“The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot” – Michael Altshuler, motivational speaker
 
As a business owner, your time is one of your most valuable assets. In fact, 25% of the participants in a survey of business owners indicated that one hour of their time was worth more than $500.
 
If you’re wearing multiple hats, as most business owners do, it’s challenging to maintain control over how you allocate time for your day-to-day activities. When things routinely aren’t getting done, it affects your mindset, your employees and your bottomline.
 
Becoming aware of how you’re using your time and following these six tips will improve your overall productivity and inspire a more positive outlook about work for you and your employees. 
 

1. Stop wasting valuable time

The first step to improving your time management is identifying where you are wasting time. Note down your daily activitives for a week or two and then analyze the results. Ask yourself these questions:
Are your activities delivering productive outcomes?
Are you spending your time on what matters most to the success of your business?
Are there activities that cause a ripple effect and increase wasted time?
What things are you not doing that you should be doing?

2. Start scheduling every task

Productivity experts recommend a system of time blocking to prioritize tasks and ensure critical work doesn’t get overlooked and pushed aside. This approach requires planning your entire day in advance by designating a specific block of time to each and every task or activity in your day.

If you don’t finish a task in the time you allotted, reschedule more time. You’ll quickly get the hang of accurately estimating how long to allow for your routine tasks. This practice will eliminate that nagging feeling we get when we realize too many undone projects have piled up.

3. Avoid multi-tasking

Often when we’re multi-tasking, we’re doing one thing we really should be doing, and another thing that is probably less important. By doing both activities at the same time, we end up giving the important thing and the less important thing the same amount of inadequate attention. In other words, it’s a lose-lose situation.

If you practice time-blocking your schedule, you’ll naturally fall into a pattern of focusing on one task at a time. But whatever productivity approach you follow, giving your attention to a single task improves overall efficiency and accuracy, saving you time in the long run.

4. Delegate

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the hours you’re putting in, your efficiency will suffer. If this sounds familiar, yourself these questions:
Have you clearly distinguished between work you’re best at and work you can pass on to employees?
Have you hired the right people?
Do you trust your staff to do their work?

5. Take breaks

As a business owner, it’s easy to work through the day without taking a break. Day after day, however, that kind of schedule is exhausting and leads to mistakes and poor decision-making.

When you practice tip #1 – scheduling yourself – be sure to include downtime to relax and recharge yourself.

6. Organize your work area

Easier said then done, but keeping a clean, well-organized workspace will not only save you time, but it will give you a sense of ease and control and put you in a more productive mindset. If this is a problem area that continually challenges you, schedule time on a weekly basis for organizing. If your situation has become too disorganized, consider hiring a professional organizer to help you reorganize your space and develop a system.

I can work with you and your team to boost your time management skills. Contact me to learn more about the programs and services I offer!

Drop me an email to set up a  complimentary coaching session. 

About the author,

As an ActionCOACH Business Coach from Chicago North Shore, I understand that time is your most valuable asset. Now, I can help you recreate your dreams and vision…and accomplish the goals you first set out to achieve with your business. Ultimately, you will experience a better quality of life because of your commitment to invest in yourself with the help of an ActionCOACH Business Coach and personal mentor.

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