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How to Shave an Hour Off Every Work Day

As a small business owner, if you think that distractions have little to do with your bottom line, you’re sadly mistaken. According to research published by, Workplace distractions cost U.S. businesses $10,375 per employee each year. To put that amount of money in perspective, it’s the same amount that most American drivers spend on annual car maintenance and ownership costs. That’s mindboggling for even the wealthiest entrepreneurs.

Stress Less and Get More Done

If time is not on your side, what can you do to make the most of every work day? Use time tracking software to monitor your employees’ progress? Although it’s an option, it won’t do much to increase your own personal productivity.

If you find that you and your employees have more tasks than you have time, you’ll want to employ some timesaving strategies right away. This will help both you and your employees be more efficient so you can stress less and get more done.

Here are some very easy ways to shave an hour off of each and every work day going forward:

  1. Tackle the Hardest Tasks First.  One thing that has been stressed by productivity experts is to tackle the hardest task first. There are a number of different reasons for that. The most obvious is that hard tasks often require more of a time commitment. Once they’re out of the way, you can focus your energy on completing smaller, less time consuming projects.
  2. Stop Unnecessary Meetings.  It’s important to keep your employees in the know. With today’s long list of technologies, it is no longer necessary to call a meeting every other day. Start to see the value of the cloud. Use it as your virtual bulletin board and set it up so your employees can access it to view memos, download handbooks and documents, and to post progress reports. Think about all the time that is wasted rehashing the same tired topics over and over again. Use Google Hangouts to meet with employees virtually. You can even set it up where video chat is an option you utilize frequently.
  3. Talk to Employees in the Afternoon.  Many business owners schedule meetings at the start or the end of the day. This kills productivity. Instead of beginning or finishing the day in a meeting, why not plan yours after lunch? This gives your staff time to get the most important tasks on their To-Do List done and still gives them the opportunity to leave work at their scheduled time.
  4. Use Blocks of Time Wisely.  It’s easy to fall into the frame of mind that 10 to 15 minutes doesn’t make a difference in your workload. Instead of using that time to delete emails or clear your browser’s cache, identify small tasks that could be completed quickly. After doing enough of the smaller projects, you’ll find the bigger projects are much easier to complete. Besides, you’re likely to never find the bottom of your inbox. If you need to be held accountable, download the Carrot app for iOS. A To-Do List that doubles as a virtual pet, it offers unlockable app upgrades, thirty challenges to complete, and over 400 unique rewards based on Carrot’s mood. It’s a great way to add a little fun in your quest for time-savings.
  5. Give the Last 60 to 90 Minutes of Your Day Your All.  Whittle down that growing list of tasks by focusing solely on your To-Do List the last hour to hour and a half of the day. Ask your employees to do the same. Think about what a relief it will be to come in the following day to a smaller number of tasks to complete. Make it an incentive to get as much done as possible. Then go home, relax, and recharge your batteries.

By focusing on the task at hand, utilizing time-saving strategies, tools, and apps, and being conscientious about the challenges your business faces to stay ahead of the game, you can shave time off of every work day. Delegate tasks accordingly and stop wasting time on boring meetings where very little is accomplished. The amount of time you suddenly have available to get things done will be astonishing.

Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Editor-in-Chief at Fundera
Meredith is Editor-in-Chief at Fundera. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
Meredith Wood