Are you feeling as if you run out of time at the office? Read more about how to save hours of time when running your own business. Do you often find that you get to the end of your work day and feel as if you haven’t scratched the surface of what you needed to accomplish? If so, you are like so many entrepreneurs who could do with some time saving tips. So consider these to put you back in charge of your business schedule:
How do I save time when working and what can I do to save time at the office?
Plan your day
In the same way you are watching over your business’ bigger picture, always maintain a bird’s eye view over your day as well. Begin by looking at your day as a whole. Shift things into the right order and decide how much time each item will need. To understand what do first, a good idea is to label each of your tasks A -D:
A = Your priorities or “Frogs” (see below)
B = The next most important item you need to tackle
C= Items that can wait another day
D = Things you can delegate
The A’s- Eat that frog
Brian Tracey, author of Eat That Frog advises that the you should begin your day by scanning your to-do list, and then tackling the hardest and most daunting task first. Like calling that supplier to renegotiate or having a tough conversation with a tardy staff member. Once you’re A’s are complete you will free up truck-loads of energy as you will instinctively realise that the worst thing in your day is already sorted. Thereafter, in comparison, the rest of your day will feel easy. This is a crucial mindset shift which ultimately is the most important of all the ways to save time.
The D’s - Delegate to your team
One of the most important ways to save time in your business schedule is by working as part of a team. For a business owner, this means delegating. By allowing your staff and colleagues to do what they do best, you will be accomplishing things without actually doing them yourself. How do you identify if an item is meant to be delegated? Ask yourself: Is this something that only I can do? If the answer is no, then label that task “D” and delegate it to someone else. This will open up time to focus on what only you can do.
Not only will an earlier start allow you more time to get things done, but it will also mean you get into the office before your colleagues arrive. This is a huge time saving tip as it will mean less distractions with the additional bonus that it will be alleviate the pressure to stay in late.
Set a hard knock-off time
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to be unclear on when to go home at the end of the day. Shift workers are clock-watchers by nature, but things are always a little more grey for a business owner. You may find yourself thinking, “just one more task and I will be that much more successful,” or “I just need to get through this last batch of emails and tomorrow will be simpler”. Unfortunately this isn’t the case, making it far too easy to work beyond what is healthy. One way to ensure you leave at the correct time is to schedule something straight after work. Like a gym trainer session or a date with your partner, which will force you out the door. With this kind of accountability, from the outset you will structure your day so you can leave on time.
Learn how to say “no”
It is so easy to say “yes” to yet another task as a favour to a colleague. This is where time and energy gets silently drained. The way to identify when this is happening is by asking yourself if the requested task is your core strength and whether it falls into your house of responsibilities. If not, it’s probably better to decline. If you do still want to help then another time saving tip is to make sure you have accomplished your own priorities first. Then if there is still a moment before knock-off to do that favour, then that would be the time. If not then politely say “no” and leave.
Guard your health
You cannot do a good job if your body doesn’t have fuel. So another ‘must’ that you need to program into your business schedule is breakfast and lunch. At a table. Without technology. Lack of energy means a reduction in will power. Which will inevitably slow you down and elongate your afternoon.
Avoid meetings about meetings
You ask how to save hours of time when running your own business? Well, make sure you don’t spend your day in hours and hours of meetings that generate more work, with no actual time to then do what’s required from those meetings. Standing during meetings is an interesting way to ensure you don’t get too comfortable and waffle onto something that isn’t core to the discussion. Also ensure that meetings have agendas that you can tick off and get through efficiently. This will reduce discussion time and free up space later in your day.
The bottom line
Time is money. Meaning that your time is a valuable asset. So if you’re looking for ways to save time then start with these top time saving tips, and free up energy to do more of what you do in efficient and stress-free ways.