For a business owner, time is a very valuable asset. In today’s busy modern life, everyone would like more time to get things done, time to relax and more time spent with family, but it’s difficult to fit it all in. It’s especially hard running a small business, because a lot of areas need constant time and effort. The age old saying “time is money” is certainly realised by the majority of entrepreneurial professionals in the 21st century.
If time is just as valuable as profit – if not more so – then how can you work smarter in order to bank it? Time management is a skill that many people don’t use to its full potential, and working long hours can lead to burnout. Many business owners don’t even recognise the value of their time, and when working out pricing and costs they don’t calculate it in addition to stock, office rent and other expenses.
Time is always of the essence, so read on for a selection of expert self-help tips to help you get more done in less time.
Calculate the current value extracted from your time
Make a log of all the different tasks you do each day and how long it takes you. By doing this you’ll then have a record of which tasks are taking up the most time, and you can evaluate whether they are actually worth that time. You’d be surprised how many hours are wasted on activities which don’t add value to the business, or time procrastinating on the internet. You’ll also see how much time you need for unexpected tasks and problems which crop up on a regular basis.
Delegate unimportant tasks
Once you’ve created a daily record of time spent, highlight the tasks which you think don’t need to be done by you. Even if it doesn’t take too much time, include it in the list. Activities could include setting up a meeting room, tidying the office, updating social media, dealing with a customer email. If something doesn’t need to be done by you it’s time to delegate! Add all of these small tasks together and you’re probably wasting many hours a week. Pass them on to existing staff or outsource tasks such as office cleaning and site support. Although you’ll be increasing monthly spend, you’ll have more precious time to focus on more pressing matters and running the business.
If you do need to attend meetings or visit clients, be organised and plan ahead so the actual time spent there is minimal. If you send briefing notes around before a meeting you can get right into the issue without wasting time on background information.
Business owners need to take a step back from the everyday tasks in order to focus on business growth.