Mine certainly has been a victim of this…my website, while effective from some standpoints, isn’t where I want it to be yet, and that’s partially because I’ve been busier working on things for my clients and not as much time on my own website.  Especially when a business is starting out and growing (or struggling to grow), entrepreneurs often find themselves using all their time working on things for their clients, and not working on things that matter for their own business.

Work ON your business, not just IN your business

This is a rather insidious thing to let happen – it’s not always obvious when you’re caught in that trap, until you suddenly realize, “wow, my website looks awful” or “no wonder I’m having trouble attracting new clients – I haven’t been focusing on bringing them in!”

Or any of a number of other problems.

The solution?  Spend a certain amount of time, at least every week, if not every day, working ON your business.

That’s BEFORE you do things for clients, check your email, go to yet another networking event, or spending time on Facebook… (unless, of course, Facebook truly is a valuable part of your marketing strategy)

So what kinds of things can you do to work ON your business?

Well, that varies from company to company, and each company is, to some extent, different.  But here are a few of the top things to focus on when working ON your business.

1) Marketing.

Marketing Strategy

Marketing, marketing, marketing.  I know, since I run a marketing company, that sounds biased, but it’s valuable advice.  Without marketing, in some shape, form, or fashion, sales trickle off and in some cases disappear entirely.    And a sad thing happens when sales don’t come through.  Nothing.  Nothing to grow the business, or even to keep it going.

2) Working on your business processes.

business processes

(Image courtesy of ctcorp.com)

This is invaluable.  The old expression “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” just doesn’t hold true for business.  If it ain’t perfect, it’s broke.  So spend a little time each week, or at least each month, working on some way to improve something in your business. Your profits will thank you for it.

Besides, working on processes is a primary factor in being able to eventually step away from your business, not just create a job for yourself.  After all, if you’re irreplaceable in your business, how will you ever be able to take an extended vacation, retire, sell the business, or even have the business survive an extended illness or accident?  If your goal is to eventually step away from the business, you NEED to create a business that can run without you.

3) Press


(Image courtesy of businessesgrow.com)

This should be a valuable part of your overall marketing strategy. I’ve had good success with it, and am continually looking for opportunities to provide value by sharing my expertise and experience.  Journalists are always looking for experts to quote in their stories, so it’s a win-win for everyone.  For an example of some of the results I’ve gotten for myself and W3 Group Marketing, check out our press page.

4) Strategy

(image courtesy of toprankblog.com)

Where do you see your business heading?  Strategy and tactics go hand in hand, and for successful businesses, the strategy is what drives the tactics and the day-to-day activities.  Actually, this should have been first if I’d ordered these by importance, but I chose to share this key point last so that it will hit home.   Take this conversation between Alice and the Cheshire Cat in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, for example:

Alice: Oh, no, no. I was just wondering if you could help me find my way.
Cheshire Cat: Well that depends on where you want to get to.
Alice: Oh, it really doesn’t matter, as long as…
Cheshire Cat: Then it really doesn’t matter which way you go.

(Quoted from IMDB at http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0043274/quotes)

Well if you don’t care where your business is going, you’re more likely to be one of those X% of businesses that fail within the first 5 years.  I say X%, because the stats vary so much – some sources said over 50%, some said as much as 95%, and everywhere in between.

But if you do care, you can benefit from investing some time working on your strategy.  And if you need help, invest in it.  Get a business coach, hire a company that does this, become part of a mastermind group, whatever it takes – do something.

So what do you do if you’re stuck on any of the above factors?  We at W3 Group can help you with any or all of the above.  Just enter your name and email address in the form at the upper right of this page, or if you need immediate help call 404-669-6682.  We’ll be glad to help you however we can.