We all want our businesses to be successful, but can you be too busy? Is a stressful business owner harming their business? In the Simply Print August 2017 Newsletter, we focus on the real cost of taking too much on.

“Busy” used to be a fair description of the typical schedule. More and more, though, “busy” just doesn’t cut it. “Busy” has been replaced with “too busy”, “far too busy”, or “absolutely buried in work.”

It’s true that being productive often means being busy…but it’s only true up to a point. As you likely know from personal experience, you can become so busy in your business that you reach a crucial point…a point where your life tips over and falls apart because you can no longer withstand the weight of your business commitments.

Once you’ve reached that point, it becomes pretty clear that you’ve over-committed yourself. The trick is to recognize the signs of being too busy before you reach that tipping point. A little self-assessment can prevent you from having a meltdown.

According to lifehack.org, there are 7 signs that you’re way too busy:

  1. You can’t remember the last time you took a day off. The occasional periods of rest are not unproductive, they are essential to productivity. Extended periods of non-stop activity result in fatigue, and fatigue results in lower-quality output. As Sydney J. Harris once said, “The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”
  2. Those closest to you have stopped asking for your time. Why? They simply know that you have no time to give them. Your loved ones will be persistent for a long time, but once you reach the point where they’ve stopped asking, you’ve reached a dangerous level of busy.
  3. Activities like eating are always done in tandem with other tasks. If you constantly find yourself using meal times, car rides, etc. as times to catch up on email, phone calls, or calendar readjustments, it’s time to lighten the load. It’s one thing to use your time efficiently. It’s a whole different ballgame when you have so little time that you can’t even focus on feeding yourself.
  4. You’re consistently more tired when you get up in the morning than when you go to bed. One of the surest signs of an overloaded schedule is morning fatigue. This is a good indication that you’ve not rested well during the night, which is a good sign that you’ve got way too much on your mind. If you’ve got some much to do that you can’t even shut your mind down when you’re laying in bed, you’re too busy.
  5. The most exercise you get is sprinting from one commitment to the next. It’s no longer opinion that exercise promotes health lives, it’s proven fact. If you don’t care about that, that’s one thing. If you’d like to exercise, though, but you just don’t have time for it, you’re too busy. If the closest thing you get to exercise is running from your office to your car because you’re late for your ninth appointment of the day, it’s time to slow down.
  6. You dread getting up in the morning. If your days are so crammed full that you literally dread even starting them, you’re too busy. A new day should hold at least a small level of refreshment and excitement. Scale back until you find that place again.
  7. “Survival mode” is your only mode. If you can’t remember what it feels like to be ahead of schedule, or at least “caught up”, you’re too busy.
Keeping the personal touch.

At Simply Print, we never want to get so big that we lose the personal touch. I’m a believer that customer service is what your clients will judge you on. You either provide good customer service or you don’t. There’s no in between. Average customer service, or good customer service some of the time, just doesn’t cut it. Your clients will go to your competitors if they don’t get the best customer service from you. We’ve always prided ourselves on our customer service. In fact, the business is built on it. I have no doubt that if we were insanely busy, our customer service would suffer, and so would Simply Print.

Ensuring our customer service is the best. 

Quotes are our first priority. How fast you send a quote to a potential client is the very first indication of your customer service. We’ve won many jobs by being prompt with our quotes. In fact on many occasions, we’ve provided the quote and printed the job before our competitors have sent the quote. Recently I was speaking to one of our competitors about business and how busy we both were. He told me that he was so busy that he was telling people there was a two day wait on quotes. What’s the point of being so busy that you take two days to send a price to a potential client? Most people won’t wait that long, and why should they? I know I wouldn’t. If you were told that you couldn’t help wondering “If they’ve taken two days to send me a quote, how long will the actual job take?” I’d rather do 6 quotes a day and win 5, than do 30 a day and win 10, because the time wasted on the 20 you lost isn’t worth the value of the 10 you won.

Making your work place happy. 

When you enjoy what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. I’ve always said that a happy business owner keeps the client happy. At Simply Print, we’ve always enjoyed our work. Below are a few things you can do to help stay happier at work.

Bring some “home” to your work place – Bringing family photos or items from home is a good way to remind you of what is important, and the reason you work so hard. Bring some sporting trophies or special certificates to display. I have a section of our factory devoted to my favourite football team the Brisbane Broncos. I have photos of myself with players, souvenirs and laminated posters.

Be grateful – Whenever a client gives you work, think of how lucky you are that someone has trusted you enough to want to do business with you. When someone sends you an order by email, always reply and thank them for the order. This lets the client know that you appreciate them, and it makes you feel good too. You can verbally thank them by phone too. Also, be grateful for your employees. Thank them regularly for their hard work, and occasionally throw a little party. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just a few pizzas on Friday will do the trick. You’ll feel much better for it and so will your staff.

Do something at work that makes you happy – Think of something you enjoy doing and then see if you can spare some time to do it at work. It might be reading a book on your lunch break, doing a crossword, or perhaps taking a short walk. Personally, I love to play my old records. I have a large record collection and don’t have the room for them at home, so I have them proudly displayed at work and they play all day in the background. The added benefit is I am forced to get off my chair to change them, so I’m not sitting too long in front of the computer.

New Specials. 

We have a new batch of specials, so make sure you check them while you’re here. If you select the home page, you will also see a countdown special. When the countdown timer reaches zero, the offer expires. This will be a regularly changing feature on the home page with discounts on a large range of our products including business cards, brochures, invoice books, stickers and colour copying.

We’ve also printed some brand new desk pads to give away. Drop in and claim one before they all go. These are great organisers for your desk, with a 16 month calendar and heaps of scribble space.

Until next time, if you have any print questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Brett and Brad.