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News & Press: Arizona Business News Updates

‘Independence’ Away from Business Leads to Innovation

Thursday, July 14, 2011   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Rhette Baughman
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Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. July ignites reflection on the American dream, and we hope you have found, or will find time to take a break, relax and reflect.

This "break" can be critical to an entrepreneurs' success, leading to innovative approaches, increased productivity and improved health.

For over 230 years, our nation's small business owners have made the choice to pursue the personal satisfaction of being an entrepreneur; accepting the advantages, disadvantages and risks. Many have difficulty taking a break, especially in this economy.

American Express surveyed 500 small business owners, and only 46 percent planned to take a vacation this year, which is an improvement over last year. However, in 2006, 67 percent of entrepreneurs planned to do so. While the decision may be hard, consider that continued success comes from contemplating what you do, and why you do it.

Top reasons for becoming a small business owner are decision-making independence, personal satisfaction, and flexibility for a better work/life balance.

To avoid burnout, take some time off so you have the perspective to enjoy your journey and inspire new ideas and solutions. It is important to the success of your business, and that is the driver resulting in the job creation and innovation our community needs.

Intuit, one of our Tucson employers, lists on its website a guide for entrepreneurs to prepare to take a vacation. Its number one consideration is planning around slow times - for many of us, that time has arrived. School is out, families are gone on vacation, and business tends to slow this month.

Burn-out is an occupational hazard for entrepreneurs. If you don't take care of yourself while building your business and dreams, you can do some real damage. The advantages of a break from your routine can be invaluable.

Any entrepreneur will report the best ideas most often come when you are away from the office.

Without the pressure of responding to "every crisis," the small business owner has time to reflect, which often leads to innovative approaches and solutions. Intuit reports vacationers experienced an 82-percent increase in productivity - and unfortunately the long weekend doesn't have the same effect, so invest in a true break.

Health advantages are also abundant. Women who did not take a vacation were up to eight times more likely to suffer from heart disease than women who took two vacations per year, according to Intuit.

Men who take vacations were 32 percent less likely to die of a heart attack.

If you are wary of being too out of touch, plan a "stay-cation" which can support other Arizona small businesses. But be certain you are only checking in to the office as necessary. With the right delegation and planning, you'll be set to comfortably vacation and return re-energized and ready to elevate your business success.

by Donna Davis, CEO of Arizona Small Business Association
Inside Tucson Business

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