Finding your business focus in direct sales feels like trying to choose the most important emergency to have to contend with first. And that's because in a lot of ways that's exactly what you're trying to do.
- You need to grow your group, so you need content.
- But you need to get some sales, so you need parties.
- But you need to warm up your friends so you can ask for parties, so you need content.
- But you can't afford the really good graphics program until you get some sales, so you need parties.
- But you need to coach your host on how to have a good party, so you need to sit and chat.
- But you need the graphics to be able to post into the party, so you need a graphics program.
- But you need to post to your social profiles or no one will remember what it is you even do.
- But you need…
You need to breathe.
Once you join a direct sales company, there are going to be times when you feel like you can't ever just sit down without things falling apart — especially when you're new and everyone is throwing all the things at you all at once. And a lot of us like to jump right in and start tackling things right away. And when we can't get to something, we take on that guilt as if we failed.
So we focus jump or play business squirrel. We hop from one process to another to another to another and before we know it, none of our systems are truly in place because we haven't spent enough time building anything – we're just chasing the dream instead of working it.
Finding Your Business Focus is Crucial
If your dream is to own your own business, then congratulations — you're there. You've made it. You're in.
But now it's time to work that business, and that means taking a minute and finding your business focus. Which area do you need to work on first that will help support and streamline your processes while you work on the next area?
- Will a proper coaching system help you onboard new hosts faster and more easily, freeing up your time to work on parties?
- Will a proper content management system help you create and publish consistent content, freeing you up to find hosts?
- Will a proper email marketing system help streamline your marketing efforts into one channel, freeing you up to expand onto another channel?
If you are feeling overwhelmed by “all I have to do!” My suggestion is to look at one process (strategy). Just one.
Believe me, the rest of the tasks and systems are still going to be there.
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3 Steps to Finding your Business Focus
1. Make a list of the easiest things you can do quickly, and find ways to make them easier and streamlined. If taking photos and videos is the easiest thing for you to do, where you can sit down and whip out a bunch of amazing selfies in no time, that's great. But that can also lead to this problem where because they are so easy for you do to, you never truly formalize a process to do them.
If you don't formalize the process, then these easy things end up in the way. Because you think, “oh, I can just whip one of these out so fast…” and that's what you'll do. You'll completely disrupt the harder thing that needs your attention just so you can whip out the easier thing. And, sometimes, you have to do it that way.
But sometimes you have to stop using the easier thing as a crutch and do the hard thing.
So start there: what are some of the business tasks you can do that are super easy, super quick, that you could whip up in a moment's notice with nary a plan. And how can you formalize a process around them to keep them out of the way?
2. Make a list of every process you need to eventually have in place. Every business has a workflow for everything they do: blog writing is one workflow, advertising is another workflow, creating graphics is another workflow. Some of them overlap, (blog need images, after all) but each workflow still has its own need and focus.
So, how many workflows do you need to define?
- Hostess outreach and coaching
- Party planning and running
- Email marketing and newsletters
- Graphics creation
- Content marketing
For every workflow, think about the system you have in place, and what can be done to improve or streamline it. Are there ways you can streamline or automate your hostess outreach and coaching, for example? Or your party planning? And if so, what kinds of tools do you need to make it happen?
You don't need to go out and get all the tools right now, but start making a list of some of the things you'll be looking for so when it's time you can actually find what you need.
3. Build a roadmap. Now, the goals is to have all of your systems and workflows in place as streamlined as possible so that working your business feels like the dream you thought it was going to be before you started.
But systems take time to build, evaluate, tweak, and perfect. You're not going to be able to get them all set up all at once. So, you'll want to start with the easier systems first, say followup, and formalize those system. Get them up and running smoothly as soon as you can so that when you have to shift your focus onto another workflow, you know that particular one is still working for you. So, create your roadmap for when you will work on each system, and in what order, depending on which areas are easier for you.
Think of each workflow as an airplane: you have to help each one take off and achieve altitude before you can set the auto-pilot.