Thursday, May 26, 2011

Time Management and Planning System

Four Key Time Management Concepts:
1.       It is impossible to do everything you think you should, could or might do!
2.       Time management is about making decisions of what not to do, what to do and when to do it.  So, you need a decision making process.
3.       Time management is about getting things done rather than doing more things.
4.       Time Blocks are more effective than To Do Lists.

The 6-Step Time Management Decision Making Process
Step 1.
DOWNLOAD at the end of each week.  Write down every task and “to do” item filling your mind.  At the end of each week, find a quiet time where you will not be interrupted.  List every single job and task you can think of, even little ones.  They are all taking up processing space (RAM) in that wonderful mind of yours.  Leave too much in there and it will crash.
Step 2.
CLASSIFY.  Assign each item to a category (e.g. Business, Financial, Personal, etc.).  This will give you a picture of the balance between various parts of your life and will help with the prioritization step.
Step 3.
RANK.  Put each item on your list into one of the following four time quadrants:

Something is important only if it will have a major positive impact when it is done OR a major negative impact if it is not done.

Something is urgent if it has to be done by the end of next week or sooner.  Something that has a deadline that’s more than a week away is not urgent even if it is important!  Relax, the time management system will give you time/space to get it done.

This is a critical part of the decision process.  Apply these rules rigidly! 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Build Your Referral Base

Every business needs an effective referral strategy.  In fact, referrals are usually the most effective and least costly way to acquire new customers.    Here's a step-by-step outline to help you put together an effective referral program that will make a significant impact on your business.

Get ready.  Do all of 6 of these steps before implementing any of the suggested referral strategies.
  • Define your ideal customer: who you want referred to your business (the 20% who generate 80% of your business)
  • Go through your current customer list grading them A, B, C, D (awesome, basic, can't deal with, dead)
    • Get rid of, fire your D customers
    • Inform your C customers about your new rules of business: here's how your redoing you business to provide what your most valued customers want, here's what you are no  longer going to provide
    • Train your B customers how to become A's
    • Let your A customers know you can now devote far more time to taking care of their needs
    • Calculate what it costs you to "buy" a new customer.  Include:
      • All marketing and promotion costs
      • All fixed costs (this way, any sales to existing customers are pure profit)