How to stay focused as a small business owner.
Staying on task when there's no one telling you to get on with it is really tough, particularly if you're new to being a business owner. #thestruggleisreal
There's no one to hold you accountable, other than yourself and getting distracted is unbelievably easy, especially for those of us who work from home. We tell ourselves (while already carrying out a job) "I'll just check my emails, really quick" and we end up responding to 100 messages over the course of an hour or two or, we run a 'quick' errand that ends up taking up most of the day and by the end of the day, we've achieved next to nothing.
Yes, we know the struggle and it is REAL. That's why we've put together some of our best tips to help keep you focused as a SME owner.
1. Create a weekly task list, in order of priority of completion
Start each week by making a note of all the jobs you NEED to get done. You can add other jobs too, that aren't as important, but make sure your list is in order of all the things you need to get done first.
2. Take away any distractions from your work space
If you don't need it, put your phone away, move any paperwork you aren't working on and choose one thing to give all of your attention to. Start with that first task on your list, and give it everything you have. Don't check your emails, your phone or your social media accounts. You might find it helpful to set timers at hour intervals. I tend to check emails, our marketing and our website for the first hour of the day and then after that, I choose my most important job and work on it for an hour at a time until it's complete. I mix up my hour intervals with a quiet minute in the garden, making a cup of tea or grabbing something to eat.
3. Evaluate your task list often
Is there something that's been on your list for weeks? If so, is it really that important and is it worth your precious time? Procrastination and time wasting is a huge issue among small business owners. We tend to fill our time with jobs that ultimately are making no difference to our bottom line. Check each task carefully and ask yourself:
- Is this making me any money?
- Is this building my brand awareness?
- Is this going to make a real difference within my business?
4. Take a break from technology
No one feels inspired while tapping away on their computer all day, or mindlessly scrolling through their social media feeds. Take some time to do something you really enjoy, once a day if you can, if not at least three times a week. Wether it's jogging, gardening, baking or taking a stroll in the park, doing something that brings you back to your centre can really help you focus during your work hours.
5. Find someone to help you keep motivated
Over our years in business, both Debbie and I have worked alongside business coaches, mentors and consultants to get us through tough spots or to help us grow our businesses to the next level. Having someone there with you along the way to ask "did you get those tasks done?" and holding you accountable if you haven't, is a really good way to keep motivated during every phase in business growth.
As you already know, Debbie now consults within the wedding industry, giving advice and helping business owners take their business to the next level and being there as a support system for SME owners who just need a little help here and there.
If you're interested in hearing more about business consultancy, please get in touch with
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