Most of us should work on two businesses at minimum – the current business and the future business. And you can roughly divide your time fifty-fifty to address the needs of each.
Current business activities look like:
- Getting new clients for the kind of work you do now
- Doing client work
- Delivering client work
- Proposals and contracting
- Bookkeeping and other operations processes
- Refining current products and services
Future business activities look a little different:
- Talking to new clients about the kind of work your future business does
- Designing future products and services
- Doing research on your market
- Designing and implementing growth strategies for the future
- Publishing/recording your thinking and insights
Caution: if you’re spending 95% of your time on the current business, the future business will suffer.
You’ll notice that the two businesses have something in common: clients.
BTW, here’s the difference between the two – getting clients for the kind of work you do now looks more like sales or outreach marketing.
Whereas getting clients for the work you do tomorrow looks more like marketing, especially content marketing or inbound marketing.
But something else happens when you work on your future business – you create content about the work problems you used to have but have now mastered. You can even ask yourself, where are you helping a prior version of yourself solve a problem you used to have?
You know more about this than almost anyone. Among other things, this’ll make you a great team leader and a pretty good hiring manager too.
Our right-now business pays the bills, but we need to find out if we do helpful work for three versions of ourselves: past, present, and future.