We’re continuing our series on time management and efficiency for small business owners with advice from the folks here at Webs who have some of the most demanding schedules in the company. If they can do it, you can do it!
We hope these tips and tricks — ranging from very logical to somewhat obscure (keep reading) — will help you feel more productive and less stressed as you work toward your goals. Please share your own tips and tricks in the comments below!
“I try to block off my first and last hour of the day to either work on projects or follow up on email. This is especially important when I have days filled with meetings.”
— Lisa (Human Resources Manager)
“Honestly, I think the number one thing you can do is prioritize tasks that will have the most impact…In fact, I would argue working on a prioritized list is more impactful than working 20% faster on a list that is not prioritized.
One way to do this is to write down everything that you have to do and prioritize it in a master list. Then, every morning look at your master list, reprioritize if necessary, and pick off the items that you are going to do that day.”
– Andrew (Webs Product Manager)
“Put time on the calendar to touch base with people you work with. This way you won’t be interrupted throughout the day with concerns. Instead, they will know there is a time set aside to answer all their questions.
Also: Music. Lots and lots of music. I live on Spotify, and I’ve made different playlists with different tempos based on what I’m trying to accomplish. Techno for physical work, pop for background music, and classical for brainstorming/thinking.
– Kate (Service Manager)
“My advice comes from the Getting Things Done methodology. For all large creative projects, block out periods of un-interrupted work time. For at least an hour sprint, just work, and ignore all distractions. No checking email, no IM, no multitasking.
For any system, it mostly just depends on how much you can force yourself to stick to the habits. Just being disciplined about any process is the most important thing; which process you choose doesn’t really matter.”
— David (Director of Analytics)
“For organization, I like the “Things” App, which is a great iOS and Mac “To-do” app.
One other tip: Get a dishwasher that actually cleans your dishes – people spend ridiculous amounts of time washing dishes before they put them in a dishwasher. A good one doesn’t require that. You should be able to drop in dirty dishes and get clean dishes out.”
— Haroon (Webs Co-Founder and CEO)
“Know yourself – proactively schedule for your natural tendencies. I know that if I try to work out in the afternoon I’ll come up with something else that needs to be done, so I go at 5am when there are no other distractions. Also, I’m smarter before 4pm, so I schedule all “thinking work” prior to that. Similarly, I slot manual tasks (organizing files, doing repetitive data pulls) on Friday afternoon.
Also, I religiously use shopping list apps on my phone – I’ll think about things that we need at home in the middle of a work lunch, or something I need for work while on a walk with my daughter. I just add the item to one of my lists immediately before it leaves my head. Once I get to the right store to buy the item, it gets crossed off and removed from the list.
— Rochelle (Head of Marketing)
Your turn! Share your tips for time management and productivity in the comments below, or on our Facebook page.
From The Time Management Series:
Real Time Management Strategies From Real People
Spend Less Time on Social Media: Pagemodo Posts
Time Management Tips for Small Business Owners [INFOGRAPHIC]
How To Stay Fit While You Work: Ideas For Small Business Owners
How To Stop Procrastinating: Tips For Getting Unstuck
Don’t Worry, Be Happy: It’s Good For Your Business!
Save Time on Social: Keyboard Shortcuts for Facebook, Google+ and Twitter
4 Big Time Management Tips for Small Business Owners
Improve Your Efficiency Through Total Inbox Zen