Are you truly productive?

Most of you know I hired an assistant this past December.

I shake my head at how I was able to manage “everything” within my Business by myself for so long.

It brings me back to the days I owned my Salon. I worked 6 days a week, 9am till 9pm, booking clients every hour. When I sold my Salon and reduced my hours and began to focus on my Distribution Business, I shook my head back then and wondered how was I able to manage “everything” within my Business AND work behind the chair…for so long.

Since I hired Leslie, I haven’t quite got caught up with all the things I’ve been pushing aside, or filing in a folder. However, I have done a lot more than I would have done if she wasn’t here and have even given myself the guilty pleasure of not being so stringent with myself in getting to work at 8am, leaving at 7pm. I find myself being a bit more relaxed.

This brings me to the topic of the day “Are you truly productive?”

  • I like to think I kept on top of things…which I did.
  • I like to think I was able to give optimum customer service…which I did.

However, when I think back, I did it all without breathing and because of that I don’t believe I really was truly productive. I was working every day to get things done yet not producing what could be done.

There are a few meanings of the word “productive”. The one which speaks to me is “achieving or producing a significant amount or result”

Don’t get me wrong. I work hard and I have been very fortunate with the success of my Business. Especially considering the fact it was me for quite some time wearing all the hats. However, with all the new Technology, the new Apps, the new Processes available to us….my productivity level could have and can still be more productive.

Last week on social media I posted ‘HELP”!

For months now, if not nearly a year, I have had issues with pre-scheduling my social media content. Somewhere, somehow out of no where, my Instagram/Facebook channels are not being recognized by these apps which allow you to schedule as many post as you want….as far ahead as you want. To date I have tried a total of four(4).

Part of the problem is, there is no live person to talk to. It’s a chat box or an email exchange where they send you links which I have already gone to. Links which troubleshoot and take you step by step through the process of correcting the problem yourself.

Over the past several months, I’ve done this four(4) times with no avail. Talk about being NON-productive.

Now, I not only have the time to dwell into this even more, I WANT to be able to schedule my post so I can be more productive in other areas which need me. Having to stop what I’m involved in at the time to post something….is so incredibly aggravating and again…NON-productive.

As I’m writing this I’m remembering the days when I couldn’t afford any of these programs, so I had no choice but to do it all on my own. And, I would imagine there are several of you that are in that same position.

I can tell you though, the adage “you have to spend money to make money” is absolutely true. I have cut back on some un-necessary processes in order to be able to afford what I feel will be more productive in bringing my Business to the level I want it to be.

I have several people in my circle of life who have retired within the past couple of years. My Mom in fact, just last week commented that I “should be next”, as my four(4) older Brothers and Sisters have all retired. She laughed as she was saying it….she knows me all too well.

For one, I will never say never because who knows what I will feel if the right offer comes along.

Also, I don’t really have any “hobbies” per se. My business is my hobby. I love what I do and I can’t even for a minute imagine me not doing it.

It goes further than that though. I still have a lot to prove to myself. I still have things I want to do within my Business that I haven’t been able to do because of time….because I haven’t been fully productive.

You might be surprised, if you google characteristics of productivity. I about fell of my chair; Don’t have more than one(1) communication channel (HUH?) – Don’t multi-task……obviously that link needs to be updated.

My idea of productivity is;

  • You know what’s important and that comes first …
  • You know what to plan for your day. …
  • You are able to get back to an important task if interrupted …
  • You know your priorities …
  • You problem-solve. …
  • You arm yourself with the right tools. …
  • You have laser-like focus, even with all the disruptions …
  • You are well organized …
  • You delegate

All these characteristics are attainable….however, not necessarily by yourself.

As it relates to Salon life;

  • You know what’s important and that comes first …Our customers – they are our income
  • You know what to plan for your day. …If you have time between customers..what do you realistically have time to do? Even if it’s taking a short walk for a break.
  • You are able to get back to an important task if interrupted … With constant interruptions, it’s important to be focused on everything we do. Are you ignoring a customer to answer the phone? How do you make your customer still feel important when you aren’t focused on them?
  • You know your priorities … Customers are always our priority, however if you have staff they become a priority as well. I’ve always said…a happy Tech makes for a happy client.
  • You problem-solve. … Being able to put fires out (calmly), dust fire if needed and solve problems before they can get worse…is huge productivity. If you don’t know how, take classes…it’ll be a great investment.
  • You arm yourself with the right tools. …
  • You have laser-like focus, even with all the disruptions … Same as above. Disruptions are always in this Business. Yet, we can’t be scatter brained…we have to stay focused.
  • You are well organized … Being organized is the only way to manage.
  • You delegate … As I did, when you get to the point all the above is too much…it’s time to re-evaluate. Delegating responsibilities so you can take care of your bottom line…will change your life. I was told this by several people when I announced I hired an assistant. And, she literally has changed my life…for the better.

Being truly productive reminds me of the time my husband and I cared for his Mom during her later years.

As a caretaker, it is so important…might be the most important  ” take care of yourself first”. If you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of the person you are caring for to the best of your ability.

Being productive is the same concept. If you aren’t truly productive, you can’t take care of your Business to the optimum degree.

Being productive is an art

Being productive is freeing

Being productive is a money maker

CJ Murray, President

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