Entrepreneurship is great! You get to be your own boss, you set your own rules, and you can choose how your day at work will look like. There is a lot of freedom coming with this dream lifestyle you create yourself, but even though all this sounds amazing, there is another side of the coin, too. With all this freedom, there are also a lot of responsibilities, decisions to be made, and things that you need to take care of on your own.
You are the boss, but you’re also a problem solver, accountant, project manager, and tech wizard. It’s never only about the tasks you enjoy doing, but you have to take into account unexpected situations and issues that might occur and you will have to solve. To scale your business and have a successful business, you need to maximize your productivity and use your time wisely. That’s why I put together 5 productivity hacks for entrepreneurs that can help you get things done without getting stressed and overwhelmed by your long to-do list!
It is so easy to put 10 tasks on your to-do list every day, but be honest, they are never all equally important, are they?! I would recommend choosing 3 main tasks that you want to work on during the day. Think about what is urgent, what needs to get done, and what is not so important and can wait. Write a to-do list that will be realistic and that will not overwhelm you just by looking at it. It will help you focus on the key tasks and you will be clear on what’s there to do during the day.
At the end of the day, go through the list and evaluate whether you got everything that needed to be done. It will keep you motivated and you will feel good about ticking off the boxes and fulfilling goals of the day. If you didn’t do all the tasks, ask yourself how important the task is and move it to the next day or scratch it off if it’s not essential.
Batch your Work Tasks
Are you checking your emails or social media every time there is a new notification coming in? Batch these and include it in your daily tasks! Notifications are a productivity killer and it can distract your attention from doing one task at the time. Put aside time for when you’re checking your emails or social media and stick to those.
Although when you are working, batch the same/similar tasks and do them all at once. Try having 3-4 hours of solely focusing on the same activity instead of multitasking. It will help you stay focused and get similar tasks done with no interruptions.
Automate & Delegate
Automation and delegation are two key things that you need to have in place when scaling a business. The first one is all about automation processes and systems behind the scenes that will help you save plenty of time and minimize the need for doing all tasks manually. There are some software that can help you with this (e.g. Dubsado) and once you set it all up, your emails and invoices are sent automatically, or your social media posts are ready to be posted automatically (e.g. Later, Planoly).
Delegation is a question of your budget, but if you want to grow, you need some help whether you want to admit it or not. Don’t get me wrong, I know it might be hard to let go of the part of your business that you’ve been building, but having someone on your team who is an expert in the specific field that you need help with, will enable you to free up a chunk of time that you can put into new projects or your spare time while tasks are getting done! No one is an expert in everything, so stick with your zone of genius and outsource tasks that are a struggle for you.
Take Time for Yourself
Set strict boundaries and stick to them. It can be really hard some time to not work all day long although we do need to take some ‘me’ time to have a personal life besides business. This can be for instance setting strict working hours, so you don’t work after 6PM, or you are only available between 10AM – 4PM for your clients. It will force you to switch off and get things done within these times. Find what works best for you.
Another suggestion is to take regular breaks during the day. Schedule it into your calendar even if it’s only 10 minutes and stick to it. You can’t be on your laptop 6 hours straight. Stretch, get off the screen, have some food, or go for a walk. Do something for yourself.
Not giving yourself time when having a business can lead to burnout, exhaustion, or overwhelm and let me tell you, running your business is a long-term thing. I’m sure burnout is the last thing you want to experience, so give your mind and body a break and take care of yourself.
Staying on top of technologies and what’s happening within your industry is something that you need to follow to grow your business, but also as a person. Be selective and find relevant blogs/podcasts or even courses that will help you upgrade your knowledge and stay on track with the latest news.
Being an entrepreneur comes with a lot of freedom, but also responsibilities. We are not only our own boss but we are also taking on another 10 roles to take care of everything ourselves. This can get stressful and overwhelming, but that’s what we want to prevent and make sure our business is successful and ready to grow.
Fortunately, there are productivity hacks that can help you scale and keep you on track. One of the main tips is to prioritize tasks that need to be done and batch similar ones. This means putting aside a chunk of time to focus on one task at the time with no distractions. So if your email notification goes off, you won’t be running and responding to that right away because it will get you distracted from the current task that you are working on.
Another hack was to take advantage of automating everything that can be automated and delegate tasks if you can. It will save you a lot of time and things that you might not enjoy doing or that you are not an expert in will be taken care of for you while you can focus on other important tasks or even yourself. Don’t forget that your mind and body need a break too, so make sure you take regular breaks off-screen and set strict rules about when you’re working and when you’re not. Find what works best for you, but stick to the boundaries you set.
My last recommendation was to keep learning. Technology, social media platforms, and pretty much everything else is constantly changing and evolving, therefore you should stay on track and know what’s happening in your industry. There are a lot of blogs, podcasts, articles that will keep you in the loop.
What has helped you scale your business or what is your favorite productivity hack? Share it below, so I know what works for you.