Prioritization will make or break business

by Ashvini on September 16, 2014 · 2 comments

in Entrepreneurship

As an entrepreneur , we want to do everything and do it now. Mostly entrepreneurs work alone or in really small teams. Pressures of revenue generation lead them to multiple directions. They of course want to live their own dream of creating something that astonishes the world but on the ground they need the money to fund their next month expenses.

Often dreams and reality coincide. Despite being successful on a few front, entrepreneurs don’t gain much on monetary side. This is because

a) They are new in the market

b) Their ideas are yet to find acceptance and thus revenue generating potential is limited.

As a result they often end up doing multiple things which consume their time away from the core business. Here prioritization of activities are essential. Literally it is not possible to give your time to everything and be successful in most of them .

Pareto’s Principle

80% of the effort and resources should be devoted to 20% of the work. This is corollary from the famous Pareto Principle. Pareto saw that 80% of land was owned by 20% of people . Out of that 80% of farmland 80% was further owned by 20% of those 20%. In the end he realized that a very small population owns a very large portion of land http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pareto_principle

Work needs to correspond to this.

I have learned this after a long process of trial and errors that sometimes, I need to stop doing my best job but to do only that i necessary. For example I recently started my youtube channel on Web Technologies. Though I could make it more appealing by adding more music and animations, I realised that it would take a lot of time to do so. The purpose was to get the product shipped asap (  in this case put up videos as fast as possible ). So I concentrated my efforts on editing the video better and keeping the animations to a minimum. Later on when time permits I will add more whistles and bells or hire someone to do them for me.

Prioritization is flexible and depends on the new circumstances

Prioritization is the key

If you are learning music you may learn more by devoting your 80% time on effective practicing of exercises ( that means doing repetitive stuff) and 20% on improvisation or creation. Without good coordination on musical instrument your playing would seem sloppy. Of course other days your priorities may change but that could be because of new things that you learn on the way.

The prioritization will happen through trial and error

Of course in entrepreneurship , trial and error is essential. Small entrepreneurs can never plan big ( though they can think big )  because they can’t garner resources equivalent to huge enterprises. They have limited resources but almost infinite passion. Thus it is important to focus on tasks that are most important and leave out perfection for later on. That minor beautification of web page can wait while you look for marketing your stuff.

Steve Pavlina has a great method on prioritization http://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2007/05/how-to-prioritize/.

Whether you do it in your head ( like me ) or on a piece of paper, prioritization is a must. Identify things that matter and work on them.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles  at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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{ 2 comments }

Adrienne September 19, 2014 at 1:45 am

Hey Ashvini,

I haven’t conquered the 80/20 principle quite yet. I just have so much I want to get done and I wear myself out trying to accomplish it all. That’s why I always seem to be behind and not able to finish what I need.

For instance take my product as an example. I’m still not finished with it and I wanted to release it next month. I just have not had the time to devote to it because I have to do the tasks right now that are making me money and then keep up my community so that they’ll still be around and eager to help promote my product. By the time I do all of that I’m exhausted at the end of the day.

Most people would say stay up until midnight or get up earlier to do what you need to get done if you really want to. Granted, I really want too but I have to have my sleep or I’ll make myself sick. I inherited that from my Dad unfortunately and trust me, I’m not a lazy person. I just can’t function and think past a certain time.

I’m just hoping once I get past this release I can change up my schedule because I’m going to have a membership site and I want that to help be a money generator for me. We’ll see!

~Adrienne

Ashvini September 25, 2014 at 4:25 pm

Hi Adrienne,

I have learned that we cannot do everything irrespective of the feeling that we want to do it all. But somedays I neglect other things in pursuit of a single agenda. I think that is time worth spent because only strong focus can achieve desired result.
My suggestion would be to keep going and not to get overwhelmed. I have started to understand that there is only so much I can do. If it spills over , well I tried ;).
Thanks for your comment :)

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