The tug of war for small business is always profits vs. costs. Undoubtedly you see costs everywhere you look as a small business owner. It’s easy to see them in the costs for equipment, supplies, utilities and the space you lease. While many of these expenses are fixed over the short term, and you can’t reduce them – there are other costs you can effect. Let’s try something: Switch your thinking from costs to value. The two key questions are: 1) what is the value of an hour? and 2) what is the cost of an hour? This analysis is quite enlightening and it's not as simple as it may first appear.

In small business we all play many roles with widely diverging values. Do this value analysis first for yourself and your time, and then do it for the top people on your team. Determine their highest value activities as well. There is a direct relationship between your team performing at top value and increased profitability in your small business. Calculate how many hours a week you are now spending at that top value. Note your reaction and any changes you'd like to make.

Remember that small business profits depend on a multitude of things – and the old adage that time is money should not be taken lightly. Every day, we’re judged by our ability to manage projects, priorities and deadlines. Learning ways to get organized and break down the barriers to personal productivity is a priority for a lot of people, and especially anyone running a small business.

The good news about having too much to do is that people trust your ability to get the job done. The bad news is that it can be breathtakingly stressful to stay on top of it all.
Wishing for more time has not helped anyone, yet. There are ways of managing even the most demanding schedules without running yourself into the ground or disappointing others. There are practical tools to combat issues that will derail your work day. Time management will help small business owners to take a “real” look at the tasks at hand so they can foster a healthy work-life balance.

How about empowering your employees? As a small business owner you must let go and entrust day-to-day tasks to your employees. Empower your team; start with complete and thorough training. It will give your employees a sense of working on the larger business issues normally done by you, the owner. You can save lots of time by not doing important and urgent tasks all the time (firefighter) and free yourself to focus on the big picture (strategic planner). Your employees will gain responsibility and feel much more appreciation as well, as their work day increases in value – and you are the winner of the bigger prize: time.

A combination of employee empowerment and understanding the value of an hour can truly result in finding that elusive 25th hour in your work day.

Donna Marie Thompson, PhD
Creating your best profit solutions is my highest priority.

PS: For more information please click on the link to get my Special Report: "3 Profit Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them."

Author's Bio: 

Donna Marie Thompson, PhD is a Small Business Profitability Expert and Founder of Expert Profit Solutions. She is a two-time best-selling author who has spent most of her career problem solving in international management consulting.
Donna Marie has helped businesses meet their profit targets under challenging circumstances. She was a Director at PricewaterhouseCooper's Consulting, and has worked at Booz Allen, as well as local consulting firms. This wide range of experience in businesses of all sizes uniquely qualifies Donna Marie to guide small businesses to discover their hidden profit potential.
Donna Marie earned a PhD from George Washington University, an MBA from Virginia Polytechnic Institute, a CPA in the state of Maryland, and is a Master Practitioner of the Energy Leadership Index.
Get your own copy of the free special report: "3 Profit Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them" at