If you’re like most small business owners, you constantly feel the weight of the never-ending to-do list mounting up.
Even when you know the task list is impossibly long, it doesn’t stop you from beating yourself up when there aren’t enough boxes checked off.
When it comes down to it-
There’s simply too much to do, and too little time.
Not only is your boss such a jerk always pushing to do more with less (whoops- that’s YOU 😬), but when you’re consumed with scratching things off the to-do list you’re not focused on the bigger picture projects that actually move the needle.
Creating systems, processes, and automation all help save you time that you can put towards growing your business.
Damon Brown said it best in an article on Inc.com:
“If you aren’t maximizing your efficiency today, then how can you even make space for those ideas that will surprise and those opportunities that will arrive?”-Damon Brown
Meaning, if it feels like you’re double-booked today, your growth will also be stunted from future opportunities. It’s actually a bigger problem than it seems.
I know, I know- you’re swamped.
“Who has time to drop everything and create a system? It’s not great, but it’s working fine”
“That sounds great, maybe I can get to it in a few weeks when things slow down.”
“I can’t even wrap my brain around that right now”
If any of those thoughts popped into your head, you’ve gotta break the cycle or you’ll never feel caught-up.
Yes, systems take a little front-end work to set up, but saves time in the future.
And that saved time reaps dividends.
Think of it as a mini-investment in the future of your business.
If you set aside time to systematize today, you’re maximizing your time tomorrow.
Still need convincing?
I’m here for it.
Once you set up a system it has the power to save you time, but let’s touch on other not-so-obvious benefits that pay off tenfold.
Reduces Cost + Increases Profitability – the highest expense in most small businesses is labor costs. (Whether you’re paying yourself or not- that’s another story) If you’re ever able to cut down on the “things” you or a team-member does- the business costs are reduced which organically increases profitability.
Expands your Bandwidth– as the owner, you’ve got to make time for high-level tasks. An inexpensive piece of software can often free up time AND mental space for more important things only you can handle in your business.
- online scheduler saves back-and-forth emails for setting up meetings
- payroll system for small business (such as Gusto) removes the stress of paying taxes and owner salaries
- small business management systems (like, Dubsado) can track payments and handle the messy work of requesting late payments
Adds Consistency – aren’t we all just clawing our way to being more consistent?
It’s the tiny tasks that can make a big impact- are also the ones that so easily fall through the cracks.
*Think* request for client feedback, collecting testimonials, following up on leads, checking in on progress- just to name a few.
They may seem too small to bother with, but each really adds up and accrues serious time and energy saved.
And if you’ve read this far, I’m going to assume that you’re on-board.
Let’s get into it.
Optimizing the systems in your business.
Here is a simple 5 step process to turn repeatable tasks into a business system.
- Look for Repetition. What are those little annoying things that take up your time each day or every week? Let’s find a way to systematize “that one thing”. (Examples: client on-boarding, podcast show editing, publishing a blog, packing for an event)
- Write it Out. Pick one and list out every simple step for each action. Pretend that you just hired an assistant and you’re writing an instruction manual. Include every little thing!
- Simplify. Over time we cobble together processes in our business to make it work in a hurry. How can you streamline and simplify this series of tasks?
- Make a Checklist. Whether you want to hire help sooner or later, your future-self will be elated that you cleaned-up and documented your procedures needed to grow a team. Create the checklist in a shareable Google Drive document, Trello Board, or in Asana so it’s ready to be shared at a moment’s notice.
- Consider Automation Software. There are software tools for easy scheduling, collecting payments, singing contracts, sending reminders. What steps can you outsource to software?
Feel like *too much* to do? Remember:
Being the Visionary for your business, requires you to look up from the day-to-day to step back and have a clear big picture perspective.
Developing systems in your business is a game changer. Systems help you streamline your business, save you precious time, and expand your bandwidth to free up your time for growth building opportunities.
Try it! What is one simple system you can create or streamline this week? Use this simple 5 step process and watch your time open-up!
Want to see my favorite time-saving tools? Click here