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Grow Your Business by Not Being Seinfeld’s “Night Guy”

by Arianne Foulks

July 4, 2017
grow your business

Your customers can feel it when your business is overwhelmed. It’s not something you can hide. Are you barely achieving the day-to-day, much less purposefully growing your business? It’s time to make some changes.

Specifically, it’s time to start making plans for Future You. “Future Me?” you ask?

I spent my college years watching Seinfeld. My husband and I enjoy our Seinfeld in-jokes. Every time I have grand plans for summer, I shout, “IT’S THE SUMMER OF GEORGE!” One of the concepts that have stuck with me all this time is this stand-up bit about “night guy and morning guy”:

JERRY: I never get enough sleep. I stay up late at night, ’cause I’m Night Guy. Night Guy wants to stay up late. ‘What about getting up after five hours sleep?’ Oh, that’s Morning Guy’s problem. That’s not my problem, I’m Night Guy. I stay up as late as I want. So you get up in the morning with your alarm, you’re exhausted, groggy, oooh I hate that Night Guy! See, Night Guy always screws Morning Guy. There’s nothing Morning Guy can do. The only thing Morning Guy can do is try and oversleep often enough so that Day Guy loses his job and Night Guy has no money to go out anymore.

Why you have a hard time hitting your goals

Michael Gerber says in The E-Myth that each new business owner has to take on three roles. If you’re a designer or creative, you probably started out in the Technician role. You’re the person designing and/or making the product. You also need to serve as the Manager, overseeing operations. The personality you need to encourage is your Entrepreneur, to grow the business.

The problem is that it’s easy and rewarding to work on the day-to-day stuff. The easy projects you know how to do where you can check off wins all day long. The Technician enjoys the work and doesn’t have to make tough decisions. The Manager knows what to do and doesn’t need to take risks. But step back: are you serving your business best in these roles? Or could you train someone else to delegate tasks to, freeing up your time to find ways to make more sales?

Think of it this way: the work you’re doing today for your business is all for Future You to enjoy. Treading water each day in 2017 means that 2018 Future You won’t have made it anywhere. Don’t you want something spectacular to show for all the work you’re doing now?

The place where I see many business owners losing momentum is when they try to do everything by themselves. If you’re the only person responsible for day-to-day operations, how on earth are you going to find time to grow your business? Once you start seeing success, you need to prepare for the next level. What got you here won’t get you there.

What to do to get Night Guy under control

How can we stop our present selves from screwing things up for our future selves? Imagine if Future You could be doing only the things you’re the best at, and getting help with all the rest. Oh, and making more money than your business has ever made, too.

To get there, you need to care about your future self’s success more than you care about your present self’s discomfort or reluctance. You’ll need to take some calculated risks, make some investments, and put in some time now.

There are dozens of ways to be a good Night Guy to your Morning Guy, but let’s keep it simple. Here is how to best serve your future self so you can get off the treadmill you’re currently on with your business:

  1. Pick a date (5 years from now, say) when you will be Future You and figure out what Future You should be doing. What jobs in the company are yours? What are other people doing for you? How much money are you and your business making? What’s in your product line? What stores are you sold in? What milestones has your business achieved? What collaborations have you forged?
  2. What is the one thing you could do this year to set yourself up for the 5-year plan? What is the one thing you could do this month to set yourself up for the year’s goal? What could you do this week to meet the month’s goal? What will you do today to get on track for the week’s goal?
  3. Now find a way to do these things, and stick with doing them until you’ve satisfied Future You. Let the day-to-day suffer while you take leaps to build your business. The day-to-day isn’t serving Future You anyway. In fact, focusing solely on the day-to-day leaves Future You out of a job!

To learn about these concepts in actionable detail, grab my recommended books. I didn’t come up with any of this on my own. The 3 steps above are from The ONE Thing.

How Aeolidia can help to immediately take over your most vital work

We’re the design studio that uses data and strategy to design a brand and website that will get you more sales. To reach your goals, you’ll want a few tools in your belt. You’ll need a strong brand identity, impeccable product packaging, and a high-converting website.

Waiting until you’re in pain to make a change is not the entrepreneurial mindset. Please have your Entrepreneur personality contact me. We’ll make a plan that will have all three of you sitting pretty by the time they become Future You (is your head spinning yet?).

What will you do right now to get on track for your day’s goal that’s going to knock down the week’s goal, that’s going to start a chain reaction on the whole stack of domino goals that are going to lead to the Future You 5 years out?

The last few spots with Aeolidia in August & September are being filled now. Our design work propels businesses forward and helps them hit goal after goal after goal. Let’s start making some real changes that will have you in a much better position for 2018 and beyond.

Contact me today and tell me all about the wonderful business you’re building. I can’t wait to hear!

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