Time is money, as they say. The more efficiently you work throughout the day, the more you’ll be able to produce and the more money you’ll be able to make. On the other hand, it’s just as common to say “work smarter, not harder.” Trying to do too much at once can be overwhelming and ultimately bad for business, as it usually ends in getting very little done at all. Whether you’ve started your own firm or switched careers to something that allows you to work from home, you’ll soon find that you need to re-evaluate how to best use your time. Here are our tips:
Before you start to work, take a look at all the tasks you have in front of you. Consider how much time you have to complete each one, and how much time you think each task will take. If one task is difficult, but you have two weeks to finish it, and another is easier but needs to be finished by end of business day tomorrow, choose the easier task that’s due sooner. If nothing is particularly urgent, consider what work style works best for you. Do you work best when you get the bigger tasks over with first, or do you like to start with something small and gain momentum to tackle the bigger projects? Make a list of everything you have to do for the week in the order in which you’d like to prioritize them.
Avoid Distractions (or If You Can’t, Choose the Right Ones)
Avoiding distractions is easy to do when you work in an office, but more difficult when you work from home. Whatever the case may be, as soon as you sit down to work, you should close your internet browser, shut the door, and completely focus on the work you need to do. This can be difficult, though, and make the work seem more daunting. And one person’s distraction is another person’s motivator, after all. Does music help you to work? If you’ve been staring at the screen for ten minutes unsure how to write, will a brief walk help you put your thoughts in order? It may even help to use your distractions as a reward for work. Say, If I finish this before noon, I can watch that youtube video. Be honest with yourself and don’t give in to justifications for slacking off. Sometimes quitting your distractions cold turkey can be difficult, so if you can’t, harness them.
Take Care of Yourself Outside of Work
The best way to stay focused during the workday is to take care of yourself when you’re not working. Exercise, healthy eating, and 7-8 hours of sleep each night will all help you stay refreshed so that you can approach the workday with energy and determination. Dedicate some of your downtime to the things that you enjoy, things completely unrelated to work. Read your favorite book or take your kids out for froyo. Take a dance class. Don’t be afraid to be self-indulgent. In fact, if you let yourself live life to the fullest and do the things that you enjoy in your downtime, your workday will feel less like a drudge.
Use the “Cloud”
Whether you have an office or you work from home, there will be times when you have to move around, whether for work purposes or for personal reasons. One excellent way to consolidate your time is to use apps in the cloud for some of your business services. With the cloud, you can do your booking while you’re in the waiting room at the doctor’s office or assign a task to one of your employees because your meeting ran late and you won’t be back in time. And there are more and more apps available for businesses everyday. Xero and Intuit Quickbooks are excellent services for staying on top of your invoicing and accounting. ServiceM8 is an all-purpose app assistant for workers in the trade and service business. The best part is it’s all automatically backed up. No need to worry about lost time if your computer or device dies. Cloud apps can be accessed from any device and all your information will still be there.
Rather than waste time trying to figure out new accounting apps on your own, let us help. We offer cloud integration services and training to help move your business’s accounting into the cloud. We also offer consulting to help you grow your business and remote tax preparation. If you need help to run your business more efficiently, contact TCA Darwin today.