Time is something that you will never get back. Time wasters are something that every business owner has to deal with. If you haven't had to deal with it, your time will soon come.
For us business owners that have had to deal with time wasters, it's not something to joke about. This past week I asked different members of Startup Grind how best to manage time wasters within their own businesses.
Here is what they said:
Time wasters are a byproduct of the restrictions of the traditional 9 to 5 work day. I have found that employees are often most productive at varying times of the day. The challenge for managers is to know and understand your people. Allowing flexibility around work schedules empowers employees to be more effective during the times of the day that their cranial cylinders are firing. As a manager you must always be flexible enough to foster maximum productivity among your team. TD Lowe--EnovationNation
Learn to Say No
You have to get good at saying no. I have found this goes against human nature. Most of us want to help others. We don't want to be rude or come off as being a jerk. The reality is we can't do and have it all. You have to make choices about what matters and what matters now. Saying no to things that don't measure up to the matter now threshold will keep you focused and efficient. Ryan Frederick--AWH
Learn Which Team Members Are Right
Do not waste any time on time wasters. People all work based on personal motivation. Some people are right for the job and others are not. If you know the person is right for the job, then making their time more productive should be a collaborative effort. If that effort shows no improvement the team member should not become a cancer among your organization. Joe Famalette--OneMusicPortal
Create Specific Tasks and Deadlines
Time waster is a pretty wide term. In the last couple of weeks I found that the best thing you can do with time management is to create specific tasks and deadlines to work them out. We recently were thinking on letting go a couple of people from our company, but instead we changed the deal with them from staff to pay-per-task and we had some amazing results. Pablo Lascurain-- Intrinno
Most Important Task First
We work in the company with the Japanese KANBAN method in combination with MIT (most important task). We have a company task overview list that allows everybody to know how they are going to contribute to our quarterly objectives. Carel van Apeldoorn--INK361.com
Prioritize, Prioritize, Prioritize
If a time waster is anything that isn't the one thing that will most quickly move your company forward, it will become glaringly obvious to spot: it just requires a clear goal. Without a defined goal, everything you do wastes time because you don't know what that true North is. Prioritizing what you should be working is the most important thing most companies don't do well. If you're in the idea stage, confirm people want to pay you for your solution. If you know what you should be building, ship product. If you've got a product out, acquire users and improve with feedback. If your growth is becoming exponential, scale with hiring and fundraising.
It's a model that isn't perfect for every company, but having a single goal at each milestone charts a clear path that allows you to ask the most important question for an entrepreneur: am I doing the most important thing I could be right now? If yes, keep grinding. If no, have a stretch away from your desk and take some time to think about what phase you're in, what the one thing you need to do in the next three months is, and what the first thing you can do to get there should be as soon as you sit down. Michael Gasiorek--ThriveTribe