With Christmas quickly approaching, and with many of us business owners having family time to fit in, and kids to juggle over the school holidays, it is important to be prepared for this exciting time of year.
Here are my top ten tips for getting your business organised fast:
- Tidy your work space
Tidy your working environment and create a pin board where you can pin all your important notes so they are at hand quickly. A tidy workplace helps promote an organised mind, therefore this should help you to work smarter and more efficiently!
- Create a weekly schedule
Create a schedule for the weeks over the Christmas holidays, with key tasks for your back-office operations, as well as client’s work. Leave lots of space so you can add to these as the weeks go on. You can even use time slots to separate the days of the week even further, although try not to be too specific with timings, as if tasks take longer than planned this can easily cause you to become demotivated!
- Don’t put off menial tasks
All tasks in your business are important, therefore do not put off those menial tasks like bookkeeping and administration. It is best to complete these first thing in the morning when you are more refreshed and awake so you are able to concentrate, and not get bored and distracted as easily.
- Work through tasks in a way that suits you
Some people work best by getting the small tasks out of the way early in the day, while others prefer to complete the larger tasks then follow with the smaller ones. Whichever works for you, stick to it, and try to work as efficiently as possible.
- Outsource some work if you can’t cope
If you are struggling to cope with your workload, and haven’t got staff to pass it to, consider outsourcing aspects of it to someone with experience you can trust. That way your time will be freed to focus on higher paid tasks. Such tasks that could be outsourced include administration, sales chasing, emailing, phone calls, bookkeeping/accountancy, website or social media management, etc.
- Draw up logical and organised lists
When writing ‘to-do’ lists don’t just scribble these on a scrap of paper, have a dedicated notebook to write lists. You could even highlight or colour code certain tasks, and put them under headings according to priority (i.e. short-term/long-term, or to complete within a day/week/month).
- Invest in a good diary
A good diary for all your appointments is definitely an investment. Whether you just choose one off-the-shelf, or a more business-focused one available (which also contains sections on goals, and strategies for the future) make sure it suits your needs in both size and content. There is no point carrying around a tiny diary when you attend numerous meetings in a day, so you have to write in tiny writing! Space for lots of notes and pockets for paperwork/business cards is also useful.
- Make sure all of your business equipment is in good working order
All of your equipment, from your laptop to your pens, should be in good working order and easily accessible when needed. If you lose things easily maybe consider labelling your draws and cabinets so you don’t waste time search for items.
- Celebrate little achievements
Try not to beat yourself up over not completing tasks as quickly and efficiently as you would have liked. It is important to stay calm under pressure and be able to organise your schedule as required. By celebrating when tasks are completed this will give you a positive boost, keeping your energy up, and meaning you can remain focused; rather than becoming distracted by stress and negative thoughts!
- Schedule time out for you and your family
There are only 24 hours in the day, 7 days a week, therefore you cannot spend all of these working. If you schedule in time for yourself this will help keep you refreshed and allow you to remain focused when you are in the office! This should also limit feelings of guilt if you have spent sufficient and quality time with your loved ones!
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