Did you know there is no such thing as work-life balance?
Honestly… do you know anyone that has achieved the perfect balance between work and life?
To me… that’s a relief!!!
But it’s not a consolation for everyone.
Last week I had lunch with a friend, she was telling me how everything was getting on top of her.
She was feeling pressure from everyone and to make things worse she knew it was showing through in her work.
The worst thing was, she couldn’t find a way out
So I grabbed a pen and paper and drew up these pie charts. I call them the Wheels of Unequal Work/Life Balance
The Wheel of Unequal Work-Life Balance
I explained to her there are 9 areas in life influencing work-life balance (pie 2)
1. Label each piece of the pie
2. What is an action you take in each of these areas to feel like this part of your life is under control?
NB: You do not need to be doing something each day in each area
3. Highlight the areas that need attention each day?
4. Write out your typical day and fit each of those actions into your day
A day in the life of a mother in business…
Each morning go for a walk with headphones playing the latest book on audible
Be present and create a conversation with the kids as they make their school lunches. Aim to have breakfast together.
Hug the kids as they leave for school
Work whilst they are at school and make sure that there is a break every hour to stop for a breather. Take the pressure off and the mind go blank
When the children come home, spend the time to talk about school and the day
Dinner is always a shared meal no matter what sport is being played and that's when we usually have a laugh
You see, when you lay it all out, you can see how everything fits together…
And it proves there is no such thing as work-life balance, only work-life harmony
The Wheel of Unequal Business Balance
But there is more to Work-Life Balance than completing the Wheel of Unequal Balance and that is to take control of your business… Business Balance
What does Business Balance mean?
Let’s go back to pen and paper…
Here’s my Wheel of Unequal Business Balance also with 9 areas (pie 1):
1. Strategic Planning & Review
4. Customer Service and Delivery
7. Finance, Accounting, Legal, Compliance
Pieces of the Business Wheel
1. Strategic Planning and Review
This is the beginning of the cycle, the end of the cycle and the glue that holds everything together
These are your goals, your timelines, your business strategies, systems and action plans
What time have you got put aside for Planning and Review?
Marketing is what you do to reach and attract new clients. What is your Marketing Plan?
How much time do you spend on marketing?
Don’t fall into the trap of only marketing when looking to boost business
Sales include everything associated with onboarding customers.
Do you take care of sales or is that taken care of by a team member?
4. Customer Service & Delivery
Making sure your customers receive the products and services they expect.
Taking care of your customers so that they are customers for life
Your team is an extension of you. They are an asset and deserve time, but how much?
Make sure they have the knowledge, support and expertise to represent you and your organisation.
Administration tasks come from every area of your business.
These are the tasks that you cannot get to (often a backlog), not income producing and usually not on your priority list
7. Finance, Accounting, Legal, Compliance
This is a priority task best scheduled on a regular basis.
You must know your numbers and have yourself insured
Every business needs to keep up to date with what happens in the industry and the latest news, technology, research…
Make sure you invest time into education
Many businesses make a contribution back to the community either financially or time
Each of these 9 pieces is very important and plays a major role in business but that does not mean that each requires the same time to achieve balance.
Depending on the stage of business depends on how much time is required for each piece
What’s important is knowing the big picture and how everything fits together.
How could a typical business day for a mother in business look?
Start the day at 9 am with income producing activities. Make sure that your sales and marketing is up to date. Work on Customer Service, product delivery and promotion
12-1pm Admin tasks
1-2pm Team support
2-3pm Tomorrows planning
HOW TO USE THE WHEELS
Make sure you discipline yourself to stick to whatever routine you choose for each piece of the pie.
Before too long the routine will become a habit.
Habits lead to wins and as Charles Duhig says
One small win sets in motion the habit to accomplish more small wins
PS. It’s important to remember that to form a new habit does take some time so stick with it and give it a good go.
Get from where you are now to where you want to be
I’ve got to say that I’ll be forever grateful to a past mentor for helping me with this process
And the great thing is that because I’ve got a system for work-life balance (harmony) I’m in a much better frame of mind to focus on the individual Business pieces
Like I said in the Strategic Planning and Review section above, this is the beginning, the end and the glue that holds the business together and when you have harmony, the planning part is just so much easier.
So, that’s simply the next step, the next focus… the big picture plan
I’m here to help if you need it.
I have a plan that took me years to develop (a plan that’s flexible to mould to any business)
Now, I don’t want you to take you years to realise that value of planning because that means wasting time.
So, like always… if you want it I’m here to help.
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About the Author: I'm a mother and a business owner, since 25 years :0 I've had my fair share of ups and downs but I'm lucky... I've found the perfect mix... to balance and time. It all starts with a plan and a strategy, for business, one that works for you, the mother in business. This is it... “The Flexibility Formula”, go download it, it's yours... free.
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