People might think that being a business owner is easy-peasy. There are advantages to it, yes. Owning a business means you are your boss. You don’t conform to anyone, and you make all the decisions regarding the path you want your business to take. However, running a business is far from easy.
First off, deciding to venture into business is a gamble- investing all your hard-earned money to start one knowing that there isn’t a guarantee that your business will be a success. It’s a risk an aspiring business owner has to take.
There is also the issue of time. If a regular employee normally works 40 hours per week, you have to forget that if you are running a business. According to a study conducted by Gallup, some small business owners worked over 60 hours a week, working twice as much as employees. While it shows a strong determination to succeed, it might eventually lead to burnout and even health problems.
The big names in the business world today pretty sure experienced the same thing. But then, part of the reason for their success is that they have learned how to maximize their time. It is one of the deciding factors of having a successful business. It doesn’t matter if you are working 24-7 if you spend it doing unimportant things.
Working longer hours doesn’t equate to being productive as well. If you are a business owner or an aspiring one aiming to maximize your time to get the result you want, check the tips listed below:
Start tracking your daily activities.
You must have taken it for granted before, but you might be surprised where your time goes when you start tracking your day. Being aware of your daily activities will help you realize what activity you are spending most of your time on, and whether you are spending it doing unimportant matters.
When you track your daily activities, include everything from how long you spend time on breaks or meals, the time you spent looking and answering emails, and even the time you spend doing errands.
Know your ability
As much as you want to do everything business-related, you have to face the fact that you can’t do it all. Learn to know the things you are good at and the things you cannot do. In an article published in Inc.com, business owner Raj Jana listed four categories that you can use to identify the tasks you can spend most of your time on.
- Incompetent: Things you cannot and should not do. For me, this is graphic design. I have no natural skill in it, nor a deep interest in growing it. Spending hours designing a logo or building a product pamphlet is not where my time should be spent.
- Competent: The tasks you can do, but so can pretty much anyone else. For me, this looked like scheduling people on my podcast or fielding customer inquiries.
- Excellent: Tasks you do very well, but if outsourced appropriately, could be done by someone else. I am great at building businesses, running finances, and trending markets, but I can also hire someone else to do them, like a CFO or CMO.
- Unique: The actions only you can do. For me, it is generating compelling ideas to be shared through words, both spoken and written.
Start delegating tasks
When your business is growing, your day-to-day tasks are also piling up. Thus, the need to delegate so you can put your focus on unique or excellent actions. That means creating business or marketing plans, finances, and other fundamental actions needed for your growing business.
“You have to accept that you are not an expert in everything. A lot of businesses fail because the entrepreneur is not willing to give up the reins to other people who may do it better. Yes, it’s your idea, your baby, and you’re protective about it. However, bringing experts on board will free you up so you can do what you do best.”-Neale Godfrey
Multi-tasking, without assistance, won’t do you any good when you are running a business. The money you won’t spend in hiring an assistant won’t help when you can’t meet the demands of your business and your clients/customers.
Plan and Schedule
With other tasks being delegated to your assistant(s), it’s now time for you to focus on your tasks. Make a to-do list of the things you need to do. Using a calendar, planner, or any panning and organizing tool you have, start scheduling your daily, weekly, and monthly activities as well as set both long-term and short-term goals for your business.
Being your boss, you don’t need to answer to anyone else. But, set a deadline for finishing a task for yourself as well. That will maintain your level of productivity and ensure that you are always a step closer to your goals.
It’s always important to know what you have to do first during the day. Make priorities. What is the most important thing you need to do today? What task should you finish today? What task needs your attention the most?
Do the most important task right away. It will boost your momentum and motivate you to work harder as you go on along the day.
We only have 24 hours every day. How can we make the most of it without compromising rest, time with family, and time doing your hobbies is all up to you. Owning a business is demanding, however, if you spend your time wisely, success is always within reach.