We are already more than halfway through 2015. For some entrepreneurs, that may create some anxiety, especially if they are way off the mark on achieving their annual goals.
The good news is that there are a number of proven small business productivity hacks that you can begin taking advantage of today to finish out 2015 strong.
Here are 10 of our favorites:
1. Create a distraction free work zone.
There are times throughout the day that you need to just hunker down and get the job done.
Unfortunately, your phone, email inbox, and social media pages can all be incredibly distracting when you’re trying to focus on the task at hand.
Silence your phone (or take advantage of Apple’s Do Not Disturb feature if you are an iPhone user) and take advantage of a free tool like Cold Turkey to temporarily block social media sites and email access.
You’ll be amazed at what you can achieve!
2. Schedule everything!
The most productive entrepreneurs live by their calendars and schedule nearly every aspect of their business day, from building prospect lists to team meetings to discuss specific clients.
Scheduling your tasks will keep you focused throughout the workday, but it’s important to be realistic about what you can get done each day.
3. Stay ahead of the game by signing in (briefly) on a weekend.
If you can knock out 3o minutes or an hour’s worth of work on a Sunday evening, you will be able to hit the ground running at the start of the work week.
4. Limit your meetings to 30 minutes, when possible.
Somewhere along the way, 1 hour has become the designated amount of time that a person should block out for a meeting.
Yes, some meetings will merit an hour, but the mission of most meetings can be accomplished within 30 minutes.
5. Schedule breakfast meetings first thing in the morning.
It’s shocking the number of business professionals that want to schedule a breakfast meeting for 9am.
Setting a meeting at this time means that you won’t realistically make it to the office until at least 10:15, which can put you way behind the eight ball for knocking out your “to do” list for the day.
Instead, choosing a time like 7:30am can help you to miss the restaurant crowds and allow you to arrive at the office at a more reasonable time.
6. Stay hydrated.
Help avoid mid-afternoon exhaustion by drinking water throughout the day.
You’ll find that drinking an adequate amount of water each day will help to keep you energized and healthy.
7. Take a break.
Often the downfall of small business productivity is that people are burning the candle at both ends all day long.
Reward yourself for accomplishing tasks with a few breaks throughout the day.
8. Learn to say no, on occasion.
One thing that frequently stands in the way of small business productivity is over-committing your time.
When you take on more than you can handle, you deliver mediocre results. Know your limit and learn to say no before you reach it.
9. Make the most of the in-between time.
This refers to the time that you spend commuting in your car or waiting at the airport gate to catch a flight.
Schedule conference calls during this time or listen to a popular industry-related podcast.
While many often think of these hours of waiting as wasted, you can use them to boost your small business productivity.
10. Stop being a perfectionist.
You should always put your best foot forward with every bit of time that you get, but do yourself a favor and keep your perfectionism in check.
This can put countless hours back into your workweek and the truth is that it perfect doesn’t exist. All you have is your best.
And we don’t have to tell you that social media can be a major time drainer for today’s small business owner.