How do you organise your working day? Do you make a list of things to do and religiously follow it? Or do you find that most activities roll onto the list for the next day?
To avoid this you have to discipline yourself. There are so many tempting distractions right in front of you on your desktop. Of course you know all about this, but it’s worth giving yourself a pep talk about it every now and then. Here are some of the worst time wasters that your outsourced bookkeepers have recognised in their clients’ work habits.
Compelling but Unnecessary Distractions
If you stop what you are doing each time an email pings in, read the new missive and then take more time to reply to it, you then have to get back into the mind-set of the job in hand, by which time you’ve probably lost 10 or 15 minutes out of your day. It is far more efficient to concentrate on one thing at a time, so get on with the job and make time for emails later. If something is really urgent the sender would be more likely to telephone than email.
That brings us to those phone calls. If you don’t have the luxury of a secretary to field your calls, it’s sensible to use an answer-phone system. If you are concerned about missing any urgent calls, use one which allows you to hear the caller and decide if the call should be answered immediately. Schedule time for the ones you need to make but never pick up the receiver without knowing what you want to achieve from it. If necessary take a few minutes beforehand to think this through. Time invested like this can make the call briefer and more productive.
Social media can also be a huge time waster. While it’s necessary for some businesses to use it for marketing purposes and to follow trends that will help you make informed business decisions, it’s also easy to get sucked in while the minutes tick by. You really should plan the time you can give to it, and make sure you stick to it.
Planning to Make the Most of your Time
Those clients your outsourced bookkeepers note are the most successful are those who review their achievements at the end of the working day and draw up a plan for the next one before they leave. If you are not one of them, give it a try. You’ll start tomorrow well prepared for the day to come so that you can get even more out of it.