Setting boundaries in your business and your personal life is something every female business owner should be doing. The need to set boundaries is especially true for those with the ‘Nurturer’ money personality profile, who often find this quite a challenge.
Why would any woman in business want to set boundaries? Well, by not putting them in place; you are just making it more challenging to make money.
Here are three business boundaries you can start to set straight away:
Business Boundary 1: Protecting Your Work Time
No matter how many or few hours in the day you can work, while still juggling all your other responsibilities for the home and family, you need to get strict on sticking to those hours. It doesn’t matter if it is two hours every other day, or four-hour days, those hours need to count. Every minute needs to count.
Don’t get sucked into social media or do the washing during work time or agree to meet a friend for coffee and cake. These are just distractions. Friends won’t appreciate that you have working hours that you need to stick to if you don’t tell them. They may not understand if they aren’t a business owner, and that’s fine, they don’t have to, although most friends will when you explain it to them. “Sorry, I’m at work then” is enough of an explanation. Let’s face it, that’s probably all you would need to say if you worked for someone else.
Business Boundary 2: Slice Up Your Time
Business owners need to be strict with themselves, and that includes becoming crystal clear on what you’re going to do and when. Carve up your time into meaningful slices of time and allocate your work activities accordingly.
I find working in 90-minute cycles works well, with half-hour breaks in between, but you can carve up slices of time, of 20 minutes, half an hour or an hour – it’s your time, so you can slice it as you like. You choose a period and then divide your daily tasks, client appointments, etc., into these time slots.
Don’t forget to create a time slot to deal with your finances regularly. You need to monitor how you are doing financially and make changes to any products or services that are performing well (you want to put effort into selling more as well as ditching those that aren’t profitable).
Also, allocate some time in your diary for YOU. A burnt-out business owner is never going to make any money!
Business Boundary 3: No More Free Stuff
Stop giving away your stuff for free! It is that simple.
The Nurturers will give away so much value that they could be using to generate additional income for their business. This ‘giveaway’ can be not just items with a zero-price tag, but giving extra time and value to clients, or even selling their assets (intellectual assets or time) too cheap. Does this sound like you? If you’re unsure, ask one of your business buddies for an honest answer and when they confirm that you give away too much, take them seriously. Stop and review your business and pricing.
Of course, you want to give value to your customers, and you should continue to do so. When you set boundaries you are not saying ‘no’ to providing value or exceptional service, you are saying that for the price being charged you are giving x, and if the client needs y or z, then you will let them know, and you won’t just be giving it to them for free.
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