What could you do with an extra hour every day? For most entrepreneurs, finding ways to increase productivity can be game changing for their businesses. In honor of Microsoft’s National Entrepreneurship Week from February 20 through 24, consider the following simple ways to help make the most of your day.
- Stick to a timeline. Break your days up into 30-minute time blocks, and schedule your work and meetings around those. Having your day accounted for in such detail can keep you accountable as you work toward finishing your projects, and can help you make sure that you aren’t overburdening yourself. Try to keep your daily schedule in a place that you can refer to it regularly throughout the day so you can ensure you are on track, whether that be your email calendar, a physical day-planner or even a bullet journal.
- Stop multi-tasking while you work. Most people do it, and some even pride themselves on how well they can multi-task. The most effective way to work is to be 100 percent present, so dividing your attention can slow down your process, despite the fact that you are working on more than one task at a time. Whether you’re writing an email, completing your upcoming budget, or exploring for a new vendor, give it your full attention.
- Give yourself breaks. Take regular breaks away from your phone, computer or desk in a day to help you refresh. Ten minutes every hour spent taking a walk down the hall and back to your desk can help you come back to projects with fresh eyes, and let you have a bit of time to decompress. This time is also great if you do something that requires you to spend time looking at a computer, because it gives your eyes a break, too.
- De-clutter your workspace regularly. It’s perfectly natural for your desk or office to accumulate stray papers, books and sticky-notes. Whether you realize it or not, the build-up of stuff is negatively affecting your productivity. Not only can it be stressful to look around you and see reminders of your to-do list, looking for things you need in piles can suck endless amounts of your time. Take time each week to tidy up your desk, your laptop bag, your computer desktop and anywhere else you may just leave things to “get to later.”
- Delegate. You may be the boss, but that doesn’t mean you need to do everything. Employees, business partners and agencies can be great resources to help you get done everything that your business requires. Being an entrepreneur isn’t about doing everything yourself, it’s about making the resources you have at hand line up to help your business flourish.
- Keep your network up-to-date. Your referral network is one of your business’s greatest assets, so don’t let it fall to the wayside as your work in your business. Regularly connecting with referral partners can help you develop new clients, expand your business and ultimately multiply what your business can and does offer. As you grow your client-base, you’ll be able to invest in new resources and new opportunities will follow. Along with updating your current referral network, always look to grow your network, too. Joining a BNI chapter can help you find new connections, develop credibility and expand your business. Click here to find a chapter near you.