You wake up hopeful that you’ll have a more productive day than the day before. So, you open up your planner, go online to your calendar or go to your long list of to-do items and it happens again… that overwhelming feeling of anxiety that you don’t know what to start with first. You feel like you’re in “to-do list hell”.
There Will Always Be To-Do Lists!
Whether you write it down or not, you’ll always have a to-do list as a business owner. While you can’t avoid it, you can gain clarity so you can better manage it. Getting clear requires you to first create your 12-month business strategy, which answers the following questions:
- What do you want to experience in your business over the next 12 months?
- What you want to experience is considered your vision and of course you will have more than one.
- List what you want to experience in bullet points.
- What are the objectives, goals and actions needed to support what you want to experience?
- Who is your target customer/client?
- How will you market your business to generate leads?
- What tools and resources will you use to implement business tasks?
- Who do you want to collaborate with?
- What is your daily workflow process that will help complete tasks?
- What customer service workflows do you need to put in place?
- What is my communications strategy for clients/customers and prospects?
You Shouldn’t Try to Handle It All Yourself!
Oftentimes, businesswomen have a tendency to think that they must handle it all only to find themselves procrastinating or not knowing how to complete the task. I know this all too well. I would often feel so accomplished creating my to-do list and then at the end of the week, I’d find myself disappointed that I had not tackled one thing towards generating profit in my business.
Your Strategy Will Give You Clarity!
Creating your business strategy allows you to not only gain clarity, but it also helps you to structure a system. Once you have your written strategy, you can then work on listing the goals to support each experience you want to have and then listing the to-do items (tasks) to support each of your goals.
Goal Setting Is A System!
Keep in mind that goal setting is a system all unto itself. You should always set milestones (deadlines) for each of your goals. When goals are complex and you find yourself with multiple sub-goals and it will take more than a few days to complete, it really has become a project. This means that you must put together a team of individuals that can help you get the project completed.
Watch Out for Challenging To-Do Items
Also remember that to-do items to support your goals can be complex and can present challenges as well. Those challenges could relate to a skill you need to complete the task, funding you need or finding someone who can help you get it done. So it’s important to never put a to-do item in your planner until you are sure you’re ready to complete it or delegate it.
Now, your to-do items are making more sense because they are supporting the outcomes you want to experience in your business and helping you to implement the tasks to make those outcomes happen!
You’ve Got to Follow Up!
The follow up process is often missing in the workflow of many businesses and yet, it’s the one thing responsible for generating the lead, building authority and reputation, developing relationships with your customers and closing the sale. So, it’s important to always have a follow up system in place that brings to your attention important calls, meetings, projects and tasks to follow up on.
Overall, it’s the systems that you put in place that help contribute to your clarity and will give you that “birds-eye-view” over your business. Schedule time to review the strategy questions in this article. Answering them will help you to better prepare your business strategy and put the to-do list in its place!