Whether you’re working through the initial startup phase of a new business venture, or are already becoming established as a successful company in your respective industry, finding yourself being forced to bite off more than you can chew can come at any point during an entrepreneurial endeavor.
More often than not, the root of this problem is simply organizational. This involves both the organization of what you devote attention to as well as the formal structure of your company. It’s easy to get caught up allotting the bulk of your time to the less-important activities that can be redistributed to colleagues who can more efficiently manage those tasks into an intuitive work schedule.
Getting caught up in checking and responding to a multitude of emails, for example, can gradually crowd out more essential business objectives, which quickly leads to stagnation in terms of growth and expansion. Symptoms of this problem include feelings of being behind constantly behind schedule as well as a sense of hopelessness about achieving business goals you’ve laid out for yourself.
Here’s a set of introductory steps you can start implementing at a daily level to being the process of better overall management:
1. Package your responsibilities together
Try to combine similar tasks that complement each other in their execution. Implement some informed organization into your routine financial requirements by saving your weekly transactions up and taking care of banking duties all at once rather than wasting time on multiple trips for separate actions.
Try to eliminate impulsive behavior from your management style. If you’re noticing an unusually high amount of clerical problems occurring throughout a period of time, resist the urge to take them as they come. The one good thing about systemic problems is the fact that they form patterns that you can track and diagnose like a virus.
2. Take advantage of delivery services
If you’re finding yourself traveling around places other than the office more than you anticipated, you can be sure that you’re not just burning gas––your time is also combusting with every trip back and forth to deliver items, pick something up, or take care of any other off-site task.
Instead, track your weekly or monthly gas and time expenses and compare them to delivery service prices that could potentially grant you more time back at home base. Services like FedEx offer both pick up and delivery services for flat fees over long periods of time. Office-supply stores many times provide delivery services for bulk purchases.
3. Make frequent notes
Whether your business is embracing the paperless office space or not, taking helpful notes and being able to keep them organized and mobile can save precious time trying to remember not only what to do, but what needs to get completed before something else, when deadlines need to be met, and who to contact with certain questions.
This can be as simple as investing in a sturdy notepad and trusty pen. Avoid going the post-it note route unless you’re looking to redecorate your workspace with small neon-colored squares plastered over every flat surface in sight. A central notepad or electronic device can go with you wherever you go, thus keeping your events, telephone numbers, and unexpected happenings within arms reach at all times.
4. Plan effective breaks
If the occasional bathroom break is the only time during the day you can actually get away from work, your schedule needs an overhaul. This rule quadruples in importance if you’re putting in weekends just to get things done.
No matter how much satisfaction you get out of what you do, or how devoted to a cause you think you are, you will eventually run up against physical and mental limitations that can end up impinging on your ability to achieve your ultimate goals.
If you’re truly pressed for time on a daily basis, take in-office breaks that will at the very least detach you from the act of doing work. Just grabbing a coffee and taking a walk outside to get some fresh air can rejuvenate your senses and clear your head of purely managerial tasks.
Take this time to reorient your daily work with your bigger plans. Take this time to make sure you’re not steering you and your organization away from your original objective.
For other advice on how to manage your startup finances, contact our start-up accounting and CFO services experts.