Maximum Returns for Minimal Effort: 4 Great Time Management Tips

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals | Maximum Returns for Minimal Effort: 4 Great Time Management TipsWhether you work in an office building or from home, staying on task can be difficult. The distractions may vary – a barking dog versus a chatty coworker – but they’re still there.

If you’re your own boss, it can be even more difficult to manage your time because no one is there to keep you in check. What can you do to get your work done in a timely manner, so you’re not working 24 hours a day?

Online business blogs, such as bullpreneur, provide resources for new and veteran business owners alike.

Wasting Time is Wasting Money

If you’re the owner of a company with employees, their wasted time is your wasted money. Not only is the work not getting done, you’re paying them for their time regardless.

If, on the other hand, you’re the be-all of a company, you’re cheating yourself. If you’re not working, you’re not making valuable connections, keeping up on your industry, or bringing in money.

With the ease of social media at your fingertips, it can be difficult not to fall into an internet rabbit hole instead of working. What can you do to get your employees – and yourself – to stay focused during work hours?

4 Ways to Manage Your Time Better

The internet isn’t the only time suck. Watercooler chats, personal phone calls, television… The list is endless. If you don’t find a way to break the habit, your work to-do list will also be endless.

Here are 4 great time management tips to follow:

1. Eliminate your distractions. No cellphones in the work area is the first step to removing distractions. Of course, that’s not so easy if you’re the boss and disregard your own rule. Making your workspace clutter-free and electronic-free can boost your productivity.

2. Plan out your workday. If you start your workday without some semblance of a plan, you’ll end up wasting time figuring out what to do. Before you leave for the day, make a list of things that need to be done the next day. It will cut back on the time you spend trying to get started each day.

3. Complete the most pressing projects first. That list you wrote at the end of the day will also come in handy when it’s time to figure out what to do first. Focusing on one task at a time helps prevent you from getting overwhelmed. There’s also a sense of satisfaction in crossing an item off the list once it’s completed.

4. Track your productivity. If you or your employees need more strict guidance, a time tracking tool installed on the work devices can help accountability. Of course, there are tons of time management apps, making it difficult to sort out the best. Forbes lists eight of the most helpful time tracking apps.

Taking Frequent Breaks Can Increase Productivity

It may seem counterproductive to take breaks to get your work done. But taking a short break can help you mentally recharge and sharpen your focus once you return to your tasks.

Staying Motivated In Your Career : 3 Stellar Strategies to Try

StrategyDriven Professional Development Article |Staying Motivated|Staying Motivated In Your Career : 3 Stellar Strategies to TryIt is not always easy to stay motivated at work. In fact, long hours, plus stress can drain all of the dedication and focus out of you. However, even if you are feeling the pull of inertia, there are some tactics you can use to stay consistently motivated. Read on to discover what they are.

Get your goal setting right.

The first way to maintain your motivation at work is to understand effective goal setting. This is because if you are always aiming for things in the distant future, it can be straightforward to lose the motivation to continue.

Instead, you must make sure that you have a mix of immediate, short, medium, and long term goals. For example, your long term goal may be to start up your own business. However, you may wish to set becoming a manager in the company in which you already word as a medium-term goal. Additionally, a short term goal would be to secure a raise and more responsibility in your current role. While an immediate goal could be to go and ask you superior to evaluate your progress so far.

In fact, in this way you can achieve something this week, and at various stages towards your end goal. All of which will help you achieve your end goal, but will also ensure that you stay motivated along the journey.

Understanding your motivation.

Another critical aspect of staying motivated in your career is getting to grips with what motivates you as a person. In fact, there are various ways of doing this, such as defining your values or goals in life.

However, one of the most effective ways to uncover the thing that drives you is to use tools like the Enneagram. The Enneagram test can be useful for personal development because it highlights both an individual’s most fundamental fear and their most basic desire. That is what they are moving towards and away from in all areas of their lives. Of course, both of these are essential areas of motivation for any type of action, including the ones we take concerning our career.

Meaningful work.

Finally, when it comes to motivation in your career, a touch of realism is vital. That is that in every single job there is, there are bad days. Days when you are fed up, drained and want to throw in the towel.

However, when you have a meaningful career, it is a lot easier to get through the more negative experiences. This is because then you will have an underlying motivation that trumps any issues you may face.

To that end, when selecting or changing a career, consider more than just the pay grade.

Instead, you also must consider factors like the ones below as well:

  • What you love to do.
  • How what you do can make a positive difference in the world.
  • What you are good at

In fact, this sweet spot between all of these factors is something the Japanese refer to as Ikigai. This is a state that will help you stay motivated at work even on the most challenging of days.

Arresting The Usual Suspects Of Downtime

StrategyDriven Managing Your People Article |Downtime|Arresting The Usual Suspects Of DowntimeTime wasted in business is money wasted. You’re still paying the bills, paying your employees and missing out on revenue for every single minute spent fruitlessly. In the pursuit of more efficient and productive workplaces, it’s important to look at the risk of downtime and where it might be rearing its ugly head in your business. Here are a few of the usual suspects.

Distraction and human error

This might be the first suspicion of a manager who is worried about the productivity of their workers but rarely is it the case that a lot of downtime is caused by employees who aren’t doing their work. If someone is distracted in the workplace, such as by certain social media networks or websites, then you can use access controls to prevent them from using certain websites at certain times.

Noisy neighbors

If distraction is the culprit, then often it’s due to outside interferences, not personal problems. For instance, a workplace that doesn’t offer enough private space for individuals to concentrate on their work is likely to see a lot more interruptions. Similarly, interrupting the workflow with unnecessary phone calls and meetings can be a drain on productivity, too. Not only does it take up the time of the meeting itself, but people have a hard time “shifting back into gear” after a length interruption.

IT issues

We rely a lot more on technology nowadays, which also means that when it’s no longer accessible, it can cut us off from our ability to do work. Whether due to software or hardware, it’s important to be ready to respond to IT issues, with the help of outsourced IT support if necessary. The greater your IT scope, the more your team relies on it and the more time could be lost if you’re not invested in proactive maintenance.

Blackouts and other natural disasters

There’s not a lot you can do to foresee natural disasters. There is a lot you can do to prepare for them, however. For instance, many businesses will invest in a backup internet connection or allow employees to work remotely if the network of the office building goes down. Similarly, you may use a backup generator to supply the power needed to keep the work going in event of a breakout. Flexibility is crucial.

How to measure it

If you want to know the specific culprit behind the majority of your own downtime, then a little fact-finding is necessary. Time-tracking software* and apps can help you see how your team is using their time, from what websites and apps they’re using to any time they might be prevented from doing work. Then you can address the issue directly rather than having to guess what’s at the route of your time-wasting problems.

An assessment of the workplace is needed, and a strategy to cut down on the downtime plaguing your team is essential. Not only does it waste time and money, but it impacts the motivation and engagement of your team. Let downtime rule the roost and everyone suffers.

Finding Balance as a Small Business Owner

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article |work-life balance|Finding Balance as a Small Business OwnerIn the early days, you probably don’t mind working all of the available hours to get your business up and running. But as you go on, you might be looking for more of a balance in what you do and when. Smaller businesses are very reliant on their owners to get things going, but over time you will find there are many options and tools to help you create a better work-life balance.


If you head to your office or open your laptop day after day without setting yourself some goals, you can spend hours ‘pottering about’ on a range of activities but not really moving forward. Take some time to set goals on everything that you need to do each day. This will mean you are less likely to start to procrastinate or do other tasks. Goals help us stay on track.

The critical thing to making it work is that you set a range of goals that are attainable over your day, week, month, and long term too.

Set goals in both your working life and personal life too. Like a date night once a week, or going to the woods or for breakfast with the children.


If you have social media campaigns running, are managing projects, and have an It network to manage, then you should consider the tools that can make this easier for you. For social media, there is a range of online tools that will help you prepare and automate your social media efforts.

Project management software like or Asana are really popular and make a big difference in staying on track and closing your laptop at a specific time of day. And the right IT security solution will mean you don’t have to have that in the forefront of your mind – it’s all handled for you.


Make your lifestyle the priority and shape your work around it. Many people let their life come second to work. It’s the default mode for millions. However, you can choose to put your lifestyle first. If you want to do yoga mid-morning and take a nap in the afternoon – then great, fit your work around your life.

Turn Off

When you close the door on your office for the day, make sure that you aren’t having a range of notifications coming through to your phone instead. This will keep you plugged into work. Meaning you never truly get a break at all. It would be best if you also considered building some time into each day that you don’t pick up your phone at all.

At least an hour can combat some of the negative effects that too much screen time can cause.

After all, part of the reason that you wanted to own and run your business was so that you had more time in your life for the things you love and the people you want to spend time with. So look for places to automate, learn to switch off, and set attainable goals.

3 Changes To Implement In Your Business This Year

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Business Goals|3 Changes To Implement In Your Business This YearIt is that time of year when we set new goals, revisit our expectations and make fresh plans for our businesses. You have probably already been thinking about revisions that you might need to make and pinpointing your strengths in a bid to build on them and further develop them. We are keen to help you to have a successful start to the year, which is why today we are sharing with you 3 changes to implement in your business this year.

Assess your business’ productivity

You are always going to want your business to be more productive, so take some time to fully assess it this month with a view to implementing any essential changes going forward.

Try to view your business critically, so that you can break down each element of your operation to enable you to decide whether it is working as efficiently as it could be. You might find that you need to get another pair of eyes on it for you, as you might be too close to everything.

When you spot areas that you feel could be improved, start looking into ways that you might be able to work differently. For example, you might find that it would be wise to invest in the latest technology like this field service dispatch software to give you a boost or you could move to using manufacturing companies such as TSMC to give you an edge.

Improve the working conditions

Your business will run more smoothly with happy, engaged and loyal staff, so it can serve you well to look at improving the working conditions for everyone.

You will want to ensure that you have all of the basics covered first, so make sure that the office has the supplies that it needs and give it a good deep clean.

After you have catered to the key areas, get your team involved in helping you to improve all common areas. You might choose to alter the premises through redecorating, adding accessories, rearranging the furniture or adding in new items.

Additionally, you might introduce dress down Fridays, music playing in the office, new reward systems or fresh flowers every week. Do not guess at what you think will work best here, do involve your staff. That way you know you are investing in the right places and they will appreciate having been heard.

Develop your marketing strategy

How is your current marketing strategy working for you? Do you feel that it is reaching the audience that you are striving to connect with? Do you feel that your business and brand is being promoted enough?

A coherent and positive marketing strategy is essential for any business looking to grow and flourish this year.

There are hundreds of possibilities available to you, such as direct mail, digital content marketing, business networking, hosting events, running promotions and utilising social media.

Take the time to think about the people that you are looking to connect with, and then you can start devising the best ways to reach out to them.