Time Management Tips for Small Businesses

Every single small business owner struggles with time management at one point or another. Even the most organized and disciplined people will fall prey to a bad habit or that overwhelmed feeling because there is so much to get done before the clock stops for the day. The following will discuss some time management tips to help you stay focused so you can have more productive days than unproductive ones.

Time Management Does Not Exist
It’s true. The only constant is that there is 24 hours in a day. Time never changes. People do. We are not managing time. We are managing ourselves and what we do with our time.

Identify Your Time Thieves
How much time in a day do you spend surfing the internet that isn’t business related. Do you check your personal FaceBook and Twitter accounts? Do you play online games? How much time do you spend reading and responding to emails? How much time is spent on personal phone calls?

There are a variety of time tracking tools you can use to help identify your time thieves, how much time they have stolen from you, and other miscellaneous distractions that put a dent in your productivity. Once you become aware of them and how much time is actually spent on these activities, it is easier to make the needed adjustments to become more productive.

Behavior Modification and Goal Setting
Managing how productive you are in a day is all about changing your behaviors. The ultimate goal is to eliminate all personal time thieves during working hours. One goal could be as simple as not accepting personal calls, except on lunch break or case of emergency, for one week. Another goal might be to reduce or eliminate smoke breaks.
You want to track these goals over time to see whether or not you are reaching your goals and how much your productivity has improved.

Prioritize Daily Tasks
Each day should begin with a list of tasks that need to be completed. Arrange them from most important to least important. Set a goal for that day of how many tasks must be completed by a set time in the day, before the end or work day, and the ones that can be moved to another day. Keep track of your daily progress.

Delegating and Outsourcing
No matter how much of a super human you may think you are, no one can do it all. It’s okay to have someone else perform a task or two or even rely on outsourcing to get the task done. Stick to the tasks you do best and delegate and outsource the rest.

Develop a Routine
Creating a routine helps you to stay focused and be more productive. There is always going to be a time when the day just seems like you’re operating in functional chaos and if one more emergency crops up, you’re going to go gray and have wrinkles before the day is finished. Sticking to a routine as much as possible will help calm the chaos.