As published in Westpac’s RedNews:
We all know the adage “work on the business, not in the business”, but 99% of the time we do nothing to make this a reality in our day-to-day business and working life.
You have my permission to book a holiday. Take a long weekend, take a week, take a month if you can. Your business won’t suffer because of it – in fact, your break could be the very thing to make it thrive.
In my business coaching career I have been lucky enough to observe the difference it makes on real life businesses and people – I can easily spot those of my clients who have taken a holiday or 2 this year, and those who have been chained to their desk 365 days of it.
Here are 6 reasons why taking time out of the office is good for both you and your business.
1. The same-old-same-old doesn’t inspire greatness
It’s very easy to go through life with the same-old routine – in business, in relationships, in life. Routines are easy, they’re safe, they’re comfortable… but they don’t inspire greatness.
Stick with your same routine you’ll get the same results. You’ll have the same problems or issues and you’ll spend so much energy dealing with them over and over that you’ll miss the opportunities that are right in front of you that you should be considering to be more successful.
To come up with new, potentially great things that could be business changing, you need to change up your routine: create the space to find those great things or work out how to fix the issues in your business that are holding you back.
2. The brain needs to stop thinking in order to think
I personally work with hundreds of NZ businesses of all shapes and sizes, and if I was to rule a line through those that are super successful today, those that are on their way, and those that struggle, there is one main factor that is the difference between success or not: quiet time. Thinking time. Chill time. Learning time. Self-critique time.
That quiet time to think is what most successful companies have in common. Do you have that sort of “free time” to identify what you should (or shouldn’t) be doing?
3. Meeting and talking to new people is good for business
If you’ve ever spent days or weeks struggling with a business issue, you’ll agree when we say that knowing other business people can make life a heck of a lot easier for you.
It means brains to pick when you have issues, or ideas or opportunities. It means having people you trust and can run ideas past for non-biased feedback. It means learning from other’s people’s business pitfalls and successes.
Having people in business as contacts or friends can give you new ideas, new inspiration, and even potentially new deals or partnerships.
It’s very likely that your network of business friends will share some really great ideas for your business that you had not thought of – bonus!
4. Taking time out opens you up to new ideas
We get so busy day to day in our business and job that we just don’t find the time to learn new things or even re-learn things that we once knew and thought were good ideas.
When I first started doing business presentations I was really average – thankfully, I realised this quite early on. It dawned on me that the reason I was not as good as I wanted at inspiring presentations was because I had never taken the time to observe and witness other amazing people doing amazing presentations.
Very quickly I got onto TED TV and watched the best in the world in action and I’ve never looked back.
The reason I quickly identified and then amended my business downfall was because I had taken the time out to think and analyse my performance in all areas of my business.
Taking the time out to work out how to be inspiring in my presentations was a huge impactor for me and opened many business doors. What could you uncover about your performance if you had the time to think about it?
5. Doing nothing will help you find purpose
To be successful in business, you need to understand why you’re doing what you’re doing and where you want to go next. It’s very hard to do this when you are day to day busy and stuck in your office, fighting fires.
Dan Khan (NZ’s foremost start-up expert and founder of The Lightning Lab) reckons, “Many entrepreneurs and senior business people spend so much time close to the day-to-day operational side of their businesses that they lose the ability to really understand why they’re doing it and where they want to go next”.
We all know the power of having a goal: imagine having a goal with purpose. Take some time out to find that purpose and watch your results fly.
6. The best achieving companies in the world are doing it
I recently read how Bruce Plested (Chairman of Mainfreight, business legend and great guy) had taken the company’s management team and other senior staff away overseas for a few days to attend a conference that he was speaking at. Mainfreight are a great example of business, so if they’re doing it, it must be a great idea!
Off-site team-building is so, so powerful. It is amazing to see how much can be achieved when you take your team and collagues away from the office: better teamwork, better engagement, better ideas.
There’s also the power of socialising, which often spills into great discussions about core issues, big opportunities, and clarity on priorities.
Offsite team building is brilliant for getting your employees on the same page. What was great about Bruce Plested’s move is that his team got to hear the same inspiring and successful speakers that he did, without the message or impact being diluted when shared on return.
It also earns employers major brownie points with staff – nothing says “we appreciate you” like a trip away!
Sound like something you’d be keen on?
It’s one thing to know all this but it’s another to actually draw a line in the sand to promise yourself that you will take that time to think and work on your business. Which is why entrepreneur Steve Pirie and I have put together a business retreat called NurtureChange.
Held at the 5-star Intercontinental Golf and Spa Resort in Fiji on November 11-15, it will give you the downtime you need to think on your business and to come up with a strategy and business plan for 2016 that will take your business to the next level.
You will meet some great business people doing great things, hopefully get to spend time with your partner or colleagues, and even work on your sun tan! We have put together an inspiring line-up of speakers to get you thinking about your business and your performance like never before. Given it is over 5 days, it is a lot less “intensive” than a normal business conference – you will have time to chill and relax!
- Sir Graham Henry
- Dan Khan, start-up expert and founder of The Lightning Lab
- Victoria Crone, Managing Director of Xero
- Sam Hazeldine, winner of Young Entrepreneur of the Year, the Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award and owner of Medrecruit
- Karl Dwight, a PWC partner specialising in exit strategies
- Craig Donaldson, CEO of KEA
- Plus many more, including myself (check out how my presentations have truly moved on!) and some health and wellbeing experts.
For more information including speaker topics and how it all works, visit www.nurturechange.com. We hope that you can take advantage of getting time away from the office to nail what it is you need to do to have your best year yet in 2016!
If you can’t attend, don’t forget the lesson: you need to find that time to get out of the office and think. Ponder the things you know you should be doing but never do, and what you can do about that. Find the discipline to create business thinking time and watch your performance fly!
See you in Fiji or in the world of business. Enjoy that thinking time!
Get $200 off your NurtureChange experience
Zac has kindly offered a $200 discount for REDnews readers. To take advantage, while booking at NurtureChange simply enter the promo code of WESTPAC.
Zac de Silva owns www.businesschanging.com, www.accme.co the virtual coaching software and is co-founder of www.nurturechange.com the Fiji business retreat. Zac is a judge of the Wesptac Growth Competition.