The Cancer Of Two-Minute Tasks

There is a cancer in your business…

…and every small business you’ll ever come across.

This cancer is so pervasive, that even though it is in plain sight, you’ve grown so used to it, you think it is normal.

The cancer of two-minute tasks

Do you ever hear yourself or members of your team say, “It only takes two minutes.”?

Or, “I’ll do it myself, it only takes two minutes.”?

Most of these tasks are necessary in the sale and delivery of your service or product

It does not mean you or your team should perform them.

Some examples of the cancer in your business…

  • Creating draft proposals or invoices
  • Publishing articles as blogs to your website
  • Notifications to your team when a certain stage is reached on a project
  • Creation of folders and sub-folders on your server or cloud server
  • Getting calls or meetings scheduled in the diary with confirmation emails
  • Entering invoices into your accounting software

The list is endless and, once you start looking for them, you’ll find your business overrun with these seemingly innocuous tasks, .

In reality, your profits are being quietly destroyed.

Let’s say you identify a single 2-minute task which you could eliminate or automate.

You’ll save your business two minutes. Big deal.

However, we seldom do things just once in the process of our sales and delivery. Let’s say this tasked is performed 10 times per day.

Now you’re saving 20 minutes. OK, that’s more interesting.

Let’s assume you have 10 people on your team who perform this task.

Now you could save 200 minutes, nearly 3½hrs, per day performing this task across your business.

What if you have a small team?

Please don’t dismiss this because you don’t have 10 people on your team. The reality is you will find a long list of these two minute tasks in your business, so stick with this to the end.

OK, so you’re saving 200 minutes per day and your business is open 5 days per week. That’s 1,000 minutes per week spent on completing a single 2-minute task… which could probably be eliminated or automated.

Let’s say your business operates 50 weeks of the year, that’s 50,000 minutes spent, and paid for, every year in order to complete a single 2-minute task.

That equates to 833.33 hours, or 104 working days. (If your team works 8 hours per day)

That means this single 2-minute task is sucking up 104 day’s worth of capacity from your business. Time you could gain back by automating the task, or eliminating it with the correct systems and processes in place.

What is the real cost?

Let’s pretend you pay everyone on your team minimum wage. It’s unlikely you do, though stick with me for the example.

At the 2019 rate in the UK of £7.38 per hour, you spend £6,147.54 per year, in order to have this single 2-minute task performed across your business.

To be clear, this is money you already spend waste. By eliminating or automating this task, you’ll increase capacity in your business, and add that £6k to your bottom line. Every year.

Now let’s say you invest 30 minutes today, to identify just five of the cancerous two-minute tasks in your business. You will have identified an opportunity to potentially save over £30,000 of profit being sucked up by what seems to be such a harmful element of your business.

Would that be a good investment of your time?

We often miss these opportunities, because they don’t seem that big on the surface. Once you really think about it clearly, you will identify so many of these two-minute tasks, it will become impossible for you to not take action.

Once identified, you can’t leave this cancer to grow rampant. As your business grows, so does the cancer of two-minute tasks.

Take some time today to look at your business, and the work you and your team do every day. What can you see that could be automated or eliminated.

If you are unsure of what is possible, let me know and I’ll be happy to discuss some options and opportunities with you.

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Author: Pieter De Villiers

Pieter K de Villiers is slightly obsessed with systems. The systems and process automation he builds for small businesses are transformative, to say the least. Pieter is a Co-Founder of Blue Peg Group and the Amazon best-selling author of “Barefoot Business: 3 key systems to attract more leads, win more sales and delight more customers without your business killing you”.

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