4 Time Management Tips for the Busy Entrepreneur
As a young entrepreneur ready to take on the world, perhaps the most precious resource at your disposalis time. Money, ideas, talent, support – it can be generated or acquired, but no matter how smart you are, how hard you work, or how determined you are to succeed, a day goes by in 24 hours – and once it’s gone, it’s gone.
While many entrepreneurs are working marathon shifts to achieve their goals, it is often done by sacrificing sleep, social life and personal fulfilment, and ultimately equates to unsustainable results. If you are out of breath from continually racing to keep up the pace, consider these executive tips for taming the unrelenting march of time
Always Have a Plan
They say life doesn’t come with directions, but try creating a master plan for your days, weeks, and months – you can draw up your own which will do just fine. While many recoil at the thought of making the effort to schedule all of their responsibilities, engagements, and events, however, modern technology and mobile connectivity now make it easy to adapt to a digital calendar to help utilise time to maximum efficiency.
Live by the List
Maintaining a daily to-do list is a productivity tip that has long been a staple of countless successful entrepreneurs. By jotting down the things that need to be done and arranging them by priority from top to bottom, you can make sure you are always on top of the essentials, and avoid being side-tracked by less relevant tasks.
Refresh and consult the list at the start of each day to form a clear plan of action for the ensuing hours, crossing off items as you go before taking a moment at quitting time to assess what you’ve accomplished. You’ll not only make more efficient use of your available schedule, but will begin to pay closer scrutiny in judging which tasks are worthy of your time.
Delegate, delegate, delegate
As an entrepreneur, it’s important to remember to delegate. While you might often feel you are the only one who can get the job done properly, its necessary to find trustworthy people to whom you can pass off time-consuming tasks so you can remain focused on making the big play.
Focus your time
While having a broad perspective of what’s going on around you is a positive trait in business, there are times when productivity can be maximised by shutting out the world and bringing laser-like focus to the work at hand.
Analyse the way you spend each day, identifying the periods during which you are typically most productive, and then structure your schedule to allow for total focus during your hours of peak proficiency. Set calls to go to voice mail, hang the “do not disturb” sign on the door, and put your head down and blast through your most important work without distractions. You can also be in charge of when a client or contact books in with you – by setting up a scheduling software such as Calendly, you choose the times that you are ‘available’, keeping calls to a preferred ‘block of time’, enabling you freedom to complete other work at your most productive times.
Effective time management allows young entrepreneurs the chance to have their cake and eat it too. By managing a plan based on priorities, delegating responsibility, and protecting against distractions in order to become more efficient, you can reduce stress and avoid burnout while living a happier and more productive life.