Time management is essential for small business people who often find themselves performing a variety of tasks throughout the working day. Often, a day can be spent running around, without a great deal being accomplished. Here are some tips to help increase your productivity, whilst keeping cool and collected at the same time:
1. Track your daily activities before you start managing your time to help build up a picture of where your tasks lie.
2. Discover where you tend to waste time: how long are you spending taking personal calls or surfing the net, for example? Set small goals to begin with, such as limiting these activities to specific time slots.
3. Consider using apps or software programmes – they are becoming increasingly popular for scheduling. Chronos, for example, is a free app that allows you to track how long you spend with clients and getting from one venue to another.
4. Prioritise: make a list of tasks for the day and put them in order of priority.
5. Even if your business is very small, you should learn to delegate. Some tasks are better off being outsourced so you can use your own time more wisely.
6. Set time limits – checking your emails could take up a whole day if you let it.
7. If you have an organised desktop and filing system, you are much more likely to lay your hands on any document quickly.
8. Try to stay busy whenever and wherever possible: don’t waste time between meetings – take your laptop or tablet with you so you can brush up on the next client you are due to see or put a structure together for your next meeting.