I never find time to do strategic work. It seems Iím always busy doing the necessary things that need to get done in my business. Every time I turn around thereís more work to be done. How do I get out of this never ending, spiral of things to do?
This is a catch 22. You have too much to do, too many jobs and activities that are absolutely necessary to run the business, and yet that means you don’t have time to work strategically ON the business. There doesn’t seem to be any solution, and there isn’t unless and until you change your thinking.
First you must realize that you are not the business. If you continue to think that you are and that you must do this work, and that no one else can do it better or as well as you do than you are fighting a losing battle. Of course you’re not the only one that can do this work, and if this statement isn’t true than you are in a business without competition and thus you should charge exactly what you wish for your production. At least if you are stuck doing the work you can get immensely rich doing it. But of course no one is in that position. Even if you are a doctor or dentist there are countless other doctors and dentist graduating each year with an equivalent amount of skill that you have.
So if you continue as you are what will you continue to get? Right, what you’ve always gotten in the past. You are I’m sure aware of the definition of insanity, expecting to get a different result by doing the same thing over and over?
First you must think differently about your business. If you’ve prepared a vision of what you want this business to look like when it’s finally done, if you’ve determined even before that what Your Primary Aim or mission is in life, that is what you are truly passionate about, then the next step is to build your "Freedom map."
"Isn’t that my vision and primary aim" you ask? Your vision and primary aim is the Freedom chest. In order to reach this we must build a Freedom map, and that involves creating your organizational strategy.
Over the past several weeks I’ve had the honor of working with a very successful charter school in the southwest. She’s feels overwhelmed quite frequently and one of the realizations she came to recently is that her temperament and her best skills are not in teaching or managing others. She is a terrific leader, motivational and inspiring, but the mundane tasks to her of teaching and managing others lose her interest quickly. We’ve begun the work on her organizational strategy and the first thing that struck us both is the number of positions her name is in when we built their organizational chart. Fifteen to be exact. I’ll grant you not all 15 are full time positions currently, but just trying to keep track of 15 positions could be a full time job.
I asked her if she ever felt as if she was at the bottom of a pool of water being held down by 15 buckets of cement. If that’s where you were, what would you do to get to the surface? That’s right, let them go. Or at least let those go that would allow you to have the ballast to rise. Many of us are holding on to buckets of cement like this in our current business. Only we act like the buckets are full of gold not cement. In reality all we need to do to is find someone to replace us so we can let go. In order to do this, first we should define the positions, and document the systems so someone else can fill it like we would. Can’t be done? How have others accomplished it? Do they simply have more courage then you do?
What do you enjoy doing? Is it something in the business? Is it something around the business, or does it have nothing to do with business at all? If you’re the big idea person, let others do the work. What you are best at will invariably reward you more than struggling to do work that is neither fulfilling nor one of your strengths. Bill Gates doesn’t make software anymore, and Ray Kroc didn’t flip burgers. Walt Disney didn’t clean the parks, he was the great innovator and creative person that made Disney the visionary business it is today. Your greatest strengths will never provide you with the degree of achievement and accomplishment you deserve unless you unleash them to prosper in an environment where they can be unencumbered by your surroundings.
Your Freedom map to personal and financial freedom is your organizational strategy. It provides you with the step by step moves you need to free yourself from the burden of working IN your business. If you need help constructing this, contact us. But don’t allow the potential you have to create and realize your wildest dreams to die simply because you didn’t recognize that you have the ability to draw your own Freedom map and live the life you imagined!