Productivity and Management Tips for Fresh Entrepreneurs
You know by now, there is a long way between coming up with an idea and turning it into a sustainable business model. We have seen promising entrepreneurs fail while trying to set up their own initiatives, namely because they failed in creating a structured system to execute their tasks. Avoiding distractions caused by never-ending challenges is the real struggle of startups. We know it is never an easy task to give life to an idea and that a great deal of dedication and discipline is needed to come through! Taking some precautions for the sake of productivity and business management can help you cope with problems ahead of time. Here are some productivity and management tips that we have compiled for you based on our personal and community experiences!
Productivity and Discipline
Let’s start with productivity and how it relates to being disciplined, because you will need to commit to a well-functioning plan to be brutally productive but still keep your creativity alive.
- First of all, you have to know how to prioritize while forming your “well-functioning” plan! If you think all tasks are equally important, then none of the tasks at hand really matter. Set your priorities straight and name them. We recommend that you number them like so: (priority) P1, P2, P3 and so on!
- Do not add the new tasks to the top of your to-do list, but to the bottom of it. This way you will finish whatever you have in hand before moving on to the next task.
- Add inevitably important tasks and meetings into your calendar and try not to shift to unplanned tasks unless there is extra free time (which in all truth, is quite rare)!
- Keep track of the time you have spent on certain tasks and think of ways to optimize that time spent for the future.
- Do not forget that your time is as precious as anyone’s and avoid imposed last minute meetings to get things “done quickly”. This will only take you out of your focus.
- Find out the workload that you can handle without losing attention, because you have to set yourself a break routine to escape from the stress and recharge.
Social Media and Email Management
Among our biggest distractions comes of course social media and email notifications that pop up on our screens! But how not to keep an eye out for social media, when it’s becoming such a big aspect of promoting businesses? Luckily, we have been there ourselves and we found our own solution!
- For you to ignore social media notifications, one of your team members can take responsibility for keeping everything under check. If you don’t have a specialist, take turns as team members each day!
- Same goes for your emails when it comes to refreshing your inbox every 5 minutes! Make it your principle not to return to your inbox until you have finished the task you have started.
- Have it as a part of your company culture, not to include essentially not relevant people as CC’s in each email; otherwise, you will find yourself delving into every conversation.
- Try to keep your emails brief and sort each topic on its own section. By doing so, you will most likely receive an answer that is similarly structured. Bullet points, paragraphs, whatever fits you best. Guaranteed to save time!
Meetings are precious because that is where you decide on a game plan. This, of course, doesn’t mean that you should spend hours on team meetings contemplating on the smallest details. Lengthy meetings are the number 1 enemy of productivity in a workplace. Here are some productivity and management tips to avoid such miseries:
- Let’s say you have a bunch of longer meetings and a few short meetings coming up next week. Take half an hour on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings for short meetings. We would recommend max. 1 hour in the afternoons for the longer ones.
- Try to keep your meetings between 30 mins and maximum 1 hour. Believe us, all that everyone is thinking after 1 hour is “when this meetings is going to be over??”.
- Your agenda won’t fit into 1 hour? Share memos with your team on what will be discussed. This way, everyone gets ready for the part they need to pitch in.
- If you are heading for a 3rd party meeting with a busy person, try to be flexible with your time and respect their needs.
- Try not to discuss more than 3-4 topics per meeting. If your agenda is huge, divide the items into several meetings with only the most relevant people attending.
- Phones and other communication devices off the table during the meeting!
There is, of course, never one single correct way of doing things, but if you keep these productivity and management tips in mind, you can at least cut down on the trial/error time. Do not forget that in the end, it’s all about making processes easy and efficient for yourself and your community.
If you want to take it to the next level by helping your team internalize these principles, check our blog on ‘Creating A Welcoming Company Culture’.