How many hours per week do you spend working ON your business?
When I survey business owners at the beginning of their work with me, the majority tell me they are working 4 or fewer hours per week ON their business. Most of their time working is spent working IN the business. This is not surprising since most of my clients hire me because they want FREEDOM from the day-to-day involvement in the business. At the start of our work together, most can be away from their business for only brief periods of time before the business grinds to a halt.
I’ve been coaching small business owners for 10 years now. Over the years, I have been very curious about the characteristics and habits that distinguish business owners who successfully gain freedom from the day-to-day operations of their business from those owners who continue to be overworked and tied to their business.
There is 1 habit that distinguishes these two types of business owners. This 1 habit propels a business owner from being the hardest working employee in the business to being an owner who facilitates and empowers employees to get the work done. What is this 1 habit?
It is the habit of regularly setting aside significant time, each week to work ON the business.
Think about it. Hiring a coach is very much like hiring a personal trainer to lose weight. If you hire a personal trainer to lose weight, and you meet with that trainer once per week, but don’t set aside time to do the exercises the trainer customizes for you, how likely are you to actually lose weight? Not likely!
Similarly, if you hire a coach to help you improve your business, meet with the coach regularly, but don’t set aside regular time to work ON the business, how likely is it that you will make strides forward with your business? Not likely!
Here’s the harsh truth…
The time for working ON your business is never going to magically appear in your schedule. You are going to have to make it happen and it won’t be easy. If you want to see real improvement in your business’ ability to function without you being the hardest working employee in the business, set aside at least 4-8 hours per week to work ON your business.
There will always be more “urgent” matters competing for your attention. Inevitably there will be crises popping up during the time you set aside to work on the business.
To experience real progress, you are going to have to treat your “ON the Business” time like an appointment with one of your best clients or customers. You wouldn’t miss one of those appointments, would you?
What counts as ON the business time? An “ON the Business” activity is any activity that moves your business closer to growing without you filling the role of one or more employees in your business.
Get into Action:
Pull out your calendar right now and block time in this next week to get your ON the Business time in. Do this every week, and get help making sure you are working ON the right activities to get your business growing without your day-to-day involvement. You will be pleasantly surprised at how far you move your business forward in the coming year!