As an entrepreneur, the chances are that there are never enough hours in the day to get through everything you need to get done. We’re working harder than ever in a bid to earn more and buy the things we want to, but that can often lead to burnout. Below, we’ve put together some top tips on working smarter and saving time as a busy entrepreneur…
Get a calendar
Let’s start with the obvious one: getting a calendar and becoming more mindful of your day is one of the best ways to save time. You might think it’s counterproductive to spend an hour on a Monday morning planning out your week, but it will actually make you more engaged and allow you to get everything done. Slowly ticking things off your list can be so satisfying.
We’re not suggesting you work seven days a week, but putting in the odd weekend shift can allow you to get ahead or back on track. Sometimes, for whatever reason, we fall behind with work and spend all of our time just trying to catch up, causing us to fall behind even further and even procrastinate. The occasional Sunday morning in the office won’t kill you.
Schedule time off
If you’re always working, set aside some times where you can have a break. It might be that you plan your family holiday a year in advance, but give yourself something to aim for. And the same goes for weekends and mid-day breaks; schedule an hour for lunch where you can run errands and take a walk; exercise clears your mind and makes you more productive.
Whether you hire an accountant or change your payment structure to work for an umbrella contracting company, there are lots of ways that you can save time. Outsourcing payroll, accounting, and paperwork will free up your time to focus on running your business the way you know how to, and you’ll be less likely to make mistakes when it comes to tax season.
Learn to say no
Always offering clients favours or adding to your workload without meaning to? Learn how and when to say no to clients, friends, family, and colleagues. Know what you’re capable of and try not to overstretch yourself; you’ll end up working much more than you really need to.
Limit emails and calls
Over-checking email wastes 21 minutes per day. The minimum default timeslot for a call is usually 30 minutes. It takes on average 23 minutes to recover from a distraction at work. Starting to make sense? Stop checking your phone every five minutes for new messages and limit calls – ask clients to send an update via email with important information if you don’t need to chat over the phone. You’ll be able to focus on getting through your workload and go back to their comments and messages when you get a spare five minutes instead. Simple.
“If your business depends on you, you don’t own a business — you have a job.”
If and where possible, automate parts of your business to save yourself time and money. Automate your social media channels, schedule emails in advance, build chatbots rather than offer 24/7 customer service and use Google Sheets’ algorithms to automatically log sales and data. Why work every hour of the day when a robot can do the dirty work instead?
The truth is that, if you’re a successful entrepreneur, you’re always going to be busy. Take a look at your workload and learn when to take your foot off the gas. Try out these techniques and you’ll free up some time to build a more manageable regime; we dare you. Good luck!