The Business of Life

Business of Life

by Ryan

As I was counting inventory at work today it hit me like a ton of bricks. What I do at work is directly related to my own life. The same processes, functions, and systems a business uses can be overlapped into your own personal life. The business of life is exactly like the business of… well… business.

If you’re great at running a business you should be great at running your life, and in particular your finances, here’s why:

Sales:
This is the area of your business where you’re prospecting for opportunities. It could be either looking for your next date or finding that next job. Sales tends to be a numbers game and if you realize this in regards to your life without taking rejection personally you’ll have great success. You could even go as far as creating a sales generation form for your dating life and career search. Manage your prospects, leads, and sales – this could get both interesting and fun. Maybe I’ll even try this one myself and post the results in the future.

Inventory Management:
We’ve all got stuff, but do any of us actually keep tabs of what we own? I’m guessing most people don’t have a list of inventory of all the crap they own.

Here’s an idea. Take a physical inventory of all the stuff you have and categorize it into unique categories such as:
-Haven’t used in over a year
-Stuff I need to sell
-Stuff I can donate
-Keeping for sentimental reasons
-Must haves

After you’ve separated each of these categories move it to the appropriate destination. Not only will your home be more organized, you’ll even feel lighter knowing you’re free from a lot of your unnecessary “stuff.”

Project Management:

Each of us has tasks such as laundry, dishes, and running errands. Do most business owners do simple tasks such as these? Nope, absolutely not. They hire an assistant or someone who will do it better and for less than the hourly rate the business makes. Consider doing the same. Hire a virtual assistant to do the tasks you don’t want, hire a cleaner for your house, and have the cleaners do your laundry. You’ll be leveraging their strengths and allowing yourself more time to do things that make you money or give yourself more time.

Accounting:
This one’s probably the most obvious. Your life accounting department is the one that manages your personal finances. Some people have fired their life accountant and simply fly by the seat of their pants while others could tell you how much they’ll have down to the dollar next year at this time. Your life accounting is probably one of the most important areas because it will show you exactly where you’re at in a factual manner. You can’t pay the bills with hopes and dreams, your accounting department will keep you in check.

Marketing:
Where are you advertising yourself? We’ll use the examples of dating and career again. With your dating life you could be marketing yourself through online sties or through letting your friends and family know you’re actively interested in meeting someone. For your career you could use online postings, send letters to potential employers who aren’t advertising openings (direct mail), or get really creative and purchase a billboard! No marketing or sales generation = no results.

The business of life can be really fun if you think of it as a challenge to overcome. Some of us live lives similar to the Fortune 500 business that are driven by money and the bottom line while others focus on other measures such as free time and happiness. Either way realize that you can streamline your process and develop systems like a business that help you achieve your definition of success.

Best of luck in building your business!

What are ways you’re streamlining your life and what other business functions is your life using?

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Fancy09 December 27, 2009 at 9:40 pm

Great post! Never thought about it that way……I’m great at saving (personal finance) and have been lucky to find jobs that pay well…but I notice that I am not passionate about what I do and I have been stuck figuring out what that is for a long time…do you have any suggestions for me? I admire all your goals…I don’t have that many…except to see 2 countries per year and be a millionare by 65…I might have to increase that goal due to inflation…I’m not sure why I am not motivated for anything else…ps: found you through ERE…your blog sounds interesting…will be following it:)

Ryan December 28, 2009 at 10:17 am

Hey Fancy,
I find that the word passion is becoming a bit of a buzzword and relate it a bit to finding a soulmate… (which is something I don’t believe – rather there are lots of people who could make us happy)… I have a ton of things I’m passionate about simply because I enjoy them or I feel like I’m helping other people by doing them.

Personally I enjoy trying new things and mixing things together…
I’ll give you a couple examples:
I enjoy real estate, and sold it for a while. I also enjoy photography and architecture, so I mixed the two and started a real estate photography business after college.

This blog: I enjoy web development, writing, personal finance, and helping others. Therefore, it’s a combination of things I am “passionate” about. I’m enjoying writing this to you and hopefully it’ll help. Therefore, I’m finding fulfillment in doing so.

The idea behind this train of thought is realizing that you’re not going to find the perfect job on craigslist or in the paper or even through networking. A lot of times you have to make your own job and find a niche by mixing the things you enjoy.

Do you have any hobbies or things you enjoy doing that help other people? Whatever you find fulfillment in, which is usually through helping others, I’d recommend pursuing those things further.

Here’s a great post by Steve Pavlina about finding your passion. It helped me a bit.
http://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2005/01/how-to-discover-your-life-purpose-in-about-20-minutes/

The world is full of problems that need to be solved and people who need help, find a way to give them your talents and gifts selflessly and you’ll find what you’re looking for.

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