Written on the 8 February 2014 by National Australia Bank
How to help manage your time effectively by NAB
24 October 2012
Posted in Business tips, Running a business, Starting a business
A key business driver for a business is time, so using your time efficiently enables you to successfully manage your business and achieve work-life balance.
Time is like money. If you control how you use it, you can create a productive and profitable working environment. If you don’t, you can spend your working life always being busy, but not getting the important things done.
It’s good to set goals
Few people have the time to do everything so it’s important to focus on priorities. Set goals and spend most of your time on activities that help you to achieve these goals.
Give the highest priority to activities that are important and urgent. Consider whether you need to spend time on things that are urgent but not important. Can you delegate them to someone else? Should you be spending any time at all on things that are neither important nor urgent?
Base your plans on your priorities, taking into account your way of working. You might find it useful to plan first your week, then your day:
•Identify which tasks will help you achieve your goals, and allocate your time accordingly.
•Get small, urgent tasks out of the way first.
•Delegate work if other people can do it as well, or more quickly, cheaply or effectively.
•Ensure other people know what they need to achieve each day.
•Divide the principal tasks for the day into achievable blocks of work.
•Tackle them one at a time.
Set realistic deadlines for all your activities. With long-term projects, set interim deadlines and a final deadline. Allow time for contingencies – the longer the project, the more contingency time will be needed.
Decide whether your deadlines are fixed or flexible. Don’t allow work (particularly less important work) to take longer than it should. If ten minutes is all a job is worth, make sure it’s done in ten minutes.
Schedule your work to suit your temperament at different times of the day or week. For example, if you’re at your liveliest and most outgoing in the late morning, schedule your customer calls at that time.
Routines and systems equals benefits
Managing a small business can be made easier by creating systems for routine tasks:
•Consider investing in contact management software or other technology that will help you schedule and manage regular calls and activities.
•Use email for regular contact with customers and employees.
•Use a personal organiser or notepad to capture ideas.