Do you always feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day? With so many things to take care of every day, time management in business can be a serious challenge. These smart tips will help you make the most of each day so you can skyrocket your success.
Studies have shown that about 8 out of 10 businesses fail. And while businesses fail for all kinds of different reasons, time management is one of the things that can make it difficult for a person to run a successful business.
There are so many different things you’ll need to do while running a business. From interacting with customers and talking to clients to handling payroll and scheduling shifts, it can start to become overwhelming before long. It’s why time management in business is so essential.
If you’re struggling to keep up with everything that needs to be done on a daily basis, take a step back and analyze the way you’re managing your time. You’ll be able to use your time more effectively so that you can get more finished.
Here are 10 awesome tips that’ll allow you to practice better time management in business.
1. Wake Up Early Each and Every Day
Are you rolling out of bed every day at 9 or 10 o’clock in the morning and rushing in to work to get your day started?
That’s a terrible approach to take and will undoubtedly lead to you falling behind on your daily tasks day in and day out. Instead of waking up whenever you feel like it, get into the habit of waking up early and setting the right tone for your day.
There are so many benefits of getting up before the sun rises every day. When you wake up early, you can establish a morning routine. You can also get small tasks out of the way at the beginning of the day so that you won’t have to worry about tackling them later.
You might even consider working out first thing in the morning to get your blood flowing and your body ready to work. You’ll feel more energized throughout the day when you make waking up early a priority.
2. Make Daily To-Do Lists for Yourself
As you’re getting ready in the morning, go over what you want to accomplish once your workday starts. There will likely be a long list of tasks that you want to complete before you return home in the evening.
Take these tasks and organize them into a to-do list for yourself. Whether you choose to list tasks in order of importance or structure them into a schedule based on time, a to-do list will give you a sense of purpose at the start of a day.
A to-do list will also provide you with direction from the moment you walk into your workplace. You’ll know what you need to do first, second, third, etc. and be able to breeze through your to-do list.
Maybe most importantly, your to-do list will help you celebrate your accomplishments, both big and small, during the day. You’ll feel better about yourself and your business when you can physically see that you’re getting things done.
3. Clean Up Clutter in Your Workspace
If you have a lot of clutter in your workspace, it could be hindering your ability to work efficiently throughout the average workday. Even doing something as simple as searching for a pen or pencil can waste valuable time.
Make a strong effort to clean up clutter in your business and keep everything organized. You shouldn’t have any trouble finding things quickly when you’re working.
The less time you spend searching for something you need, the more time you’ll have to run your business successfully. Your brain will also function better when you’re not worried about the clutter that is constantly surrounding you.
4. Remove Distractions When You’re Working
How many times do you stop what you’re doing throughout the course of a day to send a text message to your spouse or check who’s pitching in the big game that night?
Smartphones have become a huge distraction to many business owners and have stopped them from being as productive as they could be.
If there is a task on your to-do list that requires your total attention and focus, stuff your phone into a desk drawer and leave it there until the task is done. You’ll be able to spend more time thinking about the task and less time thinking about if someone responded to a text or email.
You might even want to consider shutting your smartphone off at certain times of the day if you can’t resist checking it. It’s the simplest way to prevent it from becoming a distraction.
5. Focus on One Task at a Time
When you look at your to-do list and see that you have 25 things on it, you might be tempted to try and knock out several of those things at once.
For example, you might think you can call a vendor and order products while also responding to emails from customers. Or you might think you can sit in a meeting with your employees while also filling out payroll forms on your computer.
The problem is that, if you’re doing more than one thing at a time, you’re not giving any of your tasks the attention they deserve. It’ll often lead to you making mistakes with whatever it is you’re working on.
Those mistakes can compile over time and lead to your to-do list growing rather than shrinking. You’ll end up having to call a vendor again to correct an order you placed or holding another meeting to get the information you need since you missed it the first time.
Focus on one thing at a time to prevent yourself from suffering unnecessary setbacks.
6. Delegate Responsibilities to Other People
There are going to be days when it will physically be impossible for you to do everything that you have on your to-do list. The list of demands will simply be too long for you to tackle.
On those days, delegate some of your responsibilities to others. There might certain tasks that only you can do. But there are also probably more than a few tasks that others can help you with.
You may need to promote a current employee to a higher position to take some tasks off your plate. Or you may need to hire someone new to fill a position of need.
But no matter how you approach it, delegating tasks to others is one of the most important time management skills you can have. Learn to trust others around you to improve your business.
7. Take Time to Consider Long-Term Tasks
While your to-do list will help you knock out things you need to do today, don’t forget about the things you need to do in a week, a month, or even a year. There are going to be long-term projects that need to get done, too.
Take time to consider how you’re going to get them done. Are you going to work on them a little bit at a time? Are you going to ask others to help lay the groundwork for them to get started?
It’s easy to procrastinate in business and put things off until the last minute. But that could lead to a mountain of tasks falling down on you at once.
Plan as best you can for long-term tasks and avoid the consequences of putting them off for too long.
8. Slow Down and Take a Break Every Now and Then
As a business owner, you’re very busy. You’re constantly on the go and looking to knock things off your to-do list.
But that doesn’t mean you don’t have time to take a break every now and then. In fact, you could be doing a lot of damage by skipping lunch or forgoing a quick trip to the nearby coffee shop.
Get up from your desk every two or three hours and do something other than work. Go for a walk, chat with your employees, or grab a bite to eat. It’ll help you focus better when you return.
9. Steer Clear of Scheduling Meetings at the Last Minute
Some last-minute meetings are unavoidable. If a problem pops up out of nowhere and it needs to be solved as soon as possible, an emergency meeting makes sense.
But there’s no good reason for you to schedule an unexpected meeting in the middle of a workday if you don’t absolutely have to. People probably aren’t going to be as prepared as they should be for it, which means it won’t be very productive.
It’ll also put a halt on the progress you’re making in other areas of your business and make it difficult for you to shift gears and get back to work later. Unplanned meetings are a no-no for any business owner.
10. Assess Your Time Management Skills
How well are you managing your time? Ask yourself that question at least once every week and answer it honestly.
No matter how organized you are, there are likely ways you could improve your time management skills. By finding ways to be more efficient, you can get more done and set your business up to be more successful.
Never stop asking yourself how you could improve when it comes to time management. It’ll benefit you both now and well into the future.
Start Taking Time Management in Business More Seriously
If time management in business isn’t something that’s a priority for you right now, change that immediately. You should value your time more and find ways to use it better.
Make sure your employees follow your lead, too. By making time management more important across the board, you’ll find that your business will operate more efficiently as a whole.
Read our blog to get more practical business advice that will benefit you and your company.