Stay focused: work on the business, not in it

This week just flew by and it felt like an endless series of emails, meetings, calls and travel without me having spent a minute working on some of the larger and more strategic topics that I have defined for myself and W Media Ventures. Getting drowned by day-to-day stuff is a trap that one can fall in very easily. But if you really want to make progress in your business (as entrepreneur or investor), you need to reserve enough time to work on strategic items (“work on the business, not in it”) – here are some things that worked for me and that I have been recommending to my entrepreneurs:

  • Know your vision: it all starts with knowing where you actually want to head to – writing it down and reminding yourself of it on a daily / weekly basis helps!
  • Focus on the most important levers: there are many ways to achieve your vision and even more items you could spend your time working on but there are probably only 2-3 really important levers at each moment. You need to identify them and work relentlessly on them. Try to cut out the rest as much as possible.
  • Small changes in your work routine can improve your productivity in a big way: try to keep meetings to max. 30 minutes; do email in batches; avoid too much context-switching
  • Aggressively outsource and delegate: everybody has things on his plate that he actually doesn’t need to do himself so be consequent in identifying these responsibilities and delegate / outsource them. Delegating / outsourcing is a bit of a larger one-time effort (as you need to train others to take over your job) but will pay off very quickly once it is set up.
  • Review your progress every week: was I again drowned in operational stuff or did I actually spend time working on my strategic initiatives?

Looking forward to being less “day-to-day driven” next week – hope you will be, too!

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