Today's blog article is a guest post from Lois Raats who I have met at various networking events over the past few months. She provides growth coaching and training for business owners in southern Ontario. She has a lot of experience doing what she does so I was very excited when she agreed to write an article for my blog. Below is her article which outlines five self management tips to grow your business.
Business owners should pay attention to Mother Nature. She’s smart enough to store up reserves of energy before she tries to grow things. Squirrels gather nuts, bears hibernate in winter, oceans ebb before they flow…and fortunately for us the tulips will bloom in a few weeks because they were smart enough to store up energy a whole year ago!
As in nature, business owners need to reserve time and energy to fuel business growth. Here are 5 tips for building the reserves that can boost the growth of your business.
5 Self Management Tips For B2B Small Business Owners
1. Clear regular space in your calendar to reflect and plan.
Business owners are notorious for acting first, thinking later. This gets us out of the gate, but not necessarily to the finish line.
- Start by reviewing your calendar and saying “no” to as many future offers as possible until you feel things are becoming manageable again.
- Reserve blocks of time in your calendar to focus ON your business, not just work IN it. We're not talking 10 minutes here, 20 minutes there, although that's better than nothing. We're talking meaningful reflective time - a couple hours, a couple days, a couple weeks. Then stick with it!
- Don't allow "Time Termites" like email, interruptions and "fire-fighting" to eat away at your foundation
- Take time to work on the strategics of your marketing and sales plan to generate new customers, as having a good plan and strategy is critical to attracting new customers and growing your business
2. Focus on business-building priorities.
- Get clear about the purpose and values that are at the heart of your business and help you make decisions on a daily basis. Jim Collins’ excellent article on purpose and values is found at: http://ht.ly/4rrHP.
- Every day, ask yourself "What makes me money NOW?" (so I can stay in business) and "What is most likely to help me succeed in the FUTURE?" (so I can maintain my success).
- look at prospective new customers to determine which ones will have the most value long term and focus on targeting and pursuing those prospects
3. Reserve your highest-energy times for business-building activities.
If you're a morning person, do your thinking and planning first, before your day gets filled with administration. One of my clients noticed that she always has a lag time around 4 p.m. – so that’s the time she goes to the gym. Figure out what your peak energy periods are, then arrange your schedule accordingly. When ever you are at your best, try and schedule your most critical tasks and meetings with the most valuable prospective clients at that time.
4. Do what only you can do
Ask yourself at least once a day. "What are the tasks that ONLY I can do in this business?"
- Delegate everything else.
- If you don't have anyone to delegate to, start by recording everything you do in a day that you'd rather not be doing. Use these ideas to start a job description for your new assistant.
- Be sure that you are involved in meetings with your most valuable customers. Only you have the ability to make sure your company is fully meeting and exceeding the needs of your best customers.
Be prepared to invest money, as well as time and energy. Notice I said "invest", not "spend". It's important to be frugal, but not stingy. Lack of money can always be an excuse for lack of growth. But that's just what it is...an excuse. Don't allow your business to be hamstrung by lack of funds. Check out EVERY option for leveraging what you have to get what you want. This investment mentality should be across all areas of your business, technology, additional staff, training, sales efforts, marketing, branding, your website etc. Only investing in your favorite area of your business will result in lower returns then if you invest in all aspects of your business.
By taking the above five steps you will become more efficient and effective when trying to generate new customers and grow your business. At the same time you will probably see an increase in sales with your existing customers. In addition I think you will find that you will become more satisfied with your work and your work will become more enjoyable.
Lois Raats is the founder and Principal of Ready2Grow Associates, which is located in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. She provides individual coaching, group coaching, teleseminars for small business owners in addition to corporate training and public speaking for businesses in southern Ontario. To learn more visit her website at www.ready2grow.com. Thanks again to Lois for writing this article.
Profitworks helps various B2B small businesses in Waterloo and Kitchener Ontario generate new customers. If you are interested in generating new customers for your B2B small businesses enter your email in the box provided below and click the Send Me Free Updates button. You will then receive free updates from this blog to your email.
I hope this article on self management tips by Lois Raats will help you grow your business. Thanks for reading.