We've all got the same number of hours in a day, but why is it that some people can achieve so much more than others?
Well from my own experience, it’s not about what you’re doing, but more about how you’re doing it. Most of us have heard about the busy fool syndrome.
Think of our time in this life, like a bank account that reduces by the same amount every day. We don’t know when that bank account will be empty, but as soon as it’s empty, we’re done here. If you know this to be true, are you really living the life you want to live? As that time bank account runs dry, will you be wishing you did something differently? Will you be wishing you spent more time with your family? Will you be wishing you accepted that low offer, so that you could move on with your life?
We cannot create more time, we can only use what we have, more efficiently.
The main objective to having more time, is to do the things which give you the biggest results, & those tasks you’re happiest doing. Why not turn this on its head. Instead though, we do the boring, mundane tasks first, to get them out of the way. They drain our energy & time, leave us with very little time to do the real game changing tasks, and so we make no real progress toward our goal, effectively we continue on this hamster wheel that we call life.
Setting your life up to achieve.
Something that frustrates me probably more than most things, is that every year people make new year resolutions. One month in, & how many are still on track with those new resolutions?
‘Ahh, I’m too busy, I’ll do it when I’ve got more time’. People fail at making changes because they try to do things the way they’ve always tried, but their life isn’t set up in a way that supports them to make that change.
Re-calibrating your life.
I stopped making new year resolutions about 10 years ago. The main reason being, because I wanted to change things in my own life all of the time. I was completely unhappy with the direction of my life. I had no sense of purpose to my life, no real reason for existing, and in a way was pushed into making that change. I couldn’t wait 10 or 11 months for the next new year to change things. I had to do it right away. I’ve learnt since, that it’s possible to change anything in your life, you just have to make a decision, then take the required action. You don’t need to spend lots of money on making it happen, if you want it badly enough, you can make it happen.
So you’re on this hamster wheel of life, how can you change things?
This is relevant in all areas of your life, but I’ll talk about this from a business perspective, as it’s the simplest to understand. The same principles can be used in any area of your life though.
Define your vision
What’s your goal, or vision for the business. In five years from today, how would you like the business to be operating?
At this stage you won’t know every detail about how you’ll achieve it, but the most important point, is to keep that vision in your focus. The steps will become clear as you move through the path. The only thing we need to know when setting a vision, is what we need to do today, that moves us in the right direction. We’re only interested in small steps, because with small steps, over time, we make huge leaps without ever realizing it.
Communicate the vision with your team, & your wider staff, painting a clear picture of what that vision looks like, & means for everyone of your team. This helps them buy into the vision, but also creates a group of people that are all motivated to finding ways for you to achieve that vision.
Break it down.
When you have a vision for five years into the future, you’ll need to break it down into what that’ll look like in different periods over that time frame. This helps everyone to measure their progress, then direct additional resource toward the goal, or perfect the process if it isn’t meeting expectations. Imagine it like a timeline. A path that leads you into the future. Break that timeline into annual goals, quarterly goals, monthly goals, weekly goals, & daily goals. Each one of these all focused on working toward the main five year goal, but at every increment, only focusing on the activities to reach that next increment.
Imagine a vision to create an additional £10m revenue by Year 5. We break that down as follows:
Step 1. Break it down by annual increments.
Year 1: £2m
Year 2: £4m
Year 3: £6m
Year 4: £8m
Year 5: £10m
Step 2. Break it down by quarterly increments.
Step 3. Break it down by monthly increments.
Step 4. Break it down by weekly increments.
Step 5. Break it down by daily increments.
This is a basic example, and of course it might not work out so easily. There will probably be lags to start with, some quarters will be better than others, but bare with me & follow the process.
Suddenly we’ve taken a £10m goal, and turned it into a much more achievable £6k goal, the five year goal suddenly starts to look much more achievable, but at the start of the process, we didn’t really know how we’d achieve such a large result.
So now that we know what we need to do, we need a strategy to do it. This strategy includes being clear on:
Who will do it?
When they’ll do it?
Where they’ll do it?
How we’ll do it as a team?
That’s the first step in improving your performance and achieving your goals.
We hope you’ve received some value from this article, and some information that you can use to move forward toward your vision.
If you’re confident that selling your business is the way to go, or perhaps you’re undecided, it’s important to consider the significant amount of effort and resource you’ll need to make it happen. It’s a full time job. - The time investment alone is enough to put anyone off. So imagine for just a minute, that you didn’t need to do all of this work. What if this could be done over the next 3 - 5 years (by someone else). Everything we’ve listed in this article, is what you’d need to do, if you were selling through a business broker, or direct to a buyer.
Unlike other private equity firms, our focus is on growing businesses at the smaller end of the market. We’ve worked in, and grown our own businesses in the exact same fields you work today. We’ve spent years coaching and supporting small businesses just like yours, developing their teams, and helping them to grow, but now, we’d like to help you.
We have a solution for business owners that need to sell their business immediately, or for those who want to stick around for a few years.
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