It is normal to have to work hard and put in the hours when starting out on your business ownership journey.  What is often also normal, but unnecessary, is for the long hours to continue after years of business ownership.  It almost becomes a habit.  One becomes conditioned to long hours in the office at night, after a full day on the tools and anything less brings feelings of guilt.

  • Does this sound like you?
  • Chasing revenue, rather than profit
  • No extra money in the bank
  • Working excessive hours, consistently
  • Constantly stamping out firs
  • Do everything yourself because you won’t trust others
  • Damaged family or social relationships

If it does then you are on your way to the classic busy fool syndrome, if not already there.  So, what can you do about it?  Chances are the situation you find yourself in has developed over an extended period.  The solution is also likely to take some time to implement as a magic pill does not exist (short of winning Lotto).  Try doing the following, apply some of the medicine consistently and you can expect steady progress to a better situation:

  • Take a break and use the time to seriously consider how you are working and what you can do to work smarter, not harder.
  • Start focusing on building profit, not sales.  Firing a chunk of your “D class” clients might be the best thing you can do
  • Learn to delegate.  It is a skill and like any skill needs training and practice.  Ask me how
  • Focus on the 20% of activities that produce 80% of your results.
  • Hire an advisor (like me)
  • Use technology to automate some tasks, even little ones.

Time is a precious commodity.  It is finite and you cannot create more.  Despite the common term, you cannot manage time either.  Only Dr Who can do that.  What you can manage is yourself, your diary and those people around you in order to make the most productive use of the time that is available to you.  You are likely to continue being busy as a business owner; it comes with the territory, but it is better to be a busy success than continue as a busy fool.

Andy Burrows – The Trades Coach