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How To Work On What Matters Most

Entrepreneurship, Strategy

Do you always feel like you’re trying to keep up?  Every business owner goes through a phase of just trying to keep the day to day on track.  Whether that’s working with clients, or business development. 

It’s easy to get stuck with always “just trying to keep up”.  You keep going through the motions that have become your reality.  You might catch a bit of time here and there to break the cycle, but it’s never quite enough to escape what has now become a daily grind. 

So how do you go from just trying to keep up to actually making progress that means something to you and will take you where you want to go in your business and life? 

In my experience it’s a mixture of re-evaluating what you’re actually working on and how you’re spending your time, and doing what matters most to you, and less of everything else. 

What is your most important work?

It’s the work you do that helps you create the impact you want in your business and life.  It’s the (harder) work that means you need to step up and lead your business vision. 

It’s the work that will take you from where you are, to where you want to be.

Creating The Balance

Doing your most important work won’t mean that you drop everything else.  You will still have clients to serve, a team to support and your usual business activities will continue.  It also doesn’t mean that you’re hustling so hard that you finally create the business and life you want, only to be burnt out and unable to reap the rewards. 

Your most important work may change over time as you move through the phases of your business. Sometimes that might mean documenting SOPs, onboarding new team members, developing a new service, or working on your marketing strategy.  Your most important work may be determined by what your business needs at that moment. 

It’s keeping on eye on the now, and one eye on the future.

So, how do you work out what matters?

This will depend on what impact you want to have, how you want to structure your business and what you want to ultimately achieve. 

You need a crystal clear vision of what you want.  And there comes the stumbling block!  Very few business owners I know have a clear vision for their business AND which is backed up with intentional steps to get to the end result. 

Once you have that clarity and you have spent time in the detail of what your vision means for you, then you’ll need to plan the steps to get there. 

These steps need to be strategic, and your action should be intentionally focussed on the strategic priorities of your vision.

Once you have your vision and priorities you can move on to make a plan. 

Plan Far Ahead (but not too far!)

I’m all for a 90 day sprint to move projects forward, but 90 days is also an easy amount of time to feel yourself getting sucked back into ‘just trying to keep up’ mode. 

If you can plan your high level plan for a year, and then break down the projects that fit into that over more achievable timescales you will supercharge your progress and productivity. 

Ryan Deiss and the Scalable Programme, talk about the 12Q – which is essentially a business plan for 3 years, broken down into 12 quarters (90 day sprints). That might feel like too much, but you might be surprised at how achievable thinking that far in advance is!  

Your projects should be aligned with the strategic priorities in your vision, and have clear and intentional actions, scope and results.  Map these projects around your operational and client business activities.  For example, you know you’re going to have your marketing, finance and admin tasks to do. 

Don’t overcommit.  Plan to do a little less than you think you will be able to do.  This will mean you will get it done, and you will keep your overwhelm at bay too! 

Take The Risk

Doing your most important work can feel risky.  It’s often the work that’s out of your comfort zone, the work that’s going to create change, and that can feel unfamiliar.  Especially if you are running a successful business already, and are wanting to develop further. 

Businesses don’t, and shouldn’t, stay still.  We should be looking to evolve as we get more confident, more knowledge and the ways we can make more impact becomes clearer.  

Ready To Do Your Most Important Work?

Take an hour of your week and get clear on your vision, strategic priorities and the action steps you need to take you there. 

Keep it simple, your vision doesn’t need to be complicated.  It needs to matter to you. 

Need help to find some headspace to get clarity on your vision?  I’d love to support you in working on what matters most.  

Ready to work on what matters most and say Hello Headspace? This is for you!

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I worked with Katie for years and I can honestly say my business would not be what it is today without her! She was instrumental in my business growth and smarter business processes. If you need someone to help you develop the business, be a support both practically and emotionally then Katie is your woman! I cannot thank her enough for the value she added to me and the business.

Teresa Heath-Wareing

Entrepreneur and Founder, Teresa Heath-Wareing