By Mark Wilkinson, The Business and Happiness Coach and author of Life Remixed
As SME owners, we are often guilty of letting our businesses take over our lives sometimes, and with the strange times of a pandemic changing life for us all, the past year has been more manic than most. But now, with some light at the end of the tunnel, we all have the ability to start afresh and be ready for what we hope will be a gradual return to more normal conditions. Let’s take a moment and really review where you are going.
Calm down, speed up
It is often the calm in the most aggressive storms that allows us to take stock and then speed up the areas that we know are successful. The calmer we are, the more effective we can be at focusing on the areas of the business that need attention.
This pandemic was an opportunity for some of us to take a step back, calm down from the haste of day-to-day life and reassess where we want our businesses to be going, what we need to make it happen and how to go about making a change.
It is these ‘stepping out of your head’ moments, quieting our minds, that are essential for us to realign the focus and drive ourselves and the business forward. And this isn’t something that we should be doing once in a blue moon when we are hit by a crisis.
The ability to calm down and re-align our goals is something we all find hard as SME owners, but its importance shouldn’t be underestimated. Make sure you take some time to reflect each week even in your busiest times.
Create your own economy
For many industries, this crisis has spelt disaster for business growth plans, with the majority of people relying on one business to pay for their lifestyle. But in times of crisis this isn’t always the best option, especially for an SME or someone who is self-employed. During this pandemic, individuals may have seen their incomes plummet and, unfortunately, for those in some of the industries worst hit the future is still very uncertain.
The key to riding out any crisis the world throws at us is multiple sources of income. This doesn’t mean starting up a whole new business; it might just be a new arm or a different product line for the business you already own.
Once you have achieved this you will be able to navigate any future crisis with ease. Use this time as an opportunity to turn an idea into reality or, if possible, invest in assets that will bring you an extra reliable revenue each month. Now is the time to take hold of the reins and futureproof your own earning potential.
Be realistic about what you can do
SME owners may be the worst for this, especially if you have a micro business and are riding solo. But we all have the same 24 hours in the day so it’s about the energy we bring to it. Be realistic about what you can achieve and schedule your tasks and time well. Burnout isn’t good for anyone and you will only run a successful and thriving business if you are able to look after yourself along the way.
If you are able to think about getting some external help, then do just that. Outsourcing some of the things you are not making time for may just be the key to your own success. Free up time in the day to focus on the things that really matter, not only in the business, but also your life. You will find that when you take the time to do this outside thinking, you will be able to run your business with a clearer and more targeted mind.