The Business Life Podcast #016 - Getting your workspace physically organized.

Andrew Heim's organized office - workspaceDropping the ball. Lack of motivation. No progress towards goals. Procrastination. A wandering mind. Inefficiency. A poor attitude.

Have you experienced any of these in your business? If so, it could be caused by your workspace being physically disorganized. In this episode, I give three tips for getting your workspace physically organized, increasing your efficiency and ultimately your business’ profitability. LISTEN IN!

Key takeaways from this episode:

  • The negative business side effects of having a workspace that is not organized.
  • Three steps you can take to get your desk, office and workspace physically organized.
  • What to do with all that paperwork, mail and stuff that you may or may not need some day.
  • How to decide what to keep and get rid of in your office.

Some resources to help you get your workspace organized:

WORKSPACE ORGANIZATION CHECKLIST.  Download this checklist so that you can start getting your office, desk and workspace organized a little at a time, without it feeling overwhelming!

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Head on over to my Facebook Page (@andrewheimbiz) or Instagram Account (@andrewheimbiz) and send me a before/after photo of your office! The best transformation is going to win a bag of my favorite local KC coffee!

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I sound like a broken record, but, how you use your time is the greatest determining factor of your results in business and life. When I work with business owners one-on-one, this concept is arguably the most important one we cover during the process. Most business owners and sales professionals already strive to use their time wisely. They prioritize, plan, schedule and pay close attention to how they’re spending their minutes and hours. Even so, it’s not uncommon to look back and wonder where our time went or why we didn’t get more done. I’ve found there is one main factor that’s the culprit: disorganization.

Yes, even if you prioritize and plan, you’re not going to be as efficient if you are disorganized. What types of disorganization am I talking about?

  • Physically disorganized. Do you have papers and junk piled high on your desk or in your office? This wastes time two different ways:
    1. A cluttered workspace causes people to not be able to focus on the task at hand.
    2. Finding the tools and items needed for a particular task is difficult.
  • Electronically disorganized. I’ve seen people’s desktops so full of icons they can’t fit anymore. Likewise, I’ve seen “documents” folders packed with thousands of files and not a single sub-folder. Even with the search capabilities of modern computers, it can be difficult to find files you are looking for. Remembering to save documents, backing up digital information and keeping all of your devices in sync are other sources of disorganization.
  • Systematically disorganized. Efficient businesses are ones who have systems and processes for all areas of their businesses: sales & marketing, accounting & financials, management and human resources. Businesses that lack well-defined systems and processes waste more time and don’t execute consistently.

When a business is able to become more organized and develop systems and processes, it makes for a dramatic shift in their efficiency. Suddenly, they understand the best and fastest way to approach problems and goals, and have clear plans for making progress. What does it take to become organized like this? I have a couple tips for you to try.

Where are you at right now?

This first task for becoming organized is to figure out which areas you need to focus on first. What seems to slow you down: having a cluttered workspace? Not having processes for a certain area of your business? Make a list of four or five areas that you’d like to improve upon.

Take one step at a time.

If you try to tackle everything at one time, you’re only going to end up frustrated. With your list of four or five areas you’d like to improve upon, which one would have the greatest impact in your business?  Start with that particular area and stick with it until it’s complete. Then, move on to the next. If you want to accomplish it quickly, spend at least 10 minutes per day making progress.

Form a habit.

It takes a long time to climb a mountain and just a few seconds to fall all the way back down. If you want your new-found organizational skills to stick, form a habit out of them. One habit I have is the “touch-it-once rule.” If I pick up a piece of paper (or any physical item), I handle it immediately and file it away or throw it away when I’m done. This helps keep my workspace clean and organized at all times.

Stop wasting time in your business by being disorganized. Work on taking small steps to get organized in all areas of your business and I promise you’ll start seeing results.

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In a post earlier this week, I discussed how profitable, growing businesses spend a lot of time and resources developing consistency in their business. I talked about three areas of business that consistency is important:

  1. Customer Experience
  2. Transaction Process
  3. “Housekeeping” items

In this short video below, I’m going to focus in on consistency with the “housekeeping” items in your business. These are the things in your business that don’t directly bring in revenue, but affect the success of your business. If you like this video, please feel free to share with friends and family who have a small business or are self-employed!

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Developing Systems for Consistency in Business

When I sit down and think about the companies whose services I use, the brands I buy and the restaurants I eat at, there’s a glaring similarity among them: consistency.  Every time I buy, I know what I’m getting and it’s why I keep coming back. I bet if you look at the products and services you buy often, you’ll find the same.

Consistency doesn’t happen by accident. Profitable, growing businesses put consistency on the top of their priority list. They have strategies and systems in place for how to execute each area of their business with consistency.

What’s the payoff for consistent execution?

  • An exceptional customer experience that people rave about.
  • Repeat business and customer loyalty.
  • Referrals from satisfied customers.
  • Less time and resources are wasted in your business.

No matter if you operate a business on your own or have dozens of employees, creating strategies for consistent execution will help you sustain long-term growth and success. How can you start the process of developing consistency?  Let’s take a look!

Where consistency counts.

There are specific areas of business where, if you lack consistency, you’re going to lose. These areas of your business should be your primary focus for developing systems for consistent execution.

  1. Customer Experience. Businesses that succeed in delivering a consistent, positive experience every time have customers that keep coming back, tell their friends and are less likely to be price-sensitive.
  2. The Transaction Process. Great businesses don’t just put on a good show for the customer. They also pay strict attention to the details of each transaction behind the scenes, and develop processes for consistency. Preparation and follow through are equally as important for business growth.
  3. Housekeeping. This includes items such as marketing, bookkeeping, networking, etc. Things that don’t directly relate to making money. For small business owners, startups and sales professionals, we’re often the ones taking care of all of these tasks as well.

Developing consistency systems.

We want our systems for consistency to be repeatable and teachable. This will allow us to scale our business in the future if we decide to hire more people or expand our business by ourselves. When I create systems for consistency in my business, I start by:

  1. Writing everything down. I know the steps that I need to take to deliver consistently, simply through my years of experience in business. But, when I write down those steps, I’m able to refer to them each time and avoid forgetting crucial details.
    • HELPFUL INSIGHT: Walk through each process in your business and list it out on paper, step-by-step.
  2. Making people aware. Consistency is more than one person; it’s your entire organization. As a solo business owner, it’s easier for me to control consistency. When I do receive help on projects, from my wife or other friends and family, I let them know about my processes.  If you have employees, it’s important that each person understands the ins and outs of the systems and why they are so important.
  3. Executing with intention. I refer to my plans every single day until they become engrained inside of me. Even then, I review and adjust my systems for consistency at least once a month.

[VIDEO SERIES PART 1] FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10TH, 2017 – Consistency for “housekeeping” items in your business.

Before things really start to heat up this Spring and Summer, I want to challenge you to develop systems for consistency in your business! Join me later this week for an in-depth look at how to develop consistency with your business’ housekeeping items. Those would include things such as:

  • Marketing
  • Bookkeeping/paperwork
  • Emails
  • Networking
  • Other tasks that don’t directly bring in revenue but relate to your business’ success

Hope to see you right back here on Wednesday!

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