This past week, I made a huge mistake. I run a business accountability program called DRIVERs that people can join after attending Roadmap. One of the elements included in DRIVERs is a webinar to help people tune up their Roadmap. That webinar was scheduled for this week but there was one small problem. No one knew.
Only a small number of people in our Facebook group saw the post about it and the person on my team who helps to manage this program didn’t know either.
That means we didn’t email anyone and at the last minute needed to reschedule so it can be of value to the members.
This got me to thinking about how I’d advise one of my clients if they did this and so I’m sharing some strategies to regain your focus and get organized.
Here is what I came up with:
1. Unsubscribe instead of delete. When you receive an email that you didn’t subscribe to or one that you haven’t read regularly in a while, it’s time to unsubscribe instead of deleting to manage your volume of email and help you keep my attention focused on priorities.
2. Archive all Facebook groups that are no longer serving the bigger goals for the business. You may have started groups that have gone quiet and every so often you get a new person requesting to join and feel as though you should make it active again but you never stick with it. Stop trying and just archive the group.
3. Create a program schedule. If you run any client programs, you should be looking at all of those programs on a calendar from a big picture perspective to see when the marketing happens, when the onboarding takes place, when the program runs (start to end), and when to ask for an endorsement or recommitment takes place. If you do this, you won’t miss out on notifying people of webinars (like I did) because it will be in the schedule. Here’s the important thing though, make sure you also schedule time to look ahead so you’re not planning just in time but have enough time to let people know what’s going on.
4. Figure out what you’re going to stop doing every time you add something new. Imagine if you never eliminated any of the clothing in your closet but just kept adding? Too many business owners do that with their products and services, they keep adding, and never remove the things that are no longer serving them. Every single one of those products and/or services requires energy from you to manage it in some way. Start to eliminate some of the offers that are no longer a priority for you.Start running your #business proactively, not reactively with these 11 strategies. Click To Tweet
5. Share your calendar. If you have someone on your team who is responsible for helping you manage tasks, events, etc., either invite them to a shared calendar so they can see what is going on or, when you schedule something (like a webinar), invite them too so it shows up in their calendar. When you schedule events like this, it also helps to schedule the sequence of emails you will send to notify people about the webinar, and the time you need to construct all of those pieces of communication.
6. Turn off all notifications. If there is anything that I took away from one of our Thought Readers books, Hyperfocus, it’s that we need to learn how to better make our technology work for us. Stop those annoying notifications from showing up on your computer screens and mobile devices. Prioritize what notifications you allow to take your focus away from your priorities. Whether you believe it or not, every time a notification flashes across your screen, it is disrupting your productivity.
7. Schedule a planning day or two. I host Roadmap a couple times a year so that people can spend three solid days working on their business. You can get SO much done when you schedule time to work on your business instead of in your business. If you’re not able to focus and do this on your own, hire someone to help you who is great at systems thinking. They will help you break everything down and create a process to make it happen.
8. Put your phone out of reach. Ever notice how many times you grab your phone and look at it even if your phone is face down? It’s habitual. If you have to get up and go get your phone, you’ll be less tempted to do this. The equivalent for your computer is to close all programs and tabs except the ones you’re using to do the work you’re doing right now. A messy desktop contributes to a cluttered mind. (This is hard for me too, by the way).
9. Buy a planner and get into the practice of planning your month, week and days. You can pick any planner you want but before you buy a planner, really spend some time thinking about how to best use that planner. I’ve spent hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on planners and the one I stick to the most is called the Panda Planner.
10. Make a list of repetitive tasks that need to be done daily, weekly or monthly and automate or delegate wherever possible. If you’re doing something repetitive, on a regular basis, there is a good chance that you can automate that process and save yourself time and money. If you can’t automate it, then either delegate it or schedule it in your calendar so that you don’t forget to do it. If you schedule it, do it. Don’t skip over these tasks, chances are they are important and critical to the success of your business.
11. Read some great books on productivity and focus. As I mentioned above, in Thought Readers, my business book club, we just finished Hyperfocus which was really good. I also recommend The One Thing, The Twelve Week Year and Essentialism for helping you come up with some amazing strategies for focus and execution.
Now it’s your turn. What is one piece of advice you’d offer someone who wants to focus and get more organized in their business?