“I went into business for more freedom” says the small business startup entrepreneur. So where did all the freedom go to? Why does it seem as though the only thing we don’t have is time? It often times seems that the more money we make, the less time we have available.
Here you are at the top of the world with a thriving small business and you just cannot get the time to see your family. When you complain about it, your friends actually think that you are boasting and quickly dismiss you.
Business schools teach about the best assets you can have in your business. Some say cash flow; others say it’s long term assets. And still others say it’s skilled employees. But are these REALLY the assets that you were thinking about when you started your business?
Have you noticed how many times time has been mentioned in the paragraphs above?
Of all the resources that a small business can own, the only one that cannot be scaled is… TIME.
Time Management for the Small Business Startup
Let’s face it, we all only have 24 hours in a day to make things happen.
Do you ever find yourself reading your emails for an hour? What about answering phone calls from annoyed clients? Does this sound like you? If so, it sure does sound like you are doing a lot of work. But is that the best use of your time as an entrepreneur?
Let’s look at an example:
You have a profitable business and are earning $500k per year. This would be around $250 per hour if you work 40 hour weeks and take two weeks off for your vacation. In simple terms, your time is worth $250 per hour.
But how many of those 40 hours were actually spent on productive activity in your business? If you own a restaurant, did you really have to take the mop and clean the bathrooms for two hours? If you are not an accountant, couldn’t you have outsourced data entry and saved yourself 2 hours this week? Isn’t it possible that your cake business could’ve survived had you not spent 2 hours of your day in the kitchen discussing the latest political news?
The truth is, many startup founders spend their time on activities doing menial tasks that they could have outsourced to others.
How to Gain More Time and Achieve More
Since we only have24 hours in a day, the only way you can scale time is to have other people do the things that you don’t HAVE to do. In fact, if you can get someone who can do it better than you, you will end up increasing your earnings exponentially.
Instead of answering all the sales calls, have someone else do that it so you concentrate on activities that also generate revenue.
Why? Because doing so will do is allow you to earn more. If you previously spent 1 hour every day reading and responding to emails, you can now spend that hour introducing new products to your best clients. That extra hour a day amounts to 52 hours a year.
Just look at your daily calendar- NOW – and identify all the menial tasks that you could have someone else perform. Then commit to delegating those tasks to others.
By hiring others to do these more menial tasks, you will have done the impossible: you will have bought time. Suddenly this once finite resource becomes scalable. And the dream you had of a profitable small business startup will not only be realistic, but fun too.