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The Difference between Working On VS In Your Business

Did you know there’s a huge difference between working on vs in your business? At some point, we also thought any work was work. Then as we built our business, we realised that the work we do makes a difference.

If you want to move your business from zero to 6, 7, or 8 figures, you want to balance between working on and in your business. Let me explain what each means so you can understand better.


Working On VS In Your Business

The Meaning of Working In Your Business

When working in a 9 to 5 job, we always tell our friends, “I work in XYZ Company” or “I’m an accountant at Apple.” In your job, you had responsibilities assigned to you, for example, writing invoices, recording daily transactions, and filing documents if you were an accountant.

You were working in that business. Now, as a business owner, you’re also working in your business when you perform daily tasks such as:

  • Keeping records

  • Creating the product

  • Serving customers

  • Selling the product

  • Training your employees

  • Booking a trip

  • Repairing machines

  • Managing payroll

These activities make it possible for your business to run. They’re like the gas that makes a car engine run so you can move from point A to B successfully.

The Meaning of Working On Your Business

Michael Gerber, in his book, “The E-Myth Revisited – Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It,” says that working on your business is developing a system that works because of you but without you.

Gerber says if you own a bakery, you should aim at creating a system that bakes the best cakes in town. You shouldn’t be the one baking the best cakes in town.

Based on this analogy, to work on your business means you engage in strategic decision-making. You also engage in setting up systems that enable the business to run even when you’re not there. Some of these strategic activities include:

  • Reviewing your pricing structures and comparing them against competitors

  • Planning new marketing strategies

  • Designing yearly goals

  • Planning the purchase of new equipment or systems, and

  • Reviewing yearly performance reports

Imogen Roy says when you work in your business, you get stuff done, but you still feel like you’re not making any progress. You achieve progress when you work on your business. Then, you have a clear image of the big picture you want to achieve, you achieve meaningful results, and you’re not lost in constant busyness.

5 Ways to Work On Your Business More


Working On VS In Your Business

When you work on your business, you’re able to move the needle from point A to B. You’re also able to move your business from earning 4 figures to 6, or 7 seven figures.

You’re also able to think clearly about your next move because you have enough time to think while other people are fulfilling other daily tasks. Therefore, here are 5 ways to start working on your business more.

Delegate Tasks

As we discussed earlier about a business operations support team, find the tasks you’re not good at and delegate them to an operations team. By delegating tasks, you’ll free up time from your daily schedule to work on your business.

Remember to use the freed-up time to engage in strategic activities rather than wasting it all. We recommend planning your weekly schedule using time blocks once you have an operations team in place.

Create Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

Standard operating procedures are a set of instructions that guide employees on what to do in specific situations. The procedures enable employees to bake your cakes exactly how you do so your customers can’t tell the difference. SOPs enable your business to run smoothly while you are away.

Review your business now and create SOPs for all important processes and functions. Hand over the SOPs to your operations team as soon as you hire them. Help the team understand the procedures and once they do, you’re free to go out and plan where you want your business to be in the next 5 years.

Install Systems to Perform Daily Tasks

Your business will go far when you implement systems to help your team perform daily tasks. For example, adopt ClickUp to manage your clients, Slack for communication, and MailerLite for email marketing.

These systems will make work easy, and they’ll help you automate tasks and save time for you and your employees.

Develop a Results-driven Culture

When starting a business from scratch, it’s easy to blame people when things go wrong. However, such a strategy will pull your business down. Since you’ve already installed systems, develop KPIs for your team.

Then evaluate the results they deliver quarterly, half-yearly, or yearly. Such assessments will enable employees to focus on results. They’ll have less time to blame each other because everyone will know what’s expected of them in the business.

Seek Help Where Necessary


Working On VS In Your Business

They say no man is an island. We say no business owner can do everything by themselves. You need help from those who’ve been there before you, done it, and succeeded.

Therefore, find a mentor, coach, or just a friend who you can talk to about the things that challenge you. Make sure the person is above you, has had a similar experience as you, and is more successful. If you find it necessary, bring in more investors to help you contribute capital and manage the business.

Let Us Help You Work In Your Business

To work on your business more, you need a team that will work in it every day while you focus on creating and implementing strategies. We help businesses with administration and streamlining business processes. See our admin support packages and get in touch now to get started.


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