Starting and growing a business is no easy task, so let me start by saying congratulations! You’ve accomplished something that many people never even ATTEMPT to do!
Being an entrepreneur is rewarding, but it’s also challenging as heck, so kudos for sticking it out.
And even more kudos for wanting to grow and scale the business you’ve already built.
If you’ve reached the point where you feel ready to expand your reach but aren’t sure how that’s still a sign of outstanding accomplishment.
Most businesses struggle to stay afloat, so if you’re positioned to take on more clients and tackle bigger projects, you’re way ahead of the curve. You superstar, you.
OK, enough with the love-fest. You want actionable advice on how to kickstart that growth and scaling cycle, right? Well, the key is identifying your TOP business priorities!
How to set smart business priorities
The best way to go about determining your absolute top priorities is to go back to the heart of your business.
What matters most to you about your goals, clients, and business model?
Are you clear on exactly what your company’s mission and vision are? How about your core values? These all change over time so don’t just assume they’ve stayed the same as you (and the business you’ve created) have evolved.
Review them, and make sure they’re aligned with your business as it is today, and how you want to grow it.
Once you’ve got that “true north” in view, take a look at your earnings and accomplishments from last year and see if you met your goals.
If you did, celebrate! Then determine which actions, choices, and strategies helped you get there.
How many of those are aligned with your freshly revisited mission and vision? How many can you replicate now, and how many need to be adjusted to complement your current understanding of your business?
If you didn’t meet your goals last year, determine what held you back or tripped you up.
How can you avoid making those same mistakes again? How can you move the needle forward this year?
Consider money and motivation
Next, determine where your money came from.
You probably know your biggest revenue generator off the top of your head, but you might be surprised by the ones that brought in a slow but steady trickle of money!
Do a breakdown to see which services and offerings were most profitable, then look at your accounting records to see where you might be hemorrhaging money.
What corrective action is needed? Which successful endeavors can be tweaked or replicated now? Then review what continues to motivate you daily.
Which types of work, types of clients, and types of interactions rev you up?
When you look at your calendar each week, which events do you look forward to most? This can change fairly often, so take some time to really sit and think.
Your top 3 motivators from last quarter might not be the same as your top 3 this quarter!
Finally, look for overlap: which of these tasks both generates revenue AND aligns with your mission/vision? If any of them do both, they’re the ones that should rise to the top of your priority list.
Put your plan into ACTION!
Once you’ve walked through these steps, you’re ready to choose and codify your top priorities.
You want to pick items that will actually move your business forward (revamp and sell last year’s top-selling webinar) as opposed to just being exciting (rebranding your business and website).
Once you’ve got 3 to 5 priorities sketched out, get brutally honest. Are they realistic? Can you develop concrete, measurable goals based on them?
Then consider what you need to do to ensure these priorities rise to the top. Will you need help managing other work? Can some of that other work be outsourced?
Does your current schedule need to be reorganized to keep these projects or goals front-and-center? What needs to be jettisoned to make more room for these priorities?
Once you’ve got that figured out, you can use your new priorities as your guiding light! They’re aligned with your mission and vision, they generate revenue, and they energize you as an entrepreneur.
As you work to grow and scale your business, let these priorities be your focus and they will lead you toward increased profit, impact, and happiness.
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