Everyone loves a good to-do list, us included. Setting out your day step-by-step and prioritising the important tasks is a perfect way to outline your work schedule. Not only does it make you super-organised, it means you’ll spend your most productive hours doing what needs to be done, rather than wasting time replying to emails.
But believe it or not, there is a limit. It’s great to plan your time to become more productive, but eventually it will stop helping you and start becoming counterproductive. If you plan your day minute by minute you’ll end up running your business into the ground.
No Room for Improvement
Most of your businesses growth will be planned. However there will be the odd last minute opportunity to connect with another company or accept an investment. When these prospects come around, you can’t afford to have a tight schedule to stick to.
The best quality to have as a start up is adaptability. You need to change your business quickly, so when it’s time to grow, it’s time to grow! No waiting until that 3pm meeting. Always make time for new opportunities that could improve your business.
If you’ve got employees, make time to hear their thoughts. Being busy means business is going well, but if you don’t hear feedback from your employees it won’t be going well for long. Whether it’s a monthly review or just a quick morning chat about their weekend, don’t forget who’s keeping your business going on the frontlines.
Being on a tight-knit schedule doesn’t give flexibility for last-minute meetings that might be necessary. For example, if an employee calls in sick and you’re short-staffed, you’ll need to gather up the staff and explain what’s going to happen. Needing to make a decision that will affect the company shouldn’t be done off the cuff just because you had a busy day ahead.
Having breaks regularly throughout the day should be a common aspect of your day. If you find yourself struggling to make time for a short walk or chat, it’s time to re-evaluate your schedule. It could mean outsourcing some work or bringing in an extra pair of hands, but it will be worth it.
The recommended amount of breaks varies depending on the type of work you do and the industry. As a general rule you should take the amount of breaks you feel comfortable with. Don’t just take them when you feel a dip in productivity, as taking a short break between intense bursts of work will allow you to be productive for longer.
Wearing Yourself Thin
Found yourself nodding off in the office? Your body is trying to tell you something. If you’re planning every second of your day the chances are you’re tiring yourself out and need to take some time to relax. Whether it’s having a day away from work or leaving ten minutes early, you should always make time to look after number one.
Is your schedule struggling to accommodate business growth? Leave us a comment below or tweet @AccountancyPart!
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We work very closely with our expert accountants to bring you the latest factually correct tax and accounting news. We also enjoy writing about small business news that we hope you find useful!