As we approach the end of the first quarter for 2021 there is still a lot of uncertainty out there. When will lockdown finally ease and what will the new landscape look like? It will be interesting as you review your Strategic Plan how well you have predicted the year so far and what changes you may need to make going forward.
I know that many companies out there have no Strategic Plan which is like fighting with one arm tied behind your back or going on a journey with a blindfold on. Unfortunately, so many people are so busy fire fighting and reacting to situations that they believe there is no time available for strategic thinking. I know from working with business owners that this is incorrect because as you make even a small amount of time available you free up even more time and that is when you achieve the momentum needed. I was working with one company where this was the case and we have now freed up 3 hours per day for the owner and he is delighted because he can take a breadth, stand back and make more informed decisions.
Where is this time I hear you ask so let me give you an exercise to help you find it. Tip 1 I have attached a Daily Task monitor which you should complete daily over the course of a week. This will help you identify the various tasks you are performing and how much time they are taking up. Review them and then ask yourself an honest question, should I be doing all of these or should I be delegating many of them out.
From experience business owners believe mistakenly that it is easier for them to do something than go and get someone else to do it. Sure I would have it done by the time I ask someone else and this is where the issue lies. People within organisations just dump tasks that they are capable of doing onto anyone who is prepared to accept them. It is only when you make a stand and bounce them back that you command respect and free yourself of these often trivial tasks that others should be taking responsibility for. Are you an enabler and if so is it not time to change that?
Tip 2 works very well but takes discipline - tell people that your phone is switched off say between 10.00am and 11.00am every day. When people realise you are not available they will solve problems that normally get dumped on you. You may feel that you cannot do this but in fact you will actually free up even more time every day than you realise. Why, because the amount of work you will get through without interruptions is far great than most people imagine. You would be surprised at the amount of additional time needed to complete a task when you are being interrupted then getting back to the task again, then being interrupted again. This cycle could be costing you easily 2 hours per day.
Tip 3 finally, need I mention social media? Be realistic and turn it off. Even if you are not opening you phone every time it pings, your natural curiosity will distract you from the task you are engaged in and that will add valuable time that could be spent elsewhere.
As a business owner you have control over how time is used in your company. Lead by example and see the positive changes take place. If you would like to know more why not schedule a confidential, no obligations call with me and perhaps the next nine months in 2021 will be x times more productive than the first three.