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I recently saw a brilliant quote:

"It's not the load that breaks you down; it's the way you carry it." - Lena Horne

The quote got me thinking about the "invisible workload" we, as business owners, carry! Think of the things that aren't obvious, don't show up on your to-do list, but can take up a surprising amount of time & energy.

What is an SOP?

The Invisible Workload Signs

Things like:

Thinking about what needs to be done (when, how, and by whom)

Delegating those tasks (You may not be doing the work, but passing it along to someone else still takes time.

Following up on tasks and checking in with folks takes time.

Making decisions - big or small- requires the energy to think through everything. Decision fatigue is a genuine thing.

How much of what you 'do' each day falls into the invisible workload category?

As a business owner and a mother, I understand that there will always be an invisible workload that comes with our roles. However, how we carry it is important because it can lead to exhaustion, frustration, and a lack of progress over time if it's not addressed and minimized.

There are a few tips and ideas you can do when you find the invisible workload is becoming too much:

Tip 1: Hire an OBM

Bring on an OBM (ahem, me) to take some of the invisible workload off your shoulders- once you hit the low to mid-6-figure range, there is too much going on to keep it all on your shoulders.

My expertise is taking your vision/goals into actionable plans, getting the right people in place, and ensuring the work is done correctly and on time. Whether it's for a short-term basis or an ongoing basis, reaching out to an OBM can help.

Tip 2: Empower your Team

Lead your team members to take ownership of their roles and responsibilities. Identify areas where your team relies on you to make decisions or give directions. Collaborate with them to develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and provide them with another source to turn to besides you. Start with the tasks causing you the most fiction and document them individually. Then, set clear expectations of where they can take charge and make decisions independently.

Tip 3: Simplify, Simplify

Look to simplify where possible - For instance, when I changed my newsletter from bi-weekly to weekly, I realized that it required a lot of thinking and decision-making, which took away from my enjoyment of writing and creating. In short, the more things we do, the more thinking, decision-making, and delegation are needed.


How much of what you 'do' each day or week falls into the invisible workload category? Once you get clear on those tasks, ask yourself if it would be possible for someone to take more of the invisible workload off your plate.

Reflection like this is how I help get results for architects, interior designers, and other creatives I partner with. Let's connect if your workload, invisible or otherwise, feels too much.


Hey there- if we haven't had a chance to meet yet, I'm Kirstin, a former corporate gal turned small business owner who helps female entrepreneurs lead profitable and fulfilling businesses without burnout. Click here to book a complimentary 30-minute Connection Call.

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Kirstin Brenders Online Business Mentor
KB&Co Brand Photo | Credits: P3 Photography


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