Career Woman

Avoid burnout: 4 tips to work less and earn more

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When we first jump into starting a business it is easy to get swept up in the passion projects and steam ahead working 100 miles an hour because we are so excited about what we are doing.

But, when the enthusiastic adrenaline wears off and we can look back on our journey with hindsight it is common to weigh up whether our time and effort has been worth it. We then head towards burnout.

We ask ourselves is it sustainable in terms of energy and is our income matching our expectations and forecasts?

To avoid burnout as our businesses grow, we want to be asking ourselves how can we earn more and work less?

So, I want to get personal with you. Are your income streams matching your time and energy output?

This was the question that dawned on me last year and I realised I was working 24/7 in a business where too much of my profits had to be reinvested back into the business just to keep it going.

I didn’t love that.

Replenishing stock levels, creating new designs, manufacturing, importing, shipping costs, the dollar, duty and GST, warehousing, advertising and… everything. It was overwhelming, all these things sucked the life out of my profit, and I was burning myself out in order to produce it.

So, I killed my darlings and sold that business. Not to say it couldn’t be profitable, it just needed a lot more TLC than I was prepared to give it.

Then, it was time to get smart and recalibrate. I started again with a new plan and this is what I implemented to earn more and work less:

1. Establish your income streams

Consider your income streams carefully and stop spending time on what is not bringing in the bacon. And, if you only have one income stream, look at how you can add more passive income streams to your business. For example, when clients choose the same hosting provider as I use, I receive an affiliate commission. This month, that has totalled to an extra $1000 for no extra time on my part, I just see the paypal payment notifications roll in.

However, choose your affiliates wisely and my suggestion is only recommend services that you’ve used and are happy with.

Next, choose what you sell carefully. I am a big fan of digital products or informational services with recurring payments such as a membership module. Simply because those type of products fall into the create-once-sell-multiple-times category. Plus you don’t have to reinvest any profits back into replacing that item.

On the flip side, a physical product needs capital or cash flow to buy upfront, then you need to sell it and then spend more time and money to replenish stock.

 

2. Automate & systemise

This has been an absolute game changer for my business and I estimate it has freed up at least 35% of my time which allows that time to be reinvested into scaling my business, or taking a breather and spending time with my family.

All the products I offer have been streamlined to an inch of their life and I have a system for any new team member to follow so I don’t need to repeat myself each time. We use a Facebook group to communicate which means new members to the team can see and learn from previous conversations, questions and answers.

Funnels are my friend and I have whole email sequences setup that I monitor daily and cut in when I need to send personalised replies. I can view and moderate stats which allows me to be ever perfecting my engagement levels and conversions.

I even automate tasks in my everyday life such as bills, I pay them automatically every month, school fees are paid in one go instead of every term, and food we always buy gets automatically ordered and delivered every week.

 

3. Outsource like a ninja

Let your inner control freak go and delegate. This was a hard one for me to do, but again it was a game changer.

I have 3 project coordinators that run all my jobs while I am on the frontline looking after clients and generating new business. To say that I am in love with them for the time they have created for me would be an understatement.

With websites like Upwork, Fiverr, Etsy and Freelancer outsourcing can be cost effective and work incredibly well. You do need to sort the wheat from the chaff and be wary of anything that seems to good to be true. Cull anyone who requires micro managing as otherwise, it defeats the purpose and can cost you even more time.

 

4. The 80/20 rule is the new black

This ingenuous production hack was picked up from Tim Ferriss, author of the Four Hour Work Week.

Apply the 80/20 principle to a few areas and ask yourself what are the 20% of customers/products/distributors that are producing 80% of the profit?

For example, when I asked myself ‘Where are the areas I am making the most impact with my my audience?’ I could easily see that my Facebook group trumped everything else. So, now I spend the majority of my time there offering support, advice, tips and just engaging with people. Growing this group also moved up higher on my priority list when I discovered this as well.

Then we do the less common; we apply 80/20 to the negative: what are the 20% of activities and people that consume 80% of your time? Once you’ve established what they are, it is time to say #byefalisha

Keep everything as simple and streamlined as possible and eliminate anything that does not serve you.

About Natasha Stewart

Natasha Stewart is the founder Business Jump. Natasha helps other women start their online business so they can find the same freedom and profit she has found. .Click here to download a list of Natasha’s favourite business tools and resources to help grow your business and join her mastermind Facebook group.

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