2010 was a pretty good year for me. I gained many new clients – some with project work and some needing on-going services. I committed to many training courses and attended webinars to learn and hone my skills in my transition from a Virtual Administrative Assistant with a Social Media Marketing Specialist service to incorporating all the new and improved skills that led to me packaging my brand to an Inbound Marketing Specialist.
But somewhere in that year, I failed to address my marketing, couldn’t keep up with my “To Do” list and doing client work became my only focus. I felt overwhelmed by what I should be doing and was frustrated with procrastination and not implementing my goals and strategies.
I am happy to report that in 2011 I divided my time to a more realistic 70% client work and 30% on MY business.
How did I do that?
- I re-examined my day to day activities and started implementing processes and procedures to balance my work week into manageable portions of time divided between client work and my own business.
- I took advantage of the less demanding weekend time like a Saturday morning or a Sunday evening to create my upcoming weekly To Do list which popped up first thing Monday morning. The top of the list was all the commitments I had made for the coming week – client work deadlines, client meetings, on-line webinars or classes – the activities I HAD to get done. The next section was all the To Do’s that were pending either for the month or the year – new processes and strategies, completing on-going training, revamping and launching my new website to incorporate my new and existing services…
- When Monday morning came, I was fully prepared to get started with enough wiggle room to meet new and unexpected projects, tasks and events. A quick check-in with my To Do List for the week told me where and when I could accommodate additional tasks without overburdening myself and going off track.
It has worked amazingly well. Regretfully, I have had to turn down some opportunities because I simply could not fit them in and still successfully complete everything in the given timeframes. But the benefits of working in this focused process has greatly reduced stress in my work week and easily prioritized my workload in order to complete many items that have been deferred numerous times and caused my To Do List to grow to totally unacceptable and unattainable proportions.
Why didn’t I do this a long time ago?
That is easy – because I didn’t make it a priority to take the time to set the processes and procedures up for on-going usage with a view to long term management.
If you, too, operate your business on a day to day basis without basic systems in place, are you managing to meet all your commitments and goals, or are you experiencing frustration, burnout and missed opportunities?