How Are Your Priorities Stacking Up?

  • By Lauri Paxton
  • 23 Jun, 2014

Priorities…..Where Do I begin?

We all have a “to do” list that is longer than our arm. So how do you begin to sort through the ones that are most important? It starts with a comprehensive list.
Step 1:List each idea, task, “to do’,” project, and even items you need to do on a daily basis by row on a spread sheet. By using a spread sheet you’ll be able to sort your list for later use. Don’t be discouraged by the size of the list. Part of the process is putting it down in the first place so you can identify the types of tasks that need done.
Step 2:There are two distinct categories for business owners – are you working INyour business or ONyour business? Working INyour business means you’re completing tasks to keep the business function going, i.e. landscaping yards, cooking for Friday night dinners, etc. Working ONyour business means you put on the CEO hat and are strategically developing new products or new services, creating operational procedures, hiring more staff, marketing and nurturing new partnerships.
As you go through your list ask yourself these questions:
  • Is this item revenue-generating?
  • Will you lose revenue if you don’t get it done?
  • Can you delegate this task or does it have to be done by you?
  • If you were to hire someone to do this task, how much would it be worth per hour?
  • What could you do with that hour working ONyour business that would generate more revenue?
Step 3:Choice is a wonderful thing and as a business owner, you have the power to choose. Separate tasks that are working ONvs. INyour business. The day-to-day operations of your business will always be waiting to suck you in – so don’t worry about not having something to fall back on.
There is never enough time to work ONyour business, so force it by blocking out a few hours or a half-day a week and do it, no matter what. The deliberate choice to work ONyour business for a dedicated time each week will lead to new opportunities for business growth. Take this time to calculate ROI for new ideas and products to see how it will fit into your overall business offerings. Not sure how to do this? We can help.
Take a look at what you marked “not able to delegate,” and ask “why not?” Does a procedure need to be written? Do you need more staff? Does your staff need training? Or do you need to learn to let go? Whatever it is, and especially if there are a lot of these items, remove these roadblocks. If you don’t do this, you will become the bottleneck in your own business and it will prevent your business from growing.
Identify the market value for the tasks you’re still doing. Ask yourself what your hourly rate is? How many tasks are you doing that are below your hourly rate? Could you be more productive if you hired or outsourced that task at a lower hourly rate? You’re doing yourself and your business a disservice when you continually do a task yourself that’s at a low market rate.
Step 4:Prioritize with confidence. By organizing the information in a single document, it will provide clarity for strong business decisions about working INor ONyour business.
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