Let’s face it: running a modern business can be very complicated and time equals money. However, you’re in luck – there are plenty of time-hack tricks out there for you to use to your advantage. Get with the times and make the most of the latest techniques to make your business time and cost efficient.
Break it down
CEOs of the digital age have plenty of time-hack tricks up their sleeves, and you can adopt them to stay ahead of the pack in the business world. Breaking processes down into bite-size tasks is an efficient way to get things done without feeling swamped.
- If you’re writing online content, you could try breaking down each article into tasks such as image selection, note writing, drafting and editing. This way you can have breaks between each task, or even delegate them to colleagues to create an efficient conveyor belt of your workflow
- Adopt checklists and task management tools such as Wunderlist to keep your life in sync. These tools can also work for your team, and you can even subscribe with a business account, so you can all keep on track of what task is up next. Wunderlist offers a 30-day free trial, so you can give it a go yourself
- A task-focused approach is the key to getting things done. Completing tasks will set you on your way to reaching an end-goal. This approach will stop you from going off-piste, and prevent you from getting sidelined into anything that may prevent you from meeting impending deadlines
Check out our previous article for more detail on how to grow your small business and keep yourself on the road to success.
Eliminate, delegate & prioritize
This three-step triage process will help you on your way to becoming the most organized entrepreneur out there.
You need to remove all unnecessary tasks from your list before you can get ready, set, GO! There are bound to be some tasks left on your list that have either been completed already, or are now redundant. Strike them out and start afresh.
A great way to make sure that your most pressing business tasks get completed first is to color code them. For example, red for urgent, orange for important and green for non-urgent. Consider using a spreadsheet to highlight, color code and organize your tasks to make sure that nothing gets missed. You can now get started on those tasks with urgent deadlines, and save non-urgent tasks for next week.
If you are lucky enough to run a business with employees, you should delegate work to them at a steady rate to ensure that they always have something to do. Internal communications are very important – Skype messenger and Basecamp are fantastic ways to keep in touch with your employees and have discussions about work.
It’s a great idea to spend a few hours every week on your business’ workflow, following this three-step process. This will deliver plenty of ROI for your time!
Applications are your new best friend
Apps are increasingly being integrated into daily life en masse. From recording workouts, to streaming radio shows, there is an app for almost anything you can think of these days. So, why not use apps in your business? There are plenty out there to choose from. Here are some of the best:
- Recording your important notes from meetings and spur-of-the-moment strokes of genius has never been easier. Introducing Evernote, the note-taking software. Evernote will revolutionize your note-taking, as it runs across all devices. All you need to do is log into your account to access your saved notes from anywhere you like. A sharing function also allow you to share notes with colleagues and friends.
- Billingspro is a great choice for any business needing to create quick invoices, estimates or quotes. This app offers the same time tracking functionality of Toggl but also enables you to generate invoices directly from timesheet data.
- Are you pressed for time and trying to deal with your business’ finances? Quickbooks might be the solution for you to get a full sense of your business’ financial health. Quickbooks claims to shave 8 hours per month from time spent dealing with accounts. What would you do with 8 extra hours per week?
- Internal communications are integral to any business. Slack brings all of your communications together into one place, enabling you to tie conversations for particular projects or clients together into ‘channels’, direct message, voice call and drag and drop files. The interface is very easy to use, which means that you can focus on important things – like doing your work – rather than training staff on how to use the app.
- Don’t delay when it comes to cash flow and making some money: get out there with an MVP. Are you’re struggling to get started with sales? If the answer is yes, consider using time-saving solutions like WordPress premium themes for easy site building, Shopify for designing your first online store, or Amazon and Ebay to get selling today. These are all easy to set up, allowing you to get making money straight away.
It’s time to adopt apps into the daily running of your business. You won’t regret it.
Take it easy
As a business owner, your time is extremely valuable. It can be a real labor of love to get your business off the ground, frequently burning the candle at both ends to get things done.
It’s important to get the balance right between work and play, and this is of course far easier to say than it is to do. Don’t forget that looking after yourself, eating regularly and having frequent breaks from work (especially if you spend a lot of time looking at screens) are paramount to being productive whilst on the job.
So, if time equals money, these time-saving hacks are going to save you a lot of wasted expenditure. You need to embrace the digital world around you to stay ahead in the business world. Which of these time hacks will you use to run your business? Let us know in the comments.
About the Author
Patrick Foster, ecommerce entrepreneur & writer – I am a freelance writer and contributor to many digital publications specializing in business, ecommerce and blogging. I enjoy nothing more than sharing my knowledge with others in the industry, and teaching them how to be time and cost-efficient.