Staying on Target for Your Business
This week I’m sharing my thoughts on how to find where you should be spending your time to grown your business and not get bogged down in the nonsense.
Part of the weekly livestream series in the FREE Yarn Academy Group on Facebook. Come join me each week to take part in these live sessions and have your chance to ask your questions directly to me for an instant answer!
The first point to remember is that there is always more time
I always want to do everything now! I mean everything now all at once. I want to learn new techniques, write books, design patterns, build my business, speak with my community, make new contacts, visit yarn shows and so much more… Sometimes it feel s like my brain will burst.
I keep telling myself there is time to do it all but its not easy.
This lesson was brought home HARD during my midnight Maths shawl frill knit. It feels like a never ending task which has taken way longer than knitting the core of the Circle Pi shawl itself. I want to put the shawl into testing but won’t until I have finished my sample to make sure it all actually works. I have decided the frill will be an optional extra border for the die hards out there and I have had to suck it up and accept that I can only knit so much of the border each night.
I still want it finished NOW but it won’t be and so I continue to learn.
Time can be your best friend in business as long as you treat it with respect. Small but frequent actions will provide much more business benefit than a full on assault on the business followed by a relapse and total inactivity. That cycle will lead to exhaustion and pure burnout faster than any other method I know. Often inthe run up to a launch this may seem the only way I promise you its not.
For example a blog post a week is a manageable amount of work, especially when you prep and wirite in advance. Setting aside a few hours to write blog posts for the next 4 weeks leaves you free to work on other things for a month without having to worry about your brilliantly scheduled blog posts.
After a year you would have over 50 shiny audience attracting content on your website.
My brain comes up with ideas at all times of day and night. I keep a notebook with me at all times to capture these ideas.
It means that when a submission request appears I can go back through my potential designs and find something to match the request with far less effort tan creating from scratch whilst still trying to do my day to day commitments.
It also gives me a lot more peace of mind as I don’t worry or fret about forgetting the design inspiration.
Important Vs Urgent
The Eisenhower Matrix, also referred to as Urgent-Important Matrix, helps you decide on and prioritize tasks by urgency and importance, sorting out less urgent and important tasks which you should either delegate or not do at all.
Dwight D. Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States from 1953 until 1961. Before becoming President, he served as a general in the United States Army and as the Allied Forces Supreme Commander during World War II. He also later became NATO’s first supreme commander.
Dwight had to make tough decisions continuously about which of the many tasks he should focus on each day. This finally led him to invent the world-famous Eisenhower principle, which today helps us prioritize by urgency and importance.
I’ve summarised the process below in a pretty info graphic for you.
Here’s my Top Tips for Using the Matrix
- Putting things to-do on a list frees your mind. But always question what is worth doing first.
- Try limiting yourself to no more than eight tasks per quadrant. Before adding another one, complete the most important one first. Remember: It is not about collecting but finishing tasks.
- You should always maintain only one list for both business and private tasks. That way you will never be able to complain about not having done anything for your family or yourself at the end of the day.
- Do not let you or others distract you. Do not let others define your priority. Plan in the morning, then work on your stuff. And in the end, enjoy the feeling of completion.
- Finally, try not to procrastinate that much. Not even by over-managing your to-dos.
Defining Business Goals
This is one of those tasks that are easier to define in the big picture then chunk down to managable daily actions.
- Identify your Business goal(s) for the coming 12 months.
- Break that down to each quarter
- Break them down still further to monthly activities.
I guess you can see the pattern now…
Keep going weekly and then end up with a daily set of actions for the week which you need to focus on. Knowing these tasks will lead you directly to your big picture goals for the next 12 months.
Write your own path and create your own map to find your business freedom.
I will be hosting the 5 Day Find Your Focus Live Challenge next month (October 2017)
Finally and Most Importantly…
I mean it get your stuff done and out the door. A finished project, even if not perfect, is much better for your business than a partially completed, perfectly formed item that never leaves the workroom. A course which never sees the light of day will not earn you a penny.
Even worse an uncompleted contract for a customer can destroy your reputation.
Make sure you complete the tasks you set yourself and you will find you are making amazing strides towards your business goals for the coming year.