To redefine the rules, you have to first master them. In order to get the work-life balance you want, you have to first create a structure for your business so that it can easily run at its optimal efficiency level.
If done efficiently, owning a business can be a rewarding experience that could lead to real life satisfaction. But that satisfaction generally comes at a price. Many business owners have to sacrifice their personal lives and commit to daily rigors and high stress levels just to get to a place where they feel comfortable.
The truth, though, is that it doesn’t really have to be that way. Instead of changing your lifestyle to adapt to the demands of your growing business, why not have your business fit the kind of life you lead. This doesn’t mean you go about your job wasting time, it means you set up a smart technology that will free up your time so you can work productively from anywhere - creating the structure you need to run efficiently. But in order to get there, you have to consider these three very important factors.
1. You need to have solid business processes
In the creative space, where many project-centric businesses lie, systems and structure can often feel confining or limiting. In reality, though, having a structure in place to take care of the mundane administrative tasks makes it so that those tasks can be easily repeated. Having a process that you can easily repeat allows you to be free to focus on the aspects of the job that are more valuable, like being creative. Systemizing your business not only means improving and maximizing the structures that are already in place, it also means you have to introduce new systems in areas where there are none.
In order to accomplish that, you have to identify, step-by-step, your business procedures. In layman's terms, you have to create a standard operating procedures manual that includes every aspect of your business. It is important to know that your business processes will constantly be evolving and changing, especially as your business grows. The most efficient way to create your manual is to do it electronically with the help of a Service Operations Automation solution and a lucid chart.
2. You need to foster good client relationships
Being able to improve client satisfaction usually leads to improved finances, business growth and a happier team. But, how do project managers know how to optimize their client relationships? Here are some tactics you could use to start fostering good client relationships:
Constantly Communicate - Clients depend on project managers to inform them of the status of their projects. Maintaining constant, transparent communication will ensure that they feel prioritized. The easiest way to ensure you are constantly communicating with your clients is by setting up automated triggered messages. For example, you can inform a client that you’ve moved work from the planning and design phase to development. This makes your client feel informed and relieves you of having to remember to do it.
Be transparent - In order to maintain trust in the relationship, you have to be as honest and transparent as possible. Telling your clients lies can damage your reputation, and it can hinder you ability to maintain long-term client relationships. A good way to ensure your client has the visibility they need to trust the work you're doing is by giving them access to a client portal. This will allow them to see what work is being done and how much time is spent on each task.
Do what you promise - Your word is sacred. If you promised something to your client, then you must comply. There should never be a doubt in your client’s mind whether or not you will actually do what you promised. If you have a structure in place to streamline your business process, it will free up more of your time to ensure you finalize all the promises you’ve made to your clients.
3. You need to be able to manage from wherever and whenever
Lastly, in order to do the work you love from wherever you are, you need to have a cloud solution, so that everyone on your team can access it from wherever they are. The ability to access your business process, project management system and everything else you need to run your business while out of the office is essential for anyone who either wants to take work home with them or who is visiting potential clients. The best part about having a solution that is based online is that you can begin to create that work-life balance you want. With a Service Operations Automation solution that goes anywhere you are, you’re only a step away.