Taking the time to look at your business from a distance – to take a helicopter ride – can help you ensure your time is well spent rather than just spent.
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It made me think about the advantage of being able to take some time to look at your business from above. I recently had the privilege of working with a group of CEOs all of whom took some time to take their own helicopter ride over their businesses.
Last week I wrote about not confusing activity with productivity, and last weekend I facilitated a strategic planning retreat at the charming and calming Peppers Springs Retreat & Spa at Hepburn Springs, which proved to be a great way for all participants – with the assistance of fellow CEOs – to have a look at the big picture of their businesses and re-assess their activities.
Of course this meant that they had to give up two days of their time – and we all realise what this means – giving up family time or leisure time. But on the other hand taking a couple of days out a year to re-assess the value of business activity and the activities you undertake as a CEO really should enable you to have more time in the long run for family, friends and leisure – and of course, a whole lot less stress.
Regarding activity and productivity, a helicopter-look at many businesses and the role of their chief executive shows there are many areas that a CEO can look at to ensure that time is well spent rather than just spent!
Here are a few thoughts:
- Only do the tasks that “only you” can do – leave the rest to the team.
- Train others to do what you think that only you can do.
- Work on the worthwhile parts of the business – generally those associated with the bottomline. This means you need to know the margins and returns on all parts of the business – the more you know about the figur es in your business, the more focused you can be.
- Make sure your business systems are the most efficient they can be.
- Equally ensure that your own personal work systems are efficient. Handle papers once, deal with problems upfront – don’t procrastinate, complete tasks. Don’t come back to them as it takes time to pick up from where you left off.
- Ask for assistance from experts – you may have to pay, but it will probably save you lots of time and money in the long run.
- Take time out to think about where you want your business to go and how you want to exit – even if the exit is many years out.
- Define your economic driver so that you and your business are on a synergistic track. Like a racing driver you can then cut corners according to want you want to achieve rather than being a slave to something you are not really excited about.
- Make sure you enjoy what you do – most of the time – as this means you will get far more joy out of each day. But remember whatever you do, you won’t love every day.
To read more Marcia Griffin blogs, click here.