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6 Business Distractions That Could Be Costing You Money
  • 29 January 2018
  • Eric Michaels

6 Business Distractions That Could Be Costing You Money

Once your small business is up and running, it’s important to fine-tune your operation on a regular basis. This process involves identifying what is working, looking for ways you can become more productive as a company, from top to bottom.

Perfecting your business model will require getting rid of anything that drains time and energy out of your staff. During your next review, look to root out these common business distractions that cost businesses money.


1. The latest, greatest app

While some technology trends can help your business, it can be easy for an entrepreneur to get infatuated with the latest bit of technology. Maybe a new work management app just hit the market and appears to be an upgrade over Slack, Asana, or other top products. While an app like this can boost productivity, you need to be conscience of the implementation and learning curve to get your team properly trained on how to use the new tool.

Be sure to consider how long it will take you to realize the benefit of a potential upgrade. Sometimes, you may only be exasperating your team without truly improving your company's workflow.

2. High-maintenance clients

Though loyal clients are the lifeline of a business, some may be more trouble than they are worth. If a small number of clients demand the attention of half your staff while providing only a small percentage of your revenue, those clients might be considered a distraction. Consider setting boundaries to keep these clients from monopolizing your time.

What are questions that your team answers over and over again? Look for ways you can free up your team’s time by making answers to frequently asked questions available for all customers – perhaps on your website or social channels.

3. Competition envy

It is easy to admire the success of competitors, especially when they’re trying something new. Be careful though, this type of envy can lead to mistakes. You want to avoid following a company into a new business vertical that doesn’t make sense for your own company and business goals.

A small business has to focus on its strengths until there’s enough wiggle room to venture into new territories. Take notes and learn from any boasting you may see on social media or praise heaped onto a competitor when they expand into a new area. You may find some nuggets that can help you when the time is right – for you.

4. A great (or terrible) few weeks

You can’t always explain every high and low that you see in business. Sometimes, there are anomalies. Maybe the stars aligned, or perhaps an old referral finally came through with a deal. Whatever the cause of the sudden shift in revenue, you shouldn’t let it dictate your future business plans. Avoid rash decisions like replacing staff or adding new employees until you recognize the movement as a true trend. Successful businesses don’t become rattled by a slightly different result.

5. Endless meetings

Before your next meeting, try a little experiment and send out an anonymous questionnaire. Ask employees what they take away from a typical meeting. When you have multiple pow-wows every week, your employees may have a hard time getting into a rhythm. Try to limit the number of meetings that get staff members away from their core duties and into unnecessary group sessions. Everyone should be on the same page, but an email or quick 5-minute one-on-one conversation can often achieve the same result in less time.

6. Office rivals

No matter what type of workplace you run, there’s likely to be some rivalry between ambitious employees. A seasoned business leader may be able to use this to their advantage, pitting one employee against another in a healthy competition that drives improved results. To avoid any potential feuds, make sure that any incentive or contests that you may run have clearly outlined rules and that all associates understand what they need to do to reach a particular goal. Keep it friendly, professional, and focused on the larger perspective.

As a business owner, you want your employees and business to thrive, to be efficient, to work as a cohesive unit in harmony towards a common set of goals. By avoiding some of these common business distractions, you can have a positive impact on not only the work climate, but your bottom line.

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