Effective time management is one of those things that absolutely no one can disagree with, kind of like eating vegetables. We know it’s good for us, that we’ll reap benefits from doing it, and that we should do a lot more of it. But a lot of us persist in our poor habits—the office equivalent of a steady diet of ice cream and soda. And time slips away from us on an hourly, daily and weekly basis. Where does the time go? we ask.
ChamberofCommerce.com chief editor Megan Totka says that great time management skills are some of the most important tools you can have in running a successful small business. In fact, how business owners manage and control their time can be a make-or-break proposition for the business. Totka says that small businesses are especially vulnerable because errors resulting from poor time management, like missed deliveries, lost clients, lack of follow up usually hit them much harder than in bigger companies.
Even if you think you’re managing your time well now, you can probably do better. Here are some areas to look at:
Totka says that your goal, as a business owner, should be to cultivate a “no time wasted” in your business, with every single person committed to using every hour to the fullest.
We’re guessing there’s probably no limit to the ways you can use your time more effectively and make sure you are doing the right things with your time. Yahoo Finance offers some additional insights from consultant and contributor John Aberle, who based his tips largely on his work with small businesses. Now that time has sped up, thanks to email, social media and a desire for instant communication and execution, our time management challenges have increased exponentially. Aberle suggests five areas for getting your time under control and using it wisely:
If you’re in denial about your time management skills, small.business.chron.com describes some signs of bad time management to look for. Do you procrastinate or find yourself being tardy a lot? Do you feel unusually and consistently stressed and fatigued? Do you have a hard time concentrating or do you go into situations feeling unprepared? If any of these sound familiar, poor time management skills could be at the root of the problem. The good news: As you work to improve how you manage your time, these issues should also improve.
Finally, nfib.com calls out the top five time-stealers for any business—and what you can do to beat them. Count them down here:
Deceptively simple, maybe (and familiar!). But banish these to the sidelines and watch your day, and your mind, open up.
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