Last Update: June 6, 2015
As an entrepreneur, finding your focus can, at times, be easier said than done. As a start up business or growth company there are many new ideas, business challenges and opportunities to tackle. As we approach 2011, there is no time like the present to maximize your company’s potential and activate a winning game plan.
I recently shared a few of my favorite work smart tips with HerExchange.com. Here is a more in-depth look at 10 proven, attainable and actionable tips to get your mind and business in gear.
Actively seek a new strategic alliance.
The goal is to ask yourself, not what you can get but “How can my skill set, business acumen and current operations benefit another company?” Reach out to another entrepreneur, emerging brand or small to mid-sized company and offer to help them in some small or big way. It’s rare – I know, but moving out of your comfort zone and focusing on someone else’s business needs can pay dividends.
Stay in your lane, full throttle – German Autobahn style.
Focus your efforts on your core competencies and strengths. This is where you will be the most effective. Work smart in the right places – it’s the essence of Pareto’s 80/20 law. Focus eighty percent of your efforts in the productive twenty percent – the twenty percent is representative of where you excel personally and professionally.
Eliminate negative and accentuate the positive.
It may seem trite, but it definitely works. Don’t entertain negative speak in your personal airwaves. Start each day with optimistic input and speak positively about your expectations for the day.
Develop a reading plan.
Read one chapter per day, to increase your knowledge in a specific area – whether it is a self-improvement, business, health or a psychology book. Entrepreneurship is an inside job. Endeavor to be the best person you can be. No time to sit down with a good book? Download one audio book per month and listen while you are in the car or at the office.
Set actionable goals.
Create a daily top 5 to-do list – and complete it. You see, as an entrepreneur our to-do list can seem like an endless chasm; we are never really ‘done for the day.’ However, setting short-term goals (i.e., 1-day, 1-week, and 1-month) is an empowering success strategy. You will be amazed at what you can accomplish with clarity, focus and purpose.
Assess your supply chain.
Take a closer look at suppliers, vendors, subcontractors, and partners. Set-up a conference call with each of them to thank them for their partnership and share your goals for the year ahead. Convey to each partner their role and contribution to your success for the upcoming year.
Facilitate winning negotiations.
Partnership is vital, therefore assess your historical spend with partners in your supply chain and communicate your business outlook. For example, if spend is expected to be up by 10% or remain flat vs. year ago, suggest a rate lock for the current year. Propose annual contracts to lock-in the best rates possible. This not only helps you manage your bottom-line but will help your partners assess theirs.
Develop a basic outline of internal operations.
Seek ways to simplify processes. Chart out each operational task, the lead on each task and corresponding lead times. You may find that steps in your current business systems and processes are unnecessary or discover ways to consolidate tasks and work more efficiently, including delegation.
Commit to at least one local networking event.
It never hurts to build brand recognition within your community and meet like-minded individuals that share your same passion – entrepreneurship.
Audit yourself and your business – regularly.
Don’t be afraid to clearly define and address the pain points and challenges your company faces. Invite authentic discussion and team brainstorming to fuel creativity and cancel out organizational and/or personal weaknesses.
Do you have some winning tips that work well for your business? Share them in the comments section below.
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