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What’s hindering growth at your business?

Posted by Shivali Anand

August 5, 2021    |     4-minute read (677 words)

There are multiple examples of entrepreneurs who have an excellent business concept but spend months or even years coming up with the perfect business name, a costly logo and an ideal office, instead of focusing on releasing their product or service.

Similarly, some business owners spend excessive time on tasks that bring no value. Habitually checking social media and surfing the internet may seem like an innocent diversion but can easily turn into a time-sucking routine that costs money in terms of lost productivity.

Entrepreneurs who aspire for success must learn how to effectively manage their time, and that means addressing the ways they could be squandering it. We’ve culled six time-wasting behaviors that may hamper entrepreneurs’ growth.

Not distributing daily work

Business owners may opt not to delegate for an array of reasons, such as a desire to handle everything themselves or a lack of confidence in employees’ abilities. But to run the company properly, they should be hiring employees with the necessary skills and allocating responsibilities accordingly.

Write down all the activities you perform at work during a set length of time, such as a month, to determine which jobs should be delegated. As a second stage, identify the top three duties on the list, meaning those for which you are uniquely qualified to perform. As soon as you've completed these duties, you may delegate or outsource the rest, or at least minimize the time you dedicate to them.

Too much time spent online

A startling amount of time is spent on the internet, especially social media, and it is most often unrelated to work. According to a study by Carleton University psychologist Timothy Pychyl, spending time on the internet is strongly linked to procrastination. 

The study found that 47% of people spend their time online procrastinating, a figure Pychyl calls a conservative estimate because it was conducted before social media sites like Facebook and Twitter became popular.

This points to the need for company owners and their workers to avoid using the internet for long periods unless it's truly required for work-related duties.

Not making time to respond to messages regularly

Phone conversations, emails, social media messages and texts can not only consume a lot of time, but they also ensnare you in potentially unnecessary engagements that divert time that could be better spent on core activities. Office workers receive at least 200 email messages every day on average and spend hours responding to all of them, according to a University of California at Irvine study. It takes up to 23 minutes to redirect efforts following only one interruption, the study also found.

As a result, instead of checking email and other messages continually throughout the day, set aside three to four times a day to react to messages to boost productivity.

Meetings that aren't useful

According to a 2014 Bain & Company survey, senior executives spend more than two days each week in meetings. The survey also found that meetings take up 15% of a company's time, a figure that has risen steadily since 2008.

Most meetings are a waste of time, even if they perform vital objectives by keeping lines of communication open. Before agreeing to attend a meeting, consider whether the issue at hand can be dealt differently.

Constantly attempting to innovate

Entrepreneurial traits include creativity, inventiveness and enthusiasm for solving issues. However, as you work on growing your firm, you will be bombarded with dozens of unexpected ideas and new paths that will both thrill and divert your natural curiosity to other places. Focus on the knowledge that the majority of these ideas will ultimately waste your time. 

Fight the desire to act on every feeling you have, and instead focus on why you established the company in the first place.

Reluctance to outsource

Every company believes that by keeping everything in-house, the business can fulfill every responsibility on its own. Unfortunately, this can cost time and money. Business owners may be better off outsourcing to the appropriate firm so they can focus entirely on expanding their bottom line.

Learn how we can put more time back in your day.