The balmy summer months are often referred to as 'quiet' months in the business world. But for small business owners there is hardly ever a 'quiet' moment, with long working hours and few breaks, no matter the weather.
We believe that everyone should be able to enjoy a stress free summer. So we’ve developed a series of guides to help small business owners work smarter and make the most of the coming months. The first in the series highlights tips for organising your smart summer:
Getting Smart: Get Organised
During summer, many employees take leave, so look at what is coming up and priortise business activity. See whether you need any additional support and get that booked in ASAP to save your stress levels rising.
Understand your working patterns
If you work best during a specific time of the day, block out those hours for dedicated work time. It is also worth scheduling short breaks throughout the day to give you (and your eyes) a rest from the computer if you are desk bound, and to keep your energy levels up by having a healthy snack.
Make the most of technology
Many businesses are running off old legacy systems which impacts on productivity, despite this being entirely avoidable. Take time to look new platforms such as cloud, which makes state-of-the-art technology available to all sizes of businesses. There’s no need for IT infrastructure other than the laptop, tablet, desktop or phone you consume it through. And what’s even better is that you pay for it as you go, cutting out those hugely expensive up-front costs.
Think before you buy
All businesses are unique and therefore shouldn’t rely on run of the mill software to get the job done as this could detrimental to your company. This is particularly true of non-specific accounting products that won’t be tailored to your needs or the requirements of your business. To avoid time being wasted, make sure your software is configurable with the functionality you need for your particular business.
Say no to micro management
To develop and grow, you must learn to trust your workforce and delegate. If you hired the right people, they should be capable of delivering on their tasks. Communicate clearly what is expected of them and within a certain timeframe. Constant scrutiny has a negative impact on work and overall performance, and while you might just be trying to help, micro managing hinders progress.
Ensure computer/internet speed is not impacting on productivity
There are times when employees are raring to go but the speed of the internet has dropped to nothing. Or the computer monitor does that thing where it freezes for 15 seconds for no apparent reason. Occurrences such as this are not only an annoyance for individual workers, but can also drag an entire office to a standstill. As they say, time is money so it’s important to make sure that you have the right technology in place for the job. Do your research and make informed decisions, not just on the most ‘cost effective’ package as this could cost you more in the future.