Are You Growing Your Business or Just Running It?

“A big obstacle we often face to growing our business is actually running it.”

This was a comment made to me quite a few years back by the CEO of a local capital management firm. It was quite an objective observation about the pitfalls of business leadership. 

How many of you might identify with this comment? This becomes a tremendous challenge when you are running a “solo” business, and virtually all you have is yourself. Even in these circumstances, you need to be honest with yourself about the activities you’re engaged in on a daily basis. It comes down to these questions:

  • Is this something that only I am capable of doing?
  • How important is this task to the growth and sustainability of my business?

Keen business operators know the value of their time, and realize that if you aren’t growing, then you were slowly dying. There is no in between. As a result, they equip themselves with the human resources to support their efforts, so that they can focus on that work which they—and only they—can do.

Specifically, as business leader and point person, there are certain tasks which only you can do. It mostly involves building and cultivating relationships with prospects and clients. Remember, people will buy only from whom they know, like and trust. All three factors must be present, and they must all point to YOU.

Supporting activities, which include certain tasks in servicing clients and their accounts, are often better left to your support people. In fact, as one mentor recently observed, many clients of certain caliber will look with FAVOR on their observation that you are delegating certain tasks to support personnel. They see that as a recognition of what YOUR time is really worth—and in turn they will value it all the more.

So this begs the question: what if you don’t have support people? What if you are a lone gunman? Look at your gross production, and divide out how many hours you work for the same time period. Want to see that hourly number rise? List out those tasks which you find yourself doing, yet you know is not the best use of your time. Seek out an administrative assistant service–they can be in your workplace or work virtually.

Start small, delegate some key tasks, and see what a difference it makes. As your comfort level grows (and stress reduces), simply go from there. Always be mindful to do only those tasks which only you should do.

Stop running and start growing. And watch your hourly earning rate skyrocket.

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