Last week I was away running my first international retreat in beautiful Estepona in Spain. I was delighted to find this lovely spot relatively untouched by tourism and so full of original Spanish charm, not to mention some amazing restaurants!
A mission business
Everything I do in my business is for a single reason – to help business owners get the life they wanted their business to give them, rather than the accidental life and poor financial results most business owners end up with.
But I know from 18 years running a business myself how there’s never enough time to take a step back to work on the strategically important things that will truly make a difference.
And how giving business owners tools to run their finances often isn’t enough when they haven’t got time to see where they’re going, or to do the important things that will shift their financial position.
Which is why I created my retreat program, and after running 12 retreats over the last 2 years I’m seeing astounding differences in my clients’ businesses because they regularly take time out to work ON their business and ALWAYS have a very clear plan of what they’re focussing on each quarter.
Getting to the bottom line
I love that not only do I get to help my clients improve their quality of life but I can measure the hard bottom line results that can’t be argued with!
- Having all their taxes put away
- Having buffer cash in their business
- Steadily growing their balance sheet value
- Making strong levels of net retained profit whilst paying themselves well
- Actively working on their plan to exit one day at the right price
- Having certainty their business and life finances are completely on track for what they want from life
- Total clarity on their business vision and what steps will get them there
- Knowing they’re doing the right things week by week
And the fluffier stuff…
You might think they’re working crazy hours to achieve this. But I believe that health comes before wealth and is something I focus on with my clients probably more than the financials. So they’re all doing this whilst prioritising health and exercise, time with the family, having treats and holidays, and definitely not doing the long hours they used to. None of them work weekends or in the evening any more.
(And who says we can’t combine working hard on our business with a little joy! We decided we could do our Masterminding session just as well on the beach, so we did! )
It’s counter-intuitive but it works!
This goes against all the business propaganda we see and hear everywhere. I have a real issue with the “air brushed” business features that paint this amazing picture of what success looks like, whilst the entrepreneurs proudly boast of how few hours’ sleep they survive on, wear their long hours and stress levels like a badge of honour and never see their family. All in the name of commitment and achievement.
Well, there IS another way to do it. Unless of course you’re happy to trade away your health and being present in your life. If you are then you probably shouldn’t be reading my blog, and we’ll definitely never be working together!
Take time for yourself – your own retreat plan!
I’m not saying you need to come on a retreat to build your business in a healthier and sustainable business; there are lots of things you can do that will help you achieve your financial and life goals:
- Set aside time every quarter at least. Go away for the day, turn off your phone and email and just think about what you want, where you’re going and get clarity on the most important projects
- Set clear goals for the next quarter, or at least have a clear direction of travel if you don’t buy into the goals thing
- Turn this into a weekly plan so you actually schedule the activities into your days and week – because guess what, otherwise they won’t happen!
- Find someone you can be accountable to, someone you wouldn’t want to disappoint and just email them once a week with what you got done
The key to this working
The key to this is scheduling that important strategic time for you and your business. Put your quarterly days INTO your diary. Put the tasks for your action plan INTO your diary. Just this alone will help you make more progress than you could imagine. And make these days DEEP WORK days, so out of the office. No emails. No phone calls. Total immersion in the important stuff.
So even if you never come on one of my retreats my work will be done if I can encourage you to see yourself as the most important cog in your business, and that you need to prioritise the truly important things (and that isn’t spending long hours at your desk)
Imagine a world where more business owners took time out to plan and reflect, where they put their health and fitness first, where they understood stress wasn’t an inevitable part of this package.
Who knows what we could achieve between us?