1. Plan for two quarters at a time.
Small businesses are like speed boats. Big businesses are like aircraft carriers. As small businesses, we are more nimble and can react faster. We are also affected more by outside factors. Passengers on a large ship may not even notice a big wave that could capsize a small boat. Thus, it’s pretty futile to plan beyond two quarters for small businesses so you don’t waste your time. The bright side? You can make a lot of progress in just two quarters. Be sure to celebrate all that you accomplish during those six months.
Some people are visionaries...always coming up with new ideas, but maybe they’re not so good about executing them. Others seem to make things happen, but struggle with ideas to take their business to the next level. Take some time to figure out which way you lean. Neither one is better than the other. Knowing your preferred approach will define how you grow your business.
3. Constantly evaluate how to make your tasks take less energy.
Whenever you are working on a repeating task, especially one you don’t enjoy doing, ask yourself, “how can I complete this task with less work?” It might be through creating a form to collect information. It might be through using a Zap to automatically launch the next step. It might even be that you just stop doing it (just how important is that task anyway?). By frequently asking yourself how to accomplish the same task with less work, you’ll get creative with your solutions.
4. Delegate for what you are not.
If you are an “executor,” hire a business coach, business consultant, or strategy consultant. Find one who can help you identify the right ideas to execute. If you are an “ideas person,” hire a virtual assistant. You must find one who is an executor. Another ideas person won’t help you to execute! For either of these, it might take some trial and error, but keep defining the right fit and you’ll eventually find the best one for you.
5. Keep track of ideas for later projects.
As a small business owner, you wear a lot of hats. You also have multiple issues or ideas you want to address and implement. Balancing time and priorities can get tough. Put your ideas down on paper (or in your computer). Group them into phases with milestones. When you have a new idea, you can add it to the appropriate phase and remind yourself, “we’ll get to that when we get to that phase.”