Hey, guys, Brian Hilliard here, author of the bestselling book, Networking Like a Pro and How to Overachieve Without Over-Committing and I am super fired up because this is my first written article in awhile!
People have been telling me for awhile now that I needed to start “getting the word out” and physically writing more, but with all of my speaking, podcasting, coaching and travel, it was tough finding the time.
But I’ve hired a new assistant, got my travel schedule under control, and here we are!
So, here’s the deal. Over the days and weeks ahead…
I’m going to talk about different ways Coaches, Consultants & Service Professionals can get more business…without killing themselves in the process!
Meaning, my blogs will be about Marketing, Mindset & Personal Achievement.
The short version is I’m a Coach and author of the Best-Selling Book Networking Like a Pro and I’m all about showing Busy Entrepreneurs how to get more business…without killing themselves in the process.
I’ve been doing this since 2001 and during that time I’ve written 5 books, manage 4 blogs, published over 200+ videos/podcasts and have a dog named Barley. (He’s a 55 pound Sheba Enu and he’s very smart. We’ll talk more about Barley later.)
So today we’re going to talk about Top 3 Ways Busy Entrepreneurs Can Overachieve w/o Over Committing, because let’s face it: For most entrepreneurs you’re the Chief Cook and Head Bottle Washer all rolled into one, and a lot of times it can feel like there simply isn’t enough time to get stuff done.
So the good news is we’re going to get that ball rolling right here, right now…today!
This comes as a little bit of a shock to some people because they think, “But Brian, my job is hard! What are you talking about, make things easier?”
Actually, it’s a lot easier than you think.
Now it’s important to know that, when I first got started, I equated work with a good day at the gym. Work was supposed to be “hard”. It entailed long hours, and if it didn’t hurt a little bit, then you weren’t really working. “No pain, no gain” was my motto at the office.
In other words, I recognized that I can set up a few systems and processes that made my job a WHOLE lot easier, and still get the intended results.
First off, I cleaned up my laptop.
I had files all over the place and it was taking me, on average, 5 to 10 minutes to find stuff. (And 15 minutes if I was in a hurry and really needed it.)
Second, I created folders and grouped all of the main files I used into them. So I immediately set up a Marketing folder, a Financials folder, a Proposals folder and a Presentations folder since at the time, that’s where I spent 80% of my time on the computer. (I had other folders for the other stuff, but that was a start.)
Third, I started making templates of the files I used the most. For example, I would send out a lot of proposals, so I made a template of my basic proposal, highlighted the areas that I would need to change on a client by client basis, and literally plugged in the different points I needed to make depending on the situation.
So instead of hunting and pecking for information every time I needed to send out a client proposal, I had everything in one spot. (And for the stuff I did need to look for, I could easily find it in my newly created Proposals folder.)
That alone saved me 50 to 60 minutes a week.
Fourth, I put together some scripts or talking points for when I would make phone calls to perspective speaking clients.
In the past, I would recreate the wheel every time I got on the phone with a perspective client. Or worse yet, just “wing it” and hope for the best.
Now I made things easier on myself by creating a list of questions I wanted to ask all perspective speaking clients, and simply “save as” a new document for each new prospect. I also put all of those into one folder.
So when it was time to make calls, I simply went to the proper folder, pulled up the template, and started making phone calls. What took me 20 minutes of “ramp up” time in the past, now was down to 20 seconds (the amount of time it took for me to sit down, click on the folder and have the file pop up).
You’re heart rate, blood pressure and income statement will thank me for it later!
#2 Way to Overachieve w/o Over Committing: Schedule a Meeting Free Day.
One of the best parts about being an Entrepreneur is that we can do what we like, when we’d like, with whomever we’d like.
One of the worst parts of being an entrepreneur…see above.
Do yourself a solid and schedule a meeting-free day (or afternoon) at least once a week.
Because as overachievers we have a tendency to sign up to do a lot of things…only problem is we don’t give ourselves enough time to do them!
Which has us staying up late, getting up earlier and feeling super overwhelmed with our day. (Sound familiar?)
So what I recommend is scheduling some time during the week where you can get stuff done.
For me personally, I like to do my coaching on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with Mondays and Wednesdays as my “in office” days, and I split the difference on Fridays.
Two things have happened with this and both of them are good.
I get stuff done on a more consistent basis.
I don’t over commit myself as much as I used to.
The first result is obvious because I’m focusing my efforts on my “in office” days to getting stuff done, and guess what? Got stuff done!
So that made sense.
But I have to tell you, the second was a little surprising. Call it an unintended benefit, but because I know that I have time to work on things, and I have feel for how much stuff I actually need to work on during that time, I actually find myself not signing up for as much stuff as I used to.
I call it, “Saying yes to less.”
And not because I don’t want to help or don’t want to contribute, but because I have a better feel of my time and what I can realistically do, I don’t over commit as much as I used to. (I do every now and again, but when it happens I tell myself it’s a much more “controlled” over committing, if that makes sense. J)
Regardless, I don’t find myself swamped with nearly as much to do as I used to, which in my mind is a good start.
And speaking of good start, I think this first blog turned out rather well if I do say so myself. 🙂
It went a little longer than I anticipated, so I apologize for that. And as a result we’ll have to wait until next time for my #1 Way to Overachieve w/o Over Committing, otherwise this thing could turn into a book!
I know, I know.
But no worries. I’ll be back next time with some more good stuff. Thanks for reading and I’ll see you on the other side.