As a business owner, every day brings new challenges and issues that demand our attention. When 100% of our time is given to doing the business (marketing, selling, making, fixing, shipping, accounting, etc.), we’re stuck. We’re in a rut that (often) leads to failure. Perhaps not failure in the sense of going out of business or having to take a day job, but a missed opportunity to see the business become what it could/should be.
It’s a common trap we can all fall into. We have something the market wants. Demand increases and the technical activity associated with getting and filling orders completely fills our schedules. Forty hours per week becomes fifty and then sixty. We start taking work home (it’s a sign when what we once enjoyed becomes work). Everything becomes more mechanical. We lose balance often at the same time our business is losing steam.
When we’re in the rut, the solution appears to be counter-intuitive and impossible to execute, but we must allocate a portion of our time to work on the business if we want our business to survive. It’s not optional – it’s essential. You may have heard the admonition to not work in your business at the expense of working on it–the question, though, becomes “how?”
We need to continually infuse creativity into our business–if we want to stay out of the rut. That won’t happen if we don’t: 1) purposefully allocate time for it and 2) utilize an agenda that maximizes the creative input in the time allocated. The best solution to infuse the most creativity in the shortest amount of time is setting aside 5 days per year with your executive leadership team and 90 minutes or less per week (5% to 6% of your total work hours), using specific agendas to extract creative input to prioritize, solve your issues, maintain focus and advance your company.
Applied faithfully, this regimen will move you and your company to a top performing level. Rather than rehashing worn out frustrations, being stymied in your rate of growth, or feeling like you have to come up with all the answers by yourself, you will find freedom, organization, and synergy flowing from your efforts. Dare to try it!
A special thanks to Don Tinney, who posted many of the concepts above in a blog entry this week at http://www.eosworldwide.com