Tips for busy small business owners
Do you want to grow your business, but find you simply don’t have the time to do anything beyond your usual, day-to-day tasks?
When you’re involved in every aspect of your business, it can be hard to find the capacity for the essential researching, planning and strategising needed to really drive your business forward.
In this series, we’re going to give you actionable tips that will help you win back some time to focus on achieving that business growth.
Advancements in technology are creating more and more options to help if you know where to look and what to look for. Below are some great ideas that can make life much easier for small business owners.
First, work out your priorities
With a to-do list longer than your arm, it seems reasonable to think more time is what you need to achieve everything you want with your business. Truth be told, research has shown that people who work long hours are not more productive than people who work less.
Rather than trying to do more, you’re better off prioritising the ‘deep work’ that will really drive your business forward. Be more efficient by either automating or delegating administrative tasks that suck up your precious time and daily allotment of brain-power.
Auto-responders and email templates
Do you find yourself typing the same emails over and over? An easy, time-saving tip is to look at setting up an auto-responder on your email account. This will quickly greet customers and let them know you will be in touch. If you have a website, it’s a good idea to weave in some links to your content.
Prepare templates for emails you send frequently including thank you messages, lead follow-ups, and answers to FAQs. These can simply be word documents stored on your desktop.
Hire a virtual assistant
A virtual executive assistant or secretary performs time-consuming tasks like email inbox management/filtering, booking appointments and following up with clients, managing your social media accounts, writing blog posts, and updating your CRM on an agreed hourly rate. Even if you can only afford a VA for 1-2 hours a week, that’s 1-2 hours you could be used to plan ways to build your business.
Accounting can be one the most dreaded tasks of a small business owner. Most accounting software companies offer an app you can download to your smartphone. It syncs up with your main account so you can send invoices, approve expenses, input receipts and reconcile – all while you sip your morning coffee or get through the daily commute.
You don’t need to make huge changes to be able to make the time you need to work on the business rather than just in it. Simply, figure out where you’re spending an unnecessary amount of your time and find a tool, automation or strategy that helps you tick it off your to-do list faster.