Running a business of any size can be intense. You have to wear every hat more often than you’d probably like, and success takes blood, sweat, and tears—but it shouldn’t break you.
As a small business owner, you absolutely must find ways to carve out free time. It’ll allow you to rest and regain your energy and will give you more breathing room to think about the future, create goals, and drive the company forward as only you can. If you need more free time as a business owner, here’s how to get it.
Prioritize and Delegate Tasks
As a founder, your business is your baby, and it’s difficult to give up aspects of it even when you feel like you’re underwater with projects and tasks. But it’s paramount to success! One person can’t do everything long-term without dropping a few balls. With this in mind, take some time to look at all of your projects and tasks, and figure out what can be delegated to someone else.
Some responsibilities can be easily delegated to others, especially smaller day-to-day tasks like posting on social media or fielding basic inquiries. Prioritize what will ensure growth—you’ll likely keep networking and other higher-level commitments for yourself as an owner, and freeing up smaller, more easily templated and repeatable tasks will help you focus more on bigger undertakings.
Take Advantage of Technology
There are so many aspects of a small business that you can streamline through technology—far more than you may think! You can have your social media posts ready a month in advance, automated follow-up emails for your customers, payroll for your staff, and much more.
You can even ensure that all payments are taken electronically and conveniently for your customers through payment sdk for devs. There are many tasks you can hand over to technology so that you don’t have to have too much hands-on involvement while still knowing everything is running smoothly.
This is one of the biggest mistakes that many business owners make. It’s easy to think that multitasking is a great way to get several things done at once, but this is rarely the case. It usually means your attention is divided so that none of your duties are being completed as well as they could be.
It also means that you may start multiple projects and end up with many unfinished tasks within each of them. When you want your business to stand for quality and trustworthiness, you have to give all of your attention to one task at a time. You’ll be less likely to make mistakes or do sloppy work.
Say “No” Respectfully
When you own a business, you can’t be a people pleaser. It sounds crazy in the world of “customer is king,” but it’s also a quick way to burn out, focus too much on the negatives, and add processes and changes that make no sense.
There will be many times when saying “yes” will tip the scales and overwhelm you. Saying “no” is okay and, at times, necessary! Never feel pressured into saying yes to something if you don’t have the time or it doesn’t fit your vision and mission.
Create a Detailed Schedule
Your time is precious as a business owner, so you must manage it well. But we’re all human, and it’s easy to get distracted, especially when we’re tired. This is where effectively scheduling your time each day, week, month, and so on will work well for you.
It may take some trial and error, but figuring out how to portion out each part of your day so that you’re able to balance focused work with much-needed downtime to rest and recharge (even for a few minutes) will make a major difference in being able to run your business long-term and turn it into a success story.
If you want your business to grow, you need to drive sales! Having said this, a lot of owners tend to over-promise and under-deliver…or fail to deliver, which can kill your company. You have to be realistic about your time, what you can do right now, and how you can effectively grow with the revenue and any investments you have so that you avoid falling into this trap.
As a rule of thumb, always budget more time than you need to complete a task and then deliver ahead of schedule if you can. This way, you have a cushion should you require it, and your customers are always pleasantly surprised. If you try to squeeze too much into the time you have, you’ll always find yourself rushing to meet deadlines.
Outsourcing comes with a cost and it can take time to find the right person or people for different tasks and responsibilities, but over time it will ensure you have extra breathing room to focus on larger undertakings. You can outsource a lot of things, like social media management, payroll and accounts, administration, customer service, and more.
The great thing about outsourcing is that you can hand these tasks to freelancers with plenty of experience. And you don’t have freelancers as a permanent part of your team—you can work with them on an as-needed basis. This means you have people to cover you when business is busy, rather than you needing to work constant overtime.
Want to read more about how to streamline your business operations—or to find freelance and contract positions that’ll let you travel and work remotely? Check out our Jobs & Careers section for lots more info!
Featured image by energepic on Pexels.