Time for Holiday

Finding Efficient Ways To Do Business

The time that you spend struggling to finish a task can sometimes be better spent asking more advanced people for  their methods for doing things. I know you the small business owner feeling like you have to do everything. This in part, is because of financial constraints. Lack of funding, I understand, forces you to wear multiple hats. However, it is important to know when you must retreat back to your lane.

Many years ago, I was an executive director a a NYC homeless shelter. In this role, it seemed I had endless reports due. I spent a great deal of my time reviewing, compiling and recycling data that it sometimes impeded on my ability to manage my team. This wasn’t because I couldn’t understand, communicate or implement the data for the good of my site, but rather the process was so time consuming.

It seems like a lifetime ago, I was not computer savvy and I certainly did not have the proficiency I have now working with spreadsheets and the like. Then, I would spend hours trying to create charts, graphs and illustrations…it was a nightmare! The time I spent trying in desperation was unproductive and exhausting. This self-made barrier caused stress and moved me away from the areas of my position that really needed my attention.

One day I’m sitting at my desk, almost in tears as the clock ticks away in warp speed toward my deadline. My assistant walks in and in the height of her frustration, she exclaimed, “Would you let me do it! That’s what I’m here for. I could have this done in 30 minutes!” Reluctantly, yet happily, I let go. I released my need to control the outcome and trusted her. I forced myself to acknowledge, I hired a competent, professional who possesses the expertise to assist with the tasks my position requires.

I had to believe that she capable. I had to trust her judgement to present the content of my data appropriately. I also had too have faith in her commitment to my success; and hat would would produce a work of excellence. When I allowed myself to rely on the expertise of my assistant, my role as an administrator changed. My leadership changed. Today, my business is the recipient of the benefits of that change.

Whenever possible seek ways to delegate those areas in which you are not proficient. Find an expert to get it done and move on. Focus on your lane.

Look up professionals through trade organizations, blogs and books for assistance. Outsourcing is also a viable option If you are not proficient in social media management, for example, delegate the task to someone who can do it relatively easily. I recognize hiring an employee may be a challenge but you can not give up the task. You must find creative ways to get that need met. Perhaps, you can barter services with another small business owner by offering your talent, skills or special gift to advance their business in exchange for their expertise to advance yours.

If there is a stumbling block impeding your success, and you can learn how do the necessary task(s) to move through it, by all means do it. However, invest in reading how to use the tool properly, learn shortcuts and best practices in order to maximize your time.

To illustrate this point, let me tell you about a client, Gwendolyn. She often complained about the amount of time she spent looking for emails, verifying appointments and sharing information. She did not maximize all the tools available by her email providers. She had access to both iCalendar™ and Outlook™, yet she did not use either as a calendar or filing system. Gwendolyn spent hours every week manually looking for emails because she did not know how to use the search feature.

It is true, in this example, Gwendolyn would have benefited from an assistant to get her organized. An executive assistant could easily check, forward and file essential emails in folders. Of course, it is also an option that Gwendolyn learn how to manage her email independently with a little training.

So get some training to manage the tasks that are do-able and delegate the rest. All the time (and money) saved can be used to relax and take a holiday. Enjoy!

In awareness, passion, purpose, joy and business success,

About The Author


Andrea Callahan is a brand designer. She helps passion & purpose-driven entrepreneurs maximize their strengths to craft and implement an image that represents their WHY and to use that why to position themselves as an Industry Influencer. She a speaker, seminar leader and the author of, "It's Your Brand ~ Make Your Identity Clear" available on Amazon.com Callahan launched the Industry Influencer Academy at academy.andreacallahan.com

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