How To Prioritize While Running Your Business | Ep. #23

prioritizing while running your business

Ever wake up and immediately feel overwhelmed with everything you have to do on top of your normal duties? So does most of the world but there are ways to make all of these daunting tasks feel a little less overwhelming. On this episode, we discuss how to help prioritize your life and focus on what really matters.

Beer of the Episode

Deadicated Amber Ale by Devils Canyon Brewery

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Transcription of the Episode

Errors courtesy of automation

00:07 Hey, thanks for listening to crash thinking I’m Nealey and I’m BTC and today we’re talking about prioritizing as a small business owner. It’s crucial that you prioritize your day, but as always before we jump into the task at hand, we’re going to be drinking some hopefully delicious beer

00:25 and some prioritizing ourselves for ourselves right now and drink some beer. Before we get into this topic

00:31 today, we’re drinking dedicated amber ale from Devil’s canyon brewery. I was recommended to me by someone that worked at a total wine. It reminds me of kind of like Edgar Allen Poe, Raven. I don’t know, but yeah, I honestly, I just want to open it up. It’s been a long day.

00:49 It has been a long day for sure. Let’s crack these guys open. This is dedicated spelling. D, e a d vacated and it’s nice. Raven. Raven shows a skull on it. Like a desert scene. I like it. I like the, uh, I liked the art on it.

01:08 So these guys are based out of San Carlos.

01:11 They’re a family owned, operated, so most likely you have not sold to, you know, and Beth Zion is a Bush, which, you know, there’s good things and bad things about that. I understand it’s a business decision. I don’t, I don’t necessarily see as selling out. They typically get more fun, introduced more cool things. So

01:31 yeah, it’s, it’s, I don’t really think of it as selling out is just going to the next phase of your business. Like you don’t want to stay just a mom and pop shop forever

01:41 if you’ve got national distribution and as your Bush can do that for you, doing on your own, good luck. Especially the way the liquor laws on distribution channels have to work. If you want to expand your bar, good luck. You probably already have loans, all of their equipment, right? So I don’t hate him for. I just wish they didn’t have to do it. I would rather I’d rather see everyone else be independent craft, navel to expand on their own. I hate these giant conglomerates in general. I think it hurts the small business realm, but you know, I think with the beer brewing being, there’s so many craft brewers out there, I do feel there’s enough competition at the moment. I would like to see it increase rather than decrease. So Bev stopped buying out local breweries.

02:22 So BBC, what do you, uh, what do you think about this beer from a devil’s canyon?

02:28 It’s got an intense flavor. It’s like a on the front end. It’s a very almost hoppy flavor. It’s to me it’s almost like an IPA. Really?

02:38 Yeah, like a very light Pale Ale. I mean it’s, I like it. Like I’m not a Paleo Guy, but I like it.

02:47 I’m not a Paleo guy either because I tend to prefer flavor, not bitterness, that bitter beer face. So I mean, yeah, they got a whole description on here. So sometimes we brew no particular way, but our own can’t deny. There’s no agreement on this style. We set out brewing and am American Amber Ale taking our time in front of a path for our steps alone. I kind of feel bad bashes now because it’s an American amber ale. That’s true. And still too long for me though.

03:24 Yeah, I don’t know. I like it. I’m going to give this one like a flat seven. I’m surprised, man. I’m surprised. I’m surprised. I’m thinking six point five, six months. That’s still pretty high for you.

03:37 Yeah. That’s not a six point two. I can’t even remember now. Uh, we still gotta you still have to download the APP. Yeah, we down. It’s untapped. If you ever do want to, uh, rate your beers that you’ve, uh, drank and then be able to pull them up. It’s really cool to. It’s about, I’d say I’m called untapped. It’s phenomenal thing. I mentioned it before, uh, my insane, insane beer collector friends, uh, and homebrewers. They all use it and swear by I’ve used a couple of times. It is phenomenal. I wish we’d get a sponsorship from them too. That’d be the total wine. We’re still waiting to hear from you on tap value. Any brewery that likes we have to say or, or it doesn’t, we’re still would like to hear from you too.

04:19 So I’m going to probably drink this one pretty quick. BDC is going to struggle. It’s like the blueberry, like you liked the blueberry drink. I thought it was just absolutely awful.

04:28 The blueberry was phenomenal. Oh God. I hope that blueberry, right.

04:34 I’d rather drink an IPA rather drink this cool. Back to the task at hand because we’ve got to prioritize what we’re doing. Right story, true story. So jumping in, um, I mean the whole, the why behind why we’re talking about this is going through your day to day. You have a ton of crap you have to do and it’s, it’s tough to really figure out what you have to do first or what you have to do at all. So hopefully by the end of this podcast, you should have a good foundation of some pretty actual items on how to actually prioritize your day

05:09 business owners or solo printers where a bunch of different hats and that means you’re gonna have a lot of tasks to do and it can be daunting. And uh, it could a lot of ways cause burnout. Why businesses fail within the first year, not necessarily because they had a bad strategy, excuse business, are burnt out and doing these types of things can help prevent that you might enjoy your day a little bit more and do you are then able to continue the growth of your company at a comfortable rate that will it be successful without bogging it down so much

05:41 so one of the first ways you can really prioritize your day. A Stephen Covey, author of seven habits of highly effective people suggest ranking tasks across four metrics, important, not important, urgent and not urgent. So you ranked your tasks to see what’s important and what’s urgent, what’s important and not urgent, what’s not important but urgent, and then what’s not important, what’s not urgent. And obviously you’re going to do your tasks in that order, but you’re going to scratch what’s not important and not urgent or just hold off and just do it at the end of the day or even not at all. If it’s not important, it’s not time it

06:26 do a bunch of busy work. Just do the busy work when it’s not even not important. Not urgent to your business and it might be something that you can put on the back-burner, right? And say, you know, this is something that it won’t be important for six months. And even then it’s not gonna be that urgent. So I can, I can just put this off until that right now, if it’s going to be in six months, it’ll be, uh, maybe not that important, but very urgent. You can then make sure you’re going to start done before the timeline, right? Or they’d put the deadline, I should say.

06:57 So if you’re not listening to this in your car and you’re at home, uh, pause this podcast in, basically make it a little, little four square chart and kind of task task up the most important thing is that you’re doing or what you feel is the most important things you’re doing and tally them up what’s important, what’s not, what’s urgent, what’s not, and kind of figure it out. Figure it out what you actually should be doing everyday. Because the whole whole reason for prioritizing and doing this is making sure that you continue to grow and grow your solopreneurship or your small business and branding kind of talked about it with the, the busy work, like how many jobs can you really do within? Probably about four hours. Yet we work at eight, nine hour shift.

07:42 I do want to go back to the fourth grade. Why don’t make it very clear what they are. And then left hand corner. You should have important slash urgents. Upper right, important slash not urgent. Bottom left, not important. Slash urgent. Bottom right. Not Important, not urgent. I wanted to make sure you can visualize it because those are the four. And then go from there. Right? So then we talked about, uh, you’re busy, you’re busy work, uh, and how long it takes to actually do things. You know, we worked that nine to five job, so we have eight hours to get things done. And so maybe we get in and we’re like, ah, got a cup of coffee. You get a cup of coffee, right? And then you see people walking around at work and talk to him, whatever, that five and a cup of coffee and turned into 30 or 45 minutes to get back and you’re like, you got to log into your email and what’d you do?

08:37 What’s happening on facebook? I’m on facebook. A lot of people that have these jobs where they’re in offices or a desk or with other people, spend the first hour of their day doing literally nothing that they waste to get some work done. They go, well, let me go. Let me go and take a little mental break. Right? And they go on to these other things, right? But this is your business. This is something that you started wearing all the hats probably. So you need to make sure that you are being efficient. You. If you don’t have an employee to tell, show up to work, you have the choice to show up, to work, to show up to your business. And if you are doing an eight hour day that Ah, it could be actually done in four hours, well, that’s one of those things where you’re wasting your time if you’re actually taking eight hours to do it for our job. Right? I didn’t ever say that. Say that the most articulate way, that last couple sentences, if you’re taking eight hours to do two to four hours of work, understand that means you having those 12 to 16 hour days because then you still have other things to do, right? So you need to make sure that you are staying focused and you’re not getting distracted by all these other things that get in. They get in the way that, uh, you don’t need to be focusing on.

09:57 So I want to bring up, uh, as he was talking, it reminded me something else. Parkinson’s law states that work expands, so as to fill the time available, available for its completion. So essentially that means whatever tasks you do, if you give yourself two weeks to do it, it’ll take you two weeks to do it. If you give yourself eight hours to do it, it’ll, you’ll take eight hours to it. Think back when you were in like high school and like you had had the final paper and you procrastinated and procrastinated and procrastinated. You finally did it that last night. You just binged it. You did it probably like four or five hours. Probably got a decent grade hopefully, but it took five hours when you had like two weeks to do it, do it, and you actually act. Did the work. It will probably take you all two weeks.

10:44 Exactly. And you know when it, when it comes down to, and this is your time, this is your business. A time is something you can’t get enough. As a business owner, you can’t purchase any more of it. So respect your own time. Get as much done as you can. Set realistic goals. That’s the most important. You need to be realistic. We’re going to come back to that in a second. When you talk about larger pro, uh, projects in another thing that small business owners are always, uh, are always looking for is perfection a justin man, what do you say when it comes to perfection? Especially running small business

11:22 perfection doesn’t exist. If we try to be perfect all the time, we want to get anything done. I know if I wouldn’t get anything done like building a website, trying to make it perfect, it just doesn’t exist. You make the best of the situation you have and you kind of go with it. It’s OK that if you have like 11 things you need to get, make sure you get done today. It’s OK that you will end do nine. It happens. You can’t be perfect and you can’t stress out about making sure that you have everything done to completion to perfection.

11:51 Yeah. You know, I’ve, I’ve trained a, of people know for a lot of different roles. Um, and uh, when it comes down to this, there’s actually two groups of people that typically adapt the best, ramp up the fastest and have most of the most long-term success. Who’s usually golfers and baseball pitchers. I’ve actually trained to professional baseball pitchers a story for another time. I think that can be like an interesting factor. The day for me and I trained to professional baseball pitchers. That’s. Yeah. I went to high school with a, with diamondbacks pitcher at Jake Barrett. Well, he blew it in the playoffs. Didn’t see personally and financially blame him. I don’t, I don’t blame you. You are doing much better than me in life. And I envy. So um, when it comes down to it, one of the things about golfers and pitchers is that they are always seeking perfection, but they know they’re never going to get there.

12:48 Right? A Golfer, every time they hit the ball, what are they doing after they hit the ball, they’re assessing their, assessing everything about their swing. Even straight into what I do well there, but still what could have done better because I wasn’t expecting it to actually go that straight. Right? Or if, if I let, if I moved my back with any more than I did, it would actually have shifted to the left whatever. And they. And it’s those things where even the most highest paid golfer, when tiger woods was in his prime, he’s being $80,000,000 a year. Nobody could beat him. He still had a swing coach saying, you could do this, this, and this better. Right now. He was after perfection. But Tiger was at. When he won the masters, he didn’t break the club over his leg going, I didn’t get a hole in ones.

13:34 Every time that would be perfection, right? He chased it knowing you would never get it. But knowing as long as you use the right behaviors, you’d be successful at the same baseball pitchers. They all chase the perfect game. Right? And even when to get the perfect game, if I threw that pitch to the guy who got the high [inaudible] goodly, my guy, my guy caught him, he was. It was out. What could I have done this stripe that batter out or perfect game. I could have still done this a little bit better, had that mentality. I can only do this better. I wanted to perfection. But if I focus on these behaviors, I’m going to be in a place where I, where I’m getting the results, I’m actually looking for 100 percent and sometimes, and the tasks that you’ve, you guys have up against you, it’s daunting.

14:19 Like you had this giant tasks that it’s going to take what, three, four, seven months to complete. Like how do you actually tackle that vtc actually tackle that. Oh man, there’s this. OK. So, um, one thing I really should respect our engineers, he was especially software engineers, programs, all types of engineers. I, I really respect them all. In the software development world, there’s this thing called agile. And the great thing about it is if you’ve ever worked in that industry, one thing you will know is there’s always a ton of projects. There’s always a ton of deadlines. And every project is massive. It’s a cool race, new operating system. Great. Hey, guess what? In two years we’re releasing a new operating system. Let’s do it. Let’s get moving. Now what they don’t do is say, all right, we have an operating system. That deadline is two years from now.

15:10 Let’s start working and we’re going to focus on that big picture. Agile is the system that they use that software engineers use and it’s the most successful system that has been found. Yet there was, what’s the one called waterfall for awhile in. That’s mostly so switched over to agile. One of the things about as you split up everything into what’s called sprints and based on the corporation, each sprint had a maximum time-frame, right? That corporation say the maximum time-frame for sprint is two weeks, so if that, if that sprint is going to take four weeks, you need to split that up into two separate sprints. Some corporations will be a spring, can’t take more than four days, so it will say, uh, the, the Max is four days for sprint. So you get the spray, you plan it out, what, what, how, how you’re going to achieve that, right?

16:00 And then you go through and you cover that sprint. That will then be. Then once you complete that, you check the quality of it, make sure it was done right in Job Corp, have meetings about it and the have meetings I was going to be next. Right? Then you go to the next sprint and you complete that and the expert and you complete that. Now all of those smaller sprints equal the bigger picture and because you’re doing it though, because you broke up into smaller chunks and you have a finite goal that’s reasonable that you can see the end of the road in. A lot of times they’ve finished the job away quick and they thought they would, so rather than trying to climb Mount Everest, you’re just getting to the next camp. A you can say, all right, I got to get to the top of that. You look at it, you go, well, that’s not going to happen, but if you look at that on average, say I am going to get to the next camp. That is a fraction of that. I can do that. Well, you need to get to that next camp. How do I rash in my air so I can get to the next camp? Then you, then you do. OK, I got here. What’s the next camp?

17:03 Kind of like celebrating the small wins to kind of get to that, that, that goal. That’s super tough to get to celebrate those small wins. Like I lost like three pounds this week, celebrated, and the next week I lost this amount. You celebrate. It kind of makes sense to the small, like everyday terms that most people will kind of think about. The person who I want to lose a hundred pounds. Wow. That. That’s really daunting. We’re going to start with your first five pounds. Here’s how we’re going to do it. Your first five minutes, OK, we’re changing the workout. Ten pounds. OK, now we’ve accelerated your metabolism. We’re 15 pounds and then they started talking about union drink less beer, then I can’t do it, and then here I am listed. They’re liars when

17:45 it comes to that, they’re obviously in the wine industry and they’re trying to get people over to our vodka [inaudible] vodka industry because they’re like, it’s gluten free, it’s Vegan. There’s no sugar and stuff like that, like our friend that drinks like vodka water, I don’t know how she does it anyway. So you can always research things on agile. It is very complicated in certain ways because I just gave you the rundown version, but split up the bigger task into smaller tasks, figure out how long is too daunting and then do have each sprint smaller than that. Right? So, um, this also leads into the, you know, the next thing, uh, that I think can really help out when you have a ton of different tasks to do. Now Nealey runs two small businesses. He has a daughter. Uh, he is, uh, he works at a corporate job as well. Ladies, he’s the total package, but he is taken. What did you do to handle all that?

18:55 Man? That is absolutely something I struggle with. Like even just like just the one task at A. Yeah.

19:04 So

19:05 all these things you have to do, right? Like you have have you, you have to run your business, you have to make sure you do your social media to market your business. You need to make sure you have the conversations with your employees, you have to do all these things. Um, and it’s tough. Like I struggle with it, like if I, if I’m on my computer, I start bouncing around from thing to thing to thing to thing to thing. And the thing I’ve noticed a pretty recently actually is I’m not that productive when I do that. And the reason is I’m not focusing on one task and making sure that that task is completed. So what happens is I have a bunch of unfinished tasks. I’ve made some progress on it, but nothing’s actually done. And that’s terrible. It’s so frustrating. It’s frustrating because I feel like there’s

19:49 progress. You’re working. That’s the saying. You need to work smarter, not harder, right? When you work harder, you’re working on 10 tasks at once and then you look back after five or six hours and going, wow, I’ve done one percent of everything and I’ve worked with, I’ve worked my ass off and I’ve gotten nowhere and I’m exhausted now. I don’t see the end of the tunnel on this.

20:13 So, uh, things you mind guys, focus on completing one task at a time and going back to the agile, if you have a bunch of tasks you can, you can sprint it with all your tasks and you obviously are going to clear everything at once, but it’s great different little sprints for each task that you’re working on. Complete that one task, make sure that’s done. Then move on to the next task, create that fit in, create that sprint, finish that sprint, then move on to the next one and you can actually have progress. You’re not frustrated like I’ve been where I have all these different things that I’m doing and I’m like, man, I haven’t done anything. I haven’t done a lot.

20:45 I have it know that that was well said and as we can see ladies, now you know why he’s taking now me on the other hand, I’m single as fuck. So maybe create email just about that.

20:58 Although this is probably like four months out that we, we’re recording this.

21:03 Yeah, there’s, there’s a good chance that I’m going to still be single. Spoke at that point, but it, you know, you know, if I am, you know, um, what’s your email address again,

21:13 that’s a contact at kraft thinking dotcom.

21:16 Just put in a single a f as the subject line. Go ahead and swipe right now. That is craft thinking could use this. I couldn’t use this dating service to each around ours. Ours alone.

21:36 Back to, uh, back to the t, the prior trays, prioritization at hand. Um, delegation, it’s something people struggle with this

21:46 cause you’re a small business owner and you want to take care of everything on your own because no one can do it like you do it at your business as you are. And the hardest thing as a business owner is to hand that off to a million times. I could see it pained him to give the role to someone else that he did not feel could do the job as good as him. But here’s the deal. Had he not done that running a construction company, running a construction company in Arizona with the amount of jobs they had, he would have gone insane. The business would’ve gone bankrupt. He would’ve closed it.

22:29 It’s tough guys. I get it like it’s your baby, right? Kind of goes back to not, not being perfect. Like it’s, it’s fine. Sometimes people aren’t going to do it as good as you can do it, but if you’re the only one doing it, you only have so much can actually accomplish if you started kind of divvying up the work. Even if they do eighty percent of what you can do that is still good enough, you can still start scaling your business and getting it to where you actually want it to be, which is, it’s just, which is the goal, right? Like you’re not doing this so you can basically, you’re not creating a job. Um, so you have a job for yourself. You’re creating a business and you want to create that business to grow and sustain yourself. And BDC is taking a selfie right now

23:16 on the instagram, right

23:18 on the INSTA. As we’re creating this podcast episode. If definitely threw me off and I’m keeping this one episode five, but back to the delegation. It’s tough. How do I teach them? Instagram right now is our story. All right, so let’s. So back to the list like, hey, the more kind of thing of this, the more you delegate your role, like if you start dumping off the things that you do every day, that gives you extra time to create a new role for yourself and that new roles to help you grow your business and scale it to what you actually want it to be. That’s one part of delegation. And the other part is automation. How can automation help delegation?

24:04 Oh yeah, we get. You can’t always hire another employee. Most are solopreneurs can’t. So automation is fine. The tool system or resource that’ll do it for you or maybe the one that’ll cut the time in half is huge and sometimes you may need to invest in it, but if you can save two hours on a and take four hours, that is worth paying your hundred dollars or $500 a year, whatever it takes to actually do that. When it comes down to it, you get. I’ve mentioned before, you can’t buy time. You can’t get it back. So focus on the reward you will get from it. The more the the extra efficiency you’ll have from it, the extra customers you can take care of and determine is it worth investing in this tour resource? And if you can cut your workload in halves or homes, it takes, most of the time it’s worth putting on. The credit card is worth putting into. Alone is worth saving up for whatever you have to do to make that happen.

25:09 Because at the end of the day, that’s, that’s the time that you can take back and put towards growing your business again, making that new role for yourself. You don’t want to be doing the same thing you’re doing right now, five, 10 years in the future. Like what got you here will not get you there.

25:26 Well, uh, there’s a saying out there, you can either work for your business or you can work on your business. If you’re working for your business, it’s in control of you. If you’re working on your business, you’re running it more efficiently and growing it and do what you need to do to be successful

25:44 100 percent. In the last, the last point I wanted to kind of talk about a Brian Tracy wrote a book called eat the frog are cajun fans. Love this. Not You. Frog legs again. I’ve had them and they’re disgusting. Once. I was like a teenager though, was a long time ago. I’ve been to China, China. Is he very last podcast episode. I was like, I had been to China.

26:13 Scorpion a stick dude. I would do that just like potato chips because there’s so much ms g on that thing,

26:19 but back to Brian Tracy eat the frog. Uh, basically the whole gist of the book of eating that frog is completing the most, most daunting in the base of the worst task of the day that you have to actually complete get it done at the beginning. Like if to bring it down back to kind of working out. Like if you hate working out, do it first. Like you don’t want to spend your entire day saying, man, I sought to go workout after this. I let’s go work out after this, this, this, and this. All your whole day is just daunting that task, but if you get it done, you worked out and you have the rest of the day to do whatever. You have to actually do more. Same thing with your business. Like there’s that one task if I hate being on social media, but if you do that first, you’re done with social media. The rest of the day is growing your business in other ways that you actually like to do.

27:08 I was growing up and I was in school at home or to do and I always tried to do the easy stuff first and my mom was like, no, you’re doing the hardest stuff first because then the easy stuff is just going to be just finishing up. It’s going to be enjoyable. You’re going to see like the end of the tunnel and you’re gonna get through this faster, easy stuff and now you’re going, ah, this is a pain. If you, Steve, that’s the end of the day, you’re going to dread doing it. It’s going to take double the time it takes away from your, your personal life, your family life. Do you have a family and takes away from other things that you enjoy doing or it takes you away from getting to that next level of your business?

27:45 Man, for me, that was, uh, I went to go play, I watch tv, I did all these things and then I had to do homework and that was awful. I hated it.

27:54 Yeah. It depends on if I was medicated or not. So, you know, when it comes down to a, we talked about growth is a most important, right? You can’t grow your business if you’re not running efficiently. If you’re not prioritizing. If yeah, right now it’s taken you eight hours a day. That should be true. Taking four hours or two hours to eight hours. Imagine as you scaled the business now for 16 hours for what should be four to seven hours or four to eight hours, you’re not going to take care of your customers and you can’t afford to hire somebody yet your margins aren’t there, focused on prior to our prioritization, focus on efficiency, focus on all the things we’ve talked about and that way you can then scale the business as you need to. So

28:45 guys, I have a challenge for you should you, except for the next three days. I want you to track everything you do throughout your entire day. You can go old school and do it on a pen and piece of paper that yeah, it’s a bad idea or you can do it with an APP. There’s an APP I use. I have an android. I don’t know if that’s on iphone. I haven’t checked. I don’t care whether it’s called a time longer. It’s a free app and you can section a bunch of stuff, but you can track all of your time pretty quickly and efficiently and kind of see what you spend the most time doing and what you can kind of cut out like what shouldn’t you be doing if you realize you’re spending four and a half hours a day watching Netflix, it’s probably not the best use of your time or if you’re spending a lot of time just surfing facebook, watching funny videos, I know it’s funny and it’s, but should you be doing it to grow your business? You should probably do it a little bit for that mental sanity, but you might be doing more than you think. Or if you’re spending a lot of time on email, how you kind of get rid of two, three hours on email.

29:57 Now, here’s the. Here’s the deal. You might want to watch it so for every mental sanity, but understand you should be doing something you’re passionate about, something you’re passionate about and excited about. You shouldn’t want to go on.

30:05 Watch

30:07 cat videos on facebook, like save it until later, but love your business. Love what you do anytime you supervise or manage someone and they just start and they start, they love it. At first complacently, one of the first places to start is they start browsing online and start doing other things and they’ll get lazy. Tell, let yourself get lazy and take with a passion from your work. So I think we’ve pretty much covered everything. We said we’re going to get this done in 20 minutes. That didn’t happen. Uh, but I think we had some really good points. I really, I was actually, I’m actually a big fan of this episode. I must say

30:41 it’s because you’re in it. Yes. So we’re going to finish up with the question of the day Nealey what does it. So after you’re done tracking for three days, even if you do it one day, just, just track what is, what do you spend the most time doing? Let us know as it, is it productive? Is it efficient? Is it wasting your time? Just letting us what you’re doing. That’s the uh, that’s. So with this guys Nealey and I’m BGC and this is craft thinking. Yeah!

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