Working ON Your Business, Not IN Your Business

Working ON Your Business, Not IN Your Business


In the world of entrepreneurship, the pursuit of success is often accompanied by countless hours of hard work, dedication, and unwavering commitment. As a business owner, it’s easy to get caught up in the daily grind of managing operations, handling customer queries, and addressing immediate challenges. However, a crucial aspect that many entrepreneurs tend to overlook is the importance of working on their business instead of in their business. In this blog, we will explore why this distinction is vital for long-term growth, success, and sustainability.

The Fundamental Difference

Working ON your business and working IN your business may seem like two sides of the same coin, but they represent fundamentally different approaches to entrepreneurship. When you’re working in your business, you’re immersed in day-to-day tasks, acting as a manager or an employee, solving immediate issues, and handling routine operations. On the other hand, working on your business involves stepping back from the daily grind to strategize, plan, and make decisions that shape the future of your company. This is where your desire for “growth” comes into play and understanding what that looks like for you. The beauty – there is no right or wrong answer, just right or wrong for your own personal wants and needs. 

Vision and Strategy

One of the most significant advantages of working on your business is the ability to focus on your long-term vision and strategy. When you’re caught up in the operational aspects, it’s challenging to see the bigger picture and plan for the future. By setting aside time to work on your business, you can reassess your goals, evaluate market trends, and identify opportunities for growth and expansion.

More granular than this though, is the importance of doing a self-inventory to understand what your actual vision is for the company you’ve started. Growth has different meanings from business owner to business owner. Some want to scale enough so they can just have a few employees, trucks, minimal overhead, etc but build a “nice” income for themselves (likely in the $50k-$100k range). Others want to scale where they maybe operate in multiple states and have hundreds, if not thousands of employees, producing tens of millions of dollars per year. What do you want?  

Innovation and Adaptation

In today’s fast-paced business landscape, innovation, and adaptation are crucial to staying ahead of the competition. Working on your business allows you to explore new ideas, products, and services that align with your vision and meet the evolving needs of your customers. It also enables you to keep a close eye on industry trends and adapt your business model accordingly, ensuring relevance and competitiveness.

If you’re in the field daily, you might find slivers of time where you can do some research and business strategizing, but it pales in comparison to the efficient time you can gain if you start to delegate parts of the business to others, thus allowing you to focus almost solely on what your business needs to grow. 

Empowering Your Team

When you’re always working in your business, you might find it challenging to delegate responsibilities effectively. Micromanaging can lead to employee dissatisfaction and hinder the growth of your team. By working on your business, you create space for your team members to take ownership of their roles, make decisions, and contribute to the overall success of the company. Empowering your team not only fosters a positive work environment but also drives innovation and efficiency.

A follow on here is to always ensure you continue to keep a pulse on what’s happening in the day-to-day of your business. You don’t want to get so far removed from it that you start to make business decisions that negatively impact your employees and company overall, because you’ve lost touch with what’s going on in the field. 

Scaling and Expansion

Whether you’re a startup or an established business, scalability is essential for sustained success. Working on your business enables you to assess your current systems and processes critically. You can identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies, allowing you to implement improvements that will facilitate growth and expansion. Scaling a business requires thoughtful planning and a focus on strategic goals, all of which become possible when you shift your attention from working in the trenches to working on the business itself.

Time for Personal Growth

As an entrepreneur, your personal growth is intertwined with the growth of your business. Working on your business frees up time for you to educate yourself, attend industry events, network with other professionals, and invest in your own development. These experiences will not only help you gain new perspectives but also enhance your ability to lead and make sound decisions.


In conclusion, while the daily operational aspects of a business are crucial, it’s equally vital for entrepreneurs to allocate time and effort into working on their business. By doing so, they can envision the future, devise strategies, foster innovation, empower their team, and position their business for scalability and expansion. The process of working on your business may require stepping out of your comfort zone, but the long-term benefits far outweigh the immediate challenges. Remember, to achieve lasting success, it’s essential to lift your head from the trenches and set your sights on the horizon.

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