Small business owners are first and foremost, extremely hard workers. More than 55 percent of small business owners in the U.S. work more than 50 hours a week. 10 percent of you work over 70 hours a week!
Some of this can’t be helped— when it’s just you or you and a few others, you have to be there to ensure the survival of your business. But what if you could shave a few hours off your work week simply by managing your most precious resource— your time— better?
Here’s four things you can start doing today to get more accomplished in less time.
1. Look into outsourcing what’s low-skill, what you’re no good at and what you hate to do. You got into business for yourself because there’s something you’re really great at or love to do. You should be spending most of your time focusing on that.
Hire a maid service, a personal assistant, a freelance marketer or Commerce Sync (shameless plug!) to get all those little tasks done and off your hands. The expense of outsourcing will pay off when you have more time to invest in growing your business.
2. Put limits on the choices you make. More choices equals more freedom, right? It’s the American way! Maybe, but it also means more time spent making choices.
For decisions you have to make everyday, like: what to wear, where to eat, which supplier to use, where to buy supplies, etc., limit yourself to only one or two options. White shirts always, tacos or salad, ABC Supply Co. only, Staples or Costco, etc. Variety is great on your off time— while you’re running a business, it’s efficiency that matters.
3. Take a 10-minute break. It’s been scientifically proven that you can really only focus on a task for 90 minutes before you start to burn out your brain. Take 10 minutes at least a few times a day to: take a short walk, catch up with a friend, lay down in the back room or grab a coffee. These short breaks will help you reduce errors and make better decisions when you do get back to work.
4. Make tomorrow’s to-do list today. There will always be things you couldn’t get to today. Before you close up for the night, make a list of things you still need to do. This way you won’t overlook any tasks or spend valuable time tomorrow figuring out what you need to do.