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Uber-Successful Entreprenuers Secret :: Decoded

Do you ever scratch your head and wonder why running a business is so much harder for YOU than everybody else you might be watching? Come on you know you are watching! We all do, me included.

Well, you are in luck. Because today I decided to share with you a dirty little secret of really successful entrepreneurs. See, it looks easier for them because they’ve implemented this critical tactic. The beautiful thing about it is that you can, too. I’ll get to that part in a bit.

Anyhoo, what’s even better about this week’s article is that I’m going to go back to basics and show you in detail how you can quickly get started. And once you implement this tactic I guarantee it will drastically reduce the constant juggling you got going right now. It’s the remedy to that feeling that you are continually putting out fires instead of working on what you started your business in the first place for. You know that whole “Passion” thing that started you on this journey.

Imagine how much more you could get done during your work day. Imagine your income, untethered from restraints like the number of hours in the day that you can work. Imagine being able to impact more customers with your business and know-how.

Does this sound like pie in the sky? I assure you it is not!

Are you ready?

Do you want to know how you can be in control without doing it all?

Shhh… don’t tell anyone, this is between you & me.

The big secret is… *drum roll, please* Systems!

“What?,” you gasp.

“Yup,” I reply.

Were you expecting an earth-shattering revelation here? Some fancy, complicated, hard to grasp, rocket-sciencey formula with funky Greek letters and accompanying math anxiety maybe?

Nope.

When it comes right down to it, all you need is systems. That’s the secret to a well-run, profitable business without YOU working 24/7.

But Wait! I know what you’re saying to yourself right now.

You’re saying, “I’ve heard this one before. I’ve got a system of sorts.”

Okay, maybe you do have a few systems.

How good are they? Are you following them effectively? Can you take a vacation and leave your laptop & iPhone behind? Are you getting consistent results in your business? Is your VA delivering what you want?

If you have systems and you are not feeling overwhelmed, and burnt out despite the fact that you started your business out of a passion then you are one of the 1% and I salute you. Stop right here no need to keep reading.

For the rest of you, pay attention, we have some work to do.

Here is the thing, so many of you complain that you lack freedom and/or control of your empire and yet, you very quickly discount the value of systems.

Fact:

Numerous surveys have been done by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to find out what makes it so hard for businesses to reach their income goals. Here are some of the common themes that surfaced:

Many said they:

1. Got caught up in day-to-day activities

2. Ran their businesses by trial and error on an ad hoc basis

3. Did everything themselves (aka wearing all the hats)

4. Were prone to mega-multitasking

5. Were exhausted physically and monetarily

6. Lacked a real plan to bring their Big Vision to fruition – whether via marketing or knowing how to monetize clients to bring in a consistent cash flow.

7. Lacked focus on the “right activities,” the ones that will make them money

8. Had no plan to bring in the resources needed to handle growth

Sound a wee bit familiar?

If you look closely at this list, you will detect a common denominator among these business owners. They indicated they weren’t reaching their income goals, and their businesses seemed to lack an organized set of systems to keep the wolves at bay. They appeared to be working their fingers to the bones without any system to ensure that tasks got done and predictable income was generated. And worse yet, crucial information was solely in the business owner’s head – not committed to paper.

Here’s the good news: I’m going to show you right now the two things that you need to put in place to start creating systems that actually work. And you won’t need to pay for an expensive workshop + plane tickets to fly to some tourist trap.

And now a quick refresher on what “systems” are and how they help your business and personal life :

Systems, are simply taking all those little ways you have of doing business and transforming them into a series of documented, steps that can be done the same way, over and over no matter who is doing them. Think of the glorious power!

You see, to leverage your time to the max, you need to figure out how to run your business without everything depending on one person – namely YOU! If you don’t automate with machines, software or human assistants, you will never be able to fully relax and enjoy your friends, family and free me time as an entrepreneur. And you can forget about reaching that next level of self-made business owner warm fuzziness.

There are two things you need to do before you start creating systems and documenting:

First, you need to identify what are the main processes that make your business chug along. Typical main processes are your sales, marketing, customer service, hiring, training etc…

Second, identify the main steps necessary to make sure these processes are completed exactly how you want them. Don’t go crazy here, just jot down at a high level the basic steps of what you do or how the task is (or should be) completed. We are going for simplicity here, so include whatever you feel is important for you and your team to understand and get what needs to be done.

Third, now that you have documented the way you do business, voila those are your systems. Now all you need to do is package these documents and save them for later reference, preferably in a binder or in area where your VA has access to. You can get as creative as you like give it a name, make your binder pretty whatever you like. The point is to have a place where you document your way of doing business.

That’s it. Simple, eh?

Also, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel you can adapt this method to create a system for ANY aspect of your business operations.

Don’t have time to start documenting your business operations. No problem.

Then start by creating operational systems that will drive the fastest value in your business right now. They are like low-hanging fruits on a tree. Pick them first. They are the “money-generating” activities. Don’t leave perfectly good fruit on the trees to rot. Don’t continue leaving money on the table by not systemtizing your empire

For example, every business owner experiences potential clients who balk at buying. Recognize this fact and design a solid method for overcoming sales objections and the loss of sales. Though you might think your service is the greatest, there is always someone that drags his feet. “Sheesh, I don’t know. I’m not so sure, I don’t have money/time…”

You should be prepared to counter this hesitation. That would qualify as a “system” under your sales process – a procedure to maximize leads and hopefully close a deal. If you know what the typical reasons are for a sale’s balk, have the information ready to counter possible misconceptions or offer an additional bit of value to the deal on the line – say a free workshop or some such thing.

Or, you could set up a system to track projects – when they are started, how they are doing currently, and when they are scheduled for completion. Information is power, saving you money, time and headaches.

There you have it, the secret of uber-successful entrepreneurs decoded! This is the secret sauce for transforming your empire into a well-run profitable empire.

So, now that you know the secret, which area of your business can you systemitize today?   Where are you going to stop leaving money on the table?

Remember, darling, all you have to do is think about one area of your empire, identify the main steps necessary to make sure this process is completed successfully and document the hell of it,  so it produces a reliable result, everytime, without fail. Got it?

Now, go forth and start documenting!

If you liked this article please like it + share it. :-)

18 Comments

  1. Such a great reminder about the importance of systems! I learned a lot many years ago from the E-Myth books, but I find that I need to be reminded frequently to not let my systems stagnate. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. Now this is the second time in a couple of hours that the word empire comes up! A couple of hours ago in a conversation on my business and now here again! Coincidence? Think not 😉 Love your reminder to build systems to free time for doing your value work. Also love how you remind us to come/be prepared and learn from the times we’re not.

  3. …Do you ever scratch your head and wonder why running a business is so much harder for YOU than everybody else you might be watching? — Why yes, yes I do. 🙂

    So so so good. I am a HUGE fan of systems and you’ve reminded me I need to get more in place for my business so I can better leverage myself and grow-bigger!

    How much time would you recommend one spend on documenting the core processes? I could see myself spending a couple of hours on documenting some basics…. posting blog entries, set up email distro, schedule tweets, etc.

    Hmmmm my wheels are turning… What else can I get help with? 🙂

  4. I have heard this before and the creative side of me says “bleh”. I know this is something that should be in place, but getting the motivation to do it is difficult. I saw a presentation by Michael Gerber about a year ago and was inspired. The E-myth is amazing. I recently heard him again on WISH and was re-inspired. I have plans in place now to start putting my business systems on paper. I want to have time freedom and unless I take this step it will never happen. 😉

  5. So… usually I’d hear the word “systems” and feel my eyes start to glaze over and crickets chirping in my head.

    But- your first paragraph is pretty compelling and awfully resonant. So I’m going to take a look at these steps and start identifying what exactly these things are, that work for me but have be reinvent time and time again. Thank you!

  6. Haha! Yvette! you and I need to tangooo! My boyfriend would be laughing out loud and saying… see! just what I have been telling you. Methinks the key here is what you have done in this post… to break out exactly what you mean by that word. Its tricky in the early part of the business to see the repetitive activities, or to imagine another doing them. Everything feels like it has to be nurtured like a newborn babe before given over to another caretaker. I am just now experiencing the activities that exhaust me… and that are keeping me from the core of my work, namely, working and teaching others. Everything else could be shifted to another… or yes, to a SYSTEM. I am JUST beginning to understand this. I know it has to do with my rightbrain way of being. And… I want those systems working for ME and that glorious genius I want unleashed. Thank you for you help with this!

  7. Now I’m excited to figure out what aspects of my business are ready for systems! Thanks!

  8. Thank you so much for reminding me about systems. I’ve been trying to get better about reducing my multitasking, but I still have a long way to go. It looks like it’s time to start taking systems seriously!

  9. Ahhh…my lovely left-brained comrade! It is usually so hard for people to believe that there is more freedom + more results in having systems than in not having them. One of my favorite thoughts is that you can’t be CREATIVE when you are stuck REACTIVE (even though they have the same letters!). Systems are the best way to move out of reactive…hands down!

    Jennifer Peek
    Find Your New Groove
    Left-Brained Strategy for Right-Brained Businesses

  10. As someone who helps technically IMPLEMENT those systems, I can tell you that it is not always as easy as it looks to think those things through! Sometimes you never know where you need a system- lots of business owners plug along, manually keeping their email contact list or even worse, approving spam comment by comment without realizing there’s a better way! Great article.

  11. I love systems! I love planning, organization, and knowing that things are going to get done properly and well because you’ve worked out a system. But Jessica is right – it is often a lot harder than it looks to implement the systems. And even when you do, they’ll change as technology changes!

    Great post, Yvette! I loved how you kept me hanging through several paragraphs before I found out the big secret.

    • Thanks Felicity! You are right implementing systems can be challenging as well as keeping up with technology changes. But at the same time is the lesser of two evils and its the only way to build really efficient and profitable businesses without losing our sanity…LOL

  12. My eyes glaze over too but I know that’s something that needs attending to! Thanks for the kick I needed!

    • You’re welcome Cindy! Remember start small.

  13. Perfect timing on this post! I was doing something in my business earlier today, and the thought popped into my head–that although the process wasn’t difficult, it was quite frankly boring to me!

    So I decided to make a system for it right then and there. The system is now designed and soon to be implemented.

    I love taking a headache task and turning it into a system!

    • Bravo Blaze!

  14. I need to start small, but I like the example you gave. It makes it seem less daunting. Thanks!

  15. I LOVE this reminder so much. Part of my sabbatical is about refreshing my systems so I can reflect on what works and what hasn’t worked…and I love the chance to re-start with your ideas when I return!

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