In this series of articles so far, I have argued need to use management practices even if you have your own home based online business. The discipline imposed on yourself will eventually make business stronger and more profitable. I have touched upon need for good financial and marketing management in last two articles, and will now discuss another area of management that affects all others: Time Management.
To anybody working in an office or factory, time management may well be something they hope to escape from by having their own business. A highly pressured executive may well feel same. They could work at home, where they’re boss, and they decide what to do and when. They could watch tv when they want, sit up in bed with their laptops, or without, and numerous other symbols of freedom from being an employee.
Of course, these things are all possible when you work from home. Of all types of home business, though, working online is probably most difficult to manage from a time point of view. Perhaps difficult is wrong word. It’s actually easy. What is difficult is high level of potential online distraction and having to resist it. Add online distractions to those around you at home, and you have ingredients for an awful lot of wasted time.
What Are All These Distractions?
There are many potential distractions online. Millions of them when you consider there are millions of websites, and millions of advertisements advertising those websites in often exaggerated, but tempting, ways. If you are trying to get traffic to your own website by surfing for advertising credits, you are particularly vulnerable to distraction, as you may spend a large part of your day being bombarded by advertising. Once you are drawn off into one tempting website, it can lead to others, then others and so on.
The same can be true of your email inbox. You may be signed up to various newsletters and ezines, you may be spammed, you may belong to safelists that require you to receive owner’s emails. All or some may cause a distraction from your day’s business activity. You may reach end of day and suddenly realize: “Hey, I’ve achieved nothing today.” That can be a demoralizing feeling.
Offline there are many distractions too: you may have children around, your partner may want your company, you may want to laze in garden as sun’s come out for first time in days. There are endless possibilities, depending on your own circumstances, interests and weaknesses. You need to be very much aware of what your own distractions are, and then manage them according to your business, domestic and personal priorities.
How Do You Manage Your Time?
However you manage your time, first part of process should be to:
• Decide what essential elements are for developing and growing your business, steadily and profitably.
• Consider your domestic and personal situation. Now you have your own home business, you have a chance to build into your daily routine activities that will enhance your own happiness and that of your family. This is a great opportunity. Make most of it.
• Take some quiet time and reflect on first two items. Let them meld together in your mind and visualize how they can be brought together to make your perfect day/s.
Whatever outcome of above three steps, result is not set in stone. You can change and adapt according to experience, but for now use this as an exercise in getting into a time management frame of mind.