Did you know that one of the most common challenges facing small business owners is fatigue?
If you are a small business owner, you probably work extra-long hours and are perhaps mentally and emotionally connected to your business 24/7. It can seem as if there is always too much to do and too little time every day.
So today I'm sharing 6 essential time-savers for overworked entrepreneurs:
1. Stop saying yes to everything.
- According to successful investor Warren Buffet, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.”
- When running a business or leading a team, you'll find it easy to take on more than you can handle. But it’s important to recognize when you’re in over your head and call for reinforcements.
- Instead of saying “yes” to doing something, delegate tasks to your team members or an assistant to free up your schedule. Letting other people tackle these tasks will allow you to focus on bigger issues.
2. Stop multitasking.
- Experts estimate that only 2 percent of the population is actually proficient at multitasking, so chances are, you’re not one of them.
- Multitasking can make you feel that you’re getting a lot done, but it actually has the opposite effect.
- Switching between tasks can cost as much as 40 percent of your time. Instead, focus on doing one task at a time and shut out all distractions while you do it.
3. Stop sitting in endless meetings.
- When you're a business leader, your schedule is typically full of meetings. But, with so much time dedicated to meetings, are you actually getting anything done?
- On average, employees spend 31 hours a month in meetings.
- Set up meetings for projects that need face-to-face discussion, but for all others, stick to email.
4. Stop fueling your social media addiction.
- Hubspot reports that one-third of the world’s population now uses social media regularly, so it’s no wonder that it’s found its way into the workplace.
- Employees spend up to two hours per day recovering from distractions like social media.
- During work hours, avoid getting distracted: Turn off all notifications or put your phone away completely.
- If you need to use social media for work, consider automating your posts, with programs like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck.
5. Start asking for help.
- When you have a big project that involves hours of mindless labor, bribe some friends or family with free pizza and soda (or beer) to help you.
- From collating and assembling media packages to getting orders packed and out the door, this approach can finish a project in one evening that would have taken you a week.
6. Start bundling responsibilities.
- If you can accomplish two things at once, do it.
- For example, plan the order for any errands to determine the shortest route.
- Save up all of your financial requirements and go to the bank once a week rather than two or three times. Keep an ongoing list of office supplies and stop at the store when you’re nearby.
We all have the same 24 hours, but how you use them can make all the difference when it comes to business success.
With these tips, I hope you can carve some extra minutes out of your day, reduce your stress and help your company thrive.
Roy Lamphier is Founder and CEO of Excelerate America, the fun, smart service for small businesses. Roy's passion for entrepreneurship, tech and helping small enterprises succeed are central to the Excelerate America ethos. If you'd like to share your thoughts on these time savers, feel free to shoot him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.