As a small business owner, it seems that the second you have just a little time for yourself, someone else pops up needing something. It also seems near impossible for you to separate yourself from the business and afford yourself a little down time. Every small business owner has dealt with these issues at one point or another. They are simply part of the landscape when you run your own company. However, there are ways to reduce time-wasters and encourage not only better use of your time, but also a break for you regularly.
5 Tips for Better Time Management
- Keep a Diary—This isn’t your 13 year old diary, but rather a way to keep track of your schedule, thoughts and ideas. Keep it by your side and make a point of writing in it every day. At the end of the week, review what you did. Notice where you are spending (or wasting) a lot of time. Also notice when you were the most productive and when you just needed a break. Use this information to plan your upcoming schedule.
- Lists—Start your morning by planning your day. Take the first 30 minutes to write out everything you would like to accomplish and then order those tasks by most important to least important. You can also vary the tasks by level of difficulty. Let’s say you have a grueling finance issue to deal with and you also need to review some marketing materials. Focus first on the finance issue, take a break, and then do the easier task of reviewing the marketing materials.
- Work a Little, Play a Little—Remember when you were doing homework as a kid and your mom said that you had to finish your math before you could take a break. The same rule applies here. Work hard on the task at hand for 20 minutes and then take a 5 minute water break. Get up, stretch your legs, use the bathroom and return to your work area for another 20.
- New Technology—There are so many programs and apps available to help you with planning your day more efficiently. If you are someone that always has their phone or computer nearby, take advantage at some of the free programs that exist to make the most of your day.
- Meetings—Ugh, the dreaded meeting. There is not a bigger time suck out there. It can be easy to get pulled into the idea that your company needs a meeting for everything. This isn’t true. Use a messaging system or Skype to talk with your staff or colleagues without having to pull everyone together for a meeting. This will earn you their undying gratitude.
As a business owner, we feel that we must do everything for our company or it won’t get done. This is a fallacy. Delegate responsibilities to your employees and follow up once completed. If they aren’t familiar with the task, train them and have them write up procedures during the training. This way they can train others to do the task as well.
What’s worked for you when it comes to time management? Talk to us in the comments.
We would love to hear your thoughts?
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and webpage design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.