Shifting Your Priorities from Task to Vision
Ellie Kassner, WE NYC Mentor

You’ve been on the come-up because you are great at what you do. Congratulations! But to transform your hobby, side business, or main business into a thriving company, you need to give up some of your old tasks and change your own role within your business.

Resetting can be particularly difficult when you’re in the thick of things, but you can start by tracing your business back to its roots. At the very beginning, you had an interest or talent, which you pursued. Eventually you decided the idea was unique enough and you were driven enough to go off on your own as an entrepreneur. Almost at that exact moment, though, your responsibilities changed. You suddenly needed to oversee insurance, payroll, administration, billing and more, all while continuing to pursue your original business interest.

As your business grows you can outsource some of these tasks internally to team members or externally to service providers, so long as it’s economically feasible. But here’s the rub: the more involved you are with the day-to-day operations of your business, the less you’re looking forward and creating a vision for growth.

The more gracefully and efficiently you pass along responsibilities to those around you, the better things will get done in the long run.

Ellie Kassner

Trading tangible work for abstract business acumen can be a tough transition but it’s important to the sustainability of your company. Here are a few tips for making the change your future business needs from you:

Restructure your day

You may be taking too much time balancing your checkbook, running to the bank or store or performing other tasks that you can delegate. Hire someone. Having a team member to delegate to will free up your time and give you peace of mind that will benefit your business.

Too many interruptions? Work outside of the office a couple hours a day. This will encourage your team to think outside the box and to come up with solutions even in your absence. This should yield trusting relationships and breed responsibility and confidence among employees.

Focus on training

Teaching someone to take over tasks you want done a certain way can be trying. But be patient. The more gracefully and efficiently you pass along responsibilities to those around you, the better things will get done in the long run.

Look ahead by reaching out internally and externally

Now that you’ve restructured your day, trained your staff and delegated some of your more time-intensive tasks, it’s time to work on the vision. Create that business plan everyone has been asking you for. This forces you to think through your business’s short-term and long-term goals and plan the benchmarking schedule that will get you there. Consult with free resources or paid professionals to help you gain an even better, more comprehensive vision for your business. Looking for advice outside of your business or industry may help you identify or clarify some of the gaps in your plan.

Ultimately, clearing your schedule – and your mind – to look to your company’s future is essential for success. Transitioning from “keeping up” to “thinking ahead” is not without its challenges, but unless you’re always looking for opportunities for growth, your business will become stagnant. Create a vision for your business and pursue it – the sky’s the limit!