Being productive is something that an entrepreneur simply must be. Why? As a business owner there are so many tasks pulling you in different directions and you need to know when to say yes, when to work on your most pressing tasks and when to kick back and work on those “mindless” items on your to-do list that have to get done, but don’t take a lot of brain power.
I uncovered these interesting productivity tips:
- The most productive day of the week? Tuesday. Schedule your most pressing tasks for that day.
- The most productive time of the day? 10:26 am.
- The least productive time of the day? 2:55 pm.
- The least productive day of the week? Friday. Are you surprised at that? Use Friday as a “catch up” day or a day to call potential clients or to return phone calls. Use it to prepare your to-do list for the upcoming week so you’re ready to jump right in on Monday.
- Additional thought from me: When you leave the office on Friday — or any day of the week, actually — leave priority tasks front and center on your desk.
Know your own personally productive times of the day and week and utilize those to your best advantage.
When I am working with coaching clients, one of the questions I hear most often is, “How can I bring in more clients?” or “How can I close more sales?” One item I tell my clients to do is to ask for referrals from current satisfied clients and to ask for testimonials from chose clients — having a current client recommend you is the best way to bring in new business.
If your client-closure rates aren’t what you hoped they’d be, here are some tips for closing that sale:
- Make sure you understand their pain points.
- Don’t try to be everything to everyone — make sure the products and services you’re offering are a good fit for that client.
- Build relationships by taking more time to listen than you do talking. Listen to what a potential client is telling you because their pain point might be different than what you imagined it was.
What tried and true tactics do you have to bring in new clients? Take time today to ask a current client for a referral.
Have you ever been told, “You can’t be all things to all people?” As a business owner, I know it’s sometimes difficult to not say “yes” to every project a client or potential client throws at you. I also know that when you’re just starting out you are looking at your business’s bottom line and the urge is there to say yes, simply to keep your bank account in the black.
I can tell you though, that if you choose a niche or specialize your bank account will remain in the black and your business will thrive.
In what way will being a specialist help you to be more profitable? Here are a few:
- You will be better able to focus your marketing efforts
- Being a specialist — regardless of the field — gives you immediate credibility
- You may attract higher-paying clients. (Professionals would rather work with someone who truly “gets” what they do)
Choosing a niche aka area of specialization will set you apart from your competitors. Your clients and potential clients will appreciate working with a professional who truly understands the subtle nuances of their industry. Are you focused on a particular niche?
Monsoon season is coming to Arizona and because of that, business owners (in Arizona and across the globe, actually) have to have plans in place to weather storms — both figuratively and literally. With Arizona’s monsoons come damaging rains, high winds and dust storms aka haboobs and all of these — or even any one of these could put an unprepared business owner into a tailspin.
If you have a physical location, you could find your building flooded or find yourself without electricity. Even if you have a virtual business you could find yourself impacted by storms in the form of power outages or floods as well. It’s best to have contingency plans in place to help weather storms and these could be in the form of off site storage, cloud storage and insurance coverage to help make you whole in the event of an emergency.
In addition to this, a business owner needs to understand ways to deal with the intangibles of entrepreneurship. Do you ever find yourself getting knocked off course? Are there events that happen that you just hadn’t planned for that cause you to skip a beat? If so, here are steps you can implement today to help you maintain an even keel:
- Is your vision for your business clear? If it isn’t you can easily be blown off course.
- Is your mission for how you deliver your goods and services clear? Again, see Number 1.
- Does your team understand the mission and vision and the procedures you have in place to make them a reality?
- Does your team understand their individual roles and responsibilities in the organization?
- Are you an accountable and inspirational leader? This means, you take responsibility for your actions and you lead by example.
How prepared are you and is your business in the event of a “monsoon”?