Prune Your Print Business for Better Efficiencies

Prune Your LifeWhen was the last time you pruned your print business? Or your time and activities? Or your focus?

Pruning may be one of the most important activities you can spend your time on in order to accelerate your progress toward your goals.

As we prune away those items that do not bear fruit, we have the opportunity to re-allocate and re-focus our time and effort on items that really make a difference in reaching the vision and goals we have for our print business.

Here are several ideas and ways to prune your print business or your own activities:

  • Review Your Vision and Goals. When we do this, we refocus our minds on what we desire to achieve. This creates a better alignment between what we want to achieve and the activities we spend our time on daily.
  • Define Your “Why. Once we have an understanding of our vision and goals, it is important to define the why—the reason we want to reach our vision and goals. The “why” or the purpose provides the fuel and motivation to keep going when progress becomes challenging. Knowing our purpose will aid us in figuring out what activities we want to spend our time on daily.
  • Conduct a Time Inventory. Go online and find a weekly time inventory sheet or use an Excel file that is broken into 15 minute increments. Take the time to record what you are working on during that week. If we are going to spend more time on what matters, we first have to know where we are spending our time so we can prune what does not help us reach our goals from our schedule and activities.
  • Review the Time Inventory. Examine the time inventory and highlight those activities that are not contributing to the vision and goals you have for your print business. This will give you a sense of what you can prune.
  • Delegate or Eliminate. Create a list of those activities that you want to stop doing. Next, decide whether the activity is even worth being done by you or someone else in your company. If the activity is not worth doing in the sense that it does not take you or your print business where you want to go and there are no negative consequences of not doing it then eliminate it. Next, review all the remaining activities and decide how you can possibly delegate it to someone else and delegate it. If you need additional support for the important activities, consider contacting a company that you can contract for a part-time person such as eaHelp.

If you regularly prune your print business, you will find that you will make more progress faster toward your goals and you will also have more satisfaction in what you do.

You will be working on what is your unique ability and delegating what others can do better than you.

What has worked for you when pruning your activities?


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4 replies
  1. John Corley
    John Corley says:

    Bill- thanks so much for this post. I really like the concept of “pruning” your business with the intent to achieve further growth. Time management is so critical for everyone, especially for sales professionals. It’s important to have the discipline to take the time to analyze how one spends his or her time. We often fall into the habit of spending too much time on unproductive activities. We need to be cognizant of the fact that we are all empowered to make a good activity plan and to measure its success regularly.

    John Corley

    • Bill Prettyman
      Bill Prettyman says:

      John, thanks for your comment. It does take discipline and building a regular habit that we put on our calendar to look at our activities and prune them with an eye toward the vision and goals we want to achieve. I battle this regularly but making sure that I look at my calendar and activities regularly makes it more likely that I will prune. Time management with an eye toward your vision and goals is the key. I wish you much success with your pruning effort!

  2. Melissa Sienicki
    Melissa Sienicki says:

    “If you regularly prune your print business, you will find that you will make more progress faster toward your goals and you will also have more satisfaction in what you do.” – I think regularly is the key word in this sentence. Pruning has to be a constant process, a process that is scheduled to take place every few months to keep your business moving forward. Thank you, Bill!

    • Bill Prettyman
      Bill Prettyman says:

      Melissa, thanks for your comment. I agree that pruning must take place every few months. It is a constant challenge to prune but I find that if I put it on my calendar it gets done. Happy pruning!

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