Of all the resources available to small business owners, time is the one that is irrevocably lost once it’s gone. Time wasted can never be got back, so it is imperative that you effectively use the days, hours, and minutes at your disposal. Here are some time management strategies to help make that possible.
Track Your Time
Before you make adjustments to your schedule, find out what exactly you do each day. Monitor your typical workday activities, minute by minute, from the time you get up until the time you retire in the evening. Log every task you complete and every activity, no matter how trivial. You may be surprised at what you spend much of your time doing.
Avoid Time Wasters
Once your day lies before you either on paper or on a computer screen, break it down into categories of activities, and calculate how much time you spend doing whatever you do. Identify and eliminate or minimize the wasteful activities that drain productive time away from your workday such as social media, phone calls, emails, errands, and breaks.
Focus Your Efforts
The 80/20 guideline of time management stipulates that 80 percent of your productivity comes from 20 percent of your efforts. The idea is to find your peak hours of productivity and focus your best efforts during those times. To further fine-tune your endeavors, set a timer in increments of 20 or 25 minutes throughout the day when you need to accomplish specific tasks, and allow no distractions during these sessions. This is known as the pomodoro technique.
Train Employees Effectively
Part of effective time management involves delegating appropriate tasks to employees. However, you cannot allow your staff to become responsible for important work until they are properly trained. Once they have the ability to do their jobs effectively, leave them alone to get their work done while you concentrate on what only you can do.