This is part two of how to stay focussed in your business. In part one I covered 5 tactics that can support your day to day focus in getting done what’s straight in front of you. Tasks for your clients, business operations and team.
In this post, I’m going to cover how to stay focussed on your bigger vision, your longer term goals and your strategy so your business continues to move forward each day.
One of the areas I support clients with is building, and maintaining, momentum on the big vision for the business. That overarching strategy that keeps the business evolving. This is a critical area and therefore is often a trap for overwhelm, indecision and over-complication.
As the business owner, it is also the area that can be emotionally charged. This is your brand, your expertise, you want to make an impact and you want to find your place, do your best and keep moving forward while continuing a first class service for your existing clients. There is so much to unpick here, but I think that’s for another post!
Prioritising deep work for your vision and strategy can be conflicted with the necessities of the day to day. But it is so important to find a balance to work on both.
Here are five tried and tested methods to keep focus on your big vision.
Know your why behind your goals
This one sounds obvious I know, but why are you working towards this goal? What will it bring to your business, to your lifestyle, to you personally? How will it grow your business and your audience? What motivated you to set this goal in the first place?
All these are such important questions. If you can’t answer any of these in detail, then perhaps the goals you have set (and perhaps progress is slower than you would like) aren’t rooted in the true values and motivation for your business.
Make sure your goal is achievable and clearly defined
When I talk about this topic with my clients, I am the (sometimes super annoying!) voice in the background that asks “why?”, “How?” and “What does that look like?”. I ask those questions because it is so important to know exactly what you’re working towards and whether you can realistically achieve that in the timescale.
For example, if your goal is to diversify income streams in 2022, how will you do that? What income streams are you considering and why? How will you make that happen? What resources do you need? What will your business look like when you have achieved it and how will this enhance what you do?
I could go on!
You need to keep the reality in sight and work on it with detail. Keeping detail around your goal will help you break down what you need to do to achieve it.
Prioritise your next step
Managing the priorities of your goal is one of the most common challenges for business owners. Defining an order to get things done so the work flows to the end result, and you’re not backtracking and realising you have missed a step further back which means it’s stalled progress moving forward, can be a juggling act.
A key factor in prioritising is knowing the time frame you have set to achieve your goal. I suggest only pursuing one or two goals for each time period (in my world this is usually a 90 day timeframe). This means it will be easier to focus on your tasks. When you’re setting your priorities, ask yourself “What are the most important, valuable tasks I need to achieve this quarter/month/week/day?”. Then set your tasks up and do that.
Break down your tasks into the smallest achievable actions. Often goals are big and can easily lead to overwhelm before even starting. Get into the habit of really getting down to the detail – even if it seems too small to even be a task, it’s not, write it down.
Find your best environment
Working on your business goals and strategy may require a different kind of energy and creativity than working on your client work and operations. If you struggle to transition from working on the day to day to working on your big vision, try switching up your environment and find a place away from your daily work environment to do this focused work.
Perhaps this is booking a regular slot at a local co-working space, or just at your favourite coffee shop for an hour. Perhaps you’ll go all in and book yourself into a hotel with meeting room for a day and overnight stay once a month too.
If you have been struggling with getting the right energy for your strategy work, this could be why.
Schedule a weekly review
Tracking your results as you progress can be one of the most important aspects of achieving your goal and keeping focus. If you aren’t tracking this, you won’t get a sense of how you’re doing against your milestones and timeframe.
You might be ticking off your actions, but are you moving forward, or are your actions getting done, but then the next steps aren’t being scheduled in?
Have a weekly review of your strategy and goals to make sure you are on track. This doesn’t need to be complicated, a simple “where am I and what’s coming up’ is enough to make sure you’re still ovn the right track. This review will also give you the opportunity to make any changes to timescale and projects too so you’re also working on the right thing at the right time.