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11 Ways To Stay Sharp & Effective While Running Your Business
With mobile phones, e-mails, twitters, linked ins, late buses, family drama, double booking meetings and a wide range of other “hoo-ha’s” that the business world throws your way, it is hard to not get side tracked only to find that you are running backwards or in circles, rather than moving forward for a smooth day in your business operations.
Here are the top ten ways to spend less time stressing and more time accomplishing your goals for more success in your business:
11 Sharp & Effective Tips To Handle Your Business Better
1. Be clear on why, how and when:
Be sure you understand and are able to verbalize to yourself why you want to produce more results while working less. This may seem simple, but it is highly important, as a way to motivate you to meaningful action. To do something successfully, it must be done on purpose and with a purpose. Knowing your purpose gives you an important reason to make any task or project important enough and a high enough priority to motivate you to get with the program, and get the job done.
You may want to spend less time working so you can spend more time with your family, or so you can finish the week early and have a long weekend, maybe so you can practice a sport more often, so you can compete with greater excellence. If your purpose is one that gives you a reason to get more serious and get things done, you will purposely do what is necessary to garner that time for your personal pursuits.
2. Use a Day Timer or any other Organizer:
This may also sound simplistic, but it is really important. The organizer can free your mind, as it becomes your memory bank. When you diligently use it every day, for everything, you will record your thoughts, assignments, tasks, appointments, shopping lists, and other important information. in their proper places and you will be free to forget it until it’s time to refer to that information. For example your shopping list and the unusual item that you may be concerned about forgetting is of no concern now, because you will rely on your shopping list when you get to the store, and not worry about it until the proper time. The organizer may be paper or electronic. I have tried both ways and both have their advantages, but I prefer the old-fashioned paper variety because it is usable everywhere, anytime.I also appreciate the pop-up reminders of the electronic kind.
3. Keep your To Do List short and sweet:
The “To Do List” can be very intimidating, mostly because most folks put too much on it. Your daily list should have only one or two mission essential tasks for any given day. This is your assignment to yourself. Be kind and don’t make “unfunded” requirements. You work hard and, if you are effective, you should have some time for yourself. You need breaks, personal time and fun time to be more productive. Too much hard work will tire you out, your effort will become counter-productive and you may go nuts besides. I keep a separate “Long term” to do list that keeps me on track for weeks and months. These items don’t become imperative until I schedule them on the daily list.
4. Arrive at work on time for a running head start:
There is a time to work, and a time to play. At work,get to work in an organized, effective and energetic manner. When it is time to play, or take a break, separate from work and be recharged through relaxing pursuits. It is smartest to do your coffee drinking and socializing before and after work. At work be about your business, whether your office is next to the boss’s or in your home. This policy alone will significantly shorten the time needed to accomplish the requirements of the day. When you have met the requirements of the day, straighten up, set tomorrow’s schedule and go use the time you saved for your personal purposes.
5. Prioritize before lunchtime:
It is important that you accomplish an important task before lunch: however don’t rush it. Do it right. Finishing a significant task early will give you the momentum of successful accomplishment to carry you through the rest of the day.
6. Don’t condone overly excessive chit-chat:
Do all the socializing you want in the break room or at lunch time, at the appointed times. When the time is not right, get back into the business mode and back into the office and get busy, purposefully following your schedule. When you are not conducting business, you will find life is more enjoyable if you are sociable and relaxed, then when it is time to work you will be fresher and more effective. Don’t be rude, just be professional and businesslike at work.
7. Automate as much as you can:
Anything that is done for you, automatically saves time and ensures the task will be completed. Make use of programmable coffee makers, auto-tweets, email auto-responders, reminder programs, online scheduled bill pay, and anything else you can automate!
8. You can save a lot of time if you just learn how and when to say the 2 letter word…”No”:
It is seldom required for you to do everything that everyone asks of you. Don’t be timid: Say no to unnecessary interruptions such as the inevitable social visits by co-workers. Refuse to chit-chat on the phone. Ask people to email you, so you can take control of the time and choose when to reply. If in person meetings or phone conversations cannot be eliminated, respectfully let the other person know that your you are busy and your time is limited…just let them know that you have a call to make in 5 minutes, then give them six, using the last-minute to end the conversation. Question people ahead of time about the purpose of the meeting or call, and then you can take charge and set the parameters for it. Be sure and clarify the problem or reason for the contact beforehand and then ask questions to clearly and directly bring out the answer to the problem. If you are unable to help, courteously state the fact, and refer them to someone who can help and politely end the call or meeting. Your time is very valuable. Time is money…time is also life. Your and your family’s well-being and lifestyle depends on you getting your job done effectively. Your next sale or promotion may depend upon your ability to conduct business efficiently.
9. Control Your E-mails before they control you:
This may challenge you, but it is vitally important. Don’t let E-mail control you….you must take control of it. If you get important business email during the day, you may want to set up a special web mail account just for business and then direct all your business E-mail to that address, so you’re not distracted by spam and personal email. Spam arrest is also a good program to get spam under control. Check E-mails as seldom as possible. For openers, try reducing to twice a day; just before lunch and just before quitting time. Be vicious with the delete key, then read business mail at work and read personal email after work. This tip alone can cut hours off of many a worker’s time on the job. If you are in control of your own schedule, or a good negotiator with a reasonable boss, applying this tip means getting out of the office earlier; in many cases, much earlier.
10. Stop multi-tasking (you’re not Superman):
With precious few exceptions, “Multi-tasking” means doing a half-baked job of many things at the same time. I think It is the road to a nervous breakdown and low self-esteem. When you wake up and realize that as hard as you work, you don’t get anything done excellently, it has to be demoralizing. You’ll profit greatly if you use the organizing tips above and take control of your work situation, then do one task at a time, until it is done well, then move on to the next one. A car accident in which someone dies would be a horrifying way to learn that you can’t concentrate fully on two tasks at the same time, like driving and talking on the phone. Multi-tasking could be mostly responsible for the rampant mediocrity in today’s workplace.
11. Outsource difficult and tiring tasks:
There are people who make a business of helping you with mundane tasks, or tasks that you don’t do well. One such business is freelancer.com. Give it a try with some personal tasks first to get an idea of how it works for you. Without hiring a full-time assistant or secretary, you can get good help and pay by the hour. That will free you up to tend to your more important tasks and the ones that you are strong in. Students at a local college or university who major in areas that would help you may be a good source of help, and you could help them earn a little income, too. If you prefer to go international, do a search on Your Man in India, and Brickwork, or the search on the term Virtual Assistants. Outsourcing Success has already made the connections and is ready to bridge the gap and help you get the help you need.
Above all, don’t give up on ironing out the wrinkles in your life. Everyone is different, and every life is different. No simplification tip will work for everyone. Try them all, and pay attention to what works. Before you know it, you will have your life and business running smooth as glass. The entrepreneur life can get easier, with a little diligence and a few words of wisdom.
Article By: Sergeant Carpenter