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Articles > Positioning Systems Newsletter #43 3-26-05 “Bomb Shelter”

“I can’t find time to do strategic work. Everytime I turn around someone is interrupting me or there’s a thousand things for me to do that demand my attention. How do I make time for this strategic work ON my business?”

In the 50’s and 60’s the threat of nuclear holocaust was very real. At that time many Americans built bomb shelters for protection in the event such a threat would occur. If you’re old enough you may even remember practicing for nuclear bomb threats in addition to fire drills at school.

Why do I bring that up in a discussion of finding strategic time? Because in most cases the real problem here is our thinking. Doing strategic work is not just going to happen. Many clients and business owners feel that reading the book or starting the E-Myth program will eventually provide them with the magical miracle formula for transforming their business. The truth is that magical miracle formula is you. You are the person that needs to change, and having a “bomb sh, elter” mentality is what you need to get this work ON your business done.

This will not happen all by itself, it requires a discipline that recognizes that while the urgent demands are attention, the long term strategic work, is the only thing that will provide us with what we really want long term. Unfortunately strategic work ON the business always seems to be put off in most companies.

So the bomb shelter mentality says you need to build a wall around yourself, with thick inches of solid concrete or steel that prevents any interruptions or distractions. Your business development time must be guarded against any intrusion and it must be planned and followed religiously. Any distraction will allow you to flit away to something that is urgent, and the moment you do that you will never return. Indeed papers on your desk, notes, a computer screen, telephone, anything can possibly be a diversion from this most important of all work. Plan your work and work your plan has perhaps never been more appropriately stated for this all demanding and rewarding strategic work.

The problem with strategic work is that it takes time to see the results. The E-Myth Worldwide just published a report from our clients that revealed startling evidence of the value of working strategically on your business. Working strategically is like breaking any bad habit or starting any new one. The results don’t come instantaneously, and in a world where we are promised so much instant gratification we feel cheated when that doesn’t happen. Losing weight, eating and exercising right doesn’t come without some discipline and sacrifice, and the results are not seen immediately, but the long term results are especially rewarding.

Do you recognize the importance of long term strategic work for you and your business? How can you tell? By your actions. I have two clients, one who feels he needs to do the bookkeeping work and the monitoring and quantifying of his sales staff, and the other who just this past week recognized the value of delegating the monitoring of his cash flow, employee productivity and other key financial indicators to a new employee he just hired to replace his previous office manager. Which do you think is working ON his business, and will have more time to do so in the future? Is it a feeling of self-importance that makes us do things that make so little sense? The difficulty in coaching is that many times the client fails to see how what they are doing is counter productive to what they want. They are stuck in the technician mentality. It’s a feeling that I’ve got to be doing it or something in order to feel value.

In reality, some of our best work and time is spent looking out the window, simply thinking. New ideas usually don’t come at work, and I’d be surprised if many of you haven’t discovered your best ideas came on or during the end of a good week of vacation. All work and no play doesn’t just make a dull boy, it makes a worn out non strategic focused business owner whose business is dying because they never come in to sharpen their saw.

Our program provides wonderful tools to transform any business, but the greatest and most powerful transformation is dependent upon you. You need to make a commitment to set aside 5-8 hours a week to work on your business. Build a bomb shelter of time and place where you will not be interrupted or disturbed no matter the shelling that might go on outside. Remember, you da bomb? You are! You can blow this up or you can make it happen.

We have the tools, the ideas and methods to help you make that time most constructive and help you set that time aside, but ultimately the decision to transform your life and your business is yours. Your dedication and commitment to achieving what you really want depends upon how badly you really want it. Do you understand what you really want? Are you , willing to pay the price to achieve it?

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Positioning Systems helps business owners and entrepreneurs transform their business.  We provide the tools and coaching to help you take control of your business -- rather then having your business control you.