Tips & Tricks to Boost Business Efficiency

Despite the fact that your business is running smoothly, you know that things could always be a bit better. It happened to all of us – meetings that once felt productive and valuable now seem to drag on for hours, a project gets hung up a few days too long, etc. Sometimes It can feel like wheels spinning in the mud, and it’s hard to get that traction back.

There is no such thing as a magic pill to quickly fix these kinds of issues. The only way to change things long-term is by focusing on improving the efficiency of your business. We gathered some useful tips & tricks that will help you to be more productive and keep your businesses running efficiently.

  1. Encourage your team to chat face-to-face

Using tools like Skype, Slack and email are oftentimes the most efficient. Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that face to face communication has a great amount of value in terms of authenticity and sincerity. Part of communication is human interaction, so as much as you possibly can without disrupting workflow, try speaking instead of typing. It will resonate more.

Face-to-face communication can also truly speed up the process of answering a question, solving a problem, or getting something important clarified. While sending a chat message or a quick email to a member of your team might seem like a more practical way of exchanging information, sometimes it can have the reverse effect, as the following back-and-forth takes longer than a quick face-to-face.

By making sure members of your team are comfortable interacting face-to-face, you will keep your business moving efficiently. Who needs a 20-message-long email thread to solve a problem if you can get the same results with a 5-minute face-to-face chat?

  1. Try to limit interruptions

If your employees are having difficulty when it comes to executing tasks efficiently, it might be a consequence of constant interruptions. Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to help your employees overcome these difficulties.

Start by making small but significant changes in your schedule like trying to set up various meetings on the same day instead of scattering them throughout the week. Another beneficial thing to do is to block out time on your calendars for uninterrupted work. Blocking out chunks of time for active and uninterrupted work can really help your employees focus better, and work much more effectively as a result.

It’s important to keep in mind that constant meetings aren’t the only cause of interruptions. Chat message popping up, email alerts and other notifications can all become distractions that easily interrupt the workflow. Keep in mind that it takes about a minute to resume working effectively after one of these interruptions. To avoid negative effects and limit interruptions try using tools and apps that can keep your work distraction free. Making small changes such as reducing email notification may truly help you and your employees work more efficiently.

  1. Hold a brief company meeting on a daily basis

Meetings are one of the crucial elements of everyday life in the corporate world. Typically, meetings have been set in 30 minute or one-hour increments, but we all know they can carry on to the point where they eat away at the workday.

More recently, however, there has been a trend to other shorter meeting structures. This includes the so-called “stand up meeting” – a brief, more efficient meeting that is typically held on a daily basis. Basically, these types of meetings usually go for 10-15 minutes which forces people to quickly get across their point of view.

Aside from being great when it comes to time management, these types of meeting are also a great way to keep all employees up to speed on any new developments within the company.

The main goals of stand-up meetings are to discuss the progress and difficulties linked to a specific project or a task. They also serve as a forum for employees to communicate and socialize. Having a brief company meeting on a daily basis will help you build a positive company culture that can go a long way in cultivating healthy working relationships among the employees.

  1. Embrace business automation

One of the things you can do to help your business grow is to automate whatever tasks you can. While some people may be a bit skeptic about automating their businesses, those businesses are likely also very inefficient. Whether it be sending receipts to vendors or sending out pay stubs to employees, the general idea is to automate whatever you can.

Business automation stopped being a luxury long time ago and it became a necessity, especially in today’s competitive environment. Implement automated processes might seem pricey in the beginning, but in the long run it will cut your expenses and overall increase business efficiency. Automation should be seen as something to complement your employees’ work, not hinder it. By automating monotonous tasks you will save your employees a lot of time.

In turn, it will allow them to do more complex and productive tasks that require critical thinking or a touch of creativity.

  1. Use Task Management Tools

It’s no secret how much technology has helped to improve businesses. There is a great number of apps and tools that simplify and speed up tasks for business owners and their employees. Once you have decided to automate your business, try to gather as much information as you can about some of the most popular software solutions for businesses. What you need to do is find the software that suits your needs the best and start incorporating emerging technology into your business.

Keeping relevant project-related information and work progress all in one place is extremely important. Email is still the primary channel for business communication, but it’s far from the ideal transmission and storage medium. When it comes to improving communication and collaboration on teams and increasing overall effectiveness, a far better choice is one of the various task management tools available on the market.

Task management software not only aids in mapping resources and making project estimation, but they also take part in problem identification. Software like this will help everyone involved in a project to work together more efficiently, track progress, stay on task, and it will save you a lot of time.

  1. Utilize Custom Software

Aside from task management apps, another thing to have in mind is custom software. If you are having a hard time finding the right tool that’s not overly complex, consider using custom apps. Custom apps are applications you create and tailor yourself to do exactly what your business needs. You’re able to make custom apps to organize your contacts, track inventory, research market, manage events and much more. It can truly help you solve your everyday challenges much quicker and boost your overall efficiency.

Creating custom software that works just right for your business may seem like a tough job but in truth, it isn’t. Nowadays anyone can create a sophisticated app in-house within a short time frame using platforms such as FileMaker. Businesses of all types can use FileMaker solutions since it’s one of the easiest and the most affordable ways to create custom apps. Using platforms like this, anyone can make custom software that solves your specific problems, satisfies your exclusive needs and makes your workflow easier, faster and more efficient.

  1. Single-tasking instead of multitasking

We all think that we’re excellent multitaskers but the practice of multitasking has actually fallen out of favor with psychology and time management experts. They all agree that single-tasking is actually a much more efficient way to run your life as well as your business.

Research shows that excessive multitasking disrupts short-term memory and focus and blocks creative thinking and problem-solving abilities which lead to making more mistakes. So multitasking results in less productivity and efficiency since it causes people to take longer to perform even simple tasks.

That’s where the idea of single-tasking comes into play. Single-tasking is the practice of tackling one task at a time and sticking with it until it’s finished. So the general idea is rather simple -focus on one task only, don’t move on the next project until the current one is completed.

Frantically moving back and forth between calls, emails, projects, and meetings do not make you more efficient. Single-tasking, on the other hand, enables you to get more done using less time by not letting projects wither on the vine when they’re almost done. We are compelled to think quite the opposite, but the truth is that there is great virtue in concentrating on one thing at a time.

Boosting the efficiency of your company is crucial but you also need to know where to draw the line. Not every process can be automated, and some meetings will always last longer than expected.

While you follow these proven tactics to boost efficiency don’t be afraid to try out other ways to develop your business and enable employee growth.  Always keep in mind that improving efficiency and productivity requires much more than incorporating software and implementing new strategies. It’s a perpetual effort that requires constant optimization.

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