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April 22, 2016

The quest for perspective

A sense of perspective is vital to achieve greater results

Create time and space to think and plan ahead

If you feel as though your daily business life is constantly jam-packed and you have no time and space to take a step back, get a sense of perspective and think about where your business is heading, the chances are, you are holding yourself back from achieving greater results.

A recent article in Director talked to two successful entrepreneurs who’ve opted to spend short, intensive periods away from the daily grind to find perspective and future-proof their business. One, a former magazine editor and founder of, spent two weeks on an intensive residential accelerator programme in Silicon Valley and the other, the founder of renewable energy firm Gennex, was handpicked to spend a week with Sir Richard Branson with fellow entrepreneurs on Necker Island. The lessons they learned proved invaluable to their businesses back home, giving them the push they needed to put new ideas and alternative ways of doing things into practice.

Of course, not all of us will have the opportunity to learn from the digital gurus of the Silicon Valley or spend quality time with the world’s most famous entrepreneur on Necker Island, but the lesson is an important one – taking yourself away from your business, even for just a short time, can have a huge beneficial impact on your future success.

In our previous article at the start of year, we outlined how taking time out to think and reflect gives you the opportunity to acknowledge the business challenges you’ve faced and what you’ve learned in the process. It helps you to see how far you’ve come and think about what direction you’d like to take next.

For many people, taking time out of the business can seem a bit of a luxury; particularly when the world we live in seems to be in a permanently busy, frenetic state. That feeling of not being in control and not having enough time to do everything can seem overwhelming. Indeed, one of the biggest problems faced by busy entrepreneurs is deciding when to take the leap from working in the business to working on the business. And this means taking a step back and thinking about your business strategy and your vision for the business in the future. You cannot do this if you are dealing with the day-to-day minutiae of running your business. This may sound obvious on paper, but it’s a trap that many successful business owners fall into.

Business benefits
By taking time out to gain more perspective, you and your business will benefit significantly. Here are 10 good reasons why this is a business ‘must-do’:

1. Creates head space to really think where your business is heading and what you want to achieve.
2. Helps you gain fresh perspective and come up with new creative solutions and different ideas for better results.
3. Reduces that feeling of being overwhelmed and lowers stress.
4. Boosts your personal effectiveness, productivity and time management.
5. Improves the quality of your decision making and enables you to think outside the box.
6. Recharge your batteries – a change is as good as a rest.
7. Opens up your ideas to what’s happening in the outside world and allows you to think about your external environment, including keeping an eye on the competition.
8. Opportunity to learn more about yourself as a leader and how you want to work.
9. Getting out of the daily grind leads to feelings of wellbeing and improved quality of life.
10. Provides an opportunity for staff members to up their game and gain experience in your absence.

You might be reading this thinking that it’s all very well for other people, but you have too much on to be taking time out. But it’s all about getting in the right mindset and exploring the idea that taking time out is not a luxury but an important part of creating the life and business you really want.
You can start by making small steps in the right direction. Perhaps it’s just a day or two out of the business when your diary is cleared of all commitments and you create time and space just to think and plan ahead. Maybe what might work for you is setting the same time and day each week and making it part of your regular routine.
Try whatever works for you to gain a fresh perspective on where you are, what you’re doing and where the business is going to keep you focused on your business goals.

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