Being a business owner in 2010 calls for a lot of thinking on your feet and many hours a week nurturing your business and contacts. Whenever possible it is a good idea to save as much time as you can doing routine tasks like banking or leaving a voice-mail. I have some ideas on how to save time every day, and at the end of the month or year that adds up to hours of more productivity into areas that drive revenue.
1) Keep your voice-mail short and concise and ask all of your business contacts to do the same. That way you do not have to wait on the line for 30 seconds every time you call them to leave a voice-mail.
2) Setup automatic bill payments from your bank account and try to stick to a structured budget. Constantly assess your finances to see if you can be putting more into any loans or debt that you may have. If you have none, setup a tax free savings account and automatically put money into savings while you plan where to spend it to grow your business.
3) Use the new Facebook Friend Browser to find old friends and family to connect with instead of searching randomly on the network. You can search by city, school, and friend for related connections.
4) Prepare food in bulk and put meals into Tupperware containers in your fridge so you can eat healthy and quickly, this will allow you to cook only 2 or 3 times a week. Spending time doing dishes and cooking is not productive for running a business. If you are successful enough consider hiring a cook and/or cleaner to come to your home or office.
5) Buy a second computer screen to use for email exclusively, keep this window open all day long so you can glance back and forth from your work to your communication channels without having to click needlessly.
6) Keep a note pad and pen beside your work space and write down any constructive thoughts or things you have to follow up on as they come into your head. Dont miss an opportunity or forget a great idea due to multi-tasking and then forgetting.
7) Ask you friends, whenever possible, to contact you in advance to get together and do something social, this way you will know your schedule at all times. Couple this with creating month to month game plans where each day is accounted for, maximizing your time.
8 ) Always reassess who your friends are, if they are not supporting your goals in life maybe they are not really as good of friends as you thought they were. Friends that are not supportive are distracting, which wastes time.
9) Use Yahoo Pipes to import all of the news RSS Feeds that you follow and create a filter to only allow for certain keyword based news to come through, this way you can track topics specific to your business in real-time. Take the master feed from this and bring it into a Twitter account such as I did with @BNIV, now follow that account with your main social account. Anytime I sign into Twitter I get the local news that I want in my stream and do not have to think about it or follow many people to get the quality of news that I desire.
10) Dont be afraid to make mistakes, just dont make the same one twice. Failure is part of growth and maturing, so do not dwell on it if you do fail at something, just move ahead quickly from the experience with new wisdom.
What are some ways that you save time day to day? Let me know in the comments below!