As a business owner, you have a lot on your plate and I am completely obsessed with making those things easier by making them into regular, intentional routines, and systems that are set up to actually serve you. So in this episode, I’m sharing the seven types of routines that you need to have in place to be successful as an entrepreneur.
Let’s dive in.
- Listen in to hear the 7 types of routines & systems you need to consider as you are building & growing your business:
- Personal Organization & Planning
- Project Management
- Marketing and Lead Generation
- Client Onboarding, Delivery, Off-boarding
- Energy Management
Rather read before you listen? ⬇️
As a business owner, you have a lot on your plate. And I’m obsessed with making some, most, or all of those things easier by making them into regular routines & systems that are set up to serve you. So in this episode I’m sharing the 7 types of routines you need to have in place to be successful as an entrepreneur. Ready?
We have a lot going on and you are wearing a lot of hats. Business owner, team lead if you have one, coach or service provider, content creator, salesperson, customer service rep, CMO, CFO, COO, CEO – hell, you are the entire c-suite for your company. Maybe you are also a mom, partner, fitness enthusiast, sister, daughter, friend, auntie, volunteer, mentor, student— legit, this list could be an entire podcast episode. In summary, you have a lot going on.
So much so that there might be some of this roles & responsibilities that you’ve been neglecting, putting off for another time. You just lean into creating content because that is safer than actually reaching out to potential leads and hearing crickets or worse hearing no. You spend all your time delivering the service you provide because you have no time to do anything else.
Running a successful business is about more than just signing clients & delivering whatever service you provide, or creating reels, or dreaming up another cool lead magnet.
There is a big difference between being a freelancer who just does the work and the CEO of your own business. And I’m guessing that if you are listening to this, you are wanting to step into that CEO role, but are overwhelmed by everything that requires.
But just like you didn’t learn to walk, or coach, or take freakin’ awesome wedding photos, or whatever it is that you are incredible at and getting paid for, overnight— being a CEO isn’t something that you are just supposed to know how to do. Knowing how to run a successful business isn’t something that is just supposed to come naturally. It’s a learning opportunity.
And just like majors and degrees at university are broken up into categories, so is becoming a great CEO and running a successful business. So, i’m breaking it down into categories for you too.
But not just any categories. As someone who talks leveraging your time & making your goals easier to achieve by creating habits & systems around them, you better believe that’s how I’m presenting this to you too.
The 7 Types of Routines
So, here are the 7 types of routines & systems you need to consider as you are building & growing your business:
- Personal Organization & Planning: This is all about how you as the CEO manage your time & make decisions. I start here because as the founder of your own company, whether you are on your own right now or have a small team, everything is reliant on how you conduct yourself, how YOU are running the business. You are the steward of this ship and knowing the direction in which to go, how to get there, readjusting, realigning, & strategically moving forward are all important aspects that you need to master. These systems include your calendar & schedule, vision casting, reviewing metrics & using those numbers to make decisions, goal-setting, decision-making, and how you keep yourself moving forward & buoyed. Now, this might be pretty direct and straightforward, but there is an aspect that isn’t as obvious. And that is your mindset. Stop groaning about that word. You know it’s important. In fact, I spent entire podcast episodes talking about just mindset, like episode 011: The mindset of a productivity powerhouse. But what you need to know here is that your beliefs and attitudes about your business, what is possible or impossible, and how you fit into your industry & the world as a whole is the foundation on which not only all of your other organization, planning, & decision-making is built on, but legit every other type of system I’ll share with you. In short, it is important & can’t be neglected.
- Project Management (Internal): This is all about how all the things in your business run. Where are task lists and to-dos kept? What recurring tasks do you need to be doing? This is the central hub of all the things that are required to run your business on a day-to-day basis. It is where you house all the how-tos, need-to-dos, want-to-dos, should-dos, and a breakdown of how all the other systems run. Now, when I talk about project management, you probably think of tools or software like Asana, Clickup, Trello, and while those are great solutions, that isn’t exactly what I mean. Because even if you aren’t using one of those or another software, you already have a system for managing all the things, it just may not be a very effective one. Are all the details for next month’s launch scribbled in 50 different notebooks & a Google calendar? Is your potential leads list on a napkin that your well-meaning husband threw away when he was cleaning your office? Are the things that you need to accomplish this month just living inside your brain alongside the grocery list, honey-do list, & packing list for that two-day getaway you are taking in 3 months?
Now, I am gonna pause here because you are likely feeling a little called out. And that is okay. It means that you recognize that your current systems could be more effective in actually helping you run your business better rather than feeling like another thing you just have to take care of. If you are at the point where you know you need something better but just don’t have the time or know-how to do it differently, I might have something that could help you. I want you to head over to Instagram and find me at ms.erin.haworth. Click that message button on my profile and just send me the word “SYSTEMS”. I’ll send the details.
And remember as we jump back into these systems and routines that feeling called out is just an opportunity to optimize and make your life easier & your business better.
- Marketing & Lead Generation: This is where many business coaches & small business specialists have put their stake in the ground. This is just how to attract the right people to you so you can serve them. This is likely where you’ve spent most of your time behind client delivery (which we’ll chat about in a minute). Getting this system outlined & optimized is required to stop the feast or famine cycle of online service-based business. It includes social media, email marketing, content creation, visibility/PR/cross-marketing, referral marketing, advertising, messaging, reachouts, anything that will get you in front of new potential ideal clients & build that like, know, & trust factor with those already in your community.
BTW, if content creation and keeping all the posts, reels, podcast episode, videos, blogs, stories, lives— all of that straight is something that is taking up an incredible amount of your time and causing you to feel overwhelmed, I actually have an excellent free template that you can go grab right now. This is the exact content editorial template that I use to plan out & keep straight all the content that I create for my own business. Head on over to erinhaworth.com/freetemplate to grab it.
- Sales: This is a continuation of marketing & lead generation and takes your warm leads through the sales process to turn them into a paying client. This is also a pretty hot topic & niche for many business coaches & specialists because this is the direct pathway to the money, hunny. By optimizing this system, you can ensure that you are doing what actually works every single time, and stop wasting time by trying to recreate the wheel with every new potential client. You know that your potential clients excitement and urgency diminishes with every passing hour between pitch and securing the sale, so having an effective streamlined sales-process is important for your conversion rate but also because you don’t want to spend hours and hours trying to just get paid.
- Client Onboarding, Delivery, Off-boarding: This is all about how you deliver your service and hopefully an exceptional experience to your clients. It includes getting them started, getting you everything that you need in order to do your work well, getting them comfortable with how things will run, setting & maintaining expectations, delivering and overdelivering, and making sure they leave the engagement with nothing but nice things to say for both your website & when they refer other ideal clients to you. There is a lot riding on this piece and you already prioritize this well. But just because you are comfortable here and spend the most time here, doesn’t mean that there are no improvements to be made. Small tweaks and optimizations can take this from okay for the client and beyond time-consuming for you to delightful for the client and easy & user-friendly for you.
- Finance/Operations: This systems are necessary to ensure your business is an actually business and not just an expensive hobby. (Again with the called out thing, I am an enneagram 8 so I don’t sugar coat things but do know that it is coming from a place of genuinely wanting to help you create a business that you love.) This system includes the financial aspects of running your business but also compliance & legal considerations as well. Is your business entity set up and are there regular things that you need to be doing (like paying quarterly taxes) to stay in good standing and not shoot yourself in the foot later? Are you making money or losing money? Are you paying attention to your profit & loss report (which is just a fancy way of saying do you know how much is coming in and how much is going out and where it’s going?)
- Energy Management: So, energy management is something that usually gets missed in these systems and routines. And the reason for that is that we think of a business as its own living breathing thing. And while that may be the case with growth & scaling, chances are that right now your business results are directly tied to how much you can give it: time, money, attention, & yes, energy. I talked earlier about why personal organization & planning were so important as a primary system: because as the CEO you are stewarding this ship. And when it comes to energy management, if you aren’t leveraging & optimizing the energy you have, burn out & ineffective leadership will overtake you & your business. Energy management includes everything from the physical (like movement, nutrition, & sleep) to spiritual to emotional & intellectual. There is no dividing the lines between personal & business because they are all intertwined as aspects of you.
Now, as you might expect there is lots of overlap with these systems and changing one can have effect on others. And you always want to be paying attention to small tweaks you can make even after you’ve intentionally set up each one. But just starting is the hardest part.
Again, If you know you are ready for this step, to truly take your business to the level of supportive systems so you can save time and achieve everything you desire without burning out, but just don’t have the time or know-how to do it differently, I might have something that could help you. I want you to head over to Instagram and find me at ms.erin.haworth. Click that message button on my profile and just send me the word “SYSTEMS”. I’ll send the details.
I always like to end each episode with an action step that you can take right now to help you move forward and begin to implement immediately. Here is your action step for this episode: Decide one system that you want to improve. Take 10 minutes to answer these questions: What is working about this system now? What isn’t working? How would I like this system to function? And finally, what needs to change to make that possible.