The Cafe Scholar site is about to undergo some changes! I need to overhaul the site to reflect my changing focus, and clean up some things before switching to a new theme. Trying to squeeze this in alongside maintaining my other site, working a day job, leading a ministry and teaching on the side is tough, so I’m always looking for ways to be more productive. Ok. Confession time. I’m a productivity nut…but it’s hard to follow through on all those great ideas and tools out there. I’m excited to share today’s guest post by Rae Steinbach on ways entrepreneurs (yes, writers, that’s you!) can be more productive each day. Rae is a freelance editor and graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course. You can find Rae on Twitter at araesininthesun. So without further ado, let’s get productive!
7 Ways Entrepreneurs Can Be More Productive Each Day
All entrepreneurs need certain essential skills to grow successful businesses. Imagine you’re opening a shared office space. Understanding coworking space financial models (or hiring someone who does!) is essential to building a budget and ensuring you can open up your doors.
Time management is another key skill. When your day is typically filled with tasks keeping you busy, knowing how to stay productive is key to working through those tasks efficiently.
If you’re a business owner trying to boost time management skills, keep the following points in mind. They’ll help you achieve this essential goal.
Use Motivation Effectively
You won’t always be motivated to get work done when growing a business. Forcing yourself to try and complete major tasks when you’re tired may not be the best idea. Instead, you should pay attention how you feel. Try to notice when you’re feeling particularly motivated, and use this motivation as fuel to get important work done. Although this feeling won’t strike all the time, when it does, it can be a useful tool.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re the head of a growing company with hundreds of employees or a solopreneur working out of your home: you need an organized office where you can focus on your work.
If you work in an environment where distractions are plentiful, you’ll naturally struggle to be productive. Taking the time to create a space that’s distraction-free will be worth it in the long run.
Joy interrupting here: This is why I work at cafes. A home office (or for me, the kitchen table or desk in my bedroom) can be a great place to work sometimes, but I am also surrounded by things that need to be done. And, well, pillows. A cafe or a coworking space can be a great way to step outside of the distractions and focus on the task at hand.
You may already know that proper time management involves listing tasks (both short-term and long-term) that need to be completed. However, you also need to prioritize those tasks. Some work will help you grow your business, while other projects are less immediately important. Prioritizing to-do lists helps you focus on the most important tasks first. If a particular task seems intimidating, break it down into smaller steps.
Although creating a daily schedule helps you stay productive, you can’t expect every element of your day to go as planned.
Maybe traffic prevents you from reaching a scheduled meeting. Maybe IT issues prevent you from completing tasks that require internet access. Leaving yourself enough time between tasks helps you avoid falling behind if these types of mishaps slow you down.
Train & Delegate
Running a business often involves deciding which tasks you should handle, and which you can delegate to other employees.
Delegating tasks is a smart way to use time effectively. That is, if you give employees responsibilities they’ve been trained for. Productivity can actually suffer if you delegate without considering whether a worker is qualified to handle a particular task.
That’s why training employees thoroughly is essential. Doing so boosts their performance (and saves you time) in the long run.
Take Care of Yourself
Running a business can be stressful at times. Unfortunately, stress tends to hurt productivity.
Make sure you’re taking time to address your own personal needs. Eat well, get enough sleep, exercise more (doing so yields a productivity boost), and simply indulge in activities you enjoy. Although you may be tempted to focus all your energy on work, getting away from stress is actually a smarter way to use your time.
Cultivate Good Habits
These tips will work if you apply them consistently. Too often, people apply life management advice for a short period of time, returning to their old habits before reaping all the benefits.
You want to replace poor time management habits with positive ones. That means using these tips regularly, until doing so is natural to you.
Remember, this is a major factor for any entrepreneur’s success. By knowing how to manage your time effectively and making a point of doing so every day, you’ll get a major competitive advantage.