Running a business is hard work. My plate is full a lot of the time and is definitely not for everyone. Some days, you feel like you can do ANYTHING and others, overwhelm hits you so hard, that you end up hiding and doing nothing. It is no surprise that productivity is essential to running a successful business so I want to share my top tips on how to have a more productive day.
I don’t know exactly when my organizational skills became great, but at some point (way after I graduated from university), it became a natural thing for me. Even if things seem like they are a mess, everything in my closet has a place, as does in my pantry, fridge and office.
However, this isn’t just about having a clean closet. Being organised is kind of a big deal when it comes to your business. Talking about the idea is easy, but here are a few ways I try to stay on top of my workload, and how I manage to not only organize myself but those around me.
You Have To Start From The Beginning
Start your day, the right way! I could be one of those people who set their alarm and wakes up an hour earlier than everyone, but (spoiler) I am not that person. I have a 4-year-old and he is my alarm clock, so I know I never have to worry about sleeping in. I’m up early! We have a routine in the morning, and I give myself a pep talk, to build my confidence. This helps fight the overwhelm and keeps me focused.
Goal Setting & Lists
I devote time to thinking about the day ahead and how I am going to use the hours when he is in preschool. That time cannot be wasted! Setting goals are key to making breakthroughs and effecting change. They also help to keep you accountable. If I am feeling even more awesome, I’ll try and plan the night before.
Having a good idea of how you want something to look, or what you want a finished product to be, it means you are better able to focus your time and skills on development. For example, don’t start writing an email unless you know what you want to say, and this is the same for any project really. Make sure to devote time to creating a clear vision of what it is you are doing, so time isn’t wasted along the way with ideas, and half-formed projects being tossed out. Brainstorm way in advance to you actually doing the work.
I use my calendar daily and I start a new task list for the day, copying over any incomplete tasks from the previous day. Throughout the day, I add to the list or tick off items as they’re completed. Doing this means I never lose track of a task that hasn’t been completed, and if asked where I am with a task I can provide an accurate answer and realistic eta.
Everything should be in your calendar – meetings, when things are due in, product launches, financial incomings/outgoings, etc. Seeing these items daily will help you be more aware of what is coming up within the next month, or week. Knowing what is coming up, rather than relying on a reminder from someone else, is going to reflect better on you and your work, and will help you be better organised.
I am a big fan of batch scheduling, especially things such as social media posts and my newsletters. The best scheduling platforms include…
Social Pilot for Facebook pages/groups and Twitter
This will save you hours every week and it really does wonders for your productivity. A few days a week have designated tasks that I do every month, so I can keep on top of it. I schedule a month’s tasks to go on autopilot in one sitting OFTEN. *All links listed above are affiliates because I do believe in them so much.
HIDE THE PHONE
I put this one in caps, because Renegade, ya’ll know how much of a distraction this can be! One of the biggest roadblocks to productivity is your freaking phone! Putting your phone away in a different room, while you’re busy at work makes a game-changing difference. Right not mine is charging in my bedroom while I write this blog post. I disabled social media notifications years ago and give myself certain times of the day to get on and be distracted.
Know your limits and communicate
It is important to understand exactly how long it takes for you to complete a task, so you can manage your time more effectively. An email may take you ten minutes to complete while doing your monthly accounts could take you several hours. By knowing how long something will take, it means you can better manage your workload.
If you are working on a project for a client, you need to be able to effectively communicate with them your deadlines, expectations and time frames.. If you communicate efficiently, you’ll understand the urgency of any project that lands your way. This helps you manage your own time and workload. Without clear communication, it’s difficult to not only organize yourself and your work but those around you.
Putting processes in place to keep you on track, ultimately saves you so much time, leading the way for productivity to really shine. This is how you truly achieve your goals. Being organized can be easy, you just need to put some time into your daily planning and be realistic of what you can achieve.