Well, you’ve finally done it. You made the leap from a traditional corporate job to working for yourself and starting your own business. You’re excited about the freedom it offers like a flexible work schedule, the ability to work from anywhere and no more office dress code. At the onset, your business will undoubtedly be slow. People need time to discover your business and its service/product offerings.
During this initial slow time, there are many things that can distract you and steal your motivation and productivity. Here are 9 hacks to stay productive while you’re building your business that will help you maintain that productive edge:
1. Be Realistic
Are you struggling working remotely? Do you get a sense of cabin fever being confined to working at home all day or do you enjoy the peace and quiet?
Some people thrive in the hustle and bustle of an office setting. They work better around people. Others are more productive working remotely where they can enjoy the peace and quiet of their own company.
One isn’t any better than the other when determining whether you should start your own business or not. It just means you must be honest with yourself if figuring out what kind of work environment will make you the most productive. This will help you not only build your business, but will help in the future operation of it.
2. Designate a Work Space
When you begin your company, your home will be your office. Depending on how you answered the previous point, you will spend a lot of time at home (if you’re one to work better solo). Working from home can easily blur the line between work and leisure.
If you don’t designate a work area in your home, your work will consume your life, leading to long hours and burnout.
You’ll be more productive and strike a healthy work/leisure balance when you choose a working area in your home that is used only for work. Doing all your work in this designated area will free you from distractions and put you into a work mindset.
3. Set Up a Consistent Schedule or Routine Every Day
One of the biggest reasons you probably left your former job was the opportunity to break free of the 9am-5pm work day. You want to work your own schedule.
There isn’t anything wrong picking your own schedule. There is nothing wrong working from dawn to dusk or vice versa. The thing that matters, that will make you productive is that you work the same hours every day. A consistent routine is known to boost productivity and increase focus whereby helping the building of your business to go more smoothly.
Designated work hours will also help you to keep that vital work/leisure balance intact.
4. Dress Up
No matter if you’re working from home or in your favorite coffee shop, you should dress nicely. You may be tempted to lounge around in sweatpants and a sweatshirt when working from home. After all, you’ve got nowhere else to go nor are you interacting with anyone.
While this may be true, dressing up, even just a little will make you feel better about yourself. You’ll feel more confident and positive, which will boost your productivity and aid in focus.
This dressing up doesn’t have to be dreaded suit and tie. A nice shirt or blouse with nice jeans or casual business pants will do.
5. Get Important Things Done First
While you may feel a little groggy in the morning, you should aim to tackle the most important, demanding tasks first. There are many things that must be done to get your startup running. When you accomplish an important task, you’ll feel energized and motivated throughout the day.
By getting the big projects done first-thing in the day, you’ll avoid loosing productivity due to the afternoon energy slump. Your day will go smoother and you’ll get more done when you get the big tasks done early while you have energy and the menial, less important tasks done when your energy is waning.
This will force you to have a plan or agenda for each day which will help you to stay focused and be more productive. You’ll have to prioritize tasks which will also lessen the anxiety, stress and feeling of being overwhelmed by all the tasks that need to get done.
6. Take a Break and Relax
Your start-up will take up a significant amount of your time and energy. It is important to not let it be your life. The phrase “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is true. You may feel accomplished and relieved working 10 hours or more a day on your start-up. You may get tasks and projects done, but over the long-term your mental, physical and emotional health will suffer.
To avoid burnout, you need to take regular breaks from work during the day. A short walk around the neighborhood, meeting up with friends or sitting at your favorite coffee shop are some ideas for getting out and taking a much-needed break.
You’ll need all your energy, focus and will-power to get your business off the ground. These things will suffer if you sacrifice sleep, and skimp on breaks and leisure time.
When you’re prioritizing your daily tasks, be sure to block out time for regular breaks and leisure time. While this may be counter intuitive when there is a ton of work to do in building your business, you’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel and how energized you’ll be to be more productive.
7. Collaborate and Network
Starting a new business will likely be new, unfamiliar territory for you. While you’re excited about this new chapter, you may have a level of anxiety because you don’t know what you’re doing. Networking with other entrepreneurs and having a business coach or mentor can instill a sense of encouragement that you need to keep your motivation alive and well.
Peers and mentors can also spark your creativity, give you ideas you hadn’t thought of, challenge you on how you’re running things, and offer advice and suggestions on how to make your company successful.
Building a business from scratch is a major battle for someone to tackle by themselves. The help and support of other entrepreneurs will do wonders for your self-esteem, motivation and productivity.
Take advantage of the slow time by attending local networking events for the purpose to meet other entrepreneurs who can be your support network and be an idea sounding board. Networking will also get your name and company out there to possible customers you may not have been able to reach.
8. Keep Learning
It has been proven that the more you know how to do something, the faster you can do a task involving that thing you know well. Increased innovation and knowledge therefore correlates to increased productivity.
During this slow time while you’re building your business, take advantage of the time by taking courses, online and in-person, attend networking events, participate on forums, read blogs, industry magazines and the like.
9. Use Resources
Your start-up isn’t the first. There have been hundreds of thousands of start-ups that have been created over the years. There are plenty of resources available for startups including business model templates, accounting software, marketing resources and even website templates.
No matter what industry your startup is in, you can’t expect to get customers without a quality website. A quality website also needs a professional domain name that is also easy to remember. If you’re looking for a domain name for your startup website, contact Domain Market today. We’ll be glad to help your startup get up and running.