Want to know why doing a great job wont grow your business

Doing a great job will fill up your business (and your calendar), but it won’t grow your business. Email us to find out why, and what you do about it right now.

When you do great work, the word gets around, and more and more business comes your way. You don’t need to worry too much about marketing, and most of your business comes from referrals. And your business gets full to over-flowing. If you keep saying yes to all the people who want you to fix their problems, you end up ridiculously busy, your calendar is full (maybe over-full) and other areas of your life may start to suffer.

But how do you fix that? Our latest e-book, due out shortly, covers exactly this dilemma that so many small to medium business owners face. To get a copy as soon as it comes out, email now.

Tony’s story

Tony is a bookkeeper; a really good bookkeeper. And Tony has his weeks filled with doing the books for others. People want more, so Tony works longer hours to help them out, and puts his prices up a bit too. Tony doubled the size of his business by pretty much doubling his time in it. Then his computer network stops working, so what does Tony do? He could try to fix it himself, but who knows how long that could take. And he knows that his time is better spent doing books than trying to fix a computer issue, so he gets a computer network specialist to fix his problem, while he continues doing the books. Now Tony is still spending all his time doing bookkeeping, but people want more and he also wants to grow the business to five or 10 or more times the size. So what does he do?

Tony realises that just because he is good at bookkeeping, doesn’t mean he is good at all the other things needed to grow a business. So he calls another specialist, and learns the three key things he has to do to solve the problem.

“Businesses don’t grow, their leaders do“

And those three things are:

1) Goals – Be really clear on what you are trying to achieve (and why)

2) Systems – Anything that is going to be done multiple times should have a documented system for it

3) Delegate/Out-source – Find people you trust to follow your systems (for what you are great at) and take care of the stuff you are not great at.

And by implementing those three things, Tony was able to grow his business consistently without working any more hours. In fact, Tony knows how to grow the business and reduce his time in it.

So if you are doing great work and have no time left for anything else, request a copy of our latest e-book now.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

1-lesson-for-getting-more-time-yuotube-20150422

You’ve simply got to learn this #1 lesson for saving time!

So many people want more time for stuff. They are so busy and just don’t seem to get everything done that they want to, but they don’t know how to fix that.

Well. It is really simple and comes down to one two-letter word. If you don’t learn this lesson, you are always going to be stuck on that tread mill; needing more time, worrying, stressing, overloaded and overwhelmed.

And if you do learn it then you can save time, be more in control and relaxed, and finish every day happy with what you did.

So watch this two minute video, right now.

#1 lesson for getting more time yuotube 20150422

And remember, the three simple steps to making time for what matters most are:

1. Have criteria to make it easy to decide what to say yes and no to

2. Keep track of what you spend your time on

3. Have clear boundaries in relation to your time

“The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today.” Nolan Bushnell

So you can think about what you were going to do for the rest of today, and decide what you will not do, and what you will get to do instead. And just imagine how much better you will feel at the end of the day.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

Just-a-Minute-20150320

It won’t take long, but it will take away

We’ve all been there. We know there are some really important things that we should get done today. And then you think of this other little job that you could get out of the way right now. You hear yourself saying “It won’t take long. I’ll just do it now, so it’s done and out of the way”. And maybe even a bit of “Doing it now or later will take just the same amount of time”. But there is a hidden danger here. It diverts you attention from what you really should be doing. Consumes your time. And so often does that one or two minute task actually take way longer than you expected. Right? Maybe you have also experienced this.

Just like when someone drops by and asks “Do you have a minute?” it almost always takes more than a minute, doesn’t it?

So that small task, that would be nice to tick off, really won’t take long. But it will take away your focus and take away the time you should be spending on the really important stuff right now.

Satisfaction

While people do get some degree of satisfaction from ticking things off their list, it is far more satisfying to complete the important stuff than just tick off some small (and typically less important) thing. Each day, you should know the 1-3 top priority (priority 1) tasks you have chosen for that day. The ones that are most important to you that day (you chose them yesterday before finishing work, right?). These are tasks that are important to you, will help move you towards achieving your goals, and maybe are things that you have been putting off for too long already.

“Discipline is simply choosing between what you want now and what you want most “

Just imagine what it will be like when you have all three of them completed and ticked off later today, maybe even before lunch. How good would that be?

And in contrast, if instead of doing the priority one tasks now, you did that small thing that won’t take long, then another and another. Before you know it, another day is gone (that you will never get back) and you have spent it ticking off all these little things that really took longer than you thought they would. “Oh well. There’s always tomorrow. I’ll start on the top priorities tomorrow”. But we all know that tomorrow never comes, and years can go by without making any progress towards your goals. And that sucks.

So which would you rather? I know which one I choose. And I am doing it right now. I have my list on the desk next to me. In the left column are my three #1 priorities for today, and finishing this blog will complete the next one of them. In the right column are the other things I would like to get done today (priority #2 or lower). I can do them once I finish the priority #1s. As things may pop into my head that need doing, I write them down on the right, so I won’t forget, and they may get done later. I intend to complete all my #1 priorities today before lunch. And that feels good just saying it, and picturing how good the afternoon will be once I have achieved that. How about you?

So next time you are tempted to do that job that won’t take long, instead of actually doing it, write it down on your priority #2 list. That way you will remember to do it, and once your priority #1s are done today, you can then choose which of the other things you will complete and tick off today too.

And if you don’t tick off your #1 priorities for three days, contact us and we can help you overcome what is holding you back. Or to find out about how the entire Business Time Lord system can give you the control and freedom in your business, contact us now, The time has come to do it now.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

interruption-marketing-20150304

Have you ever been delayed by someone dropping in when you were about to go out?

You know the feeling. You are all set to leave for an important meeting, to go home, or something else that you are looking forwards to. Then someone drops by or calls you. They say it will only take a second, and you know it always takes longer than that. You don’t want to be rude, but what do you do?

Well, it just takes three simple steps to overcome this and be back on track. Three steps to make sure that you respond professionally and politely, continue to be on time, avoid stresses and prioritise appropriately. Instead of the way that many people do it, which is to allow the conversation to begin, to be late for probably the rest of the day, and to stress out about where they should be and what they should be doing.

Watch this two minute clip for a brief summary of the three key steps.

Head shot from video 20150304

Step 1. Urgency – Whether you are leaving right now, have less than two minutes to go, or longer, let them know how much time you have. “I’ve only got about two minutes before I have to leave for a meeting…”

Step 2. Purpose – Without having the full discussion, you want to find out the purpose of their chat, whether it is to inform you of something, ask you a quick question, or have a longer discussion. So you can ask “What is it that you would like to talk about?”

Step 3. Options – Assuming that responding to their query will take more time that you’ve got, give them a couple of choices. For example, “Would you prefer for me to drop by when I get back, or shall I book a meeting with you for later this week?” Take into account what time you have got today and how important their thing is to YOU!

So putting it all together, it could go something like this: “I’ve only got about two minutes before I have to go for a meeting. What is it that you would like to talk about?” They answer briefly, and then you say “OK. Would you prefer for me to drop by when I get back, or shall I book a meeting with you for later this week?”. Easy, right?

Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it is about learning to dance in the rain.

Now this can work really well for most people in most situations. And if you think this may not work for you, let us know and we can help you respond better to your situation. For example, if a REALLY important person drops by and your priority is on them ahead of the other thing you would have been doing, you may say something like “I want to give this/you my full attention, so I just need a minute to contact the person I was going to be meeting with, and I’ll be right with you” (note that this is not a question, but a statement). Then do what you need to (eg. text, don’t call, the other person that you will be late) and get back to the priority chat.

The phone rings…

And remember, if you are just about to leave and the phone rings, let it ring. If it is really important, they will leave a message, just as they would if you had already left, were driving or were going through a tunnel with no reception.

P.S.  A good voicemail greeting is invaluable at times like this. To find out what we recommend for a really productive voicemail greeting, ring any of us or email us.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

20130913_suitcase2

How to get an extra hour in your day right now

So many people get to the end of their work day, looking at what’s still on their list to be done, and tell themselves there’s got to be a better way. They feel the pressure of deadlines looming, and they just wish there were more hours in the day. Maybe you know people like this.

The key is, how to solve this. And below is an example of how I do it myself and how I teach others to do it for themselves. And for those of you who saw my one minute YouTube video on Parkinson’s Law, you will relate to this.

First, I have a question to ask you. If you had an extra hour in your day, what would you spend it doing? That is a very important question, because if you don’t know what you would be doing, then you’re not about to make time for it. This works best when there is something really compelling for you. Something that you really want to do, but haven’t been able to make the time so far. Something that when it is done, you will see it as a really worthwhile achievement. You will hear others congratulating you on it, and you will feel that sense of satisfaction that today was a good day and you really made an awesome difference. This thing we will call your Compelling and Awesome Thing (CAT).

When you are clear on the worthwhile thing or things that you would spend your time on, if you had just one extra hour in your day, you are ready to make it happen. And we’d love to hear from you not only how much time you got from doing this strategy, but we’d love you to also tell us what it was that you did with that extra time.

How to get an extra hour every day

Parkinson’s Law says that the work expands to fill the time available. This is just like how you can never have a shed big enough, because no matter how big it is, it will still get filled up. So it is not really about getting a bigger shed, and it is not really about getting more time. It is really about making better use of what we have got.

A lot of people have a junk room or place in the house where they put the stuff that doesn’t fit elsewhere. Ever noticed that? And most people subscribe to the theory of ‘out of sight; out of mind’, so the stuff doesn’t get dealt with until it is overflowing and out of control. Then they get stressed out and overwhelmed about it and eventually spend ages trying to sort it out. And after slogging away for hours, it seems like they have hardly made a dent in it. That sucks. Well, one of my written goals for last year (you’ve got written goals, right?) was to clear the clutter out of our main bedroom.

Suitcases (put the problem in full view)

We had a bunch of stuff piled in our bedroom, including suitcases. For us, the suitcases belong under the beds, but they wouldn’t fit because there were toys under the beds. So we moved the toys out and put the suitcases in. Simple right. Now we needed to deal with the toys, so we sorted them out into three piles; what to keep, give away and bin. And it could only be a ‘keep’ if it would fit where toys are supposed to be kept (a place for everything and everything in it’s place!). We threw out the ‘bin’ stuff, which left the giveaways. So we stacked them up right near the front door, in full view right where everyone could see them. And it got sorted out and dealt with very fast, I can tell you.

This same strategy is what you can do to free up the time in your calendar too. Because your ‘suitcase’ is actually the thing that you really want to have time for. You have to fit it in, so get out your calendar and schedule in an hour today and every day for a week where you will spend time doing you Compelling and Awesome Thing; your CAT.

Now you may wonder what happens to the stuff that you would have been doing during that hour. That’s equivalent to the toys under the bed. Well, that is also quite simple. It will either get done or it wont, depending on how important it really is. We all get distracted sometimes, which impacts our productivity (how long it takes to get something done). And as Parkinson’s Law indicates, if we only have seven hours (instead of eight), the tasks will take seven hours. Just like how people become much more productive in the days and weeks before a holiday. They get much better focused and are much better at handling distractions (as I talked with our Inner Circle members last week).

“Don’t count the days; make the days count“ – Muhammad Ali

And if you are telling yourself that that’s how long it takes, and this strategy won’t work, ask yourself if the things take that long for everybody, or are there some people who would take longer to do it? Did it used to take you longer, but you found better ways? Now unless you are the absolute world’s best in your field (I assume you are good, but not yet world #1), then some people would be able to get the results you are getting with less of their time, right? So you may wonder how they do it, which is a good thing to wonder, and even better to find out about.

And let’s face it. We all spend some time on stuff that we could really do without, like surfing the net, procrastinating, perfecting, re-doing. So however many things you’ve got on your list that you realistically will get done in the day, you really can find ways to get them done in a day that is one hour shorter. And done well, especially when you are better focussed on the results you want to achieve and the CATs that you have been, and will continue to, make your time for.

When you have done this, send us a quick email to let us know how much time you got from doing this strategy and what it was that you did with that extra time.

And for those of you wondering, when we had cleared all the stuff out of the main bedroom, it felt so great to see the space, tidiness and to know that now we are on top of it, it will be much more manageable from here onwards.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

tree-growing-in-protecting-hands-richard-newstead-20150209-sml

Want to know why doing a great job wont grow your business

Doing a great job will fill up your business (and your calendar), but it won’t grow your business. Email us to find out why, and what you do about it right now.

When you do great work, the word gets around, and more and more business comes your way. You don’t need to worry too much about marketing, and most of your business comes from referrals. And your business gets full to over-flowing. If you keep saying yes to all the people who want you to fix their problems, you end up ridiculously busy, your calendar is full (maybe over-full) and other areas of your life may start to suffer.

But how do you fix that? Our latest e-book, due out shortly, covers exactly this dilemma that so many small to medium business owners face. To get a copy as soon as it comes out, email now.

Tony’s story

Tony is a bookkeeper; a really good bookkeeper. And Tony has his weeks filled with doing the books for others. People want more, so Tony works longer hours to help them out, and puts his prices up a bit too. Tony doubled the size of his business by pretty much doubling his time in it. Then his computer network stops working, so what does Tony do? He could try to fix it himself, but who knows how long that could take. And he knows that his time is better spent doing books than trying to fix a computer issue, so he gets a computer network specialist to fix his problem, while he continues doing the books. Now Tony is still spending all his time doing bookkeeping, but people want more and he also wants to grow the business to five or 10 or more times the size. So what does he do?

Tony realises that just because he is good at bookkeeping, doesn’t mean he is good at all the other things needed to grow a business. So he calls another specialist, and learns the three key things he has to do to solve the problem.

“Businesses don’t grow, their leaders do“

And those three things are:

1) Goals – Be really clear on what you are trying to achieve (and why)

2) Systems – Anything that is going to be done multiple times should have a documented system for it

3) Delegate/Out-source – Find people you trust to follow your systems (for what you are great at) and take care of the stuff you are not great at.

And by implementing those three things, Tony was able to grow his business consistently without working any more hours. In fact, Tony knows how to grow the business and reduce his time in it.

So if you are doing great work and have no time left for anything else, request a copy of our latest e-book now.

Have a great day,

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you found this useful and can think of anyone else who would be interested, forward this to them or let them know that they can sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.BusinessTimeLord.com.au

Happy New Year with clock 20150122

Know anyone struggling with getting some major New Year momentum?

You may have been back at work for some time already, or maybe not, but just because someone is at work doesn’t mean they are getting the results that they are there for. We’ve all seen people in attendance who are busy, but are not working on the top priorities for the business. If you know there are things that you should be doing, but have been putting off starting them, then you are not alone. So many people start the New Year and settle into work habits, then realise some time later that they have not been spending their time on what matters most for the business, for them. Sometimes June or December is approaching fast and people realise that they have done little to work on their year’s goals.

Maybe you have already this year reviewed your goals for the year, as we have done ourselves. Goals for the next 90 days, for the week? Or maybe you have not yet done that.

Maybe you know what you should be starting, that is going to help you to achieve your goals for the year, but for some reason or other, you just haven’t started it yet. There may be lots of reasons that come up for you, but remember this. When you think about all the awesome things that you have achieved in your life so far, it all started with action. You took the first step, and kept going. And some of the most difficult (and rewarding) things you have done started with a first step that was unfamiliar, difficult at first, and maybe you put it off for too long. And as you remember now how you felt when you achieved any of those worthwhile things, you know that the worry, procrastinating, putting off and avoidance caused more pain than just getting on with it. You may realise that you put off stating for too long, and you really don’t know why you didn’t get started earlier.

“A journey of 1000 miles begins with just one step“ Confucius

So when you think of what you want to achieve this year, and remember the task that you really have to start right now, then you realise what the first steps are. This makes you recognise the importance of taking that first step today, and means that you will really start to gain some more momentum now, which is what we all want.

So before you finish up for today, email us to let us know what the first step was that you took today, that moves you closer to your goals. We love to celebrate progress with people.

And if you think that the first step is too big to do today, then just break it down into smaller steps, so you know what you CAN do today to move you towards your goals. Then email us that.

And if you don’t know what your goals are or you are stuck and need help overcoming the obstacles in your way, your first step may be to ask us for a free 10 minute laser session to help you get moving. Just take that first step.

Have a great week.

The Business Time Lord team

P.S.     If you think of anyone else who would be interested in being more productive and having more free time, tell them to sign up for these newsletters here.

For more information visit

www.WhySeven.com.au

DSC_0418

Essential reading for a stress-free Christmas

Instead of going into Christmas exhausted and stressed about all the things that still haven’t been done, how about doing things differently this year. You have had a great year, achieved heaps, made a few mistakes and learned a lot. And you know that there will always be things on the list that will have to wait for later. Particularly at this time of year, successful people are doing two key things. They are reflecting on what has been achieved and they are planning ahead for what they will achieve in the coming year.

So you could go into Christmas like you may have in the past, feeling like you are about half way through a marathon, and needing a break for at least the whole of January to recover! Or you can recognise all of the positives, achievements and learnings, be satisfied in what you have achieved, and make plans for an even better year in 2015. That’s what we’ve just done, using our Big Hairy Audacious Goal-setting check list.

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success.  Do what you love and you will be successful” Buddha

From all of us here at Business Time Lords, we wish you a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.

While we are taking a break from 24 Dec 14 re-opening on 19 Jan 15, you can still send us emails. And for anything urgent, send us a text message with what your query is and when you need a response, and we will do our best to assist as soon as we can.

If you are not already receiving our fortnightly productivity tips, subscribe here. And if you have really enjoyed our posts this year, feel free to send this on to others who you think may need some of this.

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year from the Business Time Lord team

Always on? – Always distracting

It may seem great to be able to contact people any time you want to, but the distractions that causes have a huge cost for productivity

Have you ever just wished that you could have some time away from the cacophony of messages that seem to bombard you endlessly throughout your day (and maybe night)? You are trying to get some important stuff done, but keep getting distracted by another message from some electronic gadget or other? 

instant messaging word bubbles 20141208

So many people these days are surrounded by technology, which has become such an integral part of our lives. People receive text messages on their phone, instant messaging at their computers (and phones and tablets), emails, social media updates, etc. Many of these supposed ‘productivity tools’ can and do make a huge difference for what we can achieve in a day, but that difference is not always on the plus side.

When you think about what people can achieve at work these days, versus even just one generation ago, technology is making a huge impact. Someone once told me that when the US government first introduced a computerised census of their population, it produced its results before the manual analysis of the previous census had been completed.

But, there are two sides to every coin. The tools are supposed to be there to help us. But if someone from another planet was to watch a lot of people working, they would probably see a computer popping up a message, then the person stopping doing what they were doing and responding to the message. Who’s in control there? For so many people, what they do in the morning depends on what emails are in their inbox when they log on! And some people would almost appear to be slaves to the almighty smart phone.

So how do you take back control? It is simple, really.

1. Turn off all your instant messaging

I’m not going to name names here, but you know the programs and apps I am referring to, that pop up with notifications, make noises, tell you you’ve got mail, chirps, likes, friends, etc. Most businesses have some of them on the network and most smart phones have them too.

Interruptions are costing businesses huge amounts, with some management experts estimating that employees are working at less than 50% of what they are capable of. If someone is distracted by a phone call or instant message, it can take up to 40 minutes to get back to the level of concentration required for a complex task. And do you think it is likely that the person would be distracted again within that time? And by focussing single-mindedly on your most important task, Brian Tracy told us that it can be completed in less than half the time. The productivity impact of instant messaging is so high, that you just have to turn off the instant messaging.

2. Set your ground rules

And when I tell people this, the main question they ask is ‘but how do people contact me when they need to?’. Well, you just have to set some ground rules. Most people would not expect their boss to call them at 3am on a Sunday, right? And if you needed a copy of a report today, you would be pretty disappointed if they put it in an envelope, stuck and stamp on it and put it in a big red mail box, right? Ground rules. You have to choose the appropriate means of communication for the situation. If something is really urgent, you might encourage people to call your mobile or leave a voice-mail or send you a text if you don’t answer. If something doesn’t have to be responded to today, email is probably the way to go. Look at what you need to communicate, the timeliness and responsiveness it really needs, and decide the appropriate way to communicate it for you and your business.

3. Schedule time to read messages

There are people that you send emails to, maybe to inform them or ask them to do things. Now, unless you are paying those people to sit at their computers waiting for your email (I assume not), they will be busy doing other work for you, themselves or others. Just like you do. You have work to do for you and for others. You may need information from others (that they will email to you), but unless it is a last minute urgent task (which I will talk about in another post) or you left it to the last minute because you were not organised enough to do better, then you should have their information days in advance, not hours or minutes before you need it. So schedule times each day (I recommend 15 minutes late morning and the same late afternoon) to read your emails. Late morning because you decide before the end of your work day what are the most important things for you to do the next day (and don’t let someone else’s email in the morning distract you from that decision). And late afternoon because you can finish work knowing that you are up to date on your emails, your inbox is empty, and you have a plan for tomorrow (as above).

 Hutchison’s Law “Any occurrence requiring undivided attention will be accompanied by a compelling distraction“

So when you have some important things to do (isn’t that most of the time?), just turn off all of the instant messaging apps or programs. Set your ground rules for how you want to be contacted for urgent and for non-urgent things. And most of all, schedule times in your calendar for when you will check your messages, so that you can be responsive and in control of how you spend your precious time.

Have a great week,

Russell Scott
Business Time Lord
WhySeven

gmail-priority-inbox 20131106

11 Simple Questions to Help Achieve Your Goals

Don’t read this unless you want your customers to actually read what you send them

A little while ago, I received an email newsletter from a colleague, which reminded me of some valuable business wisdom (thanks James). I look forwards to reading his newsletters, and always read them when they arrive. You may have people that send you stuff, that you always open too. But what is it about their stuff that makes you want to read it, despite all the other noise of messages that surround us these days?

If you are like most people, you get loads of emails each week, many of which don’t get read. And since your customers are probably like that too, you may have wondered how much of what you communicate to your customers is actually getting through. But what can you do to get them to read your stuff, hear about what great things you are doing for your customers, and be hanging out for the next opportunity to do business with you?

Most people these days receive so many long emails, spam, useful information, advertising, and all the other stuff. I don’t want complicated solutions. And it is so refreshing to get some simple information that is easy to follow and can be used and return benefits immediately. When I get that, I am far more likely to read it. Maybe you can relate to that?

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In the email were 11 simple questions that are easy to apply to any business and lead to huge benefits. I am sure we have all heard questions like these in various places, but seeing them all in this one short email really made an impression on me, because I remembered it and knew I should share it with others, because I believe the better your ability to answer these questions, the greater your likelihood of achieving great results.

  1. Do I have a plan and know the criteria for success?

  2. Am I constantly learning what it takes to succeed and accept all feedback?

  3. Do I make decisions confidently and quickly and stick to them?

  4. Do I back myself to the hilt?

  5. Am I able to adapt quickly to change?

  6. Do I act now, not later?

  7. Do I take risks?

  8. Do I say “How can I?