Time waits for no one and we all have taken it for granted. But, it’s your greatest resource, as a business owner. Without an ample amount of time, you’re less likely to achieve your goals and targets. You will not be able to focus on what’s important. Having Less time — adds stress to your already hectic life. And, you can not have a healthy work-life balance without it. Here are the time management skills a successful business owner must-have.
Work according to the time which suits you:
One of the best things about being your boss, you can work whenever you want. Of course, that doesn’t mean you can slack off or just come and go as you please. What this means is that you aren’t forced to work 9-to-5 schedule.
For example, let’s say that you’re a parent. Your working hours could be when your children are in school, let’s say around 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. When they’re doing their homework, you could then use that time for administrative tasks or reviewing your calendar for tomorrow.
Another option would be to work around your energy levels. If you’re a morning person, then knock out your most essential tasks in the early morning when you have the most positive energy. Night owls, on the other hand, are more productive in the late morning or afternoon.
Always keep a track on time:
Want to get more done? Then keep a time log so that you can see how you’re spending your time. Additionally, time logging will let you know what are the kinds of stuff that waste your time. It will keep you from over-or-underestimating how long certain things take down the road. And, tracking your time encourages you to stop multitasking and hold yourself accountable.
There are a couple of ways that you can conduct a time audit.
- The first would be to track everything that you do throughout the day, such as your morning commute or the time spent on a specific task.
- The other way would be to set a timer for every 15 minutes. When the time is up, write down what you did during that block of time.
- You could also use time tracking apps and tools like Toggl, RescueTime, or Timely to keep tabs on your digital usage.
Focus on things which you do perfectly.
“As much as you need a strong personality to build a business from scratch, you also must understand the art of delegation,” Richard Branson once said. “I have to be good at helping people run the individual businesses, and I have to be willing to step back,” he added. “The company must be set up so it can continue without me.”
When you stop trying to do everything on your own, you’ll not only free up your valuable time. You’ll also make more money. That’s because you have the right people working on the right tasks.
For instance, even if you’re familiar with the basics of accounting or coding, you’re going to spend more time on these tasks, then an expert would. And, you’re more likely to make a costly mistake.
Follow the Two-Minute Rule.
In the famous words of David Allen, “If it takes less than two minutes, then do it now.” Sounds simple, but think of all of those small things that add up. Instead of taking a minute to respond to an email, you wait until the end of the day when your inbox is overflowing. That dish you didn’t wash after lunch? It becomes a dish full of dirty plates.
Furthermore, this rule helps you form new habits. And, most importantly, it can help overcome procrastination. As an example, instead of declaring that you want to read more, start with a small goal like read one page daily.
“The idea is to make your habits as easy as possible to start,” says James Clear. “Anyone can meditate for one minute, read one page, or put one item of clothing away. And, as we have just discussed, this is a powerful strategy because once you’ve started doing the right thing, it is much easier to continue doing it.”
Break down your activities into simple problems.
“Utilizing your consciousness requires more energy and can be avoided by simplifying your problems,” writes Mario Peshev for Entrepreneur. “Excellence in time management revolves around establishing a process and breaking it down into small, atomic operations that are easy to grasp and don’t require intensive resource consumption.” Cutting down your resource consumption is what makes business owners successful. They’re able to take a “complex task and decompose it into pieces, thus making the remaining process easier to comprehend and follow,” adds Peshev. “The simple operations are simple, and executing them doesn’t require dozens of follow-up questions preventing you from checking tasks off your list.”
Schedule “me” time in your life.
Scheduling “me time” isn’t a waste of time. Me-time may turn out to be your secret weapon against stress and lack of focus. The more you add to your schedule, the busier you’ll get. Over time you’ll be burning your candle at both ends. As a result, you’ll become burned more. Or, even worse, you’ll be putting your mental and physical health in peril.
Always schedule free time in your day. It doesn’t have to be much. But, if you have an hour of blocked time throughout the day where nothing is listed on your schedule — it can do wonders for you mentally and physically. After all, free time makes us happy, encourages self-care, adds flexibility in our calendars, and recharges our batteries.
Arm yourself with the right tools.
Finally, surround yourself with the right tools. An online calendar is an obvious choice. But, you may also want to use a tool like a Calendar to automate all of your scheduling needs. Evernote and Todoist care useful for managing your tasks. While Hootsuite, Pardot, and Xero can put your social media, email marketing, and accounting in autopilot.
By using these tools to automate your most tedious and redundant tasks, you’ll have the availability to focus on your priorities.