Most entrepreneurs and business owners have this misconception that the harder they works, the more successful they might be. Working hard and long hours is the thing of the past. Times have changed and also the way we do business. In order to achieve goals (long term and short term), one must work smart and always remember the importance of efficiency and time management.
Here are 5 easy ways to get organized and work smart:
Remove the clutter
The less you have around you, the better you think. Too many things around you always act as distractions and can hinder focused thinking. This could be hard but try to avoid the urge to browse the Internet, or keeping looking at your smartphone, make personal phone calls, run personal errands during the workday, or allow other distractions to get in the way of competing important work related tasks. The other important element is to keep work at work and personal stuff at home. That way you’re more likely to accomplish what needs to get done during your work hours, and this will make your personal time at home more relaxing and enjoyable.
Create a routine
This is the most fundamental aspect of smart working. It is highly recommended that we prepare a routine and try to stick to it. This is where time management and prioritization comes into place. Schedule errands, meetings, and appointments in such a way that that you aren’t venturing out of the office multiple times a day. Get more organized and incorporate your breaks into this period, and you can lay out exactly how much time you are going to spend on each project daily.
Create a to-do list
In addition to your daily or monthly routine, it is important to highlight the most important tasks that need to be finished. Make a note of the most important things that need to be done each month, and then assign the tasks needed to complete them to specific weeks and days on your to-do list. This is the most effective way to be sure that a huge project won’t get overlooked and that your time is being used as effectively as possible. In a project based environment, you could also highlight project milestones and important deliverable for the complete month and/or year.
Delegate and/or Outsource
You can never be good at everything and delegating and outsourcing is the key to smart working. Don’t let yourself be held back from tackling the important things by mundane work. Look in-house first–are there other people on your team who can take these jobs off of your hands? If not, there are many websites available, such as Fancy Hands or Odesk, that offer relatively cheap services for monotonous day-to-day tasks, and they are more than happy to take your work.
Keep your emails short and simple
Yes, it is always better to keep it short and to the point. There is no need to send a paragraph convey an important message when one sentence will do. Not only does it waste your and the recipient’s time, but people tend to respond more quickly to email messages that are direct and concise. Not to mention, always be polite and courteous.
There have been times when business owners have faced the challenge of improving and optimizing an ongoing process or a business activity. In typical business environments, entrepreneurs generally come across situations where they have to analyze their current situation or business and compare it to the desired or future state.
In simple terms, gap analysis is the comparison of such actual business states with potential business state or performances. This analysis can yield a lot of insights into an organization’s performance and functioning. This simple tool helps businesses identify the gap between your current situation and the future state that they want to reach, along with the tasks that businesses need to complete to close this gap.
Compared to other business analysis methods, Gap analysis is more organic, quantitative and conceptual in nature, using traditional Excel sheets or flowcharts. It gives the analyst (or business owner) more freedom in choosing what to focus on. In management theory, if an organization does not make the best use of current resources, it may produce or perform below its potential. At a root level, Gap analysis identifies gaps between the optimized allocation and integration of the resources, and the current allocation level. Such analysis is generally done at the operational or strategic level of any business.
Here are the steps followed in a typical GAP analysis:
• Recognize the existing business process
• Find the existing outcome
• Identify the desired outcome
• Pinpoint the process to achieve the desired outcome
• Identify Gap i.e. the difference between the actual and the desired performance, Document the gap
• Develop the means to fill the gap
• Improve and prioritize Requirements to bridge the gap
Such GAP analysis should be done carefully and objectively to realize any potential gains. Gap Analysis is useful at the beginning of a project or process, especially when developing a Business Case , and it’s essential when we identifying the tasks that need to be completed to deliver the project.
Have you ever got to a point where you feel completely stressed out and can feel your heart beating as a ticking time bomb?
Do you get the feeling that the long hours of work that you have been doing is not getting you the desired results and your approach lacks the positive attitude and the motivation?
Coffee, late nights, sleep deficiency, prolonged sitting, constant planning and often times unhealthy food. Does that sound like you?
Well, if the answers to the questions are a “YES”, then you are soon heading for a complete breakdown.
We all know of the superficial benefits of regular exercise and recent research has proved that how exercise has positive effects on the brain. In fact, in a NASA study, compared to people who exercised regularly, people who didn’t exercise experienced a 50% drop in productivity after 7 hours of work. For an entrepreneur who puts in 12+ hours a day, this means that allocating 30-60 minutes a day to exercise could reap overwhelming benefits in the long run.
Exercise is believed to be important for entrepreneurs for a variety of reasons. First, various research supports the explanation that fitness promotes performance. In addition, a variety of studies also show the relationship between fitness and mental performance, especially for older individuals, who are the age of many successful entrepreneurs.
So, if you decide to take out time for fitness in your daily life as an entrepreneur, always keep the following in mind:
• Treat your fitness routine as a PROJECT and measure your results – timelines and targets can be useful also outside the board room!
• Give it the utmost priority – exercise first thing in the morning or first thing when you get home from work.
• Relax and Recover – you don’t have to work out every day. Over-training or exercise may results in physical fatigue and injury. At least 7-8 hours or proper sleep is also necessary.
• Get social and get fit – joining a social fitness group or a gym will help build, enjoy and solidify your new fitness habits.
A regular exercise program has a several significant positive effects, all of which are important to keep you motivated and active as you make decisions throughout the day.
We have heard of dorm style accommodations and hostels in the traditional sense (off course unlike the setup you saw in the film – The Hostel), but have you ever heard of a hacker hostel? Well, as we all know that there are a lot of business incubators in San Francisco that offer entrepreneurs a place to code during the day. However, there aren’t many that offer sleeping arrangements as well.
A hacker hostel is a place where computer programmers, coders, designers and scientists can spend the night for $40. Most of the hostel tenants are 20-somethings who are currently building startups or are in search of inspiration. Every new comer is given a blanket, pillow, towel and sheets. There’s no TV. Also, every once in a while food is cooked for the group.
These hacker hostels are all run by the same management company, Chez JJ, with accommodations in Mountain View, Menlo Park and San Francisco in California. Chez JJ was founded by 28-year-old neuroscientist Jade Wang and Jocelyn Berl. The idea for the hostel came up when Wang had used Airbnb (a community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodations from around the world) to rent a room in her apartment; a fellow “nerd” crashed with her. Soon Wang was working on the concept of the hacker hostel.
Like any startup incubator, new comers actually have to be working on something to be accepted. Tenants are screened by hostel captains, all of whom are women. Tenants at the hostel feel very strongly about a community spirit and feel that if we want to do something to change the world and make it a fundamentally better place; we need to be around the right people, hence the hacker hostel.
Argentina was once famous for its bureaucracy, but now if you take the time to sit down and have a cup of coffee with someone then the doors open magically. It’s a country with a complicated history so people are used to helping each other out.
Their motto is simple
“I do this for you and you do this for me and together we form a human chain to help each other out”
In the words of the newly elected prime minister of Spain, Mariano Rajoy, “1,200 young Spaniards are immigrating to Argentina each year”.
The figures might sound a bit exaggerated but a mass migration of young Europeans is nevertheless clearly evident in the streets of Buenos Aires. Most of them come from Spain and Italy but some are from Britain. The large majority of young Europeans in Argentina work under the radar of the Migrations Department, residing as students or travelling back and forth to neighboring Uruguay to renew their tourist visa every three months. But figures for official residency permits for Europeans have about doubled in the past five years, to a projected 2,000 for this year.
What do Entrepreneurs feel?
A lack of adequate financing is often seen as a cause of economic stagnation for businessmen and entrepreneurs, but in Argentina it’s more a symptom of something graver: persistent uncertainty and instability. “Money is not the problem,” says Zoltan Acs, a professor of public policy at George Mason University in Virginia. “The problem is, Does the country reward people for effort?
Acs says that nonprofits like Endeavor Argentina, which provides free legal and accounting advice to entrepreneurs and connects start-ups to more established companies, have helped. But in Argentina, even the most successful entrepreneurs are never entirely sure how safe and secured they are.
However, Buenos Aires still continues to be a favored option for the young and the restless:
It is the commercial, financial, industrial and cultural hub of Argentina. Its port is one of the busiest in South America; crossable rivers by way of the Rio de la Plata connect the port to north-east Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. As a result it serves as the distribution hub for a vast area of the south-eastern region of the continent.
The city’s services sector is diversified and well-developed by international standards, and accounts for 76% of its economy. Advertising, in particular, plays a prominent role in the export of services at home and abroad. The financial, business and real-estate services sector is the largest, however, and contributes to 31% of the city’s economy.