Guest Post – Megan Totka
Time management is a concept that many people and businesses struggle with. With that said, great time management skills are probably one of the most important skills to have when it comes to running a successful small business. While larger companies may have more of a luxury of time when it comes to selling products or closing on accounts, a small business that is just getting started can be broken by bad time management. One late delivery, and a client may decide to go with another company. While a more established company can take a loss in stride, a small business may not be able to.
Here are some ways to establish good time management practices for your small business:
- Prioritizing – classify your day (and your employees’ day) by level of importance. Make sure you organize your day in such a way that the most critical tasks are accomplished first. While this may seem like an obvious thing to do, sometimes it is easier said than done.
- Scheduling – schedule yourself and your employees so that there is ample coverage throughout the day. Whether your company has a physical office or just maintains phone and web coverage, be sure to have people available at all of the hours your business hopes to cover. I would even go so far as to suggest extra coverage, in case an employee is out sick, or gets tied up with another project. This way, no time goes to waste.
- Setting Goals – having clear cut goals for your employees is critical to great time management. If your employee knows exactly what they are working towards and what the end result should be, you are setting them up for success. If your goals and timetable are unclear, time can be wasted trying to pinpoint what exactly they should be doing.
- Motivation – encouraging your employees to be self-motivated is an important step to successful time management. It is a waste of time for management to have to keep a careful eye on each and every employee and ensure that their work is being accomplished. A self-motivated work force is much more efficient than one that needs babysitting.
- Multi-tasking – multi-tasking can be a curse or a blessing. Employees and managers who are able to multi-task are invaluable. However, you have to be careful. If you ask too much of someone who is not a good multi-tasker, they can quickly become overwhelmed. It is great to gauge the ability of your employees and see which are able to handle several responsibilities at once, and which work better while focusing on just one task at a time.
Cultivating a culture of “no time wasted” in your small or fledgling business is extremely important. It is a necessity to get management, employees, and anyone else involved with your business on board with using your time to its fullest. Great time management coupled with a useful product or service can lead to a successful business.
Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She has spent time working for major media news outlets in Seattle and Portland