Everyone knows that good time management is essential for a successful business. In today’s hectic and fast-paced world, however, managing time effectively can be very challenging. Instead of focusing on activities that positively impact the health of their business, many people waste precious hours on pointless tasks that swallow up time, and then wonder where their day went!
If you really want to reach the highest levels of success, you must stop wasting time on non-essentials and instead implement a solid structure to help you become more productive and focused. Here are six powerful steps you can take to start building an effective time-management plan for your business, today:
- Set Your Priorities
- One of the first steps to better time management is to set your priorities. Think of time as a jar full of rocks. To manage your day to the best of your ability, you have to put the most important activities – the big rocks – in the jar first. Everything else is secondary. A successful schedule must always include these three ‘big rock’ items: Time for Making Calls
Social media is a great way to stay connected to people but, if you want to build the kinds of relationships that will help your business go the distance, then nothing replaces a real conversation. For your business to thrive, it’s vital to make time to reach out, network and create strong bonds with prospective clients, peers and past customers.
- Time for Writing Personal Notes
Everyone loves to receive a handwritten note in the mail. If you consistently write notes to people, you’ll deepen personal and professional relationships and enjoy the kinds of loyal and long-lasting relationships that form the foundation of a successful business. Every great business is built on relationships, so you have to make building them your business!
- Time Off
No one can or should work non-stop – you need time to recharge, be with friends and family and simply get away from your desk! A great way to stay consistent with this habit is to pick one day each week and then build it into your schedule. After some quality R&R, you’ll come back rested, refreshed and ready to take on the world again!
- Evaluate How You Currently Spend Time
You can’t assess what you don’t track! To see what you’re doing right and where you’re going wrong, track all of your activities for one 24-hour period. What did you accomplish? Where did you lose time? Where can you gain time? This exercise is a real eyeopener and can help you identify where you need to improve and plan your week more successfully.
- Implement a Strategy
After you’ve evaluated how you’re spending time, you need to create a strategy to help you focus more on your goals. This strategy should take your short-, mid- and long-term goals into account and then set out weekly and monthly activities to achieve these.
- Prioritize Your Priorities
To get smart about time, you need to get clear about your priorities. The best way to do this is to create a list. Begin with your personal and family obligations and then list everything else on your plate, such as business meetings or errands. Once you have everything down, ABC this list. It’s a simple and straightforward strategy, but it’s extremely effective. When your priorities are clear, your action steps to success become clear too.
- Time Batch Your Activities
Constantly switching between unrelated tasks causes stress and is a really inefficient use of time. By batching similar tasks into one block instead of flipflopping throughout the day, you eliminate stress and you win time. Set aside a certain period for administrative duties, such as responding to email and answering calls, and only do those activities within the set time limit. It’s incredible how much you can achieve when you work within boundaries.
- Plan Ahead
We all have 24 hours in a day, but not all of us use that time wisely or to our best advantage. To make sure that you optimize the time available to you, create a calendar of all of your activities and deadlines. Having something that you can visually see and reference is a powerful way to keep track of how you’re spending your time. Of course, life will happen, and there must be room for flexibility, but this calendar will be your road map for success.
Smart time management and planning is vital to success in today’s competitive marketplace. Buffini & Company Certified Coaches provide expert, personalized support to help you maximize your time and take your business to the next level. Why not start your free trial today?