Focus on removing barriers to growth by looking at the key factors that make your business a success, measuring what matters and removing what doesn’t.

Someone once said that time is like a snowflake – it disappears while you’re trying to decide what to do with it. And it’s true, isn’t it? There’s never enough time just to keep the business running, let alone enough time to drive it forward, is there? And yet somehow, we’ve got to create the time to start working on the really important things: The things that will… drive the business forward. The things that will… help you to achieve your goals. The things that will… turn your business dreams into reality. In this blog, we’re helping you find the time you need to be able to do all the really important stuff by sharing top tips to increase your effectiveness.

Use a time management matrix

Don’t clear up the small things first and get bogged down by the unimportant things – little stuff has a tendency to multiply! Use a time management matrix to identify how best to manage and spend your time and your life. Categorise your tasks by first asking: is the task important? Second, is the task urgent? Each task should fall into one of these categories:

#1 IMPORTANT, URGENT

In other words, I must do these things now. These are items that need to be dealt with immediately, like: customer complaints, processing orders, important meetings. Incoming prospect calls.

#2 IMPORTANT, NOT URGENT

In other words, I must plan time to do. This is what you should focus on for long term achievement of your goals e.g. goal setting, strategic planning, R&D and training. And on a more personal level, keeping fit, providing for your retirement and showing your family how much they mean to you.

#3 NOT IMPORTANT, URGENT

Find a better way These tasks should be delegated, systemised, or dumped. This category consists of, for example: interruptions, non-productive meetings, some phone calls.

#4 NOT IMPORTANT, NOT URGENT

These tasks should be eliminated or ignored. They are time-wasting activities e.g. browsing the internet, nuisance phone calls, spam email.

Outsourse non-core activities

As a business owner deciding to outsource tasks can save your business money and time and therefore should be a priority to continually try to identify which non-core activities of the business could be outsourced. Common examples include payroll, office cleaning and plant care, security, printing services, distribution and mail order fulfilment. To help you decide what services you should outsource you need to first consider whether it gives you a high or low competitive advantage, and second whether the ability and cost-effectiveness of your in-house team is high or low. Remember the Pareto principle (also known as the 80/20 rule) – 80% of results flow from 20% of effort. By focusing on the all-important 20% and applying this throughout your business you will achieve more with much less effort, time and resources.

Get in touch with an expert

Our friendly team can support you with a one-to-one session working with you on strategies for your time management, goals and habits. We can also tell you more about our One Page Plan which is specifically tailored for ambitious growing businesses that want to work closely with us to help them achieve their personal and business goals. It will help you focus on what matters, enabling you to monitor your success and take action for business growth.

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