Do you have enough time to do the things that need to get done?
The chances are you said no. Exasperatedly!
It’s an age-old issue for all of us running our own businesses. As speakers, authors, coaches, it’s hard to balance out the marketing, with the admin, with the delivery. All of it needs doing, so what gives when a client or prospect suggests a time to meet that you have allocated for non-client facing aspects of the business? (We are of course hoping that you do indeed have time allocated for non-client facing things like your finance reconciliation, the writing of content, the reviewing of website issues, the updating of contracts and all that fiddly or tricky stuff that needs doing, that usually is not as fun as serving, supporting or connecting with the humans you are in business to impact.)
In answer to the question, we suspect that most of you, if you are honest, will re-prioritise the ‘behind the scenes’ work in lieu of the call — partly because it brings in or might bring in money and mainly because it’s the really fun bit of the job that you love!
But, much as it’s fun or seems professional, it’s actually the wrong thing to do…
Here’s why. The marketing and admin tasks you just put off are already bugbears for most of you. That prospect call that you just put into your diary has usurped the (tedious) admin, marketing or finance task you didn’t really want to do that you grudgingly made time for.
And it’s very very likely that you’ll rationalise that you’ll do that task somewhere later on in the week. BUT here’s the real thing — it will likely NEVER get reallocated. It’s now lost time to you and the business. And in the moment, whilst prioritising the call seems the right thing to do, it’s not. It’s inevitably going to add stress later on this week or month, when the not done task now needs to be done pronto and you have a dozen other things that also need to be done. So how do you prevent that stress?
Limit access to you to take back control and run your business better.
You can kid yourself all you like, but we’re suggesting that you allocate set times in your diary for calls. And that you allocate set times for the ‘other tasks’. And that you STICK to it. Make others follow YOUR schedule. Most people won’t mind a call tomorrow, rather than today. They are asking because they are asking, not because they are expecting! You don’t have to cancel anything or jump through a hoop. They are checking out a possibility, that’s all. You can go back to them with what your next available spot to talk is. You likely (if you are smart) have a calendar app that will do that for you (if you don’t, get one, it means you might not even have to have an awkward moment or conversation!).
Think about it this way: if you were busy with another client, you would not cancel on them to have a prospect call, right? If you are busy (and you ARE) doing your marketing or content or invoicing, then you are busy doing that. The prospect call is only ever AS important as those tasks, and they will wait the extra time they need to. Your business deserves that. Your stress levels deserve that. You deserve that.