Tips For Starting A Business: What To Do With Time
- Posted by Alaia Williams
- On December 3, 2013
- productivity, time management
Is time money? Of course not! Time is what allows you to create relationships, gain wisdom, and appreciate the beauty of this ever changing world; money buys stuff. But there are some important correlations between time and money where your business is concerned, both directly and indirectly. What are they? Well, a large part of what dictates your success when starting a business is how you choose to spend your time. Here are a few tips on what to do with time as an entrepreneur:
Treat it as your most valuable resource. Money can be borrowed or increased through profits, employees can be hired and fired, and customers can be gained and lost. Among all of this, the amount of time you have in a day stays the same: 24 hours, take it or leave it. And in these 24 hours, you need to fit in sleep, eating, personal obligations and family time in addition to work. Because of this, it is necessary to prioritize your time and be deliberate in using it well. Renee Warren, in a recent article picks this as the one thing she wished she had known before starting her business
“I wish I would have better known the value of my time. A ‘10 minute chat’, which always leads to a much longer chat, was so easy to say yes to. It took me years to finally start saying NO to things that would take me away from what really needed my attention. No to meetings. No to interviews, and no to extra projects (for extra money). When I implemented my daily to-do lists my whole day/week/month changed. I would only accept opportunities if they could come after my to-do’s were completed.”
Spend some doing other things. Your business is here to support you in having a rounded and fulfilling life. Likewise, just that sort of life is what is going to enable you to support your business to the greatest degree. Entrepreneur Joshua Stiemle says the number one thing he had wished he had known from the beginning was the importance of putting family time first. He also suggests meditation as an advantageous method of relaxing and improving mental and emotional faculties. Your work is important, but it isn’t the only important thing. Living a balanced lifestyle will actually increase your productivity and creativity at work, not diminish it.
Don’t try to speed it up (be patient!). With your firm belief in what you’re selling, and stories of start ups that make $5K revenue in the first month in the back of your mind, it’s understandable for expectations to be high. However, as Kate Matsudaira said in a recent interview, patience is key. ” I have had to learn to focus on the long term and not get disappointed when you don’t see the crazy growth numbers often cited in start up success stories. It can take a lot of time for people to notice real value, but if you focus on your customers and building products people love, then you are on a path that — given enough time — will pan out.”
So, don’t rush. Don’t feel pressured by what you see others doing – plus, you never really know what’s going on behind the scenes. Work hard, but enjoy the journey. Do you best work, but remember, there’s also life outside of work.