When Business Should Be Simple (And When It Shouldn’t)
When you start out in online business everything seems very complex. You have to learn about a million things in seemingly no time. If you read entrepreneurial forums then you will have hundreds of different tricks, tips and strategies which are all considered “the next big thing.”
It all becomes a bit of a headache.
Business is complex at times. However it isn’t complex all the time. Sometimes, business should be easy.
The question is, “when should business be difficult and when should it be simple?”
When Business Is Tough
When you are an entrepreneur you are paid to ask questions and deliver answers.
Asking the question is where business should be tricky.
The average guy who works at his office job is not paid to ask the questions. He’s paid to answer the questions in the form of a service the business provides. I’ve written about this before here.
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Your job as the boss of your personal company is to ask the right questions. This is difficult.
- What product do you provide?
- What aim is that product achieving?
Those are simple and key questions that you need to ask and answer. What is the point of your business?
However, there are a ton of other businesses aspects which you also need to answer. These are the tricky things and it’s the reason you get to keep the profits and your employees don’t.
- Do you need to engage in email marketing?
- When should you start spending money on advertising?
- Do you need to increase your prices or decreased?
These fundamental problems are the majority of your job as an entrepreneur.
These are the problems which you need use your brain power for.
This might sound pretty severe, but it’s a lot easier to cope with when you realise that you only have to answer the questions once to find a solution.
Let’s say you are starting with email marketing. You need to find out how to do email marketing. Then you need to work out which software to use. Following that, you need to learn how to set up an auto responder and what to put in your emails.
Those are all questions which you need to answer. It will hurt your brain. You will have to learn a lot and you have to work hard. But once you’ve worked out what it is you’re doing, the problem is solved. All you need to do is implement it. That is the easy part of any business.
When Business Should Be Easy
When you have answered the questions above about any aspect of your business, you need to develop a process that makes the rest of it easy.
If you are a copywriter, then the actual copywriting should not be difficult. You should have a process in mind that you follow every single time you get a new client or a new project.
I talk endlessly about business processes and systems on this site. It probably bores a lot of the readers, but it’s the difference between succeeding and failing.
It is also the difference between being a sole trader and having a business.
Also, it’s impossible to expand if you do everything from scratch every time will stop is also badly health. You will get stressed, you will make mistakes and you will eventually get out-competed by people who have better processes.
Think back to this article I wrote on the OODA loop months ago.
Essentially, a good system works just like the OODA loop – Observe, Orient, Decide, Act.
Your business – the whole system – is based on delivering the action.
You have to do the hard work up front by asking the right questions, but when you do, the last part of the equation will take care of itself.
Let’s Use An Example
You want to make money from niche websites. The first time you build a niche website, you’re going to get a lot wrong. That’s natural. But you need to learn from the mistakes you make.
When you build your second niche site, you realise that there are things that you do exactly the same because you got them right first time. Those are things you need to pay attention to, because if you write them down and keep them locked somewhere; you’ll know exactly what to do next time.
After you’ve written a few product reviews, you’ll hopefully realise that there are lots of similarities between the articles you write. You can break those down into perfect, reusable templates by using this exercise.
For niche websites, throwing in the extra touches isn’t normally worth it – you don’t need to have a Twitter account, nor do you need an emailing list. But if you’ve done these things for other purposes, and it’ll only take you a few minutes to set up the systems for your niche sites, then you might as well do them.
At this point, you’re building things into your system which are competitive advantages for your niche sites. Providing you learn from what you do right these systems build themselves. Remember, you’re only answering the question once. The implementation is the easy part.
Once you’ve answered the question, you can implement everything you learn across every niche site you build.
Niche sites are a single example, but you can apply this to any business. Ask the questions once, work out the best course of action, learn from what goes right (as well as what goes wrong) and then turn the answers you have into systems of action that require no further cognitive input.
If you do this, you’ll find that your productivity goes up, your business is streamlined and you can do most of your business tasks on autopilot.
Or you can hire them out to man or machine once you have the funds.