The Silent Killer of Business Success
by Laurie Hayes
It seems harmless and innocent enough, but its crippling effects run rampant in the business world.
Entire days are lost, projects sloppily thrown together, and work pushed aside as entrepreneurs become slaves to its hypnotic pull.
It was designed to make life easier and speed up communications, but instead has become the nemesis of the already overextended business owner.
Have you guessed what it is? If you're reading this, there's a good chance you're also a victim of the cursed 'email.'
How many times a day do you check your email? How much time to spend each time you visit?
During a recent mastermind call, a colleague discussed challenges he was having with productivity and event management. As we broke his day into segments, we discovered he was spending 15 minutes of every hour checking email - the majority of which is spam.
Another member then shared the fact that he too had fallen into the email trap and had recently started a stat sheet. In one day alone, he checked his email 21 times! He was trying to curb his habit but was still struggling.
Several more of us chimed in confessing we had "slipped" in our email discipline efforts and were checking it more often than we should be.
Before the call ended we made a pact to check our email no more than twice a day and for a maximum of 10-15 minutes only. We will share our results at our next meeting.
An analogy one of our members shared really helped put things in perspective. Would you as a responsible business owner walk to your mailbox 10-15 times a day to collect bulk mail and advertisements? If not, why would you do it at your computer?
These challenges are not reserved for start-ups and amateurs. My mastermind colleagues who were discussing these difficulties are six and seven figure earners. Email infatuation does not discriminate!
My own coach, a multi-millionaire who has built several companies, recently discussed his obsession with email and the impact it was having on his productivity!
It's an ongoing dilemma and all you, I, or any of us can do is be aware of it, keep our activities in check and do whatever it takes to stay the course.
This time I have taken extra steps to remove email from my mind. I open the application between 11:30 and noon and between 4:00 and 4:30 p.m., take care of business then shut it down.
Tim Ferris, author of The 4-Hour Workweek, defines email as, "The greatest single interruption in the modern world" and recommends weaning yourself down to one visit a day. He's actually reached the point where he checks it once a week.
If anyone needs you badly enough they will pick up the phone and call, and if they don't, how important could it really have been?
Are you ready to get a handle on the silent business killer? If discipline is an issue, find an accountability partner or state your intentions to your mastermind group or peers. If you can't do it yourself, have others rally around you.
It takes 26 to 30 days to create a habit. Stick this out - create productive, winning habits and once you've mastered the monster, you'll be on the fast track to business success.
Copyright 2007 Laurie Hayes - The HBB Source
Laurie Hayes, founder and visionary behind The HBB Source, helps government and corporate employees break free of their jobs to live their dream of entrepreneurship. To subscribe to her FREE e-zine for valuable resources designed to create home business success, visit http://www.thehbbsource.com.