In my last blog The Dangers of Being Too Available, we looked at the reasons 'why' it can be damaging to always be available to your clients and team. But as well as recognising that it's a problem, we also need to know what we can do to resolve it.
Let's have a quick recap:
- Spending a portion of every day on the 'getting and keeping of customers' is a really smart way to develop your business
- 90 minutes a day has been shown to be long enough for sufficient progress but short enough for concentration.
So now you know what to do, how do you actually make the time to do it? Here's a selection of tips from some of the world's most successful entrepreneurs.
The 6 Absolute Best Tips for Making the Most of Your Time
- Block out time in your diary to spend on business development, several months in advance, and STICK TO IT. It's essential that people around you see you sticking to your own rules - otherwise they'll be quick to break them for you.
- Have short, stand up team meetings with your team once a week, where everyone knows what's going on and the part they're there to play.
- Be really clear with anyone who takes up your time - your team, your family - as to WHY uninterrupted time is so important to you. It will also help them to know when you're available so they can plan their own time too.
- Turn off your email (& anything that rings, pings or beeps!) when you need to concentrate, and set specific times during the day to check your Inbox.
- Close your office door during your focused time - even put a sign on saying you're not to be disturbed. Nothing says come in and chat like an open door!
- Work on one thing at once - plan what you're going to work on the night before so that when you start you'll be immediately focused. (NB - make sure your email is turned off when you leave the office so that when you next hit your desk, you're not instantly distracted or tempted to have a quick check).
Who Can You Get to Help?
So now you're starting to see how important it is to regularly ring-fence some focused time to grow your business - and that in order to free up that time you need to delegate. Here are some ideas for the type of people you might want to get on board:
- A call answering service
- A PA or virtual assistant (VA)
- A bookkeeper
- An accountability partner
- A social media manager
- A blogger / content writer
- A salesperson
- A web developer
- A delivery driver
It's simply not possible to build a really successful business by doing everything yourself; by constantly reacting to people and events (including your customers); by being constantly available and by keeping hold of all the small tasks.
If you regularly do everything in your business yourself, then it could be said that you don't actually have a business - you just have a job with a lot of bosses! For sure, getting help will cost you money, but subject specialists will do things faster, to a higher standard, and their time will likely be less expensive than yours.
And remember that the ultimate cost of you using your own precious time to do things that you really ought to delegate, is the negative effect on the growth of your business, your bottom line and your plans for the future.
Do you have any great time management tips that you'd like to share? I'd love to hear them.
Business Support & Development Partner
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