Hire someone to do your bookkeeping

bookkeepingPreparing for my taxes this year – and discovered that my financial records file was corrupted (and so was the backup). So, all the 2015 records are being rebuilt.

Luckily, I have all the source documents! So, it’s not taking too long, but still… Never again!

Most of us are just not good at this level of detail, nor do we have the time or patience for all the data entry. You will save yourself hours of time and frustration (and probably a lot of money) by having someone else do your bookkeeping. You will save tons of time at tax time, because everything will already be together and sorted appropriately.

Unless, of course, you really love to spend weeks and weeks trying to reconstruct your year in expenses to get your taxes done, or you really love doing detailed financial work late at night, after you finish your job.

I would rather turn all those receipts over to someone else to enter, and spend my time either generating more business or playing harder.

 

Are you drowning in email?

I had the privilege of contributing some tips to a story by Brigid Schulte of the Washington Post. Check it out:

Escaping the tyranny of e-mail: Death by 23,768 digital cuts (The Washington Post Sunday, Aug 17 2014, PageG4)

Set up protocols. How you handle e-mail every day is as important as creating a good system, said Terry Monaghan, who runs Time Triage workshops.

“The most effective thing I ever did, and now teach my clients, is how to establish protocols for how often I check and how quickly I respond to e-mail,” she said.

Check out the rest of the article – there are some great tips there.

Schedule time to debrief

day plannerSchedule time to debrief

A client complained once that she was writing proposals at 10:30 at night, which violated her own rules for how she wanted to work.

I asked why she didn’t have time set aside to debrief (and maybe write proposals) after meetings with prospects.

It doesn’t have to be the very next block of time, immediately after the meeting – but it should be some time within the next few days, while all the information is still fresh.

And I recommend the same thing after attending conferences!

Give yourself scheduled time to put things into existence when you get back to your office.

This way that pile of contacts  you want to follow up with won’t get lost in the flood of new work.

 

© Terry Monaghan, 2013 ~ All Rights Reserved

Want to use this article in your ezine or website? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it:

Consultant, coach, speaker, trainer and entrepreneur, Terry Monaghan, publishes Now What, an ezine for entrepreneurs and professionals who want to double their productivity, improve their performance, and have a life! If you’re ready to jump start your performance and your results, then get your free tips now at www.TimeTriage.com.

The curse of “I know that”

Part of an ongoing program I am in is regularly scheduled, live Q&A calls. All the calls are already in my calendar. And, still, I receive reminder emails the day before the calls which confirm all the details.

So, there was a call scheduled for this Thursday (already in my calendar). And the reminder arrived via email on Wednesday. I glanced at the reminder to check if the phone number had changed. It hadn’t.

So, I dialed into the call at the scheduled time (which was already in my calendar), but there was no one there! I tried several times over a 20 minute period – I figured I must have mis-dialed, or there was a problem with the line.

Obviously it could not have been my error. I had the dates, times and phone numbers already in my calendar.

Then I looked at the reminder one more time. ARRGGGHH! The time had been changed this one time. I had completely missed that – never even saw it! I read it, but didn’t read it – if you know what I mean.

Because I already “knew” when the call was.

Now, I wonder what else am I missing because I already “know?”

After the flood

So, you have gone through the hard stage of getting things going (loads of action, very few results), and you moved into the flood stage of business (more and more and more results coming faster and faster). Last time we talked about managing the flood stage by both keeping the actions going in the background, and adding the appropriate management structures to maintain and stabilize the growth.

What’s next? Well, if you did a good job managing your growth, you could move into a very stable stage in your business. The flood stage isn’t stable – it a very dynamic. But if you can ride out the flood, you can move into a place of steady, predictable results.

Like the other stages the preceded this one, there are specific actions and behaviors that area essential here.

At this point, how to produce the result is very clear. Everything needed is present. The structure of the project’s fulfillment is fully understood, and when an expected result isn’t produced what’s been changed or overlooked is easily identified. The accountabilities are clear and the measures and statistics for the project are also clear.

The biggest pitfall to this stage is boredom. There is no drama, and for some, no excitement. Predictability can be boring when you are coming off the high of managing the flood of new business. If you don’t know that you must be responsible for the boredom, then you could easily find your results falling off or disappearing altogether.

The upside to having the results be so predictable, is if you want to increase your results, you know what actions to increase. There is no more mystery. At this stage – the outcome is more fully in your own hands than at any other stage.

Don’t let boredom rob you of your hard earned and well deserved success!

Because, really, without a life, what’s the point?

What are you going to do?

Seems like everywhere we look today, there is uncertainty. What is going to happen with the economy. How is this going to affect me? What will it do to my business? How are my clients coping?

It is a cliche that many business pull back in hard times – stop marketing (or cut back), become more cautious, cut expenses. Is this really the right course of action? Maybe. Maybe not. I think the answer depends more on whether the course of action is coming from a reaction or a response.

What is the difference?

A reaction is automatic, virtually stimulus/response. Rarely any thinking. While a response comes after considering the situation, weighing the options and determining the appropriate course of action. It takes courage to take a breath and pause to think sometimes. And it can be the difference between feeling overwhelmed and being in control.

What are you going to do?

Small, subtle changes

Why is it that people think they have to change everything when they discover something isn’t working? I run into this all the time. I can’t get a new system implemented because it will mean changing everything! Really? It will take too much time for everyone to learn a new process. Why do you think that?

I think when people notice that something isn’t working, they think they have to start all over. But I have found that most of the time all that is required is one small, subtle change to the process to get it back on track. And once that small, subtle change has been made – everything else falls into place.

The trick is knowing what needs to be changed…