How much time do you spend working in your business? How much time do you spend working on your business?

Be careful. Those questions are NOT the same. There is a difference between working IN your business and working ON your business. That difference is at the heart of the best and worse business growth plans.

Working In the Business

When someone starts up a business, that person spends the majority of his or her time working in the business. That means working on the day-to-day activities that keep the business going. A typical day might include:

  • Serving customers and clients.
  • Fulfilling orders.
  • Managing the team
  • Doing marketing
  • Handling the billing
  • Putting in purchase orders
  • Keeping the bookkeeping straight.

Now all of those activities are important when it comes to keeping the business going. But, it is not necessarily what is going to give the company a stable foundation for growth.

Working On The Business

Working on the business is what makes the foundation strong and allows the company to grow in the right direction. When you are working on the business, you are strengthening your foundations and creating the basis for future business growth. What activities are included?

  • Defining and revising your business model. Many companies have an ever-changing business model that does not have much thought behind it. Spending time defining and refining that model can make the business more efficient and even more profitable. It may also show opportunities for growing the business in new directions.
  • Defining business goals and planning how to make them happen. Your company needs clear goals to strive towards and meet. You need to spend time thinking on where you want the business to go. Once you know the direction, you need concrete plans on how you will make each goal a reality. This planning is what keeps your company on track and moving forward.
  • Developing and establishing written systems. This is one of those business growth plans that most company owners don’t adopt. Developing systems to handle most of the functions and processes in your business is sound business practice. You make your business more efficient with systems that produce quality results every time. It reduces training time and makes it easy for one team member to help another.
  • Managing the company’s budget and finances. Your numbers are what tell you if your company is growing, if you are meeting your goals, and if you are having troubles. You need to spend time each day looking at daily numbers, each week with the weekly numbers, and so on. You also need solid financial planning to handle catastrophic or unforeseen events.
  • Editing your company. One of the most important things you can do for your company is to get rid of the things that are not doing the business any good. You may have products that were never popular. You might offer services which few customers want. You may have a team member that is not performing at the level you need. Releasing what is not working will allow the things that are working to grow and thrive.

Among business growth plans, working on your business is at the top of the list. If you fail to spend time in the endeavors which strengthen your business, your company will not survive. Take the time, make the time, to do the work needed to keep your company strong and moving forward.

How much time are you going to spend today working on your business?

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About the author,

With 14 years of experience in working with small and medium sized businesses to help them grow, Doug is committed to seeing business owners thrive. Business coaching is what drives Doug.

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