Why did you start your business?
Sure…you want to make more money, be your own boss, and do work you love.
But at the end of the day, most people become entrepreneurs for one reason.
They want more freedom!
But if you’re anything like 90% of the entrepreneurs I’ve worked with, once you started your business, you had a rude awakening.
Despite being a #entrepreneur…you have more stress, more work, and less freedom than you did as a 9-5 employee.
So today, I’m going to help you fix this.
I’m going to teach you how to slash 2-3 hours a day off your working hours (maybe even more) without losing a dime in profit.
This process isn’t going to happen overnight…
…And to hit this lofty goal, you’ll be required to spend more time working ON your business in the short-term so you can spend less time working IN it later.
With that said…
Let’s get to work helping you achieve the freedom-filled lifestyle you’ve been after for years.
1. Audit Your Work Week
The first step to creating more freedom in your life and business is to ruthlessly assess the FACTS of your life and business as they stand today.
Imagine your business as a box of Legos – you need to dump every piece in the box on a table where you can see it clearly.
Think about everything you do over the course of a week, month or year when you’re working.
And I do mean EVERYTHING…social media, payroll, uploading videos to YouTube, managing accounts, sweeping the floor, checking stats, customer service, writing emails, planning your day – all of it.
To do this effectively, I want you to complete a simple challenge for me this week…
Create a new Google doc or buy an extra journal and, for the next 3-7 days (depending on how much variety you have in your workdays), I want you to jot down everything you do for your business in real-time.
If you’ll do this, I promise that you’ll quickly identify a few tasks you can delegate immediately before doing anything else in this guide.
But for now, just track what you do.
Get the Lego pieces out of the box and onto the table.
And get prepared to give that box a serious makeover.
2. Identify Your REAL Money-Makers
Once you’ve completed the audit, you’ll probably notice that you’re doing a ton of “stuff” to keep your business running that doesn’t actually involve making money.
And the next step in the process is to go through the list you created line-by-line and separate the tasks you wrote down into two columns.
“Money-Makers” and “Everything Else.”
As you’re doing this, be very careful about how you identify these activities – there’s a MAJOR difference between recording a podcast that drives qualified leads to your sales process (A money-making activity).
And actually editing the audio, uploading it to iTunes, embedding it on your blog and posting on social media about it (‘keeping the lights on’ admin work).
Now that you know HOW your business makes money, place a check mark next to everything that makes you a LOT of money.
When you’re done, you’ll have a list that might look a little something like this:
|Non-Money Making Activities||Money-Making Activities|
|Check FB/IG DMs & Comments||Plan & Scheme Biz Growth||✔|
|Check Emails & Reply||Write (Emails & Sales Copy)|
|Create Promotional Assets & Ads||Architect Promos||✔|
|Build Marketing Pages||Create Products|
|Program CRM||Create Offers||✔|
|Publish Content||Client Calls||✔|
|Support Questions||Videos (Ads, Promos & Content)||✔|
|Check Stats (Ads & Content)||Book & Do Sales Calls|
Before we madly outsource everything we can on the left, let’s reflect on our end goal.
Finish work by 2 pm every day without cutting profit.
To get there, we’ve got to face one alarming truth: Most businesses do too many things that are **good** at converting into interested prospects into customers.
Very few businesses are incredible at doing things that convert interested prospects into customers.
So before we begin the process of elimination, automation, and delegation we must first…
3. Focus On Conversions
Making more money (or finishing work early without cutting profit) doesn’t mean adding more revenue streams that operate without you to your business.
If we’re going to take three (or more) hours of work off your plate every day, you need to be earning a LOT of money for the time that you invest…
NOT having more ‘stuff’ to worry about.
So take a look at the activities that make you a LOT of money.
In the example I gave, I included things like architecting promotions and creating offers, as well as filming video content, as the most profitable activities…
Yet there’s a difference between dedicating time to crafting a promotion for a $97 product and a $2,000 coaching service (especially if you can modify that to become a group coaching offer).
If you need to, look back at your month-on-month sales numbers for the last 12-24 months. See if you can notice trends between the products you sold, price points, the types of promotions you ran, and the marketing message you used.
If you know whether charging up-front for a high-ticket offer makes you more money from less work than selling something at a lower price and including an upsell…
And that most of your sales came from emails rather than Facebook ads…
And your marketing message was about the goals of your prospects (rather than the things they want to eliminate from their life)…
Your job is to double-down on that process, borrow time from everything else and become incredible at converting THAT sales process into money.
I’m not saying everything else should stop, I’m saying that we just discovered the activities that pay you the highest amount per hour – our most important metric right now.
And to achieve the kind of freedom you’re after, you must accept that you don’t have time to do all of the “grunt work” necessary to attract thousands of people to your highest converting offer each month.
Your goal is to achieve the same income with fewer people (in other words, increasing your conversion rate even more).
4. Wake Up Earlier & Invest in the #1 Profit Driver
I’m going to blunt.
If you aren’t making the money you want right now, the reason is simple…
You haven’t developed your high-income skills to a sufficient degree to make the money you desire. Period.
Earning more and working less is always a problem of SKILL, not time.
Whether you need to improve your copywriting, over-the-phone sales, leadership, or social media marketing (which you can learn more about here), you must identify the skill that’s most relevant to your business and double down on it.
Right now that’s your #1 priority – which means you must use the most important time of your day to make that happen:
By devoting only 30-60 minutes every morning to developing your high-income skills–whether it’s reading books, going through courses, practicing sales role play, practicing your copy, or talking with a coach–you can quickly transform your money-making skills from “good” to “incredible.”
You’ll start making more money in the hours you’re currently working, and that means we can use that extra profit to…
5. Outsource, Delegate & Eliminate
Having a business is like having a child – you would never do anything that might cause it pain…
…And you certainly don’t trust just “anyone” with taking care of your kid.
Giving someone else the responsibility over an important area of your business is like sending your child to their first day of school, – TERRIFYING….
But the stone cold truth is that SOMEONE ELSE can do the tasks you don’t need to do faster, better, and more efficiently than you can (and they’ll probably enjoy it a helluva lot more than you do!)
Just like a teacher spends all day actually helping children become functional adults (which you don’t), SOMEONE out there on the internet spends all day helping customers with their support questions (which you shouldn’t because you have a business to run).
SOMEONE out there has spent a huge amount of time thinking about the best way to build a brand by publishing and sharing content on YouTube or social media.
SOMEONE out there has devoted thousands of hours to mastering SEO, content creation, and email marketing.
And even though it might seem like an “expense” to hire this “someone” to help manage your business…it’s nothing more than a trade-off.
Think about it like this…
If your goal is to make $250,000 in 2020 while working only 5 hours a day (from 9 am to 2 pm), this means you need to make roughly $200/hour.
And you’re never going to do this working on $10-$50/hour tasks.
If you can shift your focus to even bigger profit-driving opportunities and attack projects that will drive $300-$400/hour, you can outsource everything else without taking a hit to your bottom line.
Now here’s the thing…
To free up such big blocks of time to focus on the key profit drivers won’t happen overnight. And to make it happen you’ll need to…
6. Engage Harder Than Ever
Research shows that at least two-thirds of workers in America are “highly disengaged” from their work.
And it won’t surprise you to know that they don’t earn as much money as those people who DO concentrate and engage…
But here’s the crazy part…
According to research from Gallup, simply engaging more deeply in your work can contribute almost two and a half times more earnings.
As a business owner you’re probably not highly disengaged – but the numbers are in on engagement…
And that’s BEFORE you factor in that we’re talking about deep concentration specifically on those tasks that ALREADY make you a bunch of money.
The reason why most people in America don’t do this is simple: It’s really hard.
The human brain is only capable of maintaining this kind of focus for around 50 minutes before performance diminishes.
Dr Srini Pillay, Harvard professor and author of “Tinker, Dabble, Doodle, Try” says to imagine that your brain’s ability to focus is like a source of light…
It can either be incredibly concentrated – like a spotlight on one particular task or activity – or very scattered, like a chandelier that illuminates everything.
To allow yourself the mental capacity to laser in on your work and perform at the highest level you can, you MUST be taking regular breaks every 50 minutes to allow your brain to focus on nothing.
For five or ten minutes out of every hour – wherever possible – you should step outside and stare into the distance at nothing, or doodle mindlessly on a piece of paper while listening to your favorite song.
(Social media doesn’t count as un-focussed brain activity, BTW)
When you ARE working, you must deliberately concentrate as hard as you would when rock-climbing without a harness, or doing brain surgery.
There’s a huge difference between sitting down in front of your computer to tap away at a new email campaign, or do a sales call with a potential prospect…
And concentrating like life itself depends on it while using ALL your training and skills.
Obviously that requires more effort than showing up and mindlessly getting things done – which is why you must give your brain that break. Every time you sit down for a period of brief work, set a 50-minute timer on your phone and make sure you obey the need for your brain to reset.
If you want to finish work by 2pm, you need to be this engaged – and your brain needs you to give it a chance to recover.
When you combine this type of highly engaged work with this final step, you’ll enjoy a level of freedom that most people only dream of:
(If you want more on this, be sure to check out this amazing article from Cal Newport)
7. Optimize Your Calendar for Maximum Output
Squeaking a few extra minutes of free time from the end of your day – and gaining as much productivity as possible from the time you do spend working – requires some fine-tuning of HOW you get tasks done.
You’re in the middle of one of your deep work, 50 minute blocks of intensely engaged productivity, madly tapping away on your computer.
You’re in a flow state, CRUSHING it – and suddenly there’s a blackout.
Once the power comes back on, how long do you think it’ll take you to return to that state of flow where you were performing at your absolute peak?
The stunningly scary answer is over 20 minutes.
It doesn’t matter if you picked up your phone and surfed on Instagram while you waited for the power to turn back on, or pulled out a pen and paper and kept working on something else…
That 20 minutes of lost time doesn’t refer to how long it takes you to recover from a distraction…
(whether it’s out of your control like a blackout, or in your control like answering emails every time your phone dings)
You LOSE 20 minutes getting back in that concentrated flow state when you switch between tasks.
If you read this blog long enough, you’ll know better than to allow another person’s agenda to interrupt that state…
What you might NOT know is that you can save huge chunks of time by scheduling similar tasks together on your calendar.
If we look at the example list of activities that make a LOT of money above, it included things like making videos (speaking), making offers (writing and creativity), and client calls (speaking).
SWITCHING between tasks such as speaking on a video to writing a sales email to speaking on a coaching call does terrible thing to your ability to get into flow.
Wherever possible you should set your day and weekly calendar to batch similar tasks together.
If half of your most profitable money-making activities include writing and creating, and half include speaking with customers…
Split your week in half and dedicate certain days (or mornings) where you ONLY write and create, for example.
This may sound like a small adjustment, but when you combine it with ruthless minimization (or delegation) of ANY tasks that don’t make you a lot of money…
And MULTIPLY that against your ability to produce and perform at an exceptional level…
Your business transforms from a box of Lego pieces that all requires snippets of your focus into a productivity machine.
If you can commit for a short period of time to significantly increase your skills and conversion rates within that machine…
(And if other people are ‘keeping the lights on’ for you…)
You’ll enjoy an extraordinary level of freedom that most people never dream possible:
A full afternoon to do whatever the heck you want (and all the money you need to actually enjoy it)
Over to you…
As the old saying goes, “Success loves speed”.
And I challenge you to begin implementing the lessons shared in this guide TODAY.
Start your delegation journal, batch your tasks together in your calendar, and try out the 50/10 work/rest model.
Take action, no matter how small and begin building the positive momentum you need to reclaim your freedom.
And if you want a step-by-step system to earn MORE and work a LOT LESS…
Then click here to check out Craig’s newest project “The Ballantyne Method”. A step-by-step system–tested by hundreds of his millionaire clients–that will help you 2X your profits while working 10-20 fewer hours each week…
…In as little as 60-days.