You can’t really get more time in a day. Time is one of those limited resources that you cannot create more of, or get back after you have wasted it. There are 8760 hours in a year, but we have to subtract out hours for sleeping, which we’ll make an average of 8 hours a night which leaves 5840 hours. Take out 48 hrs a week for family time, and you have 3344 hours left, take out a two week vacation and you have a total of 3004 hours remaining. Most yearly salaries are figured on working 2080 hours a year. We all know business owners tend to work double this at about 4160 hours a year. If you look at the numbers, it becomes clear something is suffering, and more than likely it’s you and your family and possibly even your business.
A great aspect of owning your own business is that you can always delegate tasks to others. Even if you don’t have employees it is possible to delegate some tasks virtually as well as delegate household tasks to other family members or hire some household help. If hiring someone, whether they come to your business, or whether they are virtual contractors, or whether they clean your house it automatically frees up your time.
One of the issues with delegating often ends up being an erroneous fear of the financial costs. But you have to look at this outside of the immediate financial cost and figure out how much your time is worth. Remember, you can’t get it back, and you need more of it because you need to be able to do all the things you dreamed of doing when you became a business owner. A good rule of thumb when outsourcing any type of task, is that if it costs less than you can earn in your core money making activity to outsource, then you’re better off outsourcing. If you can get it done free by family members, so much the better.
We all want to be a superhero, but if you try that route eventually something will end up not done, or not done well. This is not good for your business reputation, and when it comes to letting family fall through the cracks the consequences can be disastrous. Fortunately, one of the secret methods of time management that all kinds of business owners use is to outsource and delegate. Even if you can’t technically get more time in a day, you can feel like you have more time if you’re not doing everything alone.
Try making a list of some of the non-core business activities you do each day. Non-core activities are the tasks that you don’t make most of your money from. If you have a business store front, obviously you may need to be there, but do you need to be there from open to close, or can you hire someone to cover some of the less busy hours? If you work from home as a bookkeeper you don’t want to outsource the bookkeeping, but you may want to outsource some housework. Of course if you wanted to have an entire firm of bookkeepers, eventually you can hire other bookkeepers when your business is busy enough. Don’t forget to involve your family by delegating tasks at home. The sky is the limit when you start realizing how you can outsource and delegate.