When you’re a remote worker, such as a PA, EA or VA, time management is essential to your business success, as often you’re billing on an hourly basis or for the time spent on a specific project.
But time management isn’t limited to just knowing where your time goes – it also means ensuring your time is well spent too. Here’s some tips to help you manage your time better.
Set your working hours
By sticking to regular working hours, you, your family and your clients will all know when you’re working. This helps you to keep focused on your work, whilst also ensuring you’re not encroaching on your downtime and/or family time, as well as ensuring you’re not heading into overwork and burn out.
Prioritise your workload, so you’re dealing with the most urgent or important things first. Either use a project management tool (such as Asana) or use a to-do list and time chunk your time and plan your work for the day ahead, prior to starting your day.
Use time tracking software
When you’re working with several clients, it can be easy to lose track of the time spent on each. Therefore, it’s so important to implement some kind of time tracking software, such as the project management app Paymo or the time tracking too Minutedock.
Implement workflows and procedures
You can make your processes more streamlined, if you have a standard procedure and/or workflow for each task you do. Not only does this save you time, it also enables you to achieve a consistency across your work, whilst also ensuring you’re not missing anything.
Working from home will inevitably give you two potential big distractions – the environment around you and your laptop!
Your home environment can be distracting as it will usually fall into two categories – too noisy and/or too quiet. Often, it tends to flip between the two. Some days, you’ll struggle with the noise around you – the TV, your children, the dog barking etc. However, having too quiet a space can be equally distracting – especially if you’re used to the buzz and noise of an office environment!
When it’s just you and your laptop, your single biggest distraction will be the internet and your notifications. It’s easy to get side-tracked by automated notifications reminding you of everything, from emails to changes made to your shared online files. Having your internet connected means you’ll also feel the draw of a ‘quick’ visit to a social media platform, just to see what exactly your best friend has tagged you in.
Make the decision to limit the distractions around you, by making sure your office is a distraction-free zone. Let family members know when your office hours are, work whilst your children are at work and turn off everything not needed – your internet connection, notifications, reminders, land line etc. If you need to break the silence, play music (without words, if preferred) or have the radio on.
By following the tips above, you’ll ensure you’re both monitoring and making the most of your time – ensuring that every minute of your working day counts!
This guest post is written by Amanda Johnson from VACT.
Amanda Johnson of VACT Limited, is a Virtual Assistant Coach, Trainer and Mentor offering a variety of courses and workshops, both free and paid to help both aspiring, new and experienced Virtual Assistants to launch, create and grow their own successful VA business. Passionate about “Creating Exceptional VA’s”, All of the VACT training courses and mentoring options, are designed to support and fit around you, your current work commitments, your individual circumstances and your budget. VACT Limited were named as the “The Best VA Training Provider – 2016”. This is how Amanda describes what she does: “I’m passionate about creating exceptional VA’s – I am at my happiest when I am inspiring, challenging and supporting others” (and there might be a bit of xxx kicking in there too!)