Self-employment productivity – some dos and don’ts & how mentoring can help

By November 7, 2018Advice, News, Self-employment

ProductivityIt has been a while since we shared news on our website – where has the time gone? The gorgeous Somerset summer is over and half term is done – how can freelancers and business owners get back to being their most productive selves? Productivity is key, but increasing it, healthily, can be difficult.

Of course, as a mentoring organisation we would always maintain that having someone experienced to work with can really help you focus and make sure the priorities are covered, so if you would like help, free of charge, from a member of our team of experienced volunteer mentors do just get in touch. Business planning, marketing – anything that is worrying you – can be addressed with a wide skills base waiting to help you.

Whether you have a mentor or not, however, there are certain things you can do to boost your productivity yourself. If you work from home there are additional challenges, but many do find that homeworking offers the best solution for their work-life balance.

So here are some quick tips:

  • Unplug yourself from the WWW...Unless your job requires you to be permanently logged on, stay away from social media sites and the internet until your to-do list has been tackled. (Although a disciplined use of social media can be a very useful way of networking, marketing and simply realising you are not, actually, alone in your work.) Productivity and social media do not always mix well – keep your relationship with it healthy.
  • Make sure you have water on your desk, take regular (soft!) drinks and plenty of breaks. It may seem surprising, but spending time away from your desk can increase your productivity. If you work hard for half an hour and take half an hour out you might get a lot more done that sitting at your desk for 8 hours pulling your hair out. Go for a walk, or read up on a subject relevant to your business. Never stop learning – it is not wasted time.
  • Make sure you don’t allow work time to bleed into time with family or friends. If you have to work 6 days a week, make sure you do not allow anything to impose on the 7th. That day will reenergize you for the next week.
  • Be organised and clear clutter. Oh dear, some of us just aren’t cut out for the clear desk thing. But good organisation is the basis of an efficient business and it is important to ensure deadlines aren’t missed, important paperwork is always easy to find and customers aren’t let down. Do it. Productivity can’t grow without a strong root system.

If you do find yourself struggling to keep up, develop your business or maintain a happy work-life balance then recall a time when you felt really positive and remember how good it feels to have had a truly productive day. It does give you a buzz and a successful business is a wonderful reward for all the hard work you put in. There is a quote by Nietzsche which says: “When one has much to put into them, a day has a hundred pockets.” There is time, but you have to use it wisely to ensure your productivity is at its peak.

Don’t worry – we know this isn’t easy, so do get in touch if you think our mentors can help. There will be no cost to you – Cornerstone is funded by local business support organisations to support Somerset businesses in their bid for success.