20 Time Saving Tips for Small Business Owners
- Goal Setting: Start each day by making out a list of the things you need to complete by the end of the day.
- Plan: Note on your to do list, next to each item, what supplies you need and personnel resources.
- Prioritize By Relevance: When you write down your to do list go over and cut those items which are not important.
- Prioritize by Need: Items with deadlines need to be completed first. Do not clutter your daily list with things whose deadlines are weeks away.
- Keep Track of Time: Take a week and track your time by writing down what you have done, how long it took and interruptions that waste your time. You will be surprised that by eliminating some time wasters, you will recover significant work time.
- Make Large Tasks Smaller: Where possible, break down large tasks into smaller and less intimidating jobs.
- Plan Realistically: You will not get through your list in an hour. Plan for interruptions, your capabilities, and limitations.
- Break Times: Even though you are the boss, you need to take breaks throughout the day. Make sure you include them when planning your schedule.
- Social Media: This is part one of the dynamic duo of time wasters–social media and email. It’s important to monitor your business’s social media pages throughout the day, but don’t get distracted checking your personal profiles. For personal social media use, schedule time during your break, otherwise close them.
- Email: Email is necessary, but can be distracting and time-consuming. The best thing to do is to schedule time to respond to email that is business-related once in the morning and once in late afternoon. If you need to continuously check your email throughout the day, make sure you’re only responding and reading business-related emails.
- Create Self-Imposed Deadlines: When undertaking a project, set a deadline for completion and tell everyone about it. This is a motivator to help you get it done on time.
- Track the Clock: Many times, you become engrossed a project lose track of time. Glancing at the clock or your watch, or even setting an alarm/timer, will help you stay on schedule.
- Establish Reminders: Use your cell phone or computer to remind you beforehand of deadlines or meetings.
- Reward Yourself: When faced with a difficult task reward yourself when it is finished. Rewards need not be extreme; a break is a fine reward.
- Keep Distractions to a Minimum: Identify time wasters and eliminate them. Turn the TV off in your home office. Working in an office requires you to be sociable; keeping your socializing to break time saves time.
- Do Similar Tasks at the Same Time or Consecutively: One example is email–read and respond to emails one after the other. Or do the same with phone calls, return and make phone calls consecutively.
- Do Not Multitask: Multitasking is not a time saver. Focus on one task and complete it, then move to the next and you will be through your list quickly.
- Social Media for Marketing: If your business uses social media for marketing look into a Central Social Media Management Systems. These give you a central dashboard for all your social media accounts, and allow you to schedule posts in advance.
- Why?: Know why each task is on your list and ask yourself what the importance of completion is on your company. This will help you focus on results.
- Keep Things Together: Keep all materials needed for a project in one place throughout the project life. One file for projects in progress and another for completed projects. Keep them organized in a file drawer for each with a file folder for each individual project.
February 20, 2020