Efficiency… Ah, now there’s a real power word of business. We want an efficient business with efficient processes. Our time management must be efficient. We manage clients efficiently. We even look for efficient tools to increase our efficiency. Efficiency rules.
But if you want your business to be successful, don’t be efficient.
I sat down with a business consultant recently. The business is great, we’re right where we want to be, and we’re a contender in the field. Everything is looking perfect. It’s success all the way, baby.
The business consultant didn’t look very impressed. He asked questions about competition, our unique selling proposition and our goals. He wanted to know more about our strengths and our weaknesses from our point of view. Then he asked us what a potential client would see as our strengths and weaknesses.
For nearly two hours, the consultant grilled me. It felt like an interrogation. They were good questions, ones that made me think before answering. He took notes, he tapped on his laptop, and then he sat back.
“What do you want?”
I gave him the reason I’d booked the appointment in the first place. “I’m managing more than I think I need to be. I want the business to be more efficient.”
“No, you don’t,” he responded confidently, and I blinked in confusion. I didn’t?
Why Efficiency Alone Gets You Nowhere
Businesspeople and entrepreneurs want to work less and make more. Don’t we all? Finding ways to cut back to have more time, streamlining that our business so that our business faster and better is an ultimate goal.
But it doesn’t matter how much you reduce labor-intensive tasks to improve the work flow so that your business functions at optimal efficiency. You can be the most efficient business in the world.
If you aren’t effective, then all you do is free up time. You don’t make more money.
A 5-step task reduced to 1 step is worth nothing if it doesn’t add value. There must be results that effectively improve your business. Organizing your workload and alleviating micromanaging is useless if it doesn’t help your business do more with less.
Efficiency allows your business to effectively grow or earn more revenues. That’s what you really want. So don’t be efficient. Be effective.
Now go one step further: Be effectively efficient.