As a business consultant, one of my biggest frustrations occurs when business owners don’t see the value in spending time working “on” their business instead of just working “in” the business.

I understand that as the owner of the business, you may feel that no one can do things like you would or that  it is cheaper to just do it yourself.  You may also feel that selling your product or doing that thing (cake baking, floral arrangements, etc) will make you money but if your business is not organized or if you don’t have efficient policies and procedures; you are stagnating your business growth.

Follow these tips to balance working “in” your business with working “on” your business:

  1. Schedule it. Make time each day or once a week to attend to your bookkeeping, inventory management and employee development.  Don’t just assume that these things will take care of themselves.  You also should not just do them whenever you “have a minute.”  In many instances, that moment doesn’t come or the workload becomes so overwhelming that you begin to dread the tasks.
  2. Automate it.  There are many computer programs that you can download/purchase to automate systems such as processing payroll or paying your bills.  Most banks offer online bill pay, even for businesses, which will ensure that you don’t incur any late payment charges or have to sit down, write checks, stamp them and then get to the mailbox.  Also, Intuit has a Payroll program that can be integrated with your QuickBooks that allows you to process direct deposits for your employees and to make sure that the employees are paid on a consistent basis whether you are manning the counter, at a business meeting or on vacation.
  3. Outsource it. If there are tasks that you know that you don’t enjoy (employee training seminars, writing an employee manual, etc) or will not be able to complete effectively (managing social networking, designing a website, etc) but don’t have the resources to hire an employee; consider outsourcing the project to an independent agency or consultant.  Although it may cost a little more than doing it in-house, it can save you time as well as provide you with a professional product.

What are some tips that you use to make working in your business easier?