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Invest In Yourself

If you’ve been listening to my podcast or reading my blog for a while, you know I’m a huge advocate of investing in yourself. That means training. That means hiring coaches, getting programs, reading books, going to conferences, doing all of those things. Continually investing in yourself, so you can grow yourself and ultimately grow your business.

Let me ask you a question. Are you growing your business from what you’re learning? I have a couple more questions. Number one: Do you have books sitting on a shelf that you’ve never read? That you’ve paid for? People give me books all the time. I read them when I can, but there are books or audiobooks that I paid for that I’ve never listened to. Why? Because we haven’t prioritized those. I’ll get to that.

The second question is: Do you have training programs or courses, or anything that you purchased that is sitting on your hard drive, that you’ve never opened? Same question: Why? Because you haven’t prioritized it.

Getting Started

Really, what you’ve got to do is start to make a plan about how to consume and execute the things that you’ve purchased. Now if you’ve never purchased anything, okay you don’t need this. But I suggest you do. I suggest you start getting some books and start learning. I have a great podcast about five books that I recommend, including two of my own at the end, a little shameless self-promotion, but still. Those five books are going to help you. I guarantee you if you’re in business, and you read those, they’re going to help.

Here’s what I suggest you do. If you have purchased books, if you have purchased programs or training or any of those kinds of things, or if you’ve gone to a webinar and at the end you said, “I really need this,” then put it down on a piece of paper. What I want you to do is take an inventory of all the books that you have that you have not read, of all the training programs that you purchased that you have not done anything with, and make a list of them.

The next thing you’re going to do is prioritize them based on where you’re at, because you and your business may be in a completely different place than when you purchased these particular books or programs. They may be less relevant, they may be more relevant. They may be something that you really really need to jump on now. The bottom line is to make a list and start adding numbers to rank them. One being the most important, ten, twenty thirty — hopefully, you don’t have that many, as those are the least important. Put them in order and that will give you a list of what you need to work on.

The next thing you have to do is schedule it. Make time in your busy work schedule to say, this is my training time. This is my reading time. This is the time that I’m going to invest in myself.

Make A Plan

Let me reiterate and give you five steps to start growing yourself and growing your business through learning. Step number one we just covered and that is, make a plan. Now you can easily say that every Tuesday from 10 AM til 11 AM is my training time. You could do it from 5 AM in the morning to 6 AM if you’re an early riser, maybe 9 PM to 10 PM, whatever it is. Have it scheduled and execute it. Make sure that you’re doing it on a regular basis. Have a plan to consume what it is that you purchased.

If you haven’t purchased anything, if your list is empty, then go to Amazon. Drop $10, $20 and find a book that’s going to help you grow yourself and grow your business. I’m not saying you have to spend thousands on training, but sometimes that’s necessary. It depends. If you spend a dollar, you should make three. If you’ve heard me talk about this before, that’s kind of my value proposition. So you invest $20 bucks, can you make $60 bucks off of reading that book in the time it’s going to take you to do it? Say it takes you three hours to read it and you charge $100 an hour. Will that book make you $320, $620, $1000? That’s the goal with it. Make a plan as to what you want to consume and when you want to consume it, then stick to the plan.

Take Action

The next thing is, get it done. Take the training. Make sure that you’re going from the beginning, taking notes, making sure that this is something that you can implement, and finish it. Then go back and look at the notes that you took. Is this relevant to what I’m doing right now? Maybe you just file it away in your memory bank and say “You know what, I’ve got to come back to this another time.” But if you take good notes you can go back and say “Okay, this is what I should be doing, this is how I can implement it and this is what’s important to me in my business.”

Review

The next thing you want to do is review what you’ve learned. What I mean by that is, for example, from a book that I love, The E Myth Revisited, what I learned is that there are three different kinds of people that are in business. The technician, the manager, and the entrepreneur. Maybe what I do is I sit down and say okay, out of my 40 hours, 20 hours, whatever it is that I work, how much time do I spend as a technician? How much time do I spend as a manager? A manager is somebody who helps other people get things done. An entrepreneur is somebody who dreams. How much I time should I be spending on each one of those? How do I implement them into my business?

Relevancy

The next part is to ask, is what I’ve learned relevant today? If not, then what I have to do is sit down and make some notes and make a list, and ask if these are the things that I need to look to do. If you are a technician, can you hire somebody else to do some of the technical stuff so you can be more of a manager? Then you can manage the technical people. Maybe you need more time to be an entrepreneur, to envision where your business is going and what it’s going to look like in two, three, five, ten years, whatever it is.

Implement

Then the final piece of this puzzle is, how am I going to implement it? That means you have to write down the steps necessary to get it done to make those changes, to increase your business. Let’s say I’m a technician. As a technician I maybe make, let’s just use a random number, $100 an hour. As an entrepreneur maybe I make $250 an hour. Maybe I can hire somebody at $50 an hour who can actually do what I’m doing quicker.

I need to sit down and look at the time, the income, the expense, and the overall impact that’s going to have on my business, and that long-term plan that I talked about, the three to five-year plan, or whatever it is that you want to do. How am I going to implement those changes? What does it mean financially? What does it mean time-wise? What does it mean organizationally? If you do have people working for you, are there people that can help you do things that maybe you haven’t relied on before? Maybe your receptionist can be trained to do your social media for you. Maybe your technicians can take better pictures and actually bring them back to the office for the social media. You have to look at all that stuff.

Final Thoughts

The final thing that you want to do is continually measure the results to see how it’s working.

I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on this subject. Comment below and share your thoughts and ideas on these steps to invest in yourself. How have these helped you and your business? Do you have any ideas or advice you could share?