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I've heard that organization is the key to success, so I'm starting today with a new approach to that understanding. Will things get better? I honestly don't know, but they definitely couldn't get any worse...right?
So, what am I wanting to accomplish from this? To have a pretty calendar in my email? To have bragging rights about how "organized" I am? As I work to organized my life a bit better, I sit in front of news headlines that read of nothing short of chaos. There's fear and concern throughout every city in the US, right now, due to the Coronavirus pandemic; and I'm sure it's very similar around the world. What will organizing daily tasks and projects do to help with all of this? Well, my primary hope is that this will provide a strong habit of changing behavior...that it will not so much "force" me to change my approach to my life, but instead provide me with the knowledge that (with a bit of focused energy) I do, in fact, have the time to do the things I want while accomplishing the goals I've set for myself.
If I had to write a list of 10 line items that I look to achieve through being better orgnized, they would focus on the following growth:
- Personal - Spiritual
- Professional - Mental
- Creative - Communal
- Educational - Environmental
- Interpersonal - Physiological
With these 10 areas in mind, below are ten points of interest (possibly more like objectives) I look to achieve through becoming better organized.
- I want to give myself the opportunity to focus on a happier, healthier "Me"
- Organizing my professional affairs will put myself, the team I'm on, and the company where I work in a better position of success
- Being better organized will also better direct my time so I am able to learn more creative skills that will support other aspects found in the these 10 items
- It's said that you never stop learning...I just want to make sure that's correct
- Chaos in being organized removes patience from personal interactions, and I want to be as patient and calm with others as I can be
- An organized life will objectively provide me with a peace of mind I'd otherwise not have
- Instead of focusing on what is on my to-do list, I want to be able to focus on the task at hand with a clear mind that is not being interrupted by things that shouldn't be given a ton of energy
- A lot of time is devoted to myself, and I want to be more active with my family, friends, coworkers, and community
- I mean, can't we all do with a little more focused attention dedicated to our environment in which we live
- As I grow older, I obviously move further away from my youth; and while my mind does well with growing and maturing, I think the "treat your body as a temple" approach will help me hold on to my youth for just a little while longer...and what's so bad about that?
Being organized goes beyond making things look pretty on a board or calendar. The ripple effects have the potential to stretch beyond ourselves; and during a time when our behavior has the strength to impact the masses, shouldn't we take this time to figure out how we can do that more positively than what we were doing prior to 2020?
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Strength in trying Times
It's been a little over one month since the world of small business came to a screeching halt; and while the COVID-19 situation is definitely more impacting than anything we've ever seen before, it's not the first time small business has gone through difficult times. We've seen the rise and fall of the stock market; we've gone through tragedies such as 9/11 and the Boston Marathon Bombing; and we are now experiencing a worldwide pandemic. What, then, can be done to maintain small business strength during these hard times?
Below is a list of 5 insights to staying the course and succeeding with strength during unexpected difficult times for your small business.
Things aren't always easy in the world of business, especially the world of small business. If you are able to implement the 5 insights when you encounter a difficult time, then you have set the base of your future success. Utilize your accessible resources, communicate regularly and effectively, and remember that it will be okay, no matter what.
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Empowering your Team
"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much." - Helen Keller
Team building has grown to be a very direct source of success over the past decade, or so. The focus of business leaders has been acquired by the understanding that without a strong team in place, the number of clients the company has becomes almost negligible. In fact, customers have taken a backseat to the roles employees have for a company. Does this mean that your customers are no longer important to you? Of course, not. Instead, this business approach indicates that you have learned the value of having a strong team that has been empowered by their leader.
When you think about the word empowerment, what comes to mind? Does this word indicate a sense of responsibility? Maybe empowerment represents a distinction between roles and positions within your business. No matter the definition given to the word, the result usually falls somewhere in the realm of providing employees with the ability to take initiative, while providing them with the opportunity to improve their service, productivity, and themselves.
When you provide your team with the ability to make their own decisions, you provide yourself with a time-management tool that is difficult to match. By encouraging your team to use the training they have received, and offering them with the opportunity to make their own decisions, you are providing them with the flexibility to implement their own ideas and creativity. In turn, the team members become more productive, while feeling as though they are part of the big picture. Through a combination of flexibility and direction, your team will see a level of growth and success they may have never experienced, which could directly impact the growth and development of your business.
The strength behind empowering your team is showing them that their decisions can be trusted, while stepping in when necessary. By supporting their ideas and decisions, you build their confidence, as well as their critical thinking and decision making skills. In the end, you will be able to more effectively define goals for your team, set workable parameters for your team, and develop skills within your team members that may have otherwise been overlooked.
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Patience Really is a Virtue
"Our patience will achieve more than our force." - Edmund Burke
We have all heard that patience is a virtue, but what does that mean when it comes to the world of small business ownership? Should we just sit back and wait for opportunities to come our way? What if we wait too long and miss the opportunities all together? This article will help to clear the air and provide you with an understanding of what being a patient business owner is really means. Read over the information carefully and understand that these details apply to us all on some level. If we take into consideration that we must be patient when operating our businesses we will become more successful than if we pursue each of our goals like a bull in a room full of crystals.
Over time human beings form habits that can have both positive and negative influence in our lives. While we logically understand this, we may find it difficult to replace the negative with the positive. So, what can we expect from a lack of patience in our daily routines and responsibilities? To begin, we fuel our desire to quit. Impatience is one of the driving forces that leads to frustration, stemming from delaying our fulfillment of immediate gratification. As this feeling builds, we lose interest in the things we are doing, and eventually stop pursuing the things that once motivated us to excel in life.
How, then, can we maintain our focus to become a successful business owner? This takes commitment to changing our habits. As business owners, we must focus our attention on the entire picture while devoting our time to multiple tasks at once. As we do this, it is very easy to fall into a pattern of frustration resulting in losing sight of our goals. The positive in this, however, is that it can be easily noticed with a little self-reflection, and altered by appreciating the milestones achieved as we continue toward our final goals.
By appreciating our smaller accomplishments as business owners, we begin to understand that every action we put into our businesses results in some level of progress. More importantly, these actions put us closer to achieving our goals. Most times, when striving to achieve our goals, we become so overly focused on what we have to do that we lose sight of what we are actually doing. One way to overcome this mindset of, "I have to do this, now", and the stress that comes with it, is to have a very clear understanding of what you want as an end result.
Starting from the end and working your way back helps to lay a firm path that connects you to your goals. You'll begin to understand what actions will need to take place in order for you to take the next step. Additionally, you may want to write down the ideas you have along the way. Doing this will help alleviate the stress associated with trying to remember all the details of your action plan. As with anything, trying the shoot from the hip method usually results in overlooking important details that influence the success of your plan. Instead, invest in an organization tool that bests suits you as an individual.
Organizing your plans and goals will help with practice of being patient while reducing the feeling of being overwhelmed by all the projects you have in place. Using online calendars, smartphone applications, or even a classic daily planner will ease the mind and organize the steps you must take toward your business goals. Be specific regarding your actions for the day, and focus only on the current day. Take time in the morning to refine your objectives, and provide yourself with padding on either side of your scheduled events. Additionally, only schedule a practical number of events throughout the day that you will actually be able to complete. Being overly ambitious about what you think you can achieve during the day can leave you feeling unfulfilled and focused on the items you didn't actually complete.
This leads directly into the approach of practicing patience as a business owner. Patience provides you with the ability to be consistent with what you are doing. Approaching your goals with the same level of effort and energy will keep you motivated and driven to accomplish your next set of goals, and will allow you to remain dedicated and focused on the task at hand. The process becomes full-circle in that being patient will result in lower levels of stress, higher levels of productivity, and a greater return in sales and customer satisfaction. By simply being more patient, your future can become much more successful.