Stick to your strengths and delegate away your weaknesses. Often we feel that we have to take care of all aspects of our businesses for things to run smoothly – but this is just not true. Letting go or giving up control of certain things can be hard, but it can definitely be worth it. The opportunity cost of not doing so can be enormous and it comes down to the simple question "where is my time best spent?"
Get it in the calendar
If it's in my diary, it gets done. Colour coding tasks and activities is a useful tool and creates delineation between say personal time (which is important to be included in your calendar), client time, and training and education – for example.
Being clear on why I am attending a meeting
We all have sat through meetings and said to ourselves - "This is a waste of time". Time is precious and if attending a meeting is not going to serve any positive purpose for you or your business, say no. Your time can be put to better uses. Alternatively, if it is just not possible to get out of a meeting, ensure an agenda has been set, helping to keep the meeting focussed and agree that the meeting will be finished in a designated amount of time.
Saying no is okay
For many of us, our default position is to say yes. This may be the right response a lot of the time, but I am sure it is not the case all of the time. Remember this, on occasions when you don't want to say yes, but you do, you are really saying no to yourself. Is that crazy or what?
Use of Templates
There are several tasks you are likely to do quite frequently, perhaps daily. Examples include answering emails, responding to customer enquiries and sending out appointment confirmations. Instead of wasting time answering the same questions, or doing the same tasks over and over, there are various templating tools that can be used, such as Google Docs.
Using Online Tools and Systems
A plethora of online tools exist that can help you get more done in less time – anything from sales and marketing, finance, ecommerce, to work flow and time management. Embracing technology can significantly enhance your productivity. A quick online search will reveal just what is available.
Streamline Your Bills
The financial part of running a small business can easily overwhelm the best of us. Streamlining your bills can make a noticeable difference in simplifying your life as a small business owner. Consider signing up for paperless statements, creating automatic payments and bundling services. This will not only reduce clutter, but will definitely save you time.
Processes and well designed workflows will set you free.
Outsource Tasks and Projects
As the owner of your own business, it is important that you focus on what you are good at, and where your time is best utilised – higher value work such as interacting with your clients, for example.