keeping entrepreneurs on track

Keeping entrepreneurs on track is very much like herding cats.

Don’t get me wrong. I love working with entrepreneurs.

You know the one’s I mean. Steve Jobs described them as “the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

You need a special type of patience and insight to work with people like this. I get to work with people who have this genius within and feel my focus is to help them release it.

I would like to think I keep them on track. But, I flatter myself. You don’t keep entrepreneurs on track, you just know what needs to get done to keep the track clear for them to do what they do best. Innovate, hustle, produce.

You see ‘would be’ entrepreneurs are still doing stuff they should not be doing. Like arranging meetings, preparing presentations, getting ‘bogged down’ with emails and other distractions. Distractions that take them away from where they are meant to be focused. Working in their business instead of on it. Typically, they are frustrated because they can’t understand why they are busier than ever but not getting where they know they should be.

Distractions are the enemy

Technology and social media can help us all connect and get more done faster but at what cost? Competitors are not the problem, distraction is.

A savvy Virtual Personal Assistant who is already working with ‘a few crazy misfits and rebels’ has the clarity to see who to keep the tracks clear so the entrepreneur stays on track and accountable.

rebecca crossRebecca Cross is an Award Winning Virtual PA with a background experience working with IBM and the Wall Street Journal, amongst others. She specialises in providing creative business and administration support for entrepreneurs and business owners who understand the value of working on their business, rather than in their business. She is especially looking to work with business start-ups, entrepreneurs and professionals who travel extensively

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Staying Focused in 2016

Staying Focused in 2016

I work with many people who need to stay focused in order to achieve that which they set out to achieve. I would like to think that, as a virtual personal assistant (VPA), I help entrepreneurs meet this challenge.

And it’s a challenge for everybody who wants to be successful because, let’s face it, there are so many distractions that can dilute our effectiveness. Pull us off course.

In his post, “How to Stay Focused”, Brendon Burchard nails it, even suggesting that we actually make fewer decisions and that we stop browsing. Heaven forbid, this is probably how you found my post.

One of the biggest challenges, covered in Brendon’s excellent video, is to get action orientated entrepreneurs to say no more often than they say yes.

Anyway, you be the judge. Discover your focus for 2016 to make it the best year ever.

Read Brendon’s Original Blog here: http://brendonburchard.tumblr.com/post/112317302023/how-to-stay-focused

rebecca crossRebecca Cross is an Award Winning Virtual PA with a background experience working with IBM and the Wall Street Journal, amongst others. She specialises in providing creative business and administration support for entrepreneurs and business owners who understand the value of working on their business, rather than in their business.

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What is the Purpose of Automated Email Replies?

I want to pose a question: what is the purpose of automated email replies?

It’s interesting to note the number of automatic email replies I receive.  What is this compulsion to reply instantly. Perhaps the same knee jerk reaction to view every text and answer every mobile phone call in preference to staying in touch with the person they are speaking to live.

Sorry, I digress.  Back to automated email replies.  I received this response at 12.48pm today and I wonder if my reaction is typical.

Thank you for your email ~ Please accept this as notification that it has been received and that I will reply as soon as I am able to.

I would like to kindly remind people that during the week I generally only run the ‘office’ side of my business during office hours 9 – 5. At the weekends I am usually working both Saturday and Sunday all day with my clients.

I will endeavour to reply to all messages as soon as I am able to.

Kind regards

These would be my observations – Office hours are normally 9–5 and as my email was received in the middle of these hours, it could have been answered or a meaningful reply could have be provided a few hours later.  Why do I need any confirmation it has been received?

I don’t expect an email to be answered any faster than a letter, so why is there this obsession a reply by return? If my message was that urgent I would make a phone call.

The person who sent me this email sounds overworked. Working 7 days a week is not a strength, it’s a weakness.  She is either a workaholic and probably not at all interesting or disorganised.

First of all she should ditch this unnecessary email response – it will respect and save time and distraction for everyone who receives it. Secondly, I would recommend she choose 20 minutes at the end of each day to review and reply but only to emails where she can contribute something of value. Others she should ignore.

To reduce her workload to something balanced and sensible she should ask for the help of a Personal Assistant audit, if only to help determine how to streamline her workload and to discover her real values and where she should focus for greater productivity.

Working long hours is not why most people start a business.  Perhaps, it’s time to stand back and re-focus on why we are in business and how we are doing against that purpose.