increase-success-profitsAre you looking to succeed in today’s economy? As I look objectively at all economic indicators it’s tough to see how today’s economy is going to get better any time soon.

I believe now is the time where it is critical to focus on the things that are really going to help you excel and succeed in business.

When we first start working with someone at You Brand, Inc. there are really 3 things that we focus on to help people get on the path of success. These three things are critical to master in today’s economy.

1. Focus on Income Producing Activities

It’s absolutely critical to focus on income producing activities. These are things in your business that produce a net result of positive income.

Think of that one thing that you do that provides you the most income producing results. What is what one thing? Do you do that one thing multiple times a day that? If you don’t, why not?

What other things take you away from this one thing that time and time again helps you succeed?

This is a tough one because oftentimes it’s much easier to get into the motions of doing activities that don’t help you excel or gain forward momentum.

Spending time in social media, reading news sites, or just general browsing around the web while could be helping you gain knowledge and insight oftentimes not generating income.

Are you doing things that you really shouldn’t be doing? For instance, many small business owners or small professionals spend time doing their own accounting.

While this does save you money most likely it costs you more money in the long run. Typically accounting is not your core skill and the time you spend doing this could be better spent doing that one thing that you excel at. For most people focusing your time on this one item pays off tenfold above doing your typical bookkeeping or accounting task.

2. Increase Efficiency

With the current economic conditions it is critical that every second and capital you spend gets you results. These results and efforts must go farther than they would have just even a few months ago. This is why it is critical to focus on tools and processes that increase your efficiency.

Focusing on increasing efficiency daily can produce enormous results for you personally and your bottom line.

One of the best ways to figure out how to increase your efficiency is to start keeping a log of what you do each and every day. Do this for 5 – 6 days.

After you  have done this look at your tasks you do. Ask yourself is there a better ways to do each task or item on your list, go through the following questions:

Should I be doing this at this time or this often?
Email is one of these. Is it really efficient to check your email more than twice a day? Will answering this question on a forum in LinkedIn get you the results or increase your bottom line?

It’s so easy these days to get distracted and to focus on things or tasks that really shouldn’t be done or can be put off for more important items.

Is there a tool for this?
Sometimes the things you do or the task you perform can be more efficient with the right tool.

I’ll go back to email here, on my personal email I have opted in to just about any marketing list you can think of. I do this to know what other people are doing but also to stay on my game with sales copy and trends.

But I don’t spend any time daily looking at these emails, they are all set up via rules to go to a folder so I never see them. If I would spend a few minutes each day moving these or even seeing them in m inbox this wouldn’t be the most efficient use of my time. It would be a distraction.

The key is I use a tool that helps me with this sorting and sifting of email.

Can I outsource this?
Outsourcing is one of the best ways to get things done. Believe it or not you can outsource more than you can imagine. The book 4 hour work week was written a few years ago and spoke to this well keep in mind that it has gotten even easier to outsource the tasks to help your efficiency.

Great examples of tasks that you can outsource are research for content or market intelligence, these are prime activities for outsourcing.

3. Go to Experts

mr-miagiIf you are being beat up by bullies in skeleton outfits would it make sense to go online and start learning defense techniques or to call up Mr. Miyagi?

This one is tough for a lot of people. Often times we want to dive in and figure it out for ourselves. If you think about it is this really the best use of your time and your efforts?

I’ve already mentioned above accounting and outsourcing but here is another example even more critical.

Let’s say you really felt you weren’t getting the type of search engine exposure you thought you should be getting. You have two options here.

You could dive in head first into learning not only the basics of search engine optimization (SEO) but also search engine research and where SEO is currently going. What you would find is the depth and breadth of information is great, you would also find many contracting advice and tips. This isn’t unique to SEO any specialized knowledge has these same factors.

After all this you would still have to gain the experience and real world knowledge to know what you truly need to focus on to succeed with SEO.

Instead of you spending hours upon hours learning this specialized knowledge what if you were to seek out an expert who immediately through experience and knowledge can identify your current rankings, identify what you are doing right and what you are doing wrong and help you get on track immediately?

The key here is to also focus on results. As with any expert you hire to increase your efficiency focus on the results and the bottom line.

One thing to keep  mind before you even get there is ask yourself a question such as:

If I got 50 more visitors to my website a day this would mean X for my business?

If you can’t definitively answer this question then can you really justify the expense of not only hiring a SEO specialist but you spending your personal time learning the ins and out of SEO?

My Closing Thoughts

I find that these tips are simple but often times we don’t keep focused on these simple items.

I believe if you work constantly to focus on income producing activities you will uncover opportunities you didn’t know existed. Also, being more efficient will help you focus on these activities and combining that with going to the experts will give you the benefit of specialized knowledge that oftentimes would take you years to acquire.

What other types of tips would you suggest in these economic times to help people succeed?