When things are uncertain – and things are certainly uncertain right now – the inclination as a businessperson is to do more. Recommending “less” is not only counterintuitive, but almost scandalous. But as Google recently demonstrated with it’s 4-day work week experiment, we can often achieve the same results in less time if we work smarter. As we go through our suggested Business Resolutions for 2020 (see #1 and #2 from the past two weeks), this might be the most important one, and the most challenging: do less.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you see less clients (though maybe it does) or shorten your work week (though maybe it does). What it does mean is that you lean on things like technology to allow you to do more while simultaneously doing less.
A Do Less Example
One of the trends that gained traction in the past few years, and will get a lot more attention in 2020, is the use of chatbots. According to the Oxford dictionary, Chatbots are, “a computer program designed to simulate conversation with human users, especially over the Internet.” Chatbots can save you time and resources by automating certain aspects of customer support, without losing the ability to connect with your valued customers. The stronger your online presence, the more customers will expect quick answers, which leaves businesses with the decision to do more, or automate at least the first step. They can either be programmed with answers or use AI to learn how to help your customers.
The most basic application of a chatbot is used by many businesses with a Facebook page. The messenger bot answers basic questions and encourages engagement. Although it doesn’t (and shouldn’t) replace the need for real humans to care for your customers or clients, it does respond to simple questions and start conversations, making your job easier. There are many chatbot builders, but the point is to help you start thinking of ways to give better service in your business, while doing less.
What can you do in 2020 to automate something in your business, and do less?