You hear about the horror stories all the time of entrepreneurs toiling 24/7 for months if not years on end to make their business a success. Some people think that’s how it has to be. Well, certainly for a time, while you’re figuring things out, you’ll have to dig deep to find your groove. However, there is no reason for you to have to run your business this way for the long term! I know from my earlier days when I started NuKitchen, an online gourmet food retailer, I was exactly this ‘horror’ story - working nonstop for a couple of years - risking my health, my relationship, my sanity, etc.
Now, I was working super hard and all of my time was accounted for but I was NOT working smartly. I think many early stage entrepreneurs and business owners get caught up in their own stuff and create a micro-managed culture where they’re working nonstop too. After all, who can sell as well as you? Who can write that memo as expediently as you can? It will take less time if you do it yourself…. And so on and so on. Get out of your own way and start working on your business and not in your business.
There are three great reads that I recommend to help you get out of your own way so that you can grow your business and put hours back into your day.
The first is Michael Gerber’s E-Myth. This popular bestseller provides a great primer for figuring out how to get out from under the weeds and start working on your business… he cites some very compelling examples of business owners who are “overworked, overstaffed and eventually broke.” Sounds likes you? Then it probably is.
Next is Tim Ferris’ 4 Hour Work Week. While I think it’s very difficult to actually get to a 4 hour work week- and I’m not sure that Tim actually does from sources I’ve spoken with, there are lots of nuggets of wisdom, in particular the sections about time management techniques to make you more productive, like only checking email twice a day, outsourcing administrative tasks, or becoming an ‘expert’ in your field.
Finally, there is Scott Fritz’s 40 Hour Work Year. I’ve met Scott and I really like Scott’s philosophy. In this practical read, he gives you a roadmap for setting up your business so that you ultimately only have to devote about 40 hours a year to managing it. It may be a stretch but it’s chock full of action items for you to implement in your business immediately. His philosophy has certainly worked for him, Scott has successfully done this in his multi-million dollar business that he founded.
Are you ready to work less, be more productive and earn more money? Happy reading!