How can you tell the difference between someone working at a job and someone who is an entrepreneur? The entrepreneur is bleary-eyed, they work 24/7… and they’re happier than ever.
I’m only sort-of joking.
Many people try to escape from the corporate world because they feel trapped, unappreciated, undervalued, under-paid, and over-worked…
… Then they become entrepreneurs and discover similar problems, with the only difference being: they don’t have a boss.
I’m not trying to paint entrepreneurship as a bad gig. I’m an entrepreneur and I love it. But, in my experience, entrepreneurs who fail in the early stages are those who think that they’ll step out of their corporate job into their own start-up and earn 7 figures overnight.
Not gonna happen.
You can get there (and many do) but those early days of entrepreneurship can be challenging. It takes grit, hustle, hard-work, and guts to get up daily and grind it out. It’s totally worth it but you have to push harder than many people realize. (See step 3 of this blog post for my best advice on this).
Fortunately, there’s a secret recipe to help make it easier and to get you to your vision of success sooner.
If you’re thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, or if you are one right now and you’re struggling with trying to squeeze 25 hours of work into 24 hours of time, then here’s the way to do it:
Build a systematized business as quickly as possible, create an operations manual as quickly as possible, and then hand off as much of your business as you can to other team members.
Step 1. Build A Systematized Business As Quickly As Possible
It’s actually very easy to start a business. It’s harder to deliver great products and services to paying customers consistently.
Ultimately, that’s the difference between a small, barely-profitable burger joint that is struggling to make ends meet in your city… and McDonald’s.
McDonald’s is one of the best examples of a systematized business I know of. They have perfected the system of making burgers and fries to a science – down to the second.
In your business, no matter what you sell (even if it’s coaching and consulting services) you can still systematize a large portion of it. A system will allow you to work predictably and profitably while also giving you freedom to complete some of the customizable parts of your work.
Step 2. Create An Operations Manual
Once you’ve perfected your system, an operations manual should be the place where you write it all down. ALL OF IT. Be as detailed as possible – from what time you need to show up in the morning, in what order you turn on the lights, and where the coffee filters are… absolutely every last detail. It will seem infuriating as you try to write it but you will discover the following:
- Many opportunities to streamline
- Many wasted moments where you can improve
- Many opportunities to outsource to a team member
Step 3. Hand Off As Much As Possible To A Team Member
This is key. You can only do so much yourself. Sure, some of your work might rely on your own expertise (as in the example of the coach or consultant) but there will be parts that someone else can do. This is key. The more you hand off, the more free time you have. That results in some very powerful shifts in your business:
- You’ll have the freedom to think more strategically about your business
- You’ll have the freedom to grow your business through additional marketing and networking
- You’ll be able to scale up your business to do so much more because YOU are no longer the bottleneck in your business
- You’ll have the freedom to spend more time with your family (this is my favorite result!)
Building a business that gives you more opportunity, more freedom, more money, and more time… that’s the ultimate goal of an entrepreneur. It’s not likely going to happen in the first few weeks or months (or years) of your business… but if you follow these 3 steps, you’ll get there sooner.