Play To Your Strengths
Do you try to be all things to all people? It’s time to focus on what your strengths are and then outsource all the other do tasks!
A great example is… if you are not a whiz at accounts, find yourself a great bookkeeper or accountant, instead of painstakingly working tireless hours at something that you don’t enjoy and it also takes you away from your strengths!
Prioritise Your Time
You may have a to-do list with 50 tasks on it, I know to some that may sound crazy but to many this is a reality, so you need to prioritise those tasks into four categories.
- Urgent and important
- Important but not urgent
- Urgent but not important
- Neither urgent nor important
Know your peaks and troughs
Are you a morning person? If you are then assign the tough, high concentration tasks to the mornings, do not leave those high concentration required tasks to the later part of the day and of course in reverse should it be the other way around.
Plot some personal time
When personal issues arise it can be tempting to bury yourself in your work “Don’t Do It”! If you do not make time for yourself including your family and your health needs, it could create major problems and therefore have major effects upon your business.
Have set work hours
Really do all you can to stick to your set work hours, otherwise before you know it they will gradually Increase and this can cause major effects upon you and your business.
Find time for finances
Whether you are in business for yourself or not it is important to feel confident about your finances , in order to do this, I recommend using a great accounting software, and the sooner in business you can start this the better. Cashflow is one of the biggest challenges facing small businesses.
Managing your time
Create a timeline of activities that you keep in your head, be honest, I am sure you have many invites, meetings etc. in your mind space. If you can just write them down, it would help free up your mind for other important matters. Even better, if you can allocate a date and how much time for each event, it would be so helpful for you. You could create a spreadsheet/table where you put dates across the top line and activities down the side, remember to include all activities, even the dates and events that are with you and your family as this will also help with manage and assist you as to when you are available and when you’re not.
Make your workplace work for you
As we have noted working for ourselves can lead to long hours, so why not make the place where you spend long hours of time comfortable in every way. eg, equipment, chairs, air conditioning, music and surroundings, the list can go on but I think you know what I am meaning.
Make exercise a must-do not a should-do
It is easy to cancel the gym, the evening run or the yoga class, because we have a client requesting that they have an appointment with you. Instead, ensure that you prioritise exercise in the same way you prioritise your clients. A healthy body means a fresh mind, which leads to better function and ability to get the task completed on time.
Be aware of how long certain tasks can take…
…and ensure that you allocate the correct time to do this, instead of starting many tasks and not completing them. This doesn’t help with job satisfaction for you. Also, having so many tasks incomplete is not good business practice. Only start what you can finish!
Know and nurture your network
Prioritise growing your network, have a structured lead and or conversation system in place, it is fabulous to see how just by networking, it can cause a huge growth in your business.
Do What you love
Make that time for something that you love, other than work, but ensure that you give it the time that it deserves. It will energise you and refresh you, thus enable you to nurture the creative thoughts that are essential to every business owner.
At the end of your day ask yourself, “what worked today?” and yes also ask, “what didn’t?”. Being aware of this helps you recognise those areas that require a little more time, perhaps using some of the resources that are around you, like simply asking your peers for help?
Working for yourself can get lonely, so scheduling time with like minded business people is great, joining networking groups is also a fabulous way to get to know other people in business and this too generates business for you.
Get a business Coach
Successful people have coaches! A coach will prevent any bad habits forming, and helps to grow your business. Having an extra set of eyes on the business will help you to see the business from a different perspective. Most business coaches increase a business turnover to the extent that the cost of the coach is more than paid for by the increase in revenue.
Manage your mind
When fear or self doubt creeps in, do some work on mental health such as meditation or even just reading a good business book, alternatively allow time to spend with those who will lift you up and support you.
Take a Break
Taking time out throughout the day is important, whether it is only 5-10 mins or perhaps an hour, do something that will help you with your focus and productivity, take that holiday, even short breaks, perhaps quarterly, but for those in business keeping our clients aware of this is a must as it will ease the backlog of work upon your return.