Small business owners have it tough, they don't just have to wear many hats, but they have to fight the biggest battle of all: the Battle Against Time, every single day. Productivity is one of those things that everybody has an opinion on, but as a small business owner, when there's so much to do and never enough time to do it in, what does it really take to ensure that you are doing everything properly?
Streamline your tasks
The topic of streamlining can cover so many different areas. Streamlining can be technical, for example, a piece of software that can be designed by the Claris Filemaker Pro service to ensure that everything has a very solid process. On the other hand, streamlining can be down to the individual's perception of tasks. For example, learning how to do things in a certain order to make sure that they are optimising their time effectively. Whatever it takes, when you start to streamline your tasks, you've got to remember the end goal. Because while doing something in a different order may not necessarily make it easier, actively streamlining your tasks can be effective, just as long as you know the best approach for your needs and goals.
Work smart, not hard
This age-old adage is something we've all got to remember. You can do tasks in a logical order, but you don't have to. It's also important to look at the things where you are particularly weak and find ways to outsource them. A very good example is if you are a slow typer; instead of typing, you can invest in a dictation program that will help you to reel off emails and potentially quadruple your productivity. If you find yourself typing email after email, especially when it comes to firefighting complaining customers, this can make life a lot easier. It's also important to remember that when you are sending emails, roughly 80% will contain very similar information, so having a collection of templates will also help.
Distractions are one of the biggest obstacles. Everybody has their own distractions, whether it's social media or just not being able to focus. There are plenty of ways to learn how to focus, but you've also got to look at the distractions that you just cannot remove from your life, for example, if you need to have your email on in case of someone messaging you. But this is where discipline can make a big difference.
Complete the biggest challenges first
If you cannot remove distractions effectively, you've got to get up before everybody else does! If you really want to grow your business and you’ve got a mountain of challenges ahead of you, you've got to complete the biggest ones first. This doesn't just give you a sense of achievement, but will also give you a better opportunity to work more effectively later on, and smaller tasks that require less energy can be done with ease.
Being productive as a small business owner doesn't just involve finding the right tools and techniques, but also about winning the battle against ourselves!
I've been working with online entrepreneurs for well over a decade now and in that time (and especially during this time) I have learned many interesting lessons and tips of the trade. One of those lessons is the power of having a vision for your business growth and success.
Many of us would much rather "wait and see" what happens than take steps toward our dreams... especially when they're small (like building your own website) and grand (like taking your business from the comfort of home to millions of people looking at your site everyday).
In this day and age where there is more information than ever before, you would think that we would rather listen to someone who can show us HOW to build our business and what tools and resources we need but the sad truth is that too many entrepreneurs listen to someone who has all the knowledge... and quit when they discover that they don't know how to do what they want.
One other very important factor in getting your business started, is having a mentor.
This is not just any old mentor though; in my experience you want someone who has done exactly what you want to do, and exactly how you want to do it... so they will be your sounding board as you learn the skills necessary to get your dream of building your business... going from a hobby into a profitable business.
You want a mentor who knows exactly how your business should sound, and exactly how you can get to that point.
You want a mentor who knows exactly which tools and resources will be the best for your business.
You are going to spend many, many hours working with your mentor and we don't want to find out that the skills and techniques we invest in during our time with them is not what is needed... and you're going to be frustrated because you spent too much time with the wrong tool or technique.
So make sure there is someone who lives your dream as much as you do and has gone beyond what you thought was possible! So many entrepreneurs waste their precious time in an effort to "perfect" their business instead of concentrating on creating a business that can flourish without them.
And you don't need to spend a fortune to get yourself a great mentor... one of my all time fave's are Mike Friesen (author of "Rich Dad" series) and Jim Collins (author of Bestseller... "Lights Out")
These guys are great teachers because they get you working in their business day in day out, not just a one time course where you leave feeling like you've got it all under control.
5. Your passion - what really drives you to become a successful entrepreneur.
I want to tell you about a friend of mine who wanted to be an entrepreneur so bad that he would do anything to achieve that dream. And you know what, he's become one... as well as many other entrepreneurs we know. So his passion is real, it's not just something he creates to earn some extra cash.
There should be something you absolutely love and then there should be something that drives you to become an entrepreneur. Like wanting to do something that is beneficial to everyone and something that gives you a rush just thinking about it, getting you excited and ready to take on the world.
That way you'll get through the first 5 steps easily and then you'll be able to focus on achieving your dreams in the third step.
Now get going and create your business today!
For some, working from home is the dream! People working in the retail world or hospitality industry really could actually only dream about being able to work from home! If you're lucky enough for this dream to come true for you or have a chance, inc.com could help with a convincing stat to the boss!
Author - chris
Author, Editor, Creator of this website.