Ever find yourself thinking “I wish there were more hours in the day…”
… Congratulations, you’re officially a business owner. While this is a common sentiment, there’s no reason it has to be this way. What if I told you I can help you gain back at least 6 hours in your work week? As a trade business owner, I imagine you think that most tasks are done the quickest – and be honest, the best – if YOU do them yourself. Right? You might be right, but think about all the extra tasks you have, like doing quotes… answering calls… scheduling jobs… website maintenance… chasing late invoices… picking up supplies, how many of these things actually need YOU to do them? Less than you think…
These might seem like small jobs that don’t take up much time. But, they add up. If you are still saying ‘I wish there was more time in the day!’, ‘I can’t fit in ANOTHER THING!’ then you are in the right place. Here are 4 ways to time freedom:
1. Do a time Audit
This may sound tedious and ironically, can take some time to do but it’s the only way of objectively seeing where you’re spending your hours. Use the timer on your phone and start tracking each activity from quoting to buying supplies to chasing unpaid invoices. Do this for at least one ‘typical’ week; you’ll be surprised how much of your time is spent on things not making you any money.
2. Get help
Write down where you’re losing time and look at what options are available to take this task off your plate. Think especially about tasks which don’t need your level of expertise to do them. Can you outsource those? Can you take on a trade assistant to do mundane tasks? Do you need a virtual assistant like Trade VA to help you with admin duties? Think of ways things can get done without YOU doing them. Often paying others to take care of these things is less than the hourly rate you should be paying yourself.
3. Embrace technology
There are services available now which save you countless hours of time; do yourself a favour and get on-board. Project management apps like Tradify will help you manage everything and everyone in your business. Accounting software like Xero or MYOB will keep you on top of all things financial and tax related. Perhaps the biggest time saver of all is Upfront Pay which will win you back all of the time you currently spend chasing unpaid invoices.
This is an oldie but a goodie, at the beginning of each day, week and month reassess where you’re at with your projects, what needs to be done and rank them in priority. Think about your customers and who your giving the most time to. Make sure the squeaky wheel isn’t getting all the grease, often the most time consuming customers aren’t the ones giving you the best and most profitable projects. It might be time to be more selective about which customers you take and which to pass on.
Time is money
Remember – as a business owner your time is valuable. And it is worth A LOT.
Your time should be spent working on activities that lead to business growth, not just tasks which keep it running. While these time-saving ideas require some outlay, they free you up to create a more profitable business and will more than pay for themselves in the long run. Freeing yourself from unnecessary tasks also gives you freedom to finally achieve that elusive work life balance. More time with the people you love and the personal hobbies you once enjoyed are not luxuries, they are so important for maintaining good mental health.