TIME MANAGEMENT- FOR Entrepreneurs & Leaders
If you have just started as an entrepreneur, chances are you may be struggling with how to manage your time and get maximum output with minimum resources at hand. Managing your time, productivity and resources is the most difficult for an entrepreneur or businessman as he/she has to multi-task and there is no cap to the productivity required to make the venture successful or the business more profitable.
Further, in most cases, the resources are limited and the demands unlimited. Similarly, a leader in an organization faces the same constraints and challenges. Efficient and effective time management becomes key in such a scenario. Let’s look at some tips to manage time for Entrepreneurs and Leaders.
For an entrepreneur or a person in a high position, it is very essential to focus on his/her core strength and invest self in the same. That means for everything else you need to delegate. If you have people with you, you need to start delegating. They may not do things as well as you do but at least they can get the base work done and leave only the finishing part for you. This would certainly save time for you as compared to you doing it all start to finish.
1. DelegateDelegation in itself is a fine art. To get the best and the maximum from the people here are some ground rules:
a) Identify the right people for the right job.
b) Define exactly what you are looking for.
c) Communicate your requirements clearly using the right media - pen-paper/ computer/ graphics/ demonstrations etc.
d) Give them a clear time frame. Not just the final submission dates but also the review dates so that you don't have a lot of mess if things are not ready by the D-day.
e) Ensure that they have understood what you wanted to convey by asking them questions.
f) Let them know of the resources and other limitations around which they would be working.
g) Create hierarchy so that they do not come to you for every small query but also have some one to go to in case they are stuck.
2. CommunicateImprove your communication skills so that you can delegate in the shortest time.
3. Develop PeopleInvest some time in developing people so that eventually when your business grows you have the right workforce.
4. Create your To - Do’sDo what students do during exam time. Create a daily timetable of your to-do's. While writing an exam it is highly recommended that the student reads the question paper, decides which questions he can do best, see the time available and divide the time into the number of questions to be attempted. In this way he can ensure that he doesn't spend extra time on one question he likes at the cost of other questions. Then there is always the extra time at the end to add a few lines to some questions. This ensures more marks because of attempting maximum number of questions.
Every morning or on the previous night list down your 'things to do'. First decide which of these tasks can be delegated. Then divide your work time into the number and nature of tasks at hand. Always ensure that you leave a couple of hours out of this planning for the eventualities and the emergencies.
5. Identify Your MissionIdentify your mission very clearly. Write it down and post it on the wall where you can see it regularly. If your mission is to grow your business you would be encouraged to come out of petty work.
6. Hire an Efficient SecretaryHire an efficient secretary who can:
a) De-clutter your work station regularly
b) Keep reminding you of your deadlines and commitments
c) Manage distractions at her level
d) De-clutter your calendar
7. OutsourceIf finances permit - try to outsource some work to professional agencies. There are many agencies for many kinds of back end work and not always expensive. But hiring them can help you focus on other things.
All said, in the beginning we do have to put in lot many hours into our enterprise, but smart work always pays. Always remind yourself that you are building a business for the long run and you wish for it to grow real big. You cannot grow unless you hire people and delegate.
So invest in people training and development either yourself or with the help of training agencies. Remember, you have the vision of your business. If you get into petty things you would lose your vision.
For a leader it is important to invest in:
a) Goal setting b) Growth planning c) People management
Finally, if you have not done so already, get a copy of "7 Habits of HighlyEffective People" by Stephen Covey. Read it with a pencil and notebook at hand. It may turn out to be a Bible for you.
Hope you found these tips for managing time for entrepreneurs and leaders useful. To know more, feel free to contact me.