When one aspect of your business is thriving, other areas soon begin to benefit from it too. Similarly, if one way of working is resulting in success, it should be adopted throughout the business. High efficiency leads to high profits and once efficiency drops, your income will too. Efficiency is more than just how well employees are working, it’s also about aspects of the business that are taking up valuable time.
Here are some of the most commonly overlooked efficiency blockers in business.
Meetings are essential for any business, but you can spend as much time in meetings as you do working, and that is not efficient. It is a good idea to set a time limit, and have an agenda, for meetings and stick to those. A few more minutes here and there can easily turn into an hour wasted.
Similarly, interrupting people for a quick meeting may seem harmless, but it does disrupt concentration. If you are interrupted, it takes time for that meeting, and then more time to get back into what you were doing. The quick interruption of someone who is working on another project may not seem much to you, but it disrupts the flow and makes that person less efficient. This can quickly effect projects and other members of the team.
Email and other electronics
Emails were created to make things easier and quicker, and they do, but they can also take up a tremendous amount of time. Especially if you have a notification that you have an email, there may be the temptation to feel it has to be answered right away. The same is true for texts and other electronic type messaging.
These distractions can put you off tasks, disrupt your day (especially if they’re negative messages) and sometimes can make you forget about what you were doing completely.
The same is true for phone calls. it is best to put all calls on hold if you are trying to concentrate. Unless you’re sure it’s an important call, let it go to answerphone and catch up on it when you’re on your break.
Of course, you need a schedule to stay organised and get things done. But if you over schedule, you can end up costing yourself time and energy, which is a drain on efficiency.
One example is to schedule two or three hour-long tasks back to back. There needs to be some flexibility in the schedule, because in reality, nothing works out the way you think it will. One thing will end up taking longer, while another takes less time and so forth. Over scheduling leaves out any wiggle room, and when something does cause a snag, it can make your whole plan come crashing down.
While it is good to have a great plan, realise that plans are just plans. Have enough flexibility built into the plan so you can make needed adjustments as you go.
Automation is a great example of efficiency. Most of the time, automating processes makes a company or an individual more efficient, saving time and energy so you can do the things that matter most.
Payment processes, such as paying bills or paying employees, is a good example of automation making you more efficient. Payment software such as Bacs can automate many kinds of payments so you do not have to worry about anything. Doing this manually would take a tremendous amount of time and manpower, so you save a lot of time by using software to do it automatically. Besides automation, another alternative for payment procedures can be taking the help of an e-commerce payment solutions by FastSpring. The solutions offered can increase localised and global payments success rates to over 90%. Moreover, these solutions are known to provide multiple payment gateways worldwide and identify the right payment gateway to complete every transaction. They can ensure that you do not miss out on revenue.
That said, another way you can increase efficiency is to provide employees with targets and incentives. If a project needs to be completed by a specific date, tell your employees they should be aiming to complete it the week before. If they manage to do this, they can be rewarded. Adding slight amounts of pressure can significantly push employees to work harder, however too much will only create stress and error. Find a balance and work it into your operations.
Efficiency is a great tool to help your business run smoothly. Keep in mind though, that efficiency itself is not your real goal, it is merely a tool to reach your goals. While you seek efficiency, do not let it rule to the point that it prevents you from doing the things your business needs to do to be a success.
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