A common theme I see with business owners is how wasting time leads to a struggling business. And by wasting time, I don’t just mean wasting time on tasks. I also mean wasting time by taking too long to make decisions.
I once heard an excellent quote on a podcast that kicked my tail into high gear in business. The quote is, “Money likes speed.” The idea is that struggling business are struggling precisely because they are hung up on minutiae and don’t move fast enough as a result/ Here are a couple of the ways you may be wasting time in your business and didn’t even know it.
Taking too long to make decisions.
Going back to “Money likes speed” quote, in business you don’t usually have a whole lot of time to make decisions. You also sometimes don’t have a whole lot of time to act. Sometimes you have a day to get your act together before a big meeting. Other times you have a week to get a ton of work in. And sometimes you only have hours to decide something. With so little time, you have to be sure to stop wasting time by waiting too long to make decisions.
If I’m too busy getting hung up on insecurities, I don’t accomplish anything. So, instead, I just move. I try to get out of my head as much as I possibly can and simply act with what I have available.
Focusing on perfectionism.
I recently had an experience where I needed to get something to my agent very quickly and I couldn’t reach one of my contractors because they were feeling under the weather.
Rather than freaking out, I started calling in favors. In other words, I acted instead of getting in my head. Fortunately for me, a friend stepped in to help me edit some images.
My friend looked at me and said, “It’s not going to be the same font and it’s not going to look exactly the same, is that okay?”. I simply responded with, “Yes. It just needs to be good enough so I can get it to my agent. We can worry about perfecting it later.”
My friend was like, “Wow. If it were me I would never do that. I get hung up on the perfection of it all and it takes me forever to get stuff done.” In other words, she’s too busy wasting time trying to be perfect.
She’s not the only one. I speak with plenty of business owners who feel like they need to over-deliver in order to be considered good enough when in reality, done is better than perfect.
At the end of the day, perfectionism is just a form of procrastination that keeps us from achieving great things.
If I were to lump everything in this article into one piece of advice, it would be to stop wasting time overthinking your every move in business. Because, at the end of the day, overthinking only keeps us from acting and often times, you don’t have a whole lot of time to act.
Amanda is a best-selling author of "Make Money Your Honey", a book that helps freelancers and business owners understand their relationship with money and how to make it more productive. She's driven by helping others live the most productive and fruitful way possible.