Common Mistakes Business Owners Make - Working IN Your Business Not ON Your Business
Last year, I removed myself from about 90% of my business operations. After systemising my business and building a great team around me to follow those systems, it was time to step out and let others run it for me.
This year I’m travelling around Asia, working on my self-development and having fun experiencing new cultures. All my business needs from me is a few hours a week for high-level meetings with my operations manager and my coaches, and also to interview Opulence members who are crushing it, or chat to people for The Comeback Game podcast.
But that’s not to say I’ve let the reins go - my KPIs are dialled in so tightly that a one-page spreadsheet tells me everything I need to know about the health of my business.
I’m grateful that I’m having the experience that many business owners start out trying to achieve. But most business owners don’t make it to this stage where they can step out and know that everything will run - and thrive - without them.
Why is this so?
Why do some people gain freedom through their business, while others sit in their office for 80 hours a week, trapped and drowning?
Simple answer: those that find freedom prioritise working ON their business, instead of getting caught up IN it.
Let’s look at a few of the common mistakes business owners make around where they put their time and focus.
The Busyness Cycle
I meet lots of business owners who are overworked, overwhelmed, working ridiculous hours and so stuck in their business that they can’t see how they could possibly step out.
They know that they need to create systems and processes, and do the high-level planning that their business desperately needs. But they are so caught up in putting out spot-fires and being run ragged by clients and staff all day, that they barely get a chance to breathe.
It’s a vicious cycle, and it can seem like a catch-22. But there IS a way out. At The Game Changers, we use a tool called the ‘Task Auditor’ to help our Opulence clients start removing the layers of busyness from themselves until 90% has been either outsourced, delegated, or deleted.
From there it’s much easier to start spending more time on high-level activities that will move your business forward.
Giving In To Limiting Beliefs
The hardest part in removing yourself from the day-to-day of your business is the mindset shift and identity shift that’s needed to make that transition.
How we see ourselves, and our place in the world has an enormous unconscious impact on our beliefs and behaviours. And until you are able to let go of the beliefs you currently have about your business (and your place in it), you’ll keep yourself surrounded by the busyness that you’re trapped in right now.
Let me ask you, have you ever thought -
‘I’m the only one who can do that task’
‘I need to be there or things will fall apart’
‘Nobody else can do what I do’
If the above is ringing true, those beliefs are limiting your business’ growth.
And until you start challenging them and doing things differently, you’re going to keep getting the same results you’re getting right now.
Not Taking Time Out
The business landscape is changing faster than ever before. And if you’re not regularly taking time away from your business to get a fresh perspective, you’re asking for trouble.
Have you ever tried to solve a problem when you were tired or stressed? It can seem that the harder you try and think, the more useless your brain becomes, right? Stress, overwork, and even just being too close to your business can blind you to what’s really going on. What’s worse, they kill your ability for creative thought and introspection.
When I am meditating, walking on the beach, or even in the shower, I often have the most insightful and useful ideas and thoughts about my business. Because the mind just doesn’t work well when it’s all jammed up.
Just start with an hour a week away. Then move to 2 hours, then build up from there. Hit me up for a copy of the Task Audit tool if you cannot find the time (just leave a comment on this blog and my team will get it to you).
You’ll find that your mindset starts to shift focus from little day-to-day details, to big picture thinking the more you practice regular time out.
Need a Hand?
If you are a business owner looking to spend less time running your business, and more time directing it strategically instead, we teach methods to do this in our Opulence and Boardroom programs.
We work with our clients for 12+ months, building into their business systems and processes for increasing profits, reducing stress, and freeing up more time. Typical results are 3x profits and 10 hours back per week within 3-6 months working with us.
If that sounds like something you’d like to explore, I invite you to a 15 minute, complimentary ‘Scale Session’ call. It’s a quick chat where we’ll get to know your business a bit, and explore whether we might be a good fit.