge of entrepreneurship: working on your business, not in it.  But how do you make that leap from day-to-day “technician” to visionary executive?

By taking one step at a time.
Baby steps are better than nothing.

The following steps will assist you in managing your day, which in turn will free up time to do what you SHOULD be doing.

3. Planning your upcoming week
  1. Keep a work diary for a week.  Note in your diary (or on a pad) each task as you start it and approximately how long the task takes you to complete.  Try to be as detailed as possible.  If you answer an email at 8.15, print off a report at 8.20 and answer three more emails at 8.23 – note it down.
  2. At the end of the week analyse where you have spent your time.  Look for areas where you can make efficiencies (e.g. delegation, answering emails at certain times of the day, grouping your tasks into categories and completing them in time blocks).
  3. Using the results, start planning your upcoming week.  Allowing time for flexibility, enter into your calendar time slots for your regular tasks.  This will help to eliminate wasted time, while working to a list pushes many people to move onto the next task quickly.
  4. Allocate a quiet time each day to work on your business.  Chose a time when you are at your most creative (for some that may even be in the evening) and will have the least interruptions.  Spend this time working through your tasks in order to achieve set goals.
  5. Spend half an hour at the beginning of each week setting your goals for the week (you should already have business and marketing plans in place stating your direction and targets).  Break your weekly goals into individual tasks and schedule these into your calendar.

Note: If you have a 10 minute slot in your day, use it to brain storm.  More great 10 minute ideas.

    You do not have to be available 24/7.  Get into the habit of turning off twitter; skype; phones ; email alerts and close your door for periods during the day so you can work without interruption.  You will be amazing at how much more you can achieve just by doing this.
    What time management skills do you employ to get through your workload?

    This is the first post in a series focusing on How to Increase SalesRegister here to receive the next installment  – How to Utilise Your Existing Customers.

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