When you’re starting and/or running your own business, the tasks at hand can get a bit overwhelming. Making sure that you’re practicing good time management is obviously important. But sometimes that’s not enough.
Everyday is a challenge that brings new tasks that need to be completed, new ideas that need to be thought through, more meetings, more networking, more email. The question is…
How Do I Get More Done in Order to Grow and Improve My Business?
- Figure out your top priorities and focus on them everyday. Ask yourself “What is going to make me money?” “What is going to grow my business?” Acknowledging and focusing on your biggest business growth priorities makes it easier to identify what you should be spending your time doing.
- Choose 2 or 3 goals for the week. Based on your top priorities, create a few weekly goals that will have a direct impact on them. Remember to be as specific as possible. Simplify these goals because being too broad will make them difficult to achieve. Saying something like “Finish the new website” can be really intimidating. Saying something like “Crop images for the new website” and “Write text for the homepage of the new website” are much less scary.
- Give yourself email times. The single best thing I ever did for my productivity was turn off my outlook email notifications and give myself selected time slots in the day for checking my email. The thing about email is that it screws with your priorities. You see something from someone and you feel as if you need to drop what you’re doing and “quickly” respond. It rarely works that way.
- Schedule important meetings for the early part of the day. I don’t know about you, but when I have an important meeting or phone call scheduled for say 3pm, I get virtually nothing done before then. The anxious feeling sits in my belly and I tend to think about the upcoming meeting rather than the tasks at hand. So now, I do my best to get the really important stuff out of the way in the morning.
- Outsource. If you’re at the point where you can afford to get some help, think about the things that suck time but are not directly related to the core of your business. What is it that you’re spending time on that can be done by someone else? Accounting is a good example of this. It needs to be done, but do you have to be the one to do it? Or what about a part time assistant to help with the little tasks that add up?
Bonus: Don’t forget to to create a long term plan that lays out your goals and gives you specific tasks to work on each day, so that you’re not spinning your wheels. Don’t worry, it’s easier than it sounds. Check it out here: How to Create a Business Plan as a Tool for Staying Focused