Whether you are on your start-up business or is already on the process of maintaining and growing it, each waking day is a challenge. Even if your goal is to have a healthy work-life balance, you are most likely to have a filled-out schedule table, which has overflowing to-do tasks that can’t seem to fit in a day. More often than not, you tend to leave out important things, which creates frustration at the end of your day.
For most entrepreneurs, the initial instinct is to list of things to do in the hopes of organizing the whole day. A sense of fulfillment comes in every time you check an item on the list. Unfortunately, did you know that it is NOT the best way to effectively manage one’s day?
To begin with, people tend to underestimate the time that one should allot for one task. It is known as the planning fallacy. Aside from entrepreneurship, this phenomenon is also common among builders and home renovation contractors, where the scheduled projects seemed delayed because of allotting a smaller turnaround time than what should be. When Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky first proposed the idea of this phenomenon in 1979, they said that planning fallacy may be a result of the overconfidence of the planner. But instead of getting things done smoothly, efforts turn into frustrations, and the feeling of wasted energy overpowers the will and enthusiasm of those who worked hard to finish the task on time.
With these ideas in mind, entrepreneurs should focus on practicing prioritization to foster a sense of empowerment that is geared towards business success. Now, here are three powerful strategies to bring out the best in you as an entrepreneur.
#1 Focus on what is important.
Your focus on how you handle your business should be like hitting your target in a dart game. There are lots of possible points to hit the target but always aim for the best. How can you do it? PRIORITIZE.
Your initial step is to identify your priorities and focus on what is important. Entrepreneurs tend to focus on the urgent tasks at hand or completing as many tasks as possible, without even thinking about what should be done first. To correct this common practice and transform your business hours into a more efficient one, dedicate a time in your day to think about your priorities for the next. Put them first on the list. Do not feel bad about demoting other activities that also demands your time.
However, to have to tackle countless tasks every day as an entrepreneur is inevitable. Plus, if you have the habit of just going with the flow, it will be challenging to categorize which is a priority and what is not. To help you with this dilemma, you can try the Eisenhower Method.
The idea of the Eisenhower Method came from U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower’s quote that he has two kinds of problems, the urgent and necessary. He pointed out that what we think of as urgent may not be significant, and some of the significant things to do are not urgent. It has a decision matrix that serves as a guide to decide which tasks should be prioritized.
The matrix has four quadrants. The first quadrant houses the tasks that are urgent and vital. These tasks should be your top priority. The quadrant number two has the tasks that are important yet can be done in the next few days. These tasks need attention, but not to be done on top of others. The quadrant three shows tasks that are urgent but can be done within the day. These tasks are perfect for delegation to your team members. Last but not least, the fourth quadrant is unnecessary and not critical tasks. These are tasks that you and your team members should avoid as they hinder productivity. Examples of quadrant four tasks are browsing your social media feed and doodling during work time.
#2 Recognize your fundamentals.
Once you have set your priorities, capitalize on recognizing your fundamentals. The fundamentals that we are talking about here are various times of your day when you are most effective and efficient. It is various hours when you have the most energy and have the highest focus to accomplish critical tasks.
The proper timing can significantly influence the cognitive performance of a person. So, start by strategically scheduling your priority tasks on your prime times. If you are at your best poise in the mornings, tick off the priority items on your list from 8:00 to 11:00 AM. If you are not aware of when your prime time is, write a journal for a few days or a week. Keep a record of your tasks, the energy you have during specific hours, and the rate of accomplishments you do every hour. While it entails a lot of effort at first, you will reap the benefits once you see your working pattern.
#3 Determine the limitations of your schedule.
Paul Graham, a business writer, said that there are two kinds of schedules, a maker’s time and a manager’s time. Makers view their entire day based on the projects and tasks that they have to do. Once they feel fulfilled with their progress, they can relax and sometimes, stop doing tasks already. A manager, on the other hand, goes through the traditional way. He or she does tasks on an hourly basis and does everything to accomplish tasks given in a day.
Examples of jobs that follow a maker’s schedule are writers, programmers, designers, and those who are part of a creative team. A manager’s schedule works well for those who are part of the management, such as CEOs and department heads.
In a perfect world, makers and managers do tasks in a well-designed schedule. In a perfect work set-up, every team member accomplishes tasks on time. However, it is not the same in the real business set-up. Realistically, everyone, from the boss to the members, has to collaborate to create a harmonious working schedule.
Redesign Your Day to Empower Yourself
Proper prioritization fosters effectiveness and efficiency in any workplace. If you know how to prioritize, you can see the results of your hard work as the day ends. As even though unforeseen events might be inevitable, you are prepared as what to expect and adjustment will be a swift to you.
If you become successful in redesigning your workday, who knows how big can your business grow in a few months. Permit yourself and your business to nurture and grow. And you need any assistance on funding your business expansion, we, at Bizzloans, are your perfect partner to help you grow your business. Get a quote today and see a brighter future for your business.
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