the invisible workload

how the weight of having to think about & plan everything affects your business

I saw a post recently talking about this idea of the ‘invisible workload’ – the weight of having to think about & plan everything.

We refer to this as the invisible workload because even if you’re not doing everything, you might be the one THINKING about everything and making all the decisions. If you’re a mom, I know you can relate! 

What are we having for dinner? What gift should we get for the birthday party this weekend? I need to schedule Sam’s dentist appointment. What are we going to do for [insert holiday]? I could go on.

And even if we have help in the household (a spouse, partner, or kids) we are still the ones having to ask folks to do things. Sometimes more than once. 

As I read this post, it occurred to me – this happens in businesses as well!

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

Things like:

  • Thinking about what you need to do – when, how, and by whom.
  • Delegating – while we may not be doing the work, delegation still takes time.
  • Following up on tasks – checking in for a status report is work, especially when things aren’t getting done and falling behind.
  • Making decisions – be it big or small, energy is required to think through and make decisions.

Now to some degree, the invisible workload is part of the deal – for business owners, there will always be thinking & decision-making.

But as your business grows, you don’t have the capacity, or the desire, to keep all of this invisible workload on your plate. And it can start to show over time through exhaustion, frustration, or a lack of progress.

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

  • Hire an Operations Manager to take some of the invisible workload off your plate. Once you hit the early mid-6-figure range, there is too much going on to manage it all. We take your vision/goals and turn those into actionable plans. 
  • Lead your team to take more ownership of their role. Where is your team relying on you to make decisions or tell them what to do? Get clear on their position and lay out expectations of taking ownership and trusting themselves to make decisions.
  • Look to simplify where possible. Are you trying to do too many things at once? Create a 12-month plan and prioritize your goals per quarter. 

I’m curious – where/how do you feel like the invisible workload is showing up in your business?

What would be possible if you had someone to take more off your plate? 

If your workload, invisible or otherwise, is feeling like too much, let’s connect.