Running a small business is no easy feat. There are so many things that need to be handled in order to remain functional, that there never seems to be enough time in the day to get it all done. From administrative tasks and employee management to marketing and providing customer service, there’s always something that needs your attention. As all tasks need to be carried out efficiently and to the best quality, business owners must learn how to utilize resources and strategies that help them to maximize their time in the office. Here are some hacks to consider below:
Create a ScheduleWorking without rhyme or reason will definitely slow you down. When you don’t have a clear set of goals and tasks to complete each day, it can be easy to get distracted. Business owners should take the time to prioritize their list of tasks and create a feasible schedule that allows them enough time to get everything done. There are online calendars and task managers that can be used to keep you on track. Take time to figure out how long it takes you to complete each task and designate times of day that you’ll get each task done. Then, input this data into your calendar or task manager to help you reach your goals and maximize your time.
Hire or OutsourceTrying to do everything it takes to run your small business on your own is highly unlikely. Not only can these tasks become overwhelming, but it leaves little room for you to focus on things that are most essential. When you have too much on your plate, it limits your time which can lead to a poorer quality of work. There comes a point where small business owners need help. Hiring a team in-house or outsourcing your needs to an independent contractor or agency is the most effective solution.
Any tasks that are beyond your area of expertise, complex in nature, or time-consuming should be delegated to individuals who are willing to work with you towards your company goals. Perhaps your accounting is better left to an accountant, administrative tasks can be handled by an assistant, sales may be better handled by a sales team or customer call center, etc.
Automate ProcessesAnother way to maximize your time as a business owner is to automate processes where it is necessary. Using technologies or professional services to streamline processes helps to save time and money while also improving customer service. Think about tasks that are completed on a regular basis that are monotonous or tedious. Then, research tools or services that can help speed things up. For example, if your business requires you to take meetings with clients, you can use schedule management software. Such software allows customers to schedule appointments online based on your availability. This saves you from having to hire employees to record calls and it also ensures that you don’t overbook your services and reduces the likelihood of you wasting valuable time.
Take BreaksYes, there is a lot on your plate as a business owner. However, trying to work 8 to 10 hours straight each day will eventually weigh on your physical and mental well-being. When you work too much without time to rest and recharge, you increase your chances of making mistakes, wasting time, and you also decrease the quality of your products and services. Therefore, taking breaks is necessary. Not only should you schedule lunch breaks into your workday, but you should also find time in the schedule for both you and your staff to be able to have a day or two off.
Implement Systems for Better WorkflowYour company workflow is essentially a series of steps required to complete a task from start to finish. When the workflow is inefficient, it slows down productivity and wastes time. To improve company workflow business owners must evaluate each department and responsibilities and develop systems that help to make completing processes easier.
Let’s say you run a content marketing business. To complete an order from a client you must receive the order, delegate it to the appropriate writer, give the writer time to draft content, send the content to the editing team, send the content back to the writer for revisions, then send it to the client for approval. Are there effective solutions that could make this process run smoother? For example, using word processing software in the cloud would allow writers to see editor requests in real-time so that work could get completed faster. For other businesses, having a project manager or project management software can help maintain a positive workflow.
In the world of business, time is money. Those who are most successful are business owners who have learned how to make the most of each day. If time seems to be getting away from you causing you undue amounts of stress or a decline in your revenue or customer satisfaction, the above-discussed time management hacks are sure to help you get back on track.
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