So much to do, such little time…the constant lament of the small business person. Some other problem to rush to, some fire to put out, so many idiots who don’t understand…so organised!

Do most of us feel in control of our business lives? Or do we feel like the boy with his finger in the dyke, eyeing up a trickle of water just out of reach and dreading the next crack appearing? Will we cope? How can we take on more? Is this what we signed up for?

Where’s the duct tape? Slap it on everywhere and hope it holds. Cobble it together until there’s time to do it properly. Except – there’s never time – something else has cropped up.

So may people I speak to are in such a rush. No time for any thinking about their business, as they are too busy doing it. Doing what exactly though? Keeping themselves in some sort of job maybe – certainly not building a future for them and their families. So many people buy a job; they don’t buy a business. And it shows. It shows in results that mean you work more than the average number of hours (a lot more) for less than the average pay. It shows in more stress, less time with the family, less fun!

Less fun – what am I saying? This is no fun for anyone. None for the business person, the staff in the firm, the family who gets a tired stressed, snappy parent and partner…probably not even for the customers who have a less than perfect experience as everyone is too busy to do the job properly.

And those customers tell their friends…on average a good customer experience is reported to 7 people. A poor one to 19! It’s all (and more) in my free eBook – on How to get the customers you deserve? Just don’t be very nice to them. Those customers who remain will be less likely to pay premium prices for better products, because they don’t believe the firm sells that sort of product as their experience of the firm tells them differently. A bit of a downward spiral, if the business person isn’t careful.

This has got to change, if you value your sanity, your relationships, and your family (and your business). And please don’t tell me that you are doing it all for them. Have you asked them what they would like? You might be surprised. They might like the old you back, even if that means a worse standard of living. As my father would say, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”. If you are doing this for your family, your relationship, your ego – whoever! Do it right!

Take some time to reflect. And if you haven’t got time (I can hear you now!) – reflect on what it’s going to be like if you don’t. And if some other issue came along, you’d find the time for that, wouldn’t you?

So – reflect on what you want instead of what you don’t want. You can change this – much more easily than you think, and in simple small ways that are easy to think up and implement and manage, yes, at the same time as you are slapping duct tape onto some other problem. I know how; I’ve seen it done many times.

Just ask.