Business owners often feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of work they need to achieve within a week. However, there are certain things you can do to help manage your time and ensure you are focusing on the most critical projects.
I’m sure many of you have a daily checklist, but rather than simply listing all your tasks, put some structure and priority around these actions, which leads me to the first question.
It is essential to clarify what you need to achieve during the week based on your business goal. I typically like to operate in 90-day cycles, so the focus in any given week is a function of the 90-day target. Your business plan should always be in the back of your mind, so make sure your weekly actions align with those goals. The 90-day approach allows you to do this effectively.
Once you have weekly clarity, it’s easier to create a plan for the week and ensure that things get done. You’ll find you’re less likely to procrastinate because it will be easier to start when you have a clear plan.
There are two essential cash documents that you must have as a business owner. Depending on the size of your business, you either prepare yourself, or your team does it. Either way, you must know the information.
The first one is the daily cash position of the business. This document gives you a sense of what is happening in your business daily. I cannot tell you how many times looking at this document has allowed me to spot a significant or impending issue.
The second one is your cash flow forecast. I usually look at two weeks forecast. This document gives me a sense of the inflow and outflows over the period.
Some benefits include ensuring that your team is on top of accounts receivables, as an example. Another thing is that I have used it to manage outgoings effectively. For instance, if you see a mismatch, you can engage your lenders or suppliers in advance to push out payment dates rather than suddenly realizing you can’t pay when it is due.
So, create those two documents and use them to ensure you give the king its due respect.
Cash is King!
One final question to ask is, at the end of the week, how productive have you been?
It’s essential to look at two critical things at the end of each week; first, how did you do against what you planned to do? It simply measures the consistency of your execution. If you intended to make ten calls, how many happened? If it is 100% well done, though, I will suggest you can do more. Typically I would say shoot for 90% plus performance levels.
The second thing is to examine the effectiveness of your actions and by checking what type of results you are getting. Are you meeting your weekly goals?
At the end of your review, you should answer these three questions
what do we need to stop doing? What do we need to start doing? and what should we continue doing?
Overall, the approach allows you to build a continuously improving business that gets things done and hopefully doesn’t run out of cash.
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