Business owners spent an estimated 68% of their time working in their business and just 31% of their time working on their business. In other words, business owners aren’t efficiently managing their time to focus on high-priority tasks that will help them reach their goals.
When you’re spending most of your time on low-value tasks, you’ll find yourself stuck in a cycle of always being busy and making little progress.
Before focusing on time management, first make sure that your vision, mission and goals are clearly defined. You can’t set goals and prioritize your time if you don’t know where your business is headed or where you want it to go.
5 Time-Saving Tips for Busy Business Owners
1. Delegate Tasks
If you want to save time and reach your goals, your team needs to be on board. As a business owner, you wear many hats, but you can’t do it all on your own. Delegating tasks and maximizing productivity can help you get more done in less time.
To achieve this:
- Make sure that your operating procedures are clear and well-defined. Every team member should know what’s expected of them and their deadlines.
- Provide your team with the best possible resources and tools to maximize performance.
Continue to delegate tasks whenever possible to save time.
2. Get Accountability
Accountability plays an important role in goal achievement, so make sure that you have it.
- Make your goals public within the company. When your team knows your goals, they can hold you accountable while helping you achieve them.
- Consider working with a business coach or mentor. A coach or mentor can help you set goals and ensure you’re staying on track to achieve them.
By making your goals public, you’re also holding yourself accountable and helping yourself stay motivated to reach them.
3. Focus on Time Management
Delegating tasks is a great way to save time, but you still have your own list of tasks that you need to complete. Improving your time management skills can help you get more done and (hopefully) check everything off your list.
If you’re not setting priorities, you can easily find yourself procrastinating, feeling overwhelmed and getting distracted. Focus on the most impactful tasks and help you reach your goals.
Research shows that 88% of workers procrastinate for at least an hour each day. Imagine what you can get done in that hour if you can avoid procrastination and just get things done. Having clear goals and a list of tasks can help.
One simple way to do this is to create a list of 3-5 impactful things to complete each day. If you tick these items off your list, you can work on other things. This simple method ensures that you’re focusing your time and energy on tasks that will help you reach your goals.
Tackle the Most Important Task First
Now that you’ve prioritized your tasks, you can focus on the most important one first. What is the one thing that you absolutely have to get done today? Tackle that task first before you move on to anything else.
You’re the most focused and energized at the start of the day, so it’s the ideal time to work on those vital tasks. Energy and motivation dwindle as the day goes on, making it less likely that you’ll finish that presentation or make that call with a client. Getting that important task done first will make the rest of your day easier and less stressful.
Avoid multitasking. Focus on one thing at a time, and put all of your energy into completing that task. If you find that non-priority tasks are building up, it may be time to start saying “no” to things that won’t help you achieve your goals.
You’ll never have an unproductive day if you tackle your most important task first.
4. Break Your Day into Time Chunks
It’s tempting to put your head down and try to accomplish everything on your list without taking a break during the day. But taking this approach will only lead to burnout and may even leave you feeling less accomplished at the end of the day.
The mind can only stay focused for so long before it needs a break.
Rather than trying to get everything done in one go, try breaking your day into time chunks. The concept is simple:
- Stay focused on one task for a set period of time.
- Take a break.
- Rinse and repeat.
For example, you may work for an hour and then take a ten-minute break. Some people prefer to work in 90-minute chunks and take 20-minute breaks. Through trial and error, you’ll find a pattern that works for you.
Those breaks will give you some time to shift your focus and give your mind a rest. Use those 10-20 minutes to read, go for a walk, meditate, or do something else that brings you joy.
5. Make Time for Yourself
How much time do you take for yourself each day? Do you celebrate your accomplishments? Far too often, business owners wear their long working hours as a badge of honor. But working harder and longer is a recipe for burnout.
Effective time management, streamlining your workflow and focusing on the day’s most important tasks will help you reach your goals. Proper time management will also allow you to spend more time on the things that really matter – like self-improvement and spending time with the people you love.
It’s important to take time for yourself and to give yourself at least one full day per week when you don’t engage in any work-related activities. Allowing yourself that time to rest and recharge will allow you to maintain higher levels of creativity and productivity throughout the week.
Owning a business is hard work, but it doesn’t have to burn you out. Effective time management, delegation, and prioritizing time for yourself can help you stay energized, focused, and creative while still ticking off your most crucial to-do items.Get Started