As a small business owner, you probably find that a lot of your time is taken up by mundane tasks. Is there a way to escape it all? Absolutely! This guide explains.
5 Tips to Help Small Business Owners Take Control of Their Time
Check out these five tips that can help you reclaim your time:
- Don’t get bogged down in emails – set aside specific times to check during the day.
- Put your phone on “do not disturb” for a portion of your workday.
- Take frequent breaks to reset your brain.
- Hire a virtual assistant.
- Create systems to deal with your most frequent issues.
Tip #1 to Take Control of Your Time: Don’t Get Bogged Down in Emails; Set Aside Specific Times to Check During the Day
It’s easy to get wrapped up in your email inbox; notifications are constantly popping up, and you feel the pressure to respond immediately. But this approach isn’t very efficient and it can take away from time that could be spent doing more productive tasks. Instead, set aside specific times during the day when you will check emails. This way, you can respond to the important ones and get them out of the way without getting sidetracked.
You should also create folders in your email inbox that route messages to appropriate destinations. If certain emails are typically time-wasters – whether they’re from a specific person or company or they contain certain words in the subject line – you need to send them elsewhere until you have the free time to deal with them.
Other tips to organize your inbox include:
- Unsubscribing from newsletters that you don’t need.
- Turning off email notifications when possible.
- Creating rules to automatically file certain emails in specific folders.
Related: 7 signs you need to hire a virtual assistant before your performance slips
Tip #2: Put Your Phone on “Do Not Disturb” for a Portion of Your Workday
Your phone can be a major distraction if you let it. To help with this, put your phone on “do not disturb” mode while you’re working. This will prevent anyone from calling or messaging you unless they have been specifically whitelisted. You’ll also be able to avoid getting sucked into the blackhole of social media notifications and other distractions.
Tip #3: Take Frequent Breaks to Reset Your Brain
When you’re working, it’s important to take regular breaks. This will give your brain time to rest and reset so that you can come back to work with a clear head. Take short walks or do some light stretches during these breaks; this will help you stay alert and focused when you return to your desk.
What to Do on Short Work Breaks
When you take a short work break, you can:
- Take a walk around outside (or, if it’s too cold, rainy or otherwise inclement, walk around the inside of your office)
- Fill up your water bottle or coffee mug
- Do a few minutes of light exercises
- Listen to music
Tip #4: Hire a Virtual Assistant
If you’re finding that most of your time is spent on mundane tasks, consider hiring a virtual assistant. A virtual assistant can help you with tasks like data entry and customer service, freeing up your time to focus on more important things.
How to Tell if You Need to Hire a Virtual Assistant
Check out the signs that you need to hire a virtual assistant:
- You can’t keep up with new leads coming in
- You’re getting behind on projects and missing deadlines
- You’re feeling overwhelmed by your workload
- You don’t have enough time to work on important tasks
Related: Starting a podcast to promote your business
Tip #5: Create Systems to Deal With Your Most Frequent Issues
Creating systems for your common activities can save you a lot of time. Instead of continually reinventing the wheel, create an outline or checklist that you can follow when tackling similar tasks. This way, you won’t have to waste time thinking of the next step; it will already be written down for you.
Creating systems can also help with customer service since questions and problems tend to repeat themselves. Having a system in place to handle these types of issues can save you a lot of time and frustration.
Do You Need to Hire a Virtual Assistant?
If you’re overwhelmed with work and can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, it may be time for you to hire a virtual assistant. Get in touch with us today by using the form below. We’ll get back to you as soon as we possibly can.
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