A key benefit of owning your own business is choosing your working hours.
That was probably a drawcard when you started out. Chances are, you planned to spend less time in your business and more time with your friends and family. Then reality struck and you found yourself getting to work earlier, staying later and taking work home with you on the weekend or, for our farming clients, having to postpone or cancel holidays and time away from the farm.
This probably wasn’t the life you had imagined.
So, how do you start reducing your hours to get the life you want?
1. Identify the biggest time wasters in your day.
Consider the things that appear urgent and important but are not necessarily the best use of your time.
Examples of urgent things that aren’t always important include: interruptions and some emails, phone calls and meetings.
Examples of urgent and important things that can still be time wasters are: managing a crisis or problems that arise due to insufficient planning, procedure development and time management.
2. Identify how you can better utilise your team and resources.
Ineffective delegation, or no delegation at all, could be monopolising your time. It’s important that you trust your team, and that they have enough training and resources so that you can empower them with new tasks.
We can help you develop your Organisation Structure with clearly defined roles and responsibilities, so you can gain time for yourself to concentrate on key activities, such as revenue generation, more family time, or hobbies. We’ll also help you identify delegation opportunities.
Don’t employ a team? What tasks could you outsource to free up your time? Consider things you don’t enjoy or that aren’t your strength. The most commonly outsourced departments are administration, HR, finance and marketing.
3. Plan for your desired lifestyle.
Setting clear SMART goals, along with monitoring relevant KPIs, can help you to prioritise your most important tasks and get time freedom. If something’s not helping you achieve one of your goals, consider whether it’s really necessary, and if it is, whether someone else can do it. If not, schedule time to get it done before it becomes urgent.
If you struggle to hold yourself accountable to achieving your goals, we can be that accountability backstop to ensure you act to free up your time. You don’t need to be spending 80+ hours in your business (unless that’s really how you want to spend your time!). We can advise on the latest apps and help you put better systems in place to reduce the amount of time you need to spend at work.
“Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important.” – Stephen Covey