They don’t teach time management in college so I’ve read several books on the subject over the years, and a few items have stuck with me:
● Touch a piece of paper only once. ● Identify the most important things, prioritise them, and work on number one first.
I use these methods all the time to prioritise my work. The time management tip I remember at all times is best is known by Do Only, What Only You, Can Do (DOWOYCD).
Do Only, What Only You, Can DoWhat does this really mean? As a business owner, it means you do everything. You fill every spot on the organisation chart. Every task is yours and yours alone to understand and complete. It means that things you are not trained to do or understand are getting done poorly. It means that some things just don’t get done. Time, it’s the one thing money can’t buy.
As your company grows, you begin to hire employees or outsource some of the work. Sell a product, design advertising, do payroll, answer the phone, or whatever else that is needed or something that someone else besides you can do. This is where DOWOYCD comes into play.
Don’t do what they can do for youIf you hired someone to answer the phone, don’t answer it unless only you can answer it at that moment. You hired someone to file. Don’t file unless only you can get that filing done. Beginning to see the picture? You hired people to do things you could do but:● Didn’t have time● Were less important tasks● Could be done better by someone with a different skill set ● Didn’t like to do that task. You could do all of these things, or outsource them if needed to make your business work.
But there are things they cannot doThey can’t set overall policy. They can’t put out fires with a major client. They can’t negotiate with the bank. They can’t write payroll checks and so on. These are the things that you think only you can do now.
As you grow, you can continue to hire more people to take over more tasks or outsource them to specialists. You hire a trouble-shooter to handle irate clients. You hire a manager to oversee all the sales staff. You hire an MBA to negotiate with the bank. You outsource payroll processing to a payroll service bureau. You replace the junkyard dog roaming the halls at night with an alarm company.
Still, there are things only you can doThese are the things that need to be on your list that you should prioritise and then do. If someone else in your company can do something, that you are doing, have them do it!
Your time is too important to spend on things that you have people or companies to do for you. Maybe you think you can do it better or faster. You may be right but you’re using up your time when there are tasks that only you can do waiting to be done.
If you try to do everything, then the number one priority on your list, the most important thing you have told yourself you need to do is not getting done. Imagine the time you will have wasted when you realise that? How much of your precious time are you going to waste on things other people can do for you? Think about it.
Charles Read is an MBA, CPA, US Tax Court Practitioner, IRS Watchdog, and Small Business Advocate with over 50 years of financial leadership experience, and more than 26 years as a business owner of GetPayroll, a payroll service bureau. He recently launched the very first complete payroll app for your smartphone called Simon, set to revolutionise the payroll industry for micro business owners. Learn more about Mr. Read on their website: http://www.getpayroll.com/charlesread. Learn more about GetPayroll and Simon at http://www.getpayroll.com.
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