Part Two – Manage Your Growth With Proper Planning
By Amber Dehn
Having a general idea of what is coming next helps in any situation, but especially so in planning and running a great business. Managing your business in every aspect possible helps you to direct what is happening now, and will help you to both control and cope with future issues and growth in the long run. Over management is definitely possible, but so is under organization. Even the great Buddha knew that the middle path, the balanced path, was the way to go. Too much control can squelch creativity, business relationships, and the natural flow of your business. On the other hand, too little control leads to missed appointments, opportunities, and often results in financial loss in some, or all categories of the business.
Every business needs to be groomed and maintained nearly daily. On both a Macro and Micro level, it is important when to know when you should work hard and do something yourself, and then also when to ask for help. You are a talented, gifted person, but to truly grow as a company, you will need to outsource work that you do not have the efficient time, nor skill, to do. Whether you are a small yoga studio or a larger product provider, this is going to apply to you. But how do you know where to draw that line? Let’s discuss a few ideas that will help you streamline your daily management requirements.
- Let’s Start With You: As a new business owner, how you use of your time and your unique set of talents will very much dictate the future success of your company. Remember, you are the leader! Right now, make a list of every skill set that it will take to professionally and confidently run your business. For example; Press Relations, Marketing, Quick Books, cleaning the office, teaching the classes, Employee Management, Product Research, etc. Be as official and concise as possible. Now, write your name and percentage out of 100% that you are able to carry out these duties on a daily basis. Don’t overestimate or underestimate yourself, just be honest about how things have been working, and will work in the future. Then, finish off your list with a plan on how you will fill in the areas in which you will need assistance. In my case, I am great at art, but I don’t know how to put my creative ideas into a jpeg or pdf graphic design file on my computer. So I do 75% of the work, fax my idea to my graphic designer, who I pay $25/hour, and then she completes the remaining 25% of the work, at little cost to me.
- Outsourcing… It’s Nice and Easy! Now that you are getting a better feeling on where you need help with your business, whether it is accounting at tax time, or with graphic design, remember to keep things simple. It usually isn’t necessary to meet with your remote helpers in person. Email, texting and phone calls are a great way to communicate with your Independent Contractors. Before starting up a new business relationship with anyone that you hire on as remote help, give yourself 10 – 15 minutes of brainstorming time, asking yourself “Am I really letting this be as easy as possible?” Many new business owners feel that they must feel rushed and stressed to accomplish anything. While working hard and long is going to happen regardless, keep tabs on yourself, and let things that can be easy to be easy. This is one of them. You are paying someone else to do work for you to save you time, and ultimately, your time is worth money! Remember to verify all pricing, hourly rates, time expectations, and overall performance opportunities with your new Independent Contractor BEFORE beginning any type of work. Save the contract that you have both signed and dated with this information in more than one place. This goes for employees, as well. Once again, this will save you tons of time… and money.
- Learn As Much As You Can – The more you can learn about how your business works, the better. What I mean by this is if you personally can explain and assist others in their work by offering great guidance and leadership, your whole operation is going to run that much more smoothly. Over Micro managing can be prevented by proper training, excellent communication, and healthy business relationships. Prepare the proper foundation for others working for you to do well by knowing, on a general scale, how the bits and pieces of your business work together. Set aside some time and click around your own website for 20 minutes, read your Quickbooks manual cover to cover, fool around in Photoshop for a bit, or sit in on some of your classes a few times per week. See how much you learn, and thank yourself for problem prevention!
Your energy as leader of your business affects the entire thing. Your relationship with yourself, and all the Micro portions of your business will determine how the Macro picture of your business looks at the end of the work day. Asking for help by hiring Independent Contractors or employees goes a long way in building what is able to be achieved each day via “man power.” Perhaps you will be able to trade a product or service in exchange for labor to save on costs. Be creative, be open, and be a good manager of your business. But it all starts with you, and what you are willing to learn about your business, and yes, yourself.
Check back with Yoganomics for Part Three of this series.
An avid yoga enthusiast, Amber Dehn lives and practices yoga in Denver, Colorado. Having started and then sold the Bolder Yoga Mat Company at the age of 24, she loves helping others be bolder with their businesses and yoga practices. She is also a 200 Hour Registered Yoga Teacher and does Muay Thai.