Many small business owners struggle to find enough time in the day. A recent study from the New York Enterprise found that small business owners tend to work twice as much as standard employees, and nearly 50% report feeling stressed and worrieddue to time management issues.
Thankfully there is still hope for small business owners. You can establish habits that allow you to manage your time more effectively, so you achieve more every day (and also feel less stressed!).
Here are five useful time management tips to make your life easier.
1. Time Management Tips For Small Business Owners: Discover Your Personal Productivity Zone
Some people are more efficient and productive when they first wake up, while other people thrive at night time. So if you want to become a more efficient business owner, find the productivity zone that works best for you. This will help you to achieve more in a shorter amount of time, and it may also help to boost your creativity levels.
2. Figure Out Your Priorities
Most business owners have a long to-do list every day, so it is fairly normal for a few tasks to fall to the wayside. This can feel stressful, but you can reduce your stress levels (and improve your time management skills) by creating a priority task list. This means the most important tasks will always get completed, and then the lesser important tasks can be done at a later point (or you could hire a virtual assistant to deal with those tasks).
3. Identify And Remove Time Wasters
Most people have something (or someone) that causes them to waste time and accomplish less. This could be responding to emails constantly throughout the day (instead of once in the morning and once in the afternoon), or it could be a bored employee who wastes company time. This can destroy a good time management system, so take a good hard look at your current schedule and team to see if there are any issues.
If you spot and issue, deal with it quickly and professionally. Maybe you will need to speak to an employee to see if they are really invested in your business, or you may need to spend less time on certain daily tasks (such as responding to emails, or posting on social media). It can be scary to change your schedule significantly, but this will normally make your daily life much more productive!
4. Track Your Hours
You can also improve your time management by tracking your hours. There are lots of useful, free online tracking tools (such as Toggl), and this will make it much easier to manage your time when you are working. Knowing the timer is ticking will help you to stay focused on your work, and you will also have a better idea of how you are spending your time. This is often eye-opening, and it can help you to discover the time wasters in your life.
5. Use The Pomodoro Technique
Finally you can use the Pomodoro Technique to boost your productivity. The technique was created by Francesco Cirillo during the 1980s, and it is named after a tomato shaped timer. Francesco would set the timer for 25 minutes and then focusing on one single task, and when the timer went off he would have a five minute break before starting on the next task. This helped him to stay focused throughout the day, and the breaks stopped him from feeling overwhelmed.