Another year almost gone and a new one fast approaching. How will you make the most of the next few weeks and more importantly how will you prepare for the New Year that’s fast approaching so that you have every opportunity to maximise your potential in business and in life?
A couple of months ago I took a day out of the office to look at my own business, to review our current strategy, to look at what was working and what could be improved. That day had a sole focus on me finetuning the business’s current strategy and developing the future strategies that would not just support the business over the next 90 days but the year ahead.
How often do you take time out to review your strategy, to really analyse what’s working and what’s not working? And how much time do you then allocate to putting a plan in place that will contribute to change, growth and transformation in every area of your business and your life and not just the top line revenues and bottom line profits?
As we move swiftly toward the end of the year for most of us it means we feel rushed, stressed and we feel we have little time to do everything that needs to be done so I can already hear you saying, ‘but Tania, I simply don’t have enough time to step out of my business, in fact I don’t have enough time to do much this time of year. I want to just get to the end of the year, get through the Silly Season and then I will relax, recharge and look at things in the New Year’.
How familiar does this sound? As a coach and consultant I hear this all the time. It’s November or December and all of a sudden business owners are closing the door to opportunities and are convincing themselves there’s no time to look at things until January. Let’s face it January comes, and then it’s not until February when the kids have gone back to school and you’re now coming to the realisation that you’re half way through the first quarter of the calendar year and you’ve done nothing to plan and prepare for the year ahead, let alone take action, build momentum and are well on your way to achieving your quarterly objectives.
Today I would like to share with you some key insights into how you can maximise your potential over the next couple of months and lay solid foundations in preparation for the year to come.
Time waits for no one
Here’s a little reminder of just how valuable our time really is. No doubt you have heard this before….
Imagine there is a bank that credits your account each morning with $86,400. You are free to spend that money however you choose. It carries over no balance from day to day. Every evening the balance you failed to use during the day is deleted. If this were your bank, what would you do? I’m sure your answer would be like everyone else’s. You would draw out every cent, of course!
Each of us has such a bank. Its name is TIME. Every morning, it credits you with 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off, as lost, whatever of this you have failed to invest to good purpose. It carries over no balance. It allows no overdraft. Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the remains of the day. If you fail to use the day’s deposits, the loss is yours. There is no going back. There is no drawing against ‘tomorrow’. You must live in the present on today’s deposits. Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness, and success. The clock is running so it’s vitally important you make the most of today. This can start with being very protective of your time.
Many fall into the trap of being far too loose with our time now. In order to be outstanding you’ve got to be very protective of your time. This will not only increase your efficiency, it will position you to achieve so much more in less time so new opportunities can be seized, more leisure time can be had and you will start to build the momentum you need to take your business to the next level.
Live and work by the 80:20 rule
I’ve come to realise in business progression is better than perfection. We’ve all heard of the 80:20 rule but do you really know what that means? The value of the 80:20 rule for a business owner is that it reminds you to focus on the 20 per cent that matters. Of the things you do during your day, only 20 per cent really matters. It’s the 20 per cent that produces 80 per cent of your results. So a quick tip is to identify and focus on those things.
Don’t over plan – take daily action instead
If you fail to plan you plan to fail so the old saying goes. I have to agree to some degree. The key is not to over plan. Every 90 days create your action plan for the quarter, identify the actions you need to take, the resources you require to help you achieve your outcomes for the period and then get into action.
Stay 100 per cent responsible for your success
No one else can achieve success for you. You have got to be 100 per cent responsible for your success. I’ve come to identify there are two types of business people in the world today. Those who are interested and those who are committed. Those who are interested do what’s convenient to them and blame the outside world, events and circumstances for their shortfalls. Those who are committed do whatever it takes to make things happen. They have an attitude that leads them to transforming their business year after year. Are you interested or committed?
Be willing to make changes
The average business owner stays average and never reaches their true potential because they operate in their comfort zone day after day. Stretch yourself and change three things immediately in your business. You may have wanted to make some changes for a long time so now it’s that time. When we are uncomfortable we try to change things back to how they were before so it’s important to habitually get used to discomfort if you are going to stretch into the new and reach your true potential.
Work harder on yourself
It’s vitally important you work harder on yourself than you do on your business. When you get that right you will see shifts in all areas of your business and your life. Things will unlock, unfold and open up for you. It’s very easy when running a busy business to close the door to balance. I don’t necessarily believe work/life balance exists today, however I do believe you are in control of balancing your focus. Ensure you maintain the balance of focus in all key areas of business and in life and your overall results will flourish.
Hold yourself accountable or get a coach
Accountability is the key to achieving momentum in your business faster. If you can’t hold yourself accountable to taking certain actions on time, then get yourself a coach. A coach will hold you accountable and will help you consistently make the improvements you need to grow the business you want. If you can’t get hold of a coach ask a family member or friend to support you.
Know your key drivers
Although businesses today face many challenges the most common that cause stress and overwhelm to the business owner is:
• Not having enough customers;
• Inconsistent cashflow;
• Not enough time; and
• They don’t have a great team.
Start to know your numbers and ensure you have a good grip on the key drivers in your business. A good place to start is to look at your lead numbers and sales every day. How many leads are coming in, where are they coming from, what marketing activities are working and what’s not? What’s your online and social media strategy? Are you working closely with your franchisor with this to ensure the brand and your individual location or store is benefitting. Are your lead generation activities inviting your potential customers and existing customers to do business with you, to come into store, to take up the offer and buy your product or service from you? If you are not proactively looking at this every day or at least every week, the months will turn into quarters and years very quickly with no real change being realised.
Keeping your finger on the pulse, being protective of your time, committing to your success and keeping a balanced focus on business and your life will help you achieve more over the next few months and will also lay a more solid foundation for the year ahead.
Tania Allen is the founder of Vision Alliance and author of Franchise Profits.
Vision Alliance is a business growth and franchise consulting firm that helps franchisors and franchisees get more out of business and more out of life.
For more information about how Tania and her team can support you contact:
Phone: 1300 76 49 20 or 0419 481 203