by Karen Wessels, founder of VA Connect and SnappSales
Life loves throwing us curveballs at the best of times. It’s going to happen and it will continue happening. So, the question is, how do we best manage this? As entrepreneurs we are solution-based thinkers. This means that we are continuously seeking solutions as opposed to looking straight into the problem. It could take years of figuring out, adapting, changing, making sure that your process and flow work for you.
I know it took me many years to figure out the best way to work within my strengths and my team’s passion and strengths. Then my first little bundle of joy came along and threw that straight out the window! Lol. And I see this as a great opportunity to grow and develop as a business person, to refine my processes and to understand better where I can streamline the operations of my businesses. Opportunities lie everywhere, we just need to be prepared to see them as such. Having a little one teaches us to have patience and perseverance, and it also shows us where we are wasting time.
This is where productivity hacks come into play. Let’s take a look at some productivity tips that will help you as working mom or dad to ensure you give your business sufficient attention and to spend quality time with your young family.
1. Prepare the night before
I love starting my week on a Sunday night, it provides me the opportunity to see the week in full, I can jot down what I want to achieve in the upcoming week and plan accordingly. In the same breath it really helps to sit at night when the little ones have gone to bed to plan and prepare for the following day. It’s so much easier to start the new working day off already knowing what is on your agenda for the day and what you want to achieve. Remember to eat the frog first thing in the morning. That is, the task that you keep procrastinating about, do it first thing when your energy levels are high and you are the most motivated. Only then tackle the other tasks.
2. Get out of bed before the family wakes up
I know, this one could be a toughie, especially if your child didn’t sleep through the night and you spent the early hours of the morning trying to soothe them back to sleep. It takes mental toughness to overcome the constant tiredness, however, push through, get up while everyone else is still sleeping and spend time writing or doing self-improvement like meditation and reading a chapter from your book of the month read.
3. Sync your day with your child’s routine
Where possible work within your child’s schedule. When they are taking a nap, write that blog or do your sales calls. If your child goes to daycare or school for a few hours, be sure to sit down and do focused work. You’ll be amazed at what you can achieve in 25 minutes! I know, I’ve learned this very quickly :-) Working around your child’s schedule means you get to spend quality time with them plus give your business, team and clients the attention they deserve.
4. Outsource and delegate the rest
Don’t be a control freak! And I speak from experience, I’m one of those people that believe I can do it better myself. Until you discover that you really only have so many hours in the day, you can only be pulled in so many directions, and then it’s time to understand the power of delegation. Hire a Virtual Assistant for your admin, find a suitable Marketing Agency for your marketing needs, get a great bookkeeper for your finances, entrust your team members to do the job you have set out for them. If you’ve trained your team properly and given clear detailed briefs to your outsourced companies, know that you are in good hands to focus on what you are great at!
Karen Wessels is the co-founder and COO of VA Connect, a South African virtual assistant platform that provides outsourced administrative support; and is also the co-founder of SnappSales, a company that generates quality sales leads for its clients. Prior to establishing both her companies, Karen spent over 10 years in different sales, marketing & admin support roles. This experience has equipped her with the invaluable skills required to run her two successful business ventures. Follow Karen on her Personal Website | Twitter | Facebook | Google+
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