business productivity hacks

Follow these 10 hacks to improve your small business productivity to maximize your time so that you can work smarter not harder to succeed

You’ve already hired your virtual secretary. You have the best tools in place for managing your business. You’ve even outlined your schedule and tasks for the whole week (or month!).

So why do you still feel stressed out – as though you’re always running out of time?

Maybe it’s time to brush up on your time and productivity skills.

Think about it this way: a few tweaks on your plans now can save you from a huge amount of stress in the future! Not only will you have more time on your hands, you’ll also be more inspired to find ways to advance your small business. After all, working hard may be good, but working smart is always better.

Check out these 10 essential productivity hacks for small business owners: 



1 – Have a List of Priorities

As an owner of a small business, you probably have a to-do list at hand. The question is, are the items on your list sorted out? Prioritizing means arranging your tasks according to urgency or importance.

To sort out your priorities, rank your tasks according to:

  • Must Do
  • Want to Do
  • Will Do Whenever Convenient

2 -Attack the Worst Task First

Out of your Must Do list, select the task that you dread the most. This may sound counter-intuitive but just think: if it must get done, you might as well get it done immediately. Otherwise, you’ll just wind up being distracted if it keeps tugging at the back of your mind.

Besides, taking care of your least favorite chore will put you in a better disposition for the rest of the day. When you finish the most difficult task, you’ll feel like you can take on anything that comes after. 

3 – Learn How to Delegate

Whether you are working with a virtual staff or in-house assistants, ease up some control over your obligations and let other people take care of them. This doesn’t mean avoiding the things you don’t like doing. Recognize which jobs other people are better at, and let them handle those for you.

 4 – Stop Checking Your Email Compulsively

Have people replied to your newsletter yet? How many subscriptions did you get today? These concerns will keep pulling at your thoughts if you left them. As a result, you end up refreshing your email again and again.

Set aside a specific schedule for reading and replying to emails. This could also be one of the things you can appoint to your virtual assistant. Ask your VA to alert you only if there’s something urgent or if it’s the email you’ve been waiting for.

5 – Avoid Social Media

Social media is even more distracting than email. One minute you’re just reading a chat, the next thing you know, you’ve already wasted 40 minutes aimlessly browsing your newsfeed!

Mute your phone or social media notifications when you’re working. If you’re updating your company’s social channels, logout of your personal accounts so you don’t get tempted to peek into your homepage.

6 – Keep Meetings Short

Before you decide to round up your team for a meeting, consider if the agenda can be sent or discussed through email. If not, keep meetings as brief as possible. If you’re meeting with an in-house staff, have the discussion while standing up. People will be more alert and the meeting will be more straightforward.

7 – Go Paperless Whenever Possible

Utility companies and suppliers will send you invoices, important notices, and occasional messages. Save yourself a huge amount of time and do everything online.

Receiving and paying bills online. Getting important messages and corresponding with suppliers via email will save you time and effort. Going paperless will not only save you time leafing through stacks of documents on your desk – it’s also easier to organize and declutter if you do these tasks online.

8 – Move Around

If you’re feeling stumped or overwhelmed, get up and move around to ease up the tension. A change of scenery always does wonders to a burned-out mind. You don’t need to book a ticket to an exotic destination to channel your creative genius. Sometimes, a trip to the coffee and bagel stand outside your workplace will do the trick.

9 – Don’t Multitask

In the past years, people have glorified multitasking as though juggling different tasks at the same time is a badge of honor. The truth is, multitasking usually does more harm than good. Human brains aren’t wired to hastily switch from one chore to another. Less effective and more stressed out – that’s what multitasking can do to you.

10 – Let it Go to Voicemail

Whenever you’re in the zone or just beating a deadline, ringing phones can get you sidetracked. Unless it’s from a client or a supplier with pressing issues that demand immediate action, let phone calls go to voicemail.

These 10 essential productivity hacks for small business owners are guaranteed to help you maximize your time. Are you ready for a more productive year?



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Catherine Vanvonno

President & Executive Director at 20Four7VA
Catherine is president & executive director of 20four7va, a global eCommerce virtual assistance service provider. She is into strategic planning, product development, brand management, and digital marketing.

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