Three Habits That Can Shift Your Company’s Outcome
After a horrific accident during high school, which resulted in both a brain injury and massive damage to his face, James Clear embarked upon a long journey of recovery. In his book, Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones, written many years later, he shares the expertise he developed through a series of small wins and tiny breakthroughs as he rebuilt his life.
He points out that the quality of our lives often depends on the quality of our habits, which are influenced by both internal and external factors. He demonstrates how “changes that seem small at first will compound into remarkable results if you stick with them…” and claims that a simple 1% shift in behavior can yield dramatic changes.
His principles apply in both our personal and professional lives. We all have habits that are unique to each. When you are running a business, there are three main areas that might benefit from a change – even a small one.
Creating a 1% shift and the difference it can make for your business
1. Know your numbers.
It’s easy for a business owner to get busy running their company and assume that someone else – maybe a bookkeeper or CPA – is looking after the finances. But the buck stops with you, the primary decision-maker. Those decisions impact your staff, customers, and perhaps even your community and industry. The financial health of your business is a foundational factor in all your decisions. Set aside time each month to review your primary financial reports – Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Statement of Cash Flow. If you need help understanding how to navigate and interpret these documents, ask for it. Knowing your numbers means you’re on top of your company’s financial health, prepared to respond to changes and opportunities, and equipped to be a more effective decision-maker.
2. Stop trying to do it all yourself.
If you feel responsible for everything about the business, you’re not alone. Many business owners try to be involved in everything, which often takes them away from their true responsibility – fulfilling the vision and mission of the company and growing the business. If you’re pulled in many directions, things can quickly become chaotic as your business grows. Stop and re-assess. Do you need to hire a bookkeeper? Could you benefit from a marketing consultant? Do you have people right under your nose who can take on those tasks that are distractions and free you up to do what you do best? Think about what you don’t need to do yourself and hand it off.
3. Find some balance.
With so much of ourselves and our money invested in our businesses, we tend to often also invest most of our time. Yet study after study demonstrates that we are more effective and happier in both our business and personal lives when we have some balance between the two. What can you do for yourself that you’ll feel good about? Here are some ideas:
- Take a break during the day to get outside and go for a walk.
- Get that book your colleague has suggested and set aside a little time to read each day.
- Schedule some “time off” during each week as well as time to tend to personal matters that you’ve put off.
- Get an extra hour of sleep.
Changes such as these don’t have to take a lot of time but can help clear your mind, improve your health, hone your focus, and provide greater satisfaction with your life and work.
James Clear shares that changing habits doesn’t have to be difficult when you go about it the right way, and advocates that change will be successful if you:
- Make it obvious
- Make it attractive
- Make it easy
- Make it satisfying
I’d welcome the opportunity to help you identify and implement a plan to change habits within your company and make that 1% shift that can yield big results. Contact me for a complimentary review of your company’s financial status.