Why's it so hard to find time to work on your business?

  • Find time to work on the business
Neil Foley

It’s important to work on the business not just in it – but when?

In my experience ‘stuff’ tends to fill the time available. Brilliantly described in Northcote Parkinson’s book aptly named ‘Parkinson’s Law’ in the 1950’s! Not much has changed since then.

Therefore ‘stuff’ leaves precious little time for tackling important work on the business. Unless we’re careful, this never changes.


What fills your day

It’s important to look long and hard at what fills your day.  In corporate life, if in doubt…call a meeting!   A great way of looking busy and sharing the workload/blame, but of course achieves precious little.

I recall a meeting being called at a senior level, whose sole agenda item was to discuss the agenda for the next meeting. That was it! Bonkers and futile exercise. But everybody felt busy. 

In sales, if somebody states they had a good meeting, typically it means they didn’t sell anything. It can be an excuse.

Meetings on their own are never a good thing.  They waste precious time and resource.

However, a well-structured meeting to a clearly defined purpose is a different thing altogether!  We want as many of these as we can manage!  Come along to a Business Growth Club meeting where we always have a packed agenda.  One with the sole aim of helping us grow with business advice and business top tips. Meeting details are here BGC Events

How to find time

So how do you find time to dedicate to improving your business? The only way is to plan this time and put it in your diary.  Not this would be ‘nice’ to do if I finish my to-do list.  Nor only if I feel like it tomorrow. 

It’s a fact that what you do determines how you feel. Not the other way round. Work on your business and feel great. 

We must focus on improving business by attracting the right type of enquiries. Work on converting more of them to become paying customers at better prices and margins.  Look after your existing customers.

This doesn’t happen by accident. 

Surely this is important, vitally important stuff! 

Therefore it must be in the diary, at the top of your list. Block out the time.  Colour code it so nothing gets in the way. To be completed no matter what, at the expense of any non urgent or important meetings.

After all you can’t pass an exam without study time. We don’t launch a new product or learn something new without putting time aside. 

Why would it be any different when learning new skills to grow your business? 

That’s why we tackle effective time management very early on in the BGC modules BGC Home Page

What the Romans tell us

Not a Monty Python scene but in reality. The rather wonderful Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius was born in 216 AD. He wrote insightful musings throughout his adult life, to include this – ‘Concentrate every minute like a Roman. Doing what’s in front of you with precise and genuine seriousness. And on freeing yourself from all other distractions.’  If that was patently true then, imagine how much worse it is now!

It’s a human condition to put things off. To get distracted. To look and feel busy but not do the really important stuff.

The key question is if not now, when?  Wait another year and see what’s changed?  Wait for a new competitor to launch taking some of your valuable (but neglected) clients?  Wait until you notice your enquiries have dropped, or your closing ratio has fallen. Wait until famine suddenly looms again? 

Sounds like a definition of insanity…

If this rings a chord, we can help! Why not get in touch and let’s arrange a coffee, but it must be good coffee! Drop me a line


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