1. Get Up Early
Any small business owner quickly learns that they wouldn’t get very much accomplished by getting up at the crack of noon every day. Aside from the fact that getting an early start gives you time to get more work done, you will be forced to play catch-up when you get started later because all of your partners and colleagues have probably already been going strong for hours.
2. Don’t Skip Breakfast
You’re not like other people—you’re a business owner. You’ve got an insane schedule, constant daily stresses, and a team to look out for. That means you need to eat your Wheaties. Ok, you don’t have to eat Wheaties, but before the work starts, make sure you get a good breakfast that will build up your energy stores. Complex carbs like whole grains are good for sustained energy, and so is a vegetable juice like V8; assorted fruit or juice will give you a dose of vitamins. It’s not a bad idea to invest in a juicing machine, either, for those days when you’re short on time.
3. Respond to Emails, Religiously
Now that you’ve got the juices flowing and you’re wide-awake, you’re ready to hit the ground, running, which starts with returning messages. If you receive hundreds of emails a day, then naturally, you may not be able to get to them all; at least make it your goal to answer as many as possible so they don’t pile up.
4. Check Your Media and Give it Once-Over
Maintaining a web presence is a necessary occupation in today’s business world, which means you’re going to have to keep a close eye on your web-based media. Got a few extra minutes in your day? Use that time to take a look at your business’ Facebook or Twitter page, and post something every day that will draw traffic to your website. Does your website need updating, or even just a facelift? Keeping everything current and relevant is crucial to creating an effective web presence.
5. Make Contact with Your Team
Whether via Skype, a conference call, or some real face-time, try to touch base with your staff every day. Constant meetings tend to be notorious time-wasters, but just blocking out 10 minutes before you get started on the day’s business should be enough to get everybody on the same page. Though there may not be anything terribly important to cover, the practice of daily interfacing with your team is good for morale and gives everyone a positive sense of structure.
6. Reconnect with Colleagues
A key trait of successful business owners is the ability to stay on top of their professional relationships. In addition to responding consistently to queries and daily emails, veteran entrepreneurs know that if they don’t preserve working relationships, those relationships will die. That’s the last thing you want because business contacts are one of your greatest assets.
7. Eat a Banana
Come on, you know you want a banana. Silly though it may sound, it’s a miracle fruit. In addition to significant levels of Vitamin B, C, as well as Magnesium (related to counteracting depression), bananas have a high concentration of the essential amino acid Tyrosine, which the body uses to make dopamine. Dopamine, if you haven’t already heard, is an important part of the brain’s reward system and regulates metabolism, focus, concentration, and mood—sounds like a good cocktail for a someone running a business. Some other foods that contain Tyrosine are almonds, apples, yogurt, and beans.
8. Feed the Piggy Bank
Want to know how to get rich? It’s simple—save more than you spend. It’s tough for a business to stay in the black when it’s just starting out, but you can give yourself a good cushion to fall back on just by making a small deposit every day, into an invisible, supplemental account that you never touch. It’s a good thing to have when your business takes an unexpected hit, and you need to float for a short time.
9. Make Time for Family
Running a business takes a great deal of time, energy, and concentration, but there is always time for family. Too many husbands, wives, fathers, and mothers have become casualties of their own business because they worked all the time, and neglected to spend time with family. Keeping up these relationships will enrich you, as well as your loved ones, and you will thank yourself for it.
When day’s end comes around and you’ve closed the door to your office, your work is done—it’s time to relax. We all know there are special circumstances that need extra time or attention, and let’s face it, sometimes running a small business calls for some late nights at the office (especially if you’re a control freak). Outside of these special cases, however, you need to take time to decompress. Finding a balance of work and leisure is essential to keeping your spirits high and your stress in check.
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5 Signs that You’re a Smart Business Owner
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