One of the most overlooked aspects of growing your own business is the amount of time you invest in ongoing projects, day-to-day processes, and promoting your business through social media and other resources.
You can’t expect others to value your time if you won’t. #TimeManagement is about managing your energy, not filling in the white space in your daily calendar. It’s important to know where your strengths lie and then choose others to fill in the gaps via outsourcing.
This requires an honest assessment of your abilities and accurate representation of your time spent. Here’s an easy way to get started. Make a to-do list for your week. Write down what’s supposed to get done, and make sure you include the marketing side of your business. Just for fun, predict how long it’s going to take you to accomplish each task. You can round it to the nearest half hour, if you like.
Each day, keep an accurate hourly record of what you’re doing. Make sure you include when you go through email, phone conversations, when you eat, updating reports, etc. Add any emergencies that occur to your original to-do list. If you find that you forgot something important that has to be done every week, make sure you add that too with a side note that you’d overlooked it.
At the end of the week, see what was done and what drifted to the side. Look at your to-do list. Did you get it all done? If not, what is left? And of those tasks, which are the ones you really don’t want to tackle?
Look at your hourly record for the week. Did the actual amount of time spent on each task match up with your original predictions? If you’re anything like me, probably not. I tend to underestimate the time it takes me to do the tasks I enjoy or tasks I do on a regular basis. It’s rare to overestimate time, by the way.
Try this for a few weeks and see if you have any underlying patterns. The things that are constantly being swept to the side still need to get done. Consider outsourcing for better performance in those areas. Choose people who are skilled in that particular aspect of your business. You don’t have to be great at everything. As a matter of fact, the key to success is surrounding yourself with the people who can get the job done so that your vision can be realized.
Phylecia Jones, amazing Budgetologist and owner of Keeping Up with Mrs. Jones, would tell you – you have to know what your time is actually worth. What are you worth per hour? If you know that number, you will have a better sense of whether certain tasks and responsibilities are even worth the time you are spending on them. If you can find a team member that can expertly accomplish that work for less than what your time is worth – then there is no better argument for the need to outsource some of what you do. Attempting to be an “Everything CEO” keeps you from being able to focus on the aspects of your business where you excel and where growth happens.
What many small businesses and entrepreneurs discover during this process is that outsourcing time-consuming tasks tends to free them up to win new work. This is an imperative part of business growth. It’s time to let go and invest in your own profitability and success.
Your time is precious and you need to realize that. Know where your strengths lie and choose team members who can fill the gaps. We have a network of fantastic power partners and would love to give you an introduction to a company that can help you #BeAwesome at what you do!
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Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.