Running a small business is not for the faint of heart! Between marketing, sales, strategic planning, filing taxes, managing employees, managing client relations, and productivity (just to name a few!), it's enough to drive even the most dedicated entrepreneur a little crazy!
Fortunately, there are plenty of smart ways to run your small business more effectively. Making some simple changes can save you time, effort, money and help you to find the work-life balance you deserve.
#1 Embrace Outsourcing
There are only a finite number of hours in a day. Regardless of your intellectual capacity, time management skills and work ethic, there will always be something that you want to be working on or developing for your business. Most small business owners struggle, relying on others because they are habitual doers and know that if the job is worth doing, it’s worth doing well and they are the best person to get it done. Even when you do outsource tasks, I bet you find yourself micromanaging them and defeating the purpose of outsourcing altogether.
To run your business more efficiently, embrace Outsourcing.
Outsourcing will free up time and resource, allowing you to dedicate that time to other priorities within your business. Instead of hiring staff for short-term business needs (which can be expensive and time-consuming to train them quickly). Consider outsourcing administration tasks to a virtual assistant, a bookkeeper to manage corporate taxes and an expert to develop policies and procedures. You may also be supporting your local network & community, since many small businesses are those that others outsource to. It doesn’t always have to land on your shoulders.
#2 Embrace Technology
The tools are out there to help you manage your time more efficiently - and it really isn’t that scary! There are simple changes you can make today that will improve your productivity. Consider creating a digital calendar to set automatic reminders on your phone or use the ‘dictation’ function to help speed up writing emails. Technology can be used in dozens of ways from virtual meetings (how we have come to love those in the last couple of years!) to client on-line booking systems.
Don’t forget to update your technology: It is too old or too slow? Set a budget for tech each year. What are your competitors doing to stay ahead of the game? If you do not invest in the right technology, you could risk losing clients or failing to attract new ones. Remember to also check what your team needs are – what technology will make them work smarter and more efficient (and help boost morale)?
A digital filing system may not sound the sexiest thing to many of us, but I promise you that using some tech-friendly alternatives to organize your desktop files or using the “Cloud” to set up collaborative folders can make it a whole lot easier to share, sort, save and find documents more quickly.
Digital forms or checklists will reduce printing paper copies (and bonus points - your carbon footprint), allowing you to retain documents digitally and can be a whole lot easier to access from your phone or tablet when out of the office.
#3 Embrace a workspace just for you!
Optimizing your workspace has a huge influence on your productivity. Getting it right will help minimize distractions, make you physically more comfortable and possibly prevent ergonomic injuries. At Pendragon Solutions, we are experts in ‘Lean Management’ – identifying creative and practical ideas to help make your workspace more efficient.
Get your chair, desk and computer set up correctly (and get your staff to do the same). It can help ensure your body is positioned in the most ergonomically friendly way; far better for you (and your teams) long-term well-being.
Cleaning and organizing your workspace at the end of each day removes unnecessary clutter, so you can find all desktop items and stationery you need quickly and easily, saving you time. Creating a “to-do” list at the end of the day so you can hit the ground running first thing the next morning always helps focus the mind.
Remember that all the above points should be applied to your whole team and not just yourself. Successful business efficiency relies on the buy-in from everyone.
As you can see, some of these simple changes do not take much time or budget to implement and have a huge benefit to help you achieve your business productivity goals.
For more insights on making your business run more efficiently – contact Kirsten at Pendragonsolutions.com today.
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