Does Your Business Need a Physical?
"If you want something new you have to stop doing something old." -Peter Drucker
Not all that long ago, I had my annual Well-Woman Exam.
There were about a hundred other things I would have rather have done, and I was annoyed at the huge block of time that was being used to put on a paper gown.
But, I know it’s incredibly important (seriously, Y'all, prevention). And this time around, I found out I have a genetic mutation that affects my blood clotting. Don't worry, it’s no big deal, but it could have been if I hadn’t been tested.
When I went in for my checkup, I was 100 percent sure I didn’t have this mutation (sounds so X-menish, doesn't it?). I never had any signs or problems. My doctor was also sure I was clear and only tested me to be safe.
Turns out we were both wrong.
It made me think, how many areas of our lives do we assume are a-ok that are really in need of closer exam?
Just like we need physical checkups, the various parts of our lives need assessing, including, but not limited to, our businesses.
As we get further into our work, we tend to get more and more responsibilities. We get into a groove and are usually chasing the next thing on our list. We often become blind to things we see over and over again and often don’t even realize when something in our business no longer fits or doesn’t work.
Taking the time to give our businesses a ‘physical’ is essential to growth. It allows us to determine what’s healthy, what needs preventative care, and what needs to be surgically removed (I might be taking this analogy too far...stay with me.)
The benefits of a business checkup include clarity, focus, new ideas, streamlined systems, a more productive workflow, and overall alignment.
I just finished giving my business a 'physical'. I checked in and reviewed all.the.things from my branding and messaging to my systems and tools. (You'll see some changes in the near future!)
Want to join me and give your business a ‘physical'? I'm sharing my 'how to' below!
How to Check Your Business ‘Vitals’:
1. Make an appointment.
Make an appoitment with your business and block off a chunk of time. I’m talking a half-a-day kind-of-time. You’ll want uninterrupted, quiet time. I did a big bulk of this when I was out of town for a conference in February and recently went through the rest back home over a weekend.
2. Check your ego at the door.
Sometimes this can be tough because we’re talking about possibly getting rid of or adjusting things we’ve poured our heart and soul into. Do your best to check your ego at the door and remind yourself that some things have an expiration date.
3. Get clear on your ideal business future.
Where are you going? What does your business look like in a year? Three years? What do you want to create? What impact do you want to have? How do you want your work-life balance to look? Who do you want to serve? How do you want to feel in your business?
This will act as a guidepost when you take inventory.
4. Look through the eyes of curiosity.
Go through every area of your business and do your best to look at it through the eyes of curiosity. Try your best to be an observer. It can be helpful to enlist someone else who knows your business but isn't as close to it, so you can identify your blind spots (we all have them).
4.2. What's the ROI?
Go through each area of our business and ask, “Is this working?”
“What return does this give me?” (A return isn’t only financial and can include emotional return, experience, growth, etc.)
“Is this in alignment with where I want to go (your bigger vision)?”
With areas like systems and tools, I assess ease of use, flow, and benefits. (I found I was using and paying for a few tools that were outdated and giving me very little return.)
5. Keep, update, or discard.
For each area, decide on the following: keep (and leave as is), keep and update, or discard.
6. Identify action steps.
For anything you want to keep and update, identify the specific change or improvement you want to make. Don't just diagnose; give a prescription for change!
7. What's the urgency?
Identify the changes you want to make along with their urgency level (rate on a 1-10 scale). Then, tie these updates to a realistic and doable date. Delegate and hire out where needed!
*A note here, it can be very tempting to take stock of your business and decide everything needs a facelift RIGHT NOW! Trust me, I’ve found myself getting crazed wanting to “fix” all the things, all at once.
Not everything is urgent. I repeat, not everything is urgent and needs updating right now. Bookmark the rest of your findings for when you have time to make changes.
Broken 'buy now' buttons would fall into the urgent category...finding a pretty new font or image may be important for your branding, but it can also wait.
The purpose of this ‘physical’ isn’t to make us overwhelmed with busy work, but to check in and elevate our business health.
After you've finished, schedule your next checkup in 6-8 months.
This is something I do about twice a year, and I always uncover something new.
My business checkups not only allow me to see what isn't working anymore to make room for something else, they also remind me of what's important. This improves my clarity and focus.
Now it's your turn! I'd love to hear from you if you schedule your business 'physical' and what you find. Let me know in the comments below!
Wishing you your version of success,
P.S. Ready for a business 'physical'? I'd love to help! Click here to learn how we can work together and UPLEVEL your business!