Working On Your Business Not Just In It

We’ve all heard and used the phrase.  But exactly how should a business owner go about working on their business?

The first challenge is that of knowing what to do.  Some business owners prefer to act on intuition and are successful, but this has the disadvantage of being hit or miss.

Others prefer to be guided by ad hoc advice from outside experts.  Such as a business acquaintance, your accountant, an online article just read, or a business guru’s latest book.  This has the disadvantage of not controlling the direction of the business.

The best way to work on your business is to develop and implement an operating business plan. This alone will provide a roadmap for the long term success and prosperity of your business.

The second challenge is finding the time the business planning process requires.  The worst approach to this is to say “I have a quiet moment now so I will make a start”.  In reality such quiet moments never last because some need will always arise requiring you to get back to working in the business.

So you must set specific time aside to work on your business.  This is what all successful business owners do, and they do it on a regular basis.

One approach is to set aside a half day per month, e.g. the whole of the morning of the first Wednesday.  Don’t try working in your office as the phone will ring and your presence invites interruptions.  Go off site!  And stay clear of emails and other such distractions.

A second approach is to go on a retreat for 1-2 days once or twice a year.  This works well where there are family members or partners involved in the business.

Working on your business does not just happen.  You have to make the time and the effort.

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