What Two Questions Should You Be Asking About Your Business?

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As a business coach, I talk to a lot of business owners. Every small business owner asks questions like:

– How can my business make more money?

– How can my business increase sales?

– How can my business improve cash flow?

These are good questions.

To really make progress with your business, though, you need to go deeper. You need to ask questions that get right at the roots of your business problems.

You need to ask these two questions:

– What things am I doing that I should not be doing?

– What things am I not doing that I should be doing?

These two simple questions lead to profound results.

— What Things Are You Doing That You Should Not Be Doing?

For most small businesses, paperwork chaos and bookkeeping hassles waste huge chunks of time.

Jay Abraham, a renowned marketing expert, would call this a violation of the highest and best use concept. The concept of highest and best use is easy to understand – you need to use your time and talents to their maximum potential.

To judge whether doing a task fits the highest and best use concept, ask three simple questions.

Can someone else in your business or outside your business do a task better than you can? If yes, delegate that task.

Are you passionate about the task? If no, delegate it.

Is the task is strategically relevant to your business? If no, delegate it.

Remember — paperwork, bookkeeping, and accounting are tasks that have to be done. But they do not have to be done by the business owner.

With recent advances in technology, you can inexpensively go paperless in your office in 24 hours. And you can completely outsource your bookkeeping and accounting!

So – you should not be wasting time fighting paperwork chaos and in-house bookkeeping nightmares.

By getting rid of these processes, you free up huge chunks of time to work on your business.

— What Things Are You Not Doing That You Should Be Doing?

To answer this question, look at the example of the top earning small businesses, the ones that consistently net $365,000 a year or more. These top earning small businesses do three things that typical small businesses do not.

First, the top earners apply the model described in the E-myth series of books. The owner works on his business, not in his business.

Second, the top earning owner applies the 80-20 rule. 80% of profits come from only 20% of customers. The owner focuses on this profitable 20%.

Third, the top earning owner makes sure he has access every day to accurate financial numbers. This owner knows that what you measure, you can manage, what you manage you can improve.

Doing these three things will take your business to a whole new level.

— Bottom Line

You’ve probably seen the UPS commercials about logistics.

UPS argues that small and mid-sized businesses don’t need a large warehouse, distribution center, or global network to access the new logistics. They just need UPS. UPS has already built the systems.

By tapping into those systems, you can operate your business with the heft of a big guy, no matter how big you actually are.

UPS is right!

Exactly the same logic applies to paperless office systems and to outsourced bookkeeping and accounting. The systems exist. And they are easily and inexpensively available to small and mid-sized businesses.

By outsourcing your bookkeeping and accounting, you get the accurate numbers you need to manage your business.

By going paperless and outsourcing your bookkeeping, you free up huge chunks of time.

You can spend that time growing your business!

You can start working on your business, not in your business.

You can analyze your business so you know, for example, which 20% of your customers are generating 80% of your profits. Then focus your efforts where they produce the greatest results.

Your small business achieves big leverage.

And you’ll have the accurate financial numbers you need to decide what’s working and what’s not.


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