I believe in twos. Two heads are better than one. It takes at least two people to create a partnership (or a friendship). And two hours will get you there. Well, two hours won’t get you everywhere, but they will get you closer to your dream, if you show up consistently.
Some of us, as Anita Campbell has discussed, are creating businesses while we work at a job. Or we are developing a new element of our company while maintaining the current services and products. And sometimes that can feel overwhelming because in smaller companies, the same people often wear multiple hats. So what do you do when you don’t have the money to pay a separate, dedicated task force to move your business forward? Here is where two words can truly pay off: consistency and strategy.
In a recent interview with Oprah Winfrey, fashion mogul Ralph Lauren said that a major key to his lifestyle is “consistency of vision. There is a consistency about my life.”
It may not seem like much at first, but the ability to show up every day and work a plan to the very end is major. It’s easy to get distracted. You start on one thing and then get sidetracked by a phone call, a text, a visit or a client in need. The day passes, and you forget the mission-critical, business-improving task that you intended to accomplish. And life (and your business) stays the same.
At its root, consistency is the ability to stand firm. But what do you stand firm for?
The goal is to find a strategy that you understand and believe in and then follow it consistently. As a creative person, I’m used to redesigning things, but when you’re learning something new, it’s best to master it before you start changing it. Let’s say that you decide to implement an email strategy. My suggestion is to follow your original plan to the letter (at first). So if the plan is
- to get an email client that you trust,
- design a newsletter template so that the newsletter’s look and feel is consistent, and
- send out weekly emails,
then follow that strategy until you know it and understand it. Then, and only then, you are ready to improve on it.
For me, the first hours of the day are the best time to break new ground for the business. You may give four to eight hours on a Friday or two hours every morning. If you’re not a morning person, give three hours every evening.
Even if you have to take baby steps, a consistent strategy will move your business forward, no matter what. Get started and keep going until you get to the place where you can take full strides.