Our productivity and success in business is evident in the schedules that we follow.
Can you account for every hour of your day? Do you breeze through the day filling your time with mindless activity that makes you feel busy and important?
Working for yourself is extremely liberating because you don’t have to adhere to a strict schedule but this freedom can be two edged if you don’t learn to stick to a productive schedule. By productive, I mean a schedule that is geared towards achieving your business’s goals and not simply being busy for busy’s sake. Remember, Seneca’s quote, “Love of bustle is not industry”.
Coming from a corporate background, scheduling has now become a part of my psyche. The large consulting firms know the value of scheduling. They run their consulting practices by scheduling staff, market development activities and client work a year or two in advance. This not only ensures that staff are being utilized but it also enables them to predict their cash flow for business planning purposes.
I know that this is not strictly possible for a small business but you can still start working towards achieving a schedule that improves your cash flow, a month at a time. The practice of productive scheduling will benefit both the new and seasoned consultants in developing and maintaining a profitable practice. Productive scheduling requires discipline and proactively pursuing only those activities that bring you results.
What will you be doing next week or even next month? What is your schedule saying about your business?
These are some tips on how to stay productive:
- Develop a working pattern or hours that enable you to have the much deserved time out. This will help you stay motivated and disciplined during your working hours.
- Assign some significant time to marketing activities at least once a week – this is how you will keep your practice productive.
- Expand your service offering to include activities that can be scheduled in advance e.g. workshops etc and improve your cash flow.
Today’s activities will be tomorrow’s income earners so come on, do what it take to keep your schedule productive.
Griselda Kumordzie Togobo is a small business consultant based in the UK. Previously, she worked for an international professional services firm where she provided management consultancy services to charities, the healthcare and manufacturing industries.
As an engineer, chartered accountant and mother Griselda has become a role model for the youth in her community. Visit her blog at www.awovi.com