Small Business Productivity Guide

    The way a business owner spends their time is the most important factor in determining productivity. But what if you don't know where to start? What should be your number one priority? This downloadable PDF will show you how to create an effective plan for developing a productive work environment that will help skyrocket your success as a small business owner, with easy-to-follow tips and instructions on everything from scheduling tasks appropriately so they can get done quickly without sacrificing the quality of product or service, delegating responsibilities efficiently so everyone has something meaningful do every day while still getting enough breaks throughout the day themselves, and more!

    Work on One Non-Urgent Task Each Day

    "Every day, we are faced with a myriad of tasks that need to be completed. Business owners often feel like they're juggling too many things and have no idea where to start. But what if you only worked on one non-urgent task each day? Allowing yourself to focus on one thing at a time will help you get more done in less time."

    The last thing you want is for something to go wrong tomorrow because it was ignored today. What often starts as a minor issue could turn into a major problem if left untreated, and there's no time like the present!

    For example, You may think that fixing up your company website layout isn't an urgent task, but what happens when customers can’t find anything on your site? Or maybe revising the content of marketing emails doesn't seem very important right now either-but. Just imagine how much worse off you'll be without any new leads insight. The best way to avoid these issues from spiralling out of control is by tackling one non-urgent task each day while still focusing on running your business successfully.

    Automate as many tasks as possible

    If you've been in business for a while, you know that there are lots of processes and activities still being done manually. Those small but essential tasks can be time-consuming to do on your own. But what if those manual jobs could be automated, so that much more complicated work or other important responsibilities didn't have to suffer?

    It is important to invest in software that helps automate the mundane and boring parts of your business. This will make it easier for you to focus on other tasks while the software does all the work, saving time so you can attend to more pressing matters with critical thought from a human worker. There are now many mobile infrastructures available which means this is an excellent opportunity for reassessment: what jobs can be eliminated?

    With the constant evolution of technology and its impact on our daily lives, it's important to consider how we can make tasks more efficient. The following are some ways in which you can automate your business. 

    1) Implement a CRM system with an integrated task list app that automates your customer follow-ups. This will help you stay organized and not miss any opportunities for sales, as well as save time by automatically reminding you to follow up with customers or prospects who haven't responded yet. 

     2) Automate repetitive tasks like sending out invoices via email - this can be done easily using a spreadsheet and an automated function such as "Create Invoice" that automatically pulls data from another sheet.

    Consolidate your errands and tasks

    You may think of your errands and tasks as different from those at other businesses, but there is a strong similarity in how you do them. Think about it like this: when you make a grocery list, all the items are on that list for one trip to the store, rather than going back-and-forth between home and supermarket every time an item runs out. In much the same way, consolidate your errands so they can be completed in just one go - with less stress!

    You don't realise how much time you waste by jumping from project to task, checking your email and social media at every opportunity. This is because constantly switching tasks not only takes up a lot of energy but also causes unnecessary stress. Instead of spreading yourself thin across the day with emails, meetings, chores, group similar activities together on specific days or times in order to give each its own focus without feeling like you are neglecting other important things along the way.

    Master the Art of the To-Do List

    Do you find yourself struggling to juggle all of your responsibilities? Do you feel like there is never enough time in the day to complete everything on your plate? Maybe it's time for a change. To-Do Lists are one way that can help take some pressure off. 

    To be productive, you need a system. Many people don't use a system because they think they're too disorganised or have no idea where to start. The truth is, anyone can make use of a system and get organised with just 5 minutes of effort per week! 

    A to-do list is a lifesaver for anyone trying to stay on top of their tasks. Here are some tips and tricks that can help you get the most out of your system:

    1) Begin by writing down everything that's currently in your thoughts, no matter how big or small it may seem. You never know when those ideas will come back around again! 

    2) Sort through each item as soon as possible because they have an expiration date; if not completed within three days, then either delete them from the list or move them into another category (e.g., "projects" folder). 

    3) If there's more than one task associated with something else (i.e., grocery shopping), create a new line for every action

     Break up your tasks

    It's important to have goals and aspirations, but it can also lead to overwhelm. When you're looking at a big task, such as "build a website," it may feel like too much for one person to handle, which could result in procrastination or abandonment of the project altogether. It is helpful if these bigger tasks are broken down into smaller jobs that are more manageable, so when we look at our list, we see specific things instead of overwhelming ourselves with two impossibly large items on an endless checklist!

     For example, if the task is “build a website”, break it down into small and specific steps.

    Instead of building the website, you could write: 

    Find a hosting provider 

    Write copy for the homepage 

    Find images 

    Structure your task list in this way makes things more manageable. It also helps to apply this same principle to your time each day. Break up your day into chunks by allocating a number of minutes to work and then follow it with short break.

    The Pomodoro Technique is a way of structuring your day to make it more productive. The technique breaks the workday into 25-minute chunks and then has five minutes between each chunk in order for workers to stay focused on their tasks at hand. Workers are also given built-in break periods, which prevents them from burning out by giving themselves some time away from working all hours of the day without rest or recovery periods.

    To-Do List Do's and Don'ts

    A to-do list done wrong can lead to confusion, overwhelm, procrastination and dropping the ball. Follow these Dos and Don'ts when making your own:

    Don’t make it too long - keep the number of items on your list manageable. Productivity systems vary in how many they recommend; for some, three is enough, while others may want 20 or more, choose a maximum that feels right for you!


    Do follow GTD personal productivity technique - Get organised with GTD and make it easy for yourself by listing like items together. For example, list your phone calls in a group or online research tasks grouped together. Don't let an item linger on the list if you've had to move them forward more than twice without any good reason behind doing so - either do the task or file it away for later use; otherwise, delete that item from your lists; forever!

    Don't list a project as a task - Listing a project as a to-do list item is not the best way of going about it. Breaking projects down into doable chunks, creating truly actionable items will help you get things done with ease and efficiency. For example, “plan conference” should be broken up into smaller tasks such as “Email Sally to get caterer recommendations" or "Call Joe for venue quotes."

    Use batching to handle small tasks.

    'Batching small tasks can help you reclaim your time and focus on the important stuff. Throughout my career, I've found that delegating repetitive tasks is just as effective at eliminating them from my to-do list than doing them myself.'

    Imagine if you could get rid of all your tasks in 30 minutes. Batching up your work not only eliminates multitasking it also frees up a lot of time for the rest of your day! Although there are some instances where multitasking is necessary or even beneficial to doing well at certain jobs such as small businesses and marketing companies; research shows that our brain can't really focus on two things at once - instead, it rapidly switches back and forth between them which just leads to decreased performance overall.

    Multitasking may seem like the best way to get things done, but it's important that you know what your brain can and cannot do. It turns out that our brains are not nearly as good at multitasking as we think they are. So don't try to cram two major tasks into one day--instead, divide them up for maximum productivity!

    Set SMART goals

    When you set smarter goals and fewer overall, it's easier to find your passion. You can build up that passionate feeling by setting SMART goals (specific, measurable etc.) or even just focusing on five at a time with an "avoid" list for anything unrelated to those things.

    People are often guilty of setting goals that they'll never reach. But when you set a few engaging ones, once the flywheel effect kicks in, everything will be easier to accomplish, and progress is inevitable. The thing about it, though, like any heavy object at rest, just getting started can seem impossible - but as soon as things start rolling, your momentum will pick up! Before long, gains won't stop coming so fast with every new goal met that there's no end in sight for what you're capable of achieving.

    Use calendars and lists strategically.

    If you're like most people, your to-do lists are overflowing with work and personal tasks. But is that a good thing? Time management guru Kevin Kruse says it's not; he argues in his deep research shows we do what we schedule while our to-do list just causes stress as they get longer. That's why one of his best corporate life hacks is ditching the list for more efficiency by using calendars instead!

    Start with your SMART goals

    Break them into action items

    Put these in your calendar

    Each morning, make a list for the day. If you're unsure what to do tomorrow or later in the week, just write down "research" and keep digging until something gets clearer (or pick one thing from your research). Keep this small two-page document with you at all times--it will be easy enough to add tasks as they come up throughout each day.

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