Small Business Tax Center
Small Business Ideas, Grants &
Plans to Start & Run a Business:

Small Business Grants
Network in Cyberschmooz Community Ask Questions Questions and Answers Share Tips Small Business Ideas List Your Business Business Advice from Idea Cafe Experts Coffee Talk with Experts Starting A Business Business Plan Biz Planning | Sample Plans Small Business Ideas Idea Name Your Biz Name Plan Your Biz Plan Financing $ Starting a Business Do It! Running your Business Marketing Tips Promotional Merchandise Marketing Tips Marketing | Sales | Customers Human Resources HR | Employees | Contractors Legal Forms & Tax Information Legal | Biz Forms Managing a Business Managing | Operations
Financing Resources Financing Your Business E Commerce & Webhosting eCommerce Take Out Info Trade Publications FREE Trade Publications Business Books Biz Books Your Own Business Small Business News Small Biz News Gen X Biz Gen X Biz Work at Home Work @ Home Business Information The Fridge - Biz Info on Ice Destress Send Awards Send Awards & Greetings Yoga At Your Desk Yoga @ Your Desk Fun Guide Guide to Find FUN Online About Idea Cafe Press Idea Cafe has received Idea Cafe in the News Idea Cafe's Kudos Kudos for Idea Cafe Advertise on Idea Cafe Advertise on Idea Cafe Privacy Policy Privacy Policy Contact Idea Cafe Contact Idea Cafe Link to Idea Cafe Link to/from Idea Cafe Join Idea Cafe
Search Idea Cafe Site Directory Site Map Online directory to business resources Biz Web Guide

Expert Answers to Biz Questions

Listen in! Pick up some expert advice to a reader's question that we selected from CyberSchmooz.

color business bar

5 Tips to Increase Productivity for Your Small Business

Starting a small business can be a stressful experience. You have your business and your employees to think about, as well as all the other business that are your competition. The good news is that it gets easier with time. The bad news is that the first year can be tough on you and your business, and that you must make sure that you set a good course you will follow until you sail into calmer waters. In business, setting a good course often means making sure the business’ productivity levels are good.

Set Performance Indicators and Find Ways to Track Them

What gets measured, gets managed, right? Well, it’s true with productivity. However, measuring productivity so that it can be managed is, at times, a very difficult task. The number of products you create, or services you perform, or things you sell, is one way to see how productive your business is. But it’s far from perfect.

Still, it’s important that you find a way to count in all the factors that can help you determine how productive your business is. Remember that quantity is not all that matters for productivity, and that quality counts for a lot. And when you figure out what you need to track to be able to measure your productivity, make sure that you get the gear that can help you do it — a Lathem time clock can, for example, help you track when your employees come to work, how many breaks they take, and when they go home.

Rely on Automation Whenever Possible

Doing away with all the tedious, but unavoidable, tasks is one way to make your business more productive. You can pass them on to one of your employees or team members, or hire a temp to handle the spillover, but today, it would be much more cost-effective to simply let a computer program do it for you.

Automation applications can do a lot of work for you. From scheduling and sending out emails, to taking care of your social media posting, and even developing personalized offers for your online store customers — automation tools can do it all, and then some. The best thing about them is that automation is booming, so you can expect new tools to come up and help improve your productivity even more.

Discourage the Culture of Multitasking

You can be tempted to encourage your staff or team to try to tackle as many tasks as possible at the same time. You can think that multitasking is a necessary skill in today’s work environments. And you can think that most of your employees are already accustomed to multitasking, with all the devices and apps they use.

But you’d be wrong to push multitasking as the go-to mode of work, because multitasking is bad. Really bad. Instead, you should encourage your employees to focus on a single task at a time, and to make sure that they devote their complete attention to it. You might even want to consider using the Pomodoro technique to help you maximize your employees’ focus.

Continually Improve Communication

You can start a business with five other people, with each of you living on a different continent. But we didn’t need the capability to easily create geographically dispersed teams to understand that communication is vital for productivity. We just seem to have learned to appreciate it more now.

Among the other tools your business will be using, make sure that communication tools are included. You can have integrated tools that allow you to manage your business and communicate all in one neat package, or you can rely on separate tools for things like task scheduling and communication. Either way, make sure that every part of your business has the means to instantaneously communicate with the other parts.

Accept that Perfection Is Not Possible

There’s no such thing as a perfectly productive business. Things will happen that are out of your hands, mistakes will be made, and directions changed. There’s so much that goes into running a successful small business, so many moving parts that following all of them and making sure they all perform at top productivity levels is not always possible.

It’s important that you know when your quest for enhanced productivity is starting to hurt your business. You can put too much pressure on your employees, for example, by setting impossible standards or asking them to stay at work for too long, which tends to backfire. You can alienate business partners or associates, or even clients and customers. And you can spend all your time trying to find your ideal of productivity instead of running your business. It’s important to know when to say that the productivity is at a good enough level, and to focus on other things.


Small Business Tax CenterIdea Cafe HomeSign UpBiz Grant CenterCyberSchmoozCoffee Talk with ExpertsPeople in Biz ProfilesStarting Your BizBiz PlanningRunning Your BizFREE Trade PublicationsMarketingFinancing Your BizHuman ResourcesLegal & Biz FormsManaging Your BizeCommerceYou and Your BizGen XWork@HomeThe FridgeDe-StressSend an AwardSend an eGreetingYoga @ Your DeskWeb GuideIdea Cafe in the NewsAbout Idea CafeAdvertise on Idea CafeContact UsPrivacy PolicySite MapSmall Biz News

Copyright 1995-2024, Idea Cafe Inc. Downloads are for personal use only, not for resale to others, and may not be reprinted in any form without written permission from Idea Cafe Inc.

DISCLAIMER: We hope whatever you find on this site is helpful, but be cautioned that it may not apply to your own situation, or be totally current at any given time. Idea Cafe Inc. and all of its current and past experts, sponsors, advertisers, agents, contractors and advisors disclaim all warranties with regard to anything found anywhere on this family of websites, quoted from, or sent from Idea Cafe. and its related sites, publications and companies. We also take no responsibility for comments published by others on these pages.

TRADEMARKS: The following are Registered Trademarks or Servicemarks of DevStart, Inc.: Idea Cafe®, Online Coffee Break®, The Small Business Gathering Place®, Take out Info®, Biz Bar & Grill®, Complaint-O-Meter®, A Fun Approach to Serious Business™, CyberSchmooz™, and BizCafe™.