In the previous post I wrote about the seven barriers to business success and how one of them is us the Owner! Which is not surprising when you consider there is no schooling to train for this position and so we are left to train on the job. However the bigger hindrance is that there is never enough time to do everything that needs doing. So here are some solutions.
1. The 45 Minute Solution
Add 45 minutes to your work day; this addshalf a day to your work week! Add the time to the start of the day or the end of the day or a combination of both. Come in on a Saturday morning. BUT, and this is a big but, don’t fill that time up with more of the “urgent” activities. Use it to do the “important” things that will bring success to your company. Remember the model: Important Versus Urgent.
2. The Procrastination Solution
Yes you heard it here first; procrastination is a good thing (as long as it is done right)! So you have your to do list and you know darn well that there is no way you will complete everything on the list. So procrastinate …. on some. Mark each item on the list either a Must do or a Should do or a Nice to do. Immediately cross out anything you consider Nice to do; you are never going to get to them anyway so get rid of them. The Should do’s are the candidates for procrastination. Leave them for another day until they become Must’s or Nice’s. Remember the model: Must Should Nice.
3. The No Interrupt Solution
Our days are made up of a long series of interruptions. Studies have shown that the smallest interrupt, like 30 seconds, takes us 10 minutes away from what we are doing. Suffer just 12 small interruptions in a day and you have been diverted from your work for 2 hours! If you have an office close the door for 1 hour a day; your staff won’t die and it is unlikely the building will burn down. If you don’t have an office go to a coffee shop or sit by the lake and think. Wouldn’t that be incredible? One hour of thinking about your business without any interruptions! Turn off your emails; turn off your cell. This must be focused think time. Remember the model (with thanks to IBM): Think!
4. The Meetings Management Solution
If you are plagued by meetings after meetings take control. Manage the meetings. This can be simply done by following these rules:
- Have an agenda
- Start on time (regular late comers will soon learn to arrive on time)
- Have an end time for the meeting and keep to it
- Deal with the decision items first followed by information items
- Only invite those who really MUST be there
- If you are invited decide if it is really necessary to be there
- Control the conversation ~ keep to the topic
Remember the model: Manage Meetings.
It doesn’t matter which way you look at it there are only seven days in a week. Take charge of your time if you want to build a successful business that one day you can sell. Don’t let you become the barrier to your business’s success. Take charge of your time.