Now that you have a list of most – if not all – of the tasks and projects you’re working on in your business, it’s time to figure out their order of importance: it’s time to prioritize.
How to prioritize the systems you’ve identified for your business
This is a common roadblock I see hold so many entrepreneurs back from starting to create systems in their business: they simply don’t know where to start.
With a categorized list of the things we’re working on in our business, it’s going to be quite simple to identify where to start. (If you haven’t made your list yet, check out this step-by-step.)
Simple, but not easy.
I said it before, and I’ll say it again: systems take time to create, and there are going to be several points on our journey when we’ll have to take a step back, breathe deep, and practice patience.
We’ve got this :)
Here are our next steps…
How to prioritize what system to create first
We’re going to give priority to the tasks or projects that fit these 2 criteria:
- The things we’re doing most frequently (or that take up most of our time), and
- The things that make the biggest impact for our business (they help us move forward the fastest).
So let’s start there: of the tasks and projects you identified, start arranging them in order of priority based on the criteria that they:
1. Take up most of your time, AND
2. Have the biggest impact for your business.
An example of a task that fits both criteria
Let’s take a look at an example from my own list…
Here is a small version of what my whiteboard looked like after I took inventory and categorized my tasks and projects (meaning, this is not all-inclusive):
Looking at my list, I’m going to prioritize within each of my categories based on our criteria above (1. takes the most time, and 2. has the biggest impact).
Once I do that, I’m going to have each of my tasks and projects in a list based on their priority just like this:
Let’s break it down
For my daily tasks, email and social media definitely take up a good chunk of my time, but the impact they have for our business is nowhere near as powerful as checking in with my team to make sure they have everything they need to do their job most effectively.
Plus, making sure my team has the tools and resources they need to be effective takes a lot of time, especially when it comes time to creating training videos and documenting the systems and processes I want them to follow.
For me, creating a system around how I check in with my team daily is my #1 priority under my daily tasks.
There are a lot of time consuming and impactful things on my weekly list.
Content creation and the podcast are incredibly important; however, when it comes to the webinars and workshops we hold, there’s no comparison.
Our workshops have helped us created our largest stream of income, and having done over 60 live webinars in 2014, and more than 30 in 2015, the time commitment is big.
Therefore, creating a system around webinars is the top priority for my weekly tasks.
Sponsorships are huge for us; in fact, they account for our second largest income stream. And while we do have the Midroll to help us with our sponsorships, I still probably spend at least 15-20 hours per month on sponsorships. Significant, right?
Our income reports are also important; the way we’re able to connect with our audience via our income reports is massive. It allows us to give people a behind-the-scenes look at how we run our business, and it gives us the opportunity to be incredibly transparent, two things we know Fire Nation really appreciates.
Putting the income report together is also very time-consuming.
But of the tasks and projects I have on my monthly list, what would our business be without proper bookkeeping?
If our checks and balances are off, then our business is off, and therefore, I’m going to put bookkeeping as my #1 priority for my monthly tasks.
Recap, and what’s next
Remember, these are just examples, and so your list might look very different from mine.
The point here is that we’re giving ourselves a place to start.
By prioritizing our tasks and projects, we’ll get to take the next step towards creating systems around those tasks and projects that:
1. Take up most of our time, and
2. That make the biggest impact for our business.
Now that you have your #1 priority under each of your categories, it’s time to take that leap – what ONE task or project will you tackle first?
Pick ONE, and let’s get to work!
Don’t let picking just ONE, or the process of choosing between two super important tasks, get you tied up.
If you’re on this journey with me and willing to commit to creating systems in your business that will create freedom in your life, then we’ll be creating systems for ALL of your tasks and projects.
But we have to take our first step with just ONE.
Next, we’re going to break down each individual step our first task or project requires in order for us to accomplish it.
Always remember: on your journey to creating systems for your business, there will be times when it feels like you’re spending way more time creating and implementing a system than it’s worth.
It’s going to feel like it’d be SO MUCH EASIER to just do the task or project one more time — THEN you’ll create the systems around it.
Don’t give in!
Systems will take time and patience up front before you actually reap the benefits of having that system in place. But trust me, once you experience how much time and frustration you’re saving in the long run, you’ll be so glad you have systems in place.