Time Management For At-Home Entrepreneurs

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But there is a two-word solution that most successful business owners will tell you is key to their success: time management.

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As a busy entrepreneur and mother of six, here are some tips on how to stay afloat:. Schedule everything you do in the day including driving, shopping, studying, reviewing documents — and include the time when you will finish the day. Having a clear idea of your downtime is just as important because no one can be effective if every minute of the day is busy. While it may take time up front to schedule your day, doing this will allow you to make the most of every hour of your day and make efficient use of your limited time.

Face difficult tasks at your peak. Generally, it's best to face the most challenging, tedious tasks in the morning.

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Because counter to what you may think, the morning is generally when you are at your optimum performance level. Any follow up or repercussions can be managed during the same day, and you can breathe easier by putting the task behind you. Don't start a 'file pile.

This will save you from wasting time looking for documents later. The same goes for contact names. Scan them into Outlook along with specific notes about people you meet.

Time Management for Part-Time Entrepreneurs

For example, where you met them, what relevance they are to your business or people you may have in common, etc. This helps down the road when you want to quickly revisit that person's profile to remind yourself of key details that they may have shared with you. Whether at the office or at home, when you have the right people working with you, you worry less.

If your response to this statement is "I can't trust them", you have a problem.

If fixing the problem isn't an option, then choose the simplest of the time-consuming tasks — those with a clear process, outcome and deadline — that you could assign comfortably to someone else. For example: compiling research for a document you need to write, filing, running errands, etc. This will clear some of the tasks off your plate and allow you to focus on those which require your personal attention. Take advantage of technology. They call them smartphones, but are we smart enough to use them to their full capacity? Helpful apps and tools such as Skype, synching, calendar reminders, etc.

Prepare the night before. Take time in the evening to plan for the following day. Avoid a last minute scramble or risk forgetting something critical. Every minute counts. If you are travelling or going somewhere where you will need to kill some time, download documents to a USB key and to your laptop. Long waits can be best filled by responding to e-mails or working through documents.

Make sure your laptop is fully charged. Reduce distractions. You can shut your door, turn down music or forward your phone messages, but this does not stop people from knocking on your door. Reducing distractions means training people around you to respect the time you have scheduled to focus on a task at hand.

Ask for an agenda or just say 'no. If you are invited to a meeting, ask for an agenda. If you learn that the meeting is about something that you are not suited for or is not in line with your business goals, then politely decline and suggest a person or company that may better suit their needs. You don't want to waste your time or theirs. If you are not prepared for what will be addressed in the meeting, ask for a later date.

When time is limited, you need to prioritize how to best use those valuable hours. By organizing your meetings ahead of time you will find them to be more effective and efficient. If you choose to do something, then be prepared and focus. Give your undivided attention to the task at hand whether it is a meeting or an event. If you do not stay in the moment, you'll miss something important and all of your preparedness will be for naught when you overlook a relevant detail.

Any small business owner will agree that time is money. You might have grand plans for the day and have filled your schedule and lists with some of the productive stuff that you plan on doing, but there is a huge chance there will remain a few or a lot!

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This gives you a crippling sense of unfulfillment. Remember: the more stuff that you plan, the more that you will be overwhelmed. Learn to prioritize. List down three things that you MUST absolutely work on for a particular day, and do them first.

Effective Time Management Tips for Entrepreneurs of the Digital-age

Focus your energies on these three things, before you move on to your secondary tasks. Even if you have tasks left on your list, you can rest easy knowing that your three main agendas for the day has been dealt and done with. The Internet is full of time-sucking distractions. A great alternative is to block those distracting websites themselves. You can use software or browser extensions for this purpose.

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Humans are not robots that can work hours on end without rest. Make sure that you have regular scheduled breaks wherein your mind can take a breather from work.

This Is How Successful People Manage Their Time

No multitasking, no distractions, no interruptions. The Pomodoro Technique was developed by Francesco Cirillo in the s to help him focus on his coursework.

7 Time Management Tips For Entrepreneurs - Smart Money Mamas

After four pomodoros, a longer break of 15 to 20 minutes can be taken. This method works best for people with short attention spans. Almost anyone can work and focus intensely in 25 minutes, and the small breaks at the end of each time period prevents burnout. Entrepreneurs need to have an accurate picture of how they spend their time during the day. Think of it as analytics for productivity. You need see where the problem areas so that you will know how to improve yourself. Software like DeskTime and TimeCamp allows people to track their computer activities during work hours.