Productivity Can Improve: Your 3 Step Guide

“How can I be more productive?” It’s a question our clients ask us frequently. With so much pressure on all of us to achieve so much in what seems like so very little time, it’s not surprising that business owners want a simple ‘how-to’ solution.  The thing is – your productivity can improve. But you won’t find the secret in someone else’s list of ‘Top 10 Productivity Hacks’. Because those hacks only address your superficial symptoms and not what’s at the root of your unproductiveness. You can do anything, but not everything. – David Allen Getting more productive means doing more of ‘what’s important’, and less rabbit-chasing ‘what’s urgent’ down sidetrack alley. But how do you know the difference? Know EXACTLY what it is you want your life to look like. And that’s the moment our productivity unravels. Because most of us do not have a clear picture of what we truly want.   Important vs Urgent – A Personal Example This morning started ‘late’ for me and my husband. So both of us were feeling the pressure to ‘get everything done’. So much so, that we decided we didn’t even have ten minutes to sit down together.  “No time. Gotta run.”  “See ya. Love ya.” We prioritised urgent things.  Hair brushing. Packing school bags. Ensuring the kids were appropriately dressed. We prioritised the things we felt we ‘had to do becuase we’re the only ones to do it’ over our most important thing – investing regular time in each other.   Had we chosen to spend that ten minutes together, potentially the worst thing that would have happened is that the girls would... read more

Business: How a Web Designer Skyrocketed Profits 240% in 6 months

In today’s competitive market, an SME business can fall into the trap of trying to be all things to all people. Recently, I’ve come across a plumber who’ll also clean my gutters and an accountant who would also like to be my financial planner. But there are some businesses who bravely decided to buck the trend – and reap the rewards. Here’s the story of how a Web Designer saved his business by getting clear on what to focus on… and making some brutal decicsions. June 2015 – Hitting Rock Bottom. When the numbers finally came in – it was devastating. Frustrated, stressed and scared, he didn’t know whether it was even possible to come back from such a big loss. His business had been successful in the past, but profitability was always a struggle. Behind the scenes, at home, the stress and negative cashflow were affecting his marriage and there were arguments for the first time. He was often sick, always tired and never seemed to have enough energy. It was a definitive low point. He began his business back in 2004 as a web design company. It grew quickly and like many businesses, additional services were added in order to offer the ‘one-stop-shop’ experience and boost profitability. One of those added services was digital marketing. Marketing had always been a passion pursuit for this owner and it was a natural fit with web design. As the years wore on, though, the frustration with the business grew. Despite its initial successes, the profits of the core undertaking were declining. And although the profits from the marketing side were... read more

3 Lessons for Business Owners from the Australian Open

Unless you actively avoid all mentions of sport – you’ve probably noticed there’s a tennis tournament going on. The 2017 Australian Open has had more felling of Tennis Royalty than a Revolution (albeit less bloody). But as a business owner, there are three crucial lessons you need to learn from what’s happening at the AO. LESSON 1: Have A Champion’s Mindset Nowhere do you get more insight into the mind of a champion than during the on-court, post-match interviews.  As Business Owners, we want to be champions in the game of business. However, if you want to be a champion, you’ve got to develop a champion attitude. A champion accepts total responsibility for everything that happens on the court.   “At the end of the day you have to be happy with what you did, as well. Have to be happy with the little things. Sometimes it’s not going to be pretty. Sometimes it’s just going to be a fight.” – Roger Federer (Post-match interview, 18-1-17) Just today I spoke with a business owner who was complaining about sales staff ‘not doing their job’. After a couple of questions, it was clear that this owner hadn’t provided his team with a clear sales strategy. He’d employed a sales person because he didn’t like ‘doing sales’. By continuing to abdicate his responsibility to someone else, this Business Owner will probably go through many ‘incompetent’ sales staff and always struggle to grow his business. A champion expects to win and has a plan to do it. “I know I have the game to beat top players so I came in there with... read more

6 Assassins That Kill Business Growth…

If you’ve been stuck in the grind for a while, it’s time to take stock and assess if business growth is actually what your company is geared for. When you’re busting your gut to break through to the next level, business ownership can feel chaotic. Results that came quickly in the early days are harder to come by. You begin to wonder if success if further away than you thought. Here Are Six Assassins Guaranteed To Kill Business Growth. 1. You Routinely Work 12-15hr Days. It’s no secret that you’ve got to hustle to get a new venture off the ground. In start-up phase, entrepreneurs are known for their crazy hours. We wear sleep deprivation like a badge of honour. However, this intense period does not go on indefinitely. If you are a few years into your business and still regularly working extreme hours, something has definitely gone amiss. There are many reasons why business owners continue to work punishing hours, but here are the three most common. No clear direction for the company. When a business owner can’t clearly articulate where their business is going, they get caught up doing anything and everything, because they don’t really know where to focus their efforts. Deal with the ‘urgent’ rather than make time for what’s important. The quick-response habits that drove business growth in the early days will not drive growth in the next phase. As the leader you must know, and focus on, the actions most important to achieve your business goals. Won’t delegate effectively. Ultimately, as the owner, you must know where your efforts return the biggest pay-off. It’s highly unlikely that place... read more

Are you playing to your strengths?

Congratulations!   The fact that are you are reading this blog means you’re currently working ‘on’ your business and not ‘in’ it.   You are taking time out – if only for a few minutes – to discover more ways to take your business from good to great and create a better lifestyle.   One of those ways is to work out how you can be of most value to your business and then play to that strength.   I almost guarantee that doing this exercise will surprise you! Many of the businesses we work with are run by people who are technically brilliant at what they do but are now transitioning from hands on worker to successful business owner. This means that what was previously their greatest strength – a technician doing the work – is probably not the best use of their time and energy if building a great business is the goal. A good example I came across recently was a business owner who realised the biggest contribution he could make was going out and bringing in new clients. Together we calculated that his hourly rate for the time spent on landing his newest client was about $3,000! A complete rationalist would therefore argue that anything else he was doing, which at that time included the invoicing and cleaning the office, was a poor second in terms of adding value. But it also helps to be a realist if you want to own a great business. You can guess the reaction at home when he jokingly told his wife he could no longer take the rubbish... read more

Stay on top of your game

Gone are the days of a single coach in the world of Rugby League – just as a single coach in business isn’t enough for the ever-changing game of business.

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Count your blessings

In business – any business – numbers are your best friend. They are your business’s blessing!!
If you look after the numbers, keep them close to you and trust what they tell you, your business has the greatest chance of succeeding.

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Happy Easter

What does Easter mean for you? I hope it is a message of hope, new life and new beginning. This is also true for business. How are you going on your journey to achieving the goals you set for 2015?

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