When you started your business, did you have big dreams and ambitions? Or even moderate dreams and ambitions?
Maybe you just wanted the free time and ability to take time off and pick your kids up from school?
Or you fancied a big house in the country, and a slightly smaller town house that you could gift to your mum?
Whether you wanted your business to give you a lavish lifestyle or just give you a bit more of what you were lacking – it’s often easy to lose track of those dreams.
When I was looking back through my notes from three years ago, I was shocked to see that I’ve not really moved forwards in all that time. The goals I had set for myself were substantially the same as this years. The progress I had made was, in many cases, non-existent.
There’s a saying “if you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got”.
If you want to move towards those dreams, you need to change how you do things. It’s not enough to write out a plan. You’ve got to decide to implement it. And make sure you actually do.
Too often, I’ve come up with the plan then got distracted when implementing it. And the reason for that is because of a number of issues I’ve got in my own brain.
I consistently underestimate how long a particular project will take. I always undercharge for the work I do. I’m always too nice when it comes to accepting change requests.
So I decided, earlier this year, that it was time to change.
I no longer take on those bespoke, open-ended projects. So there’s no estimating to be done; instead I have a series of defined, thought-out products that give you what you need but give me certainty in how long they will take to deliver.
I have a fixed price list. No more writing proposals and estimating how much it’s going to cost. Instead, I can say “here are the prices; I hope you’ll see they’re extremely good value for what you get”.
And I have a process for handling requests. When we’re at points X and Y in the process, that’s when we make those amendments. That way we stay on schedule, we all know where we stand but the end result still fits your needs precisely.
For me, the change I needed was all about money. Where do you need to make the change?