Starting Your Business
Staying Productive as an Entrepreneur
Written by James Garvin for Gaebler Ventures
First time entrepreneurs are often faced with the challenge of constantly motivating themselves to stay productive. They are removed from an environment in which tasks are readily handed to them and are for the first time in charge of ensuring that everything gets done. Following a regiment of focusing on delivering at least one tangible good every day will help you keep focused and on track.
Perhaps we can partially blame the internet for our ever often mid day trances that leave many of us in a daze where we all but forget about our items on our to-do-list that leaves us more unproductive then we planned.
As an entrepreneur, it is critical to remain focused, productive, and efficient since you are now solely responsible for the business you have started and are operating. We can all get away with letting work slide a little when we're working for our bosses in the corporate world, or as a student, but being unproductive as an entrepreneur can be a dangerous habit that may take your venture off course.
Entrepreneurs especially, are vulnerable to falling into unproductive traps due to many different factors. For one, entrepreneurs no longer have a boss handing them tasks, giving them deadlines, and applying pressure to make things happen. As an entrepreneur, you now need to set your own deadlines and apply pressure to yourself to get things done in a timely fashion.
Entrepreneurs also tend to face a lot of criticism and negativity when launching their ventures, as you will often hear entrepreneurs explain that they are always told no more often then they are told yes. Constant negativity as an entrepreneur can leave many into believing the negativity they hear which results in a deflation of your motivation. Entrepreneurs need third-party validation and belief that their business is doing the right thing and will succeed, however often times that third-party validation doesn't come until after you have succeeded.
The challenge of having to all of sudden do everything to get your business launched and operating efficiently can create a stalled environment that can be compared to being pulled in so many different directions that the equal forces in all directions end up leaving you in the same spot. Entrepreneurs need to understand how to set priorities and stay focused amongst the craziness to move their business forward. One way to measure your productivity is to count how many things you cross off of your to do list every day and how many of those things you accomplished are tangible?
Two simple rules that I like to follow to ensure I stay productive are to write down a to-do-list the night before and leave the to-do-list on my computer to look at first thing in the morning. Secondly, set a goal for your self to produce at least 1 tangible item every day. A tangible can be anything physical or physically related such as a client meeting, writing a marketing document that you've been putting off, finishing a business plan, or anything that moves your business forward. All too often, we get bogged down and saturated with intangible things like conducting research on the internet and emails that takes away from accomplishing our most productive tasks, which tend to be tangible.
As you work on your business and ideas, use little productive tips like the aforementioned to help you monitor your productivity and more importantly to keep your productivity and your business on track.
James Garvin began his education studying biotechnology. In recent years he has turned his interest in technology to helping two internet startup companies. The first business was an online personal financial network and the second was an e-marketing platform created to help entrepreneurs demo their web sites. Currently a student at University of California Davis, James is spending his summer incubating two new online businesses and writing about his entrepreneur experiences.
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