Five steps to successfully work from home

Are you one of the many small business owners working from home? Heck, in the age of COVID who isn’t working from home. 

 

I was an early-adopter but I’m lucky enough to have a dedicated work space, which I’ve recently redecorated. It’s full of inspiration and keeps me motivated and focused on the tasks at hand. But I know not everyone is as fortunate as I am. Many remote workers set up camp at the kitchen bench or in a cramped corner of their bedroom. If this is you, then I congratulate you for keeping up the momentum!  

The truth is, it really doesn’t matter what your set up looks like. What’s important is making it work for you. Unlike being in an office with a boss tracking your every move, when you’re at home you have to be your own self motivator, your own champion. You have to overcome the urge to procrastinate and avoid the distractions.

 

If you have kids at home, it can be even harder to find the right space. And I don’t just mean physically – to get any real work done, you need to be in the right mental ‘space’ too. 

 

But as someone who has been working from home for several years, I’ve learnt a trick or two (or twenty-two) that help to keep me on-track. 

 

In this post, I’m sharing the five steps I follow to successfully work from home.

 

Let’s get into them.  

 

step 1: systems

Five steps to successfully work from home

Having really good systems in place is a sure fire to successfully work from home. I’m not just talking about systems for your business either – I mean systems for everything. Household chores, food prep, time with your kids. You name it, it should all follow some sort of system. 

 

I work much more productively when I have my week and my days organised. I theme my days so that I can stay focused on a set of tasks. This helps me to work not just IN my business, but ON it too.  

 

For example, Monday is my content day. I write blogs, create content for the week, schedule posts and work on Pinterest. Whereas on Tuesdays I schedule meetings and appointments with my one-on-one clients. 

 

As a rule, I recommend that you batch similar tasks together. I use Wednesdays to make discovery calls with potential clients and on Fridays I record multiple episodes for my podcast. 

 

Batching keeps me head clear and my tasks organised. Plus, I like knowing where I need to focus my attention each day! 

 

I really can’t emphasise enough just how important it is to have systems for goal setting and business strategy, too. It’s essential to know what you’re working on and where you’re trying to lead your business.  

 

You will be more productive and less distracted if you have a clear focus – and it will help you to achieve your goals in the most efficient way.

 

I talk about this a lot when I’m speaking to female business owners who are taking on the role of CEO. When you work from home, no one is there to witness how you use your time. You need to set your own hours and stick to them. So make promises to yourself, and make sure you fulfil them! You’ll only have yourself to blame when you fail to meet your expectations.

 

If you just work on whatever you feel like you should be working on in that particular moment, you’re going to have much less success with your business. My recommendation is to recreate the systems that would be in place if you were working in a busy office with a boss and lots of colleagues –even if it’s just you at home on your dining table. 

Step 2: limit distractions 

Five steps to successfully work from home

The distractions are endless when you work from home. There are always dishwashers to unstack, clothes to fold, dogs to walk or kids to tutor. 

 

Almost every female business owner I’ve spoken to who works from home has said that they find it hard to concentrate. So you need to ask yourself why your ‘home’ tasks are taking priority over your paid work. 

 

There are a myriad of reasons for avoiding doing your work. Perhaps you find it difficult. Or boring. Or you’re simply not in the mood. Whatever it is, you must address what is causing you to procrastinate so you can adjust your behaviour. 

 

The other thing I’m always telling female business owners? Put your blinkers on! I know what it’s like to walk in the door after school drop off and see dishes to put away or toys to pick up off the floor. But my advice? Ignore them! Make your way to your desk instead. 

 

Having a messy house can be really frustrating but if you worked in an office on the other side of town, there’s no way you could squeeze in a few chores between 9am and 5pm.

 

If you ever find it difficult to look beyond all those other jobs you need to get to, take a pause and remind yourself why you started your business in the first place. 

 

For me I’m passionate about using marketing and content creation to help other women build successful businesses. But I want to make my business a success too! This keeps me on track and focused on the tasks that I need to do to move my business forward. 

 

Of course, one of the biggest distractions for many of us are our mobile phones. They’re hard to dismiss because we often rely on them to complete important tasks. I suggest turning your phone on silent mode if you can or even moving it into another room when you need to concentrate. Turn the notifications off and put limits around when you can check them. 

 

You don’t need to make yourself available 100% of the time – it really is ok to set boundaries and respond to that email or text at a time that suits your schedule. You don’t have to be accessible every minute of the day. 

 

Step 3: workspace

Five steps to successfully work from home

Clear desk, clear mind – or so the saying goes. Now, I know this doesn’t resonate with everyone but it absolutely resonates with me. 

 

As I mentioned at the top of this blog, I’m very fortunate to have a dedicated space in my house to work at every day but you might not be able to accommodate this, and that’s absolutely fine. Even if you just have a desk in the corner of your living room, if you can keep it organised and free of clutter I truly think it will help you to stay productive throughout your day and successfully work from home.

Step 4: TECHNOLOGY 

Five steps to successfully work from home

 

If you’re like most business owners working from home, you’re probably wearing more than one hat. In fact, on any given day you probably adopt the role of CEO, administrator, marketing officer and accountant. Phew. I’m exhausted just typing it! Which is why ‘step 4’ is all about technology. 

 

Lots of people have a fear when it comes to new tech and would secretly prefer to stick to pens and paper and notebooks. This is me to an extent too, but there is certain software that really does make working from home a breeze. I could go on forever about tech but these are the top 4 pieces of software that I rely on: 

 

Asana 

Asana is a task management platform that I use to organise my week and keep me on track. Tello and monday.com provide a similar service but I love Asana because it is a) free and b) it allows me to talk with my collaborators. 

 

Google Drive 

Nothing has streamlined my productivity more than Google Drive. As someone who juggles multiple clients at once, having a cloud-based system that allows me to share editable documents with my partners has been invaluable for my business. Plus, it’s so easy to use! 

 

Zoom 

Zoom rolls off the tongue for all of us these days but I’ve actually been using it before it was a household name. My business is service-based and I rely on Zoom to host coaching sessions with my one-on-one clients. I also use it to record my podcasts, hold monthly meetings of my Thriving Business Mums Club and to join calls with other business groups. Honestly, I’d be lost without it. 

 

Toggle 

Toggle is time-tracking software that I use to record how long I spend on tasks. It’s a brilliant project management tool that keeps me accountable for my hours and shows me if I’m charging my clients appropriately. 

 

Step 5: Take regular breaks 

Five steps to successfully work from home

Taking regular breaks is really important if you want to work from home successfully. Trust me! It might sound counter-intuitive for your productivity but staring at a computer screen all day is not healthy. Or natural. 

 

I like to set a timer every 45 minutes to remind me to move around a little or do some simple stretches. Be diligent with lunch breaks too – by that I mean actually take one. You don’t want to get yourself into a situation where you’re burnt-out. Taking care of yourself is essential and will only make your business more successful. In fact if you’re not firing on all cylinders, there won’t be a business at all. 

 

5 step recap

 

As you may have guessed, this is a topic I’m really passionate about. I love helping women like me create thriving businesses.  

 

 

To recap, here are my 5 steps to follow if you want to successfully work from home: 

 

Step 1: Get your systems in order 

Step 2: Limit distractions 

Step 3: Create a dedicated workspace 

Step 4: Invest in the right technology 

Step 5: Take regular breaks 

 

And my final, bonus tip to help you successfully work from home? Invest in a good pair of noise cancelling headphones! Just do it.

I promise you’ll thank me later.

 

If you need any help with your digital marketing or time management, I’d love to help! 

 

Or If you’d like to join a community of female business owners, sign up to my Thriving Business Mums Club here. Lastly, if you’d like to check out the podcast on this very topic, listen in here. 

 

 

 

 

Do you want to get results from your marketing?  If you struggle with making money doing the thing you love, it’s time to act.

 

Grab a marketing audit and get an hour of my expert eyes on your marketing.


Book my 4 week strategy simplified package to get your exact action plan to increase brand awareness and generate more leads.


Still not sure?


Book a free call here

The two things that will have you consistently hitting your business & marketing goals

Does it sometimes feel as if you’re treading water with your small business? Like you’re constantly working but not really achieving your goals? 

 

No doubt you started your business because you’re passionate about something. Or had experience in a particular area and wanted to share it with the world. 

But have you found it difficult to create the business that you desire? To stay on track? To hit your business goals and make sales? 

 

After all, to be successful, your business must do more that stoke your passions. It has to make money for you too. 

 

If you’re finding yourself nodding along, then keep reading. I’ve discovered the two things you need to focus on to ensure that your business is successful. 

 

And I’m going to share them with you. 

THE STRUGGLE IS REAL

If you’re a business owner and a mum, you probably wear many hats. I’m sure your priorities get muddled regularly. 

 

Most of the female business owners I’ve worked with are passionate about their career but are scrambling to hit their business goals while working from home and juggling family commitments. 

 

I get it, I’ve been there. It’s exactly how I felt when I started my business. 

 

It’s hard to block out time to work on your business and determine the direction you want it to go in. 

 

And it’s even harder if you don’t have a background in marketing or a fancy business degree. Learning new skills and new technology sucks time and energy, even it if is worth the investment. 

But over the years I have realised that there are two main things that make the difference between success or failure. 

 

Today, I’m going to delve into them for you so that you too can achieve success in your business.

 

The number one thing standing between business success and failure is you

Yes, that’s right – YOU. I know. It’s hard to hear. But only you can hit your business goals. Day after day, you must show up, take action and strive towards building your dream business. It’s possible, believe me. 

 

But you must be consistent and take your business seriously. If you treat it like a hobby, that’s exactly what it will be be – a hobby. And not necessary one you look forward to. 

Moulding a mindset for sucess

 

Have you ever thought to yourself, “Who’s going to want to hear what I have to say?” Or “I’m not enough of an expert to do this –everyone’s already got it together online.” It’s easy to allow negative thoughts like this to creep in – they happen to all of us. It’s something I still struggle with but I have learnt to control their power over me. Now, I recognise when I’m having a flare up and choose to push through anyway.

 

Overcoming procrastination 

 

 

If you’re a big procrastinator, remember this: you choose where to focus your attention every day. 

 

Sometimes it just feels easier to do anything other than the task at hand, doesn’t it? Skim a few emails? Scroll through Instagram? Check LinkedIn? 

 

Sound familiar? 

 

Oftentimes the task you’re avoiding is the one thing that will actually inch your business forwards. Still, it feels icky because it’s pushing you outside of your comfort zone. 

 

But the beauty of doing things that scare you is what’s on the other side!

 

When you achieve what you’d been avoiding or deemed ‘too hard’, even impossible, the feeling is fantastic….until the next hill comes along that you have to climb! But that’s all part of the fun, the pushing onwards.

 

It means you are transforming from the person you were to the entrepreneur you need to be to have a fulfilling, money-making business.

 

To progress forward, you must be willing to shake things up. Start a gratitude journal. Meditate to help manage the demands of a business and family. Be coachable and invest in yourself. Recognise your weaknesses and increase your skills in areas where they are lacking.

 

You’ve heard it all before but now you need to actually commit to doing them. Only then will you see positive change and consistently hit your business goals. 

 

And one more crucial step: consider where you want to be in 10 years time and write it down. Then think about what you need to do in order to reach these goals. How do you need to change personally to build the business you desire? 

 

It might sound tedious, even trivial, but it will help you on your journey towards a successful, profitable business. 

SO WHAT IS THE NUMBER TWO THING STANDING BETWEEN BUSINESS SUCCESS AND BUSINESS FAILURE? 

 

Process. 

 

You need to have systems in place that make it easy for you to work IN your business as well as ON your business. 

 

In short, you need to build a business that runs like a well-oiled machine. 

 

Time management is critical and it’s something many business owners struggle with. I’m always banging on about productivity to the members in my Thriving Business Mums Club because we’re all mums and we’re all business owners. Which means we’re all short on time.

 

It’s important to create systems in your business that allow it to run seamlessly. You need to be able to repeat processes with ease so that you’re not starting from scratch every single time you begin a new task. And it’s really important to make time to do the tasks that are going to help your business move forward. 

 

If you started work this week  thinking, “Oh, I’m sure I’ll find time to plan my content and create that lead magnet I’ve been talking about for the past three months…”, it’s unlikely to ever happen. 

 

You need to block out time in your diary and actually stick to your schedule. 

 

How you plan your week is essential to creating a successful business. 

 

Do you batch tasks and theme your days?

 

Do you have a system for doing your finances? What about for content planning and creation? And where do you fit all those meetings in?

 

Distractions are inevitable, especially if you’re working from home and have children to care for. But I’m challenging you to live a life of integrity. 

 

Set yourself work hours and stick to them. Promise yourself that you will do certain tasks on certain days and …wait for it … actually do it. 

 

If your business is chaotic then your results are likely to be chaotic. So keep your promises and run your business like the CEO you are. 

 

You can consistently hit your business goals 

 

If you can take anything away from this blog, I hope it’s this: you can build a booming business that is both fulfilling and profitable. 

 

But there are two things that will mean the difference between success and failure. 

 

In my experience these two things are YOU and your PROCESSES. 

 

I hope you’ve found this post helpful but if you have any queries, I’d love to hear from you. In case you didn’t know, I explore this topic in my podcast series too. You can listen to the episode here.

 

If you’re interested in learning about my Thriving Business Mums Club or you’re wondering how to create a marketing and content strategy, please get in touch with me at any time. 

 

 

 

Do you want to get results from your marketing?  If you struggle with making money doing the thing you love, it’s time to act.

 

Grab a marketing audit and get an hour of my expert eyes on your marketing.


Book my 4 week strategy simplified package to get your exact action plan to increase brand awareness and generate more leads.


Still not sure?


Book a free call here

The three essential strategies you need in your business

If you’re a business owner, it probably feels like there are 110 things that you should be focusing your time on. I know because it’s something I struggle with every day.  

 

No matter how hard Tim Ferris tries to spin it, single-tasking just doesn’t quite pack the same punch as multi-tasking. All of us have places to be, clients to see and problems that needed solving yesterday. 

So if the thought of directing your energy and resources to one area of your business is just not where your head’s at right now, don’t panic. That’s not what this blog is about. 

 

But I do think you need to have a killer strategy in place to keep you on track when you’re struggling to come up for air. 

 

In fact, I think there are three essential business strategies that you need to have in play if you want to increase awareness for your brand, generate results and secure more sales. 

 

 

In short, I’m talking about your marketing strategy, your content strategy and your sales strategy.

What does strategy even mean and why is it important? 

Strategy. It’s a complex word that sends the best of us running for the hills (especially us creative folk). But it’s critical to the success of any business, no matter what your area of expertise might be. 

 

A strategy is a longterm plan that outlines the goals and objectives for your business, and the all important steps that you’ll take to achieve them. 

 

When I first started my business, I didn’t think I needed to worry about strategy.  I picked up clients easily and channeled all my energy into the work I was doing for them – social media management, website design and other digital marketing services. 

.

I was productive, even profitable, but I was most definitely working IN my business and not ON it.  I spent all my time creating content that helped my clients’ businesses soar while completely ignoring my own.

 

And then I started taking my business a bit more seriously.  I realised that to be successful, I needed to focus on my personal growth, my productivity as well as many other aspects of how I was choosing to run my business (and my life!). 

 

THE THREE ESSENTIAL BUSINESS STRATEGIES THAT PUT ME ON THE PATHWAY TO SUCCESS

Around two years ago, my business went through a digital transformation. I felt that with a stronger online focus, I could serve more clients and make better use of my limited time. 

 

But this also meant that I needed to look much more seriously at strategy. I had to ask myself how I was going to attract new people and convert them into paying customers. 

 

 

I knew I needed to invest hours and money into myself and my business. And I 100% believe this is something that every business owner needs to do, too.

 

Even as a marketing professional, I’m constantly overwhelmed by the endless marketing and advertising tools out there. There’s just so much choice and it’s easy to forget why you’re applying these tools in the first place – to grow your business. 

 

So I channelled my energy into learning from some of the best business heads out there, which helped me to understand the three magic ingredients I needed to promote my services effectively. 

 

Which is how I landed on the three essential business strategies: Marketing. Content. Sales. 

 

Let me walk you through them. 

 

Marketing Strategy 

 

I truly believe that the heart of your business success lies in its marketing. It’s a key way to build awareness, engage your customers and increase your sales. But your efforts can fall on deaf ears if you don’t have the basics in place. 

 

Before investing too much time and effort, you need to ask yourself the following questions: 

 

• Who is your target audience?

 

• What is your unique selling position?

 

• What do you want to achieve over the next 3, 6, 9 or even 12 months? 

 

To begin with, you might want to start by defining your ideal customer. Are they male or female? How old are they? Where do they receive messages and what do they care about? What’s going to make them listen to you? 

 

Competitor research is also critical to a successful marketing strategy. It will help you understand trends. see any gaps in your current approach and define your positioning. 

 

You’ll then want to think about messaging. Is your offer right? Are you providing a solution to your audience’s problem or are you just adding more noise to the marketplace? We both know you’ve got value to add but if you don’t frame it in the right way, your audience is more likely to tune out than sign up. 

 

And what happens when they do interact with your messaging? To make sure that your messaging is right, you need to perfectly understand your customer’s journey from awareness to consideration right through to conversion. 

 

Branding is another big component. You might have a business but if you don’t have a brand, you’ll struggle to find and maintain an audience. Branding is more than your logo or colour palette. It encompasses your voice, your vision and your mission – and when you get it right, it will speak volumes. 

 

Once you have a firm grasp on all these moving parts, you’ll want to think about the types of marketing channels and tactics you’ll use to get you to where you want to be. 

 

And this feeds directly into number two of the three essential business strategies – your content strategy. 

 

 CONTENT STRATEGY 

 

A content strategy will help you to define your marketing goals and ensure that your efforts are goal-orientated. So many business owners (myself included at one point in time) randomly show up and post whatever comes to mind without any strategy behind it. 

 

But with a clear plan in place, every bit of content you put out into the world will help to establish you as an expert voice in your field. Which will translate into tangible results –win! 

Think carefully about how you want to communicate with your audience or customers. Will you try short form or long form content? Do you want to connect with them on Instagram or do they prefer reading blogs? What about video? Or podcasts? There are many content avenues but you need to determine which one (and there could be more than one) is right for your audience. 

EFFICIENT CONTENT FOR SOCIAL MEDIA

SALES STRATEGY

 

A sales strategy will typically include your growth goals to make sure you stop leaving money on the table. 

 

When creating your sales strategy, you’ll want to think about these points: 

 

Are you following up with warm leads and helping them along the customer journey?

 

How are you going to get them to make an appointment with you?

 

What touch points do you have in place that will convert your audience into paying customers or longterm clients? 

 

Do you have automation in place to streamline any tedious or time consuming tasks that are taking you away from the actual selling part?

 

There’s a lot of things to contemplate but without a defined approach, getting people to actually buy your product or service will be challenging to say the least. 

 

A GOAL WITHOUT A STRATEGY IS JUST A WISH 

 

To put it simply, you need to determine what you are trying to achieve before you try to actually achieve it.  As the saying goes – a goal without a plan is just a wish. 

 

If you have any questions about crafting your three essential business strategies, dont hesitate to get in touch. Id love to help you reach your goals and make money! 

Thanks for taking the time to read this post, If audio is more your thing, why not check out the podcast version?  

 

 

Do you want to get results from your marketing?  If you struggle with making money doing the thing you love, it’s time to act.

 

Grab a marketing audit and get an hour of my expert eyes on your marketing.


Book my 4 week strategy simplified package to get your exact action plan to increase brand awareness and generate more leads.


Still not sure?


Book a free call here

5 Reasons Google Analytics is of Benefit to your Business?

In this post I will show you the 5 benefits of using Google Analytics for your business.

The main importance of Google Analytics to business is to understand where your traffic is coming from and to gain an insight into your audience.

But let’s delve a little deeper into this…

SOCIAL PLATFORMS

1. If you are selling products or services and you are using several platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or LinkedIn with the end goal to send people to your website; then wouldn’t it be valuable to know which of your channels is performing well? Google Analytics benefits your business by providing you with details of where your traffic is coming from.

 

CONTENT STRATEGY

2. You will also be spending time in your business creating content for your various platforms. Your content strategy should include a selection of ways you get your message across to your target audience.  For example, photos, graphics, educational and informational posts, videos etc.  It would be of great benefit to your business to know which content performs the best and to find out which type of content is leading your ideal clients to your site.

 

IS YOUR SITE WORKING WELL?

3. Where are your customers going once they get to your site? And how long are they spending there?  Again, this is valuable information because it tells you which pages on your site are working well.  The analytics can also tell you the journey that customers follow once they get to your site.  It’s useful to know that your site is easy to explore with Call To Actions in the right places.

 

ARE YOUR SITE’S PAGES WORKING WELL?

4. How well are your pages or landing pages performing? Google Analytics provides you with a Bounce Rate. This is the percentage of people that visit a single page and take no action.  For example, if someone went to your landing page and didn’t click on any buttons then that would add to your bounce rate.  This tells you if your pages are performing well and gives you a reason to change things up.

 

TARGET AUDIENCE DEMOGRAPHICS

5. The final benefit of Google Analytics to your business is detailed demographic information about your ideal audience. You may think you know who your audience is here you can get the real information.  You will learn the age, gender, geographic location of our audience.  This means you can ensure you are delivering the right type of engaging content that particular audience wants to see.

 

I hope this article has shown you why Google Analytics is a massice benefit to your business.

Look out for a blog coming soon detailing exactly how you install Google Analytics to your site.

 

HOW DO YOU TELL YOUR BRAND’S STORY ON YOUR SOCIAL CHANNELS?

HOW DO YOU TELL YOUR BRAND’S STORY ON YOUR SOCIAL CHANNELS?

Consumers are faced with so many choices when it comes to spending their spare cash, particularly in the hospitality and tourism sector which undoubtedly is the first place people stop spending when times get tough.

So you need to stand out right? Make sure you have defined what your brand is and tell your story across your social channels so you can appeal to people’s emotions?

People want to connect with you. After all that’s what ‘social’ media is all about. However, how often do we feel disconnected? So by telling your story you are trying to establish a relationship or a connection with your audience.

How do you do this?
– have great images
– share stories about the people that work in the business
– use live video or create stories of what’s happening around the business so your customers feel they get to know you.
– think about every department in your business and all the things that happen day to day. Then create content relevant to your followers and your brand message.
– follow people that have similar messages or an interest in what your business is. Then you can share their stuff to your page to reach a wider audience.