I had a very important part in a grade school production of Alice in Wonderland that fits this title and our hurried, urgent business lifestyle. I was the White Rabbit at a tea party and said, “I’m late, I’m late for a very important date. No time to say hello, good-bye, I’m late, I’m late, I’m late.” Is it any surprise then that of more than 50,000 CEOs and business leaders,
- 62% want to grow their business (more money, more value, more time later)
- 21% want to make the business easier to run (more personal time now)
- 17% want to sell (No time like the present to get more personal time)
So, what are you going to do to free up more time for yourself since you cannot create more time?
- Prioritize the most important things
- Decrease the time it takes to do any task such as by focusing
- Do things at the time of day when you are most productive
- Delegate things properly to other people or automation
- Identify and eliminate wasted effort such as steps in a kitchen
- Make sure all the parts are ready when it’s time to start assembly
- Learn from others
If a runner or swimmer wants to get faster (decrease time), they talk with other swimmers and listen to their coach. Others can see what you cannot see. One or two suggestions from someone else can make a big difference in the performance of the athlete. Today, athletes have a cadre of supporters and coaches to help them. Even so, sometimes they have to jettison their current coach to find another with different ideas, or start working out with people at the next level.
For business leaders in manufacturing, technology, and transportation, try a Peer Advisory Council to find kindred leaders with knowledge to take you to the next level. You may have a great team within your company, but they may not have the breadth of experience that will guide you. Maybe you can get their “on your own,” but you will likely get there faster by taking a little bit of time to work with others.
Simply stated, take a little bit of time now working with a PaCk of business leaders to save lots of time in the long run. Your business will REV up with increasing Revenues, more Earnings, and better Value.
As an additional note for the 62% that want to grow their business, how much growth is best? I would certainly say that you need to grow faster than your competitors and the overall economy. Several books suggest a steady 20% growth per year on average is a good number. This question is addressed in an article by C2FO.
. . . a healthy growth rate should exceed the overall growth rate of the economy or gross domestic product (GDP). Further to that, Harvard Business Review suggests that most companies should grow at a rate of between 10% and 25% per year.
Do you know the biblical story of the owner, who before he went on a trip, gave 5 talents to one, 2 talents to another, and 1 to the third. The first two doubled the money, while the third kept it as cash-on-hand and did not even put it into the bank to get interest. To get some perspective, I checked the compound annual growth rate of some stable, secure investments such as a mutual fund that would track the S&P 500 or the NASDAQ Composite. Here are the numbers.
S&P 500 over 40 years—8.57% compound annual growth rate
166.25 in 1983
4457.49 in 2023
NASDAQ Composite over 40 years—10.34% compound annual growth rate
278.60 in 1983
13761.53 in 1923
That suggests to me that 10% annual growth is needed just to keep even with the economy and competition. So, 20% growth is a good target to aim for, in my opinion.
Don’t get trapped in a cycle of