Inefficiency eats away at profits in any company, but for smaller firms where the margins are tighter and time really is money, the effects are even more pronounced. Learning how to operate more efficiently will not only reduce your expenditure, it will free more time for projects that will help the company develop and grow.
However, for many of those with start-up companies, there is so much to learn about the various aspects of operating a business that efficiency can be difficult to achieve. But even making a few small changes could make the difference between moving forward as a company and standing still.
Here is a quick rundown on how to reduce expenditure and work more efficiently:
Owning your own business provides the freedom to work however you wish, but giving yourself too much freedom can be counter-productive when it comes to working effectively. Even if you are operating a start-up business with yourself as the sole employee, it pays to approach your working day as if you were working as part of a larger firm. This means tackling projects one at a time – to a conclusion where possible. Jumping between different tasks usually means spending a lot longer completing them. Put in place processes to follow when completing regular tasks; having a set way of doing things means that method soon becomes second nature and will reduce the time you spend on each project.
Many small business owners work long hours – the Federation of Small Businesses suggests that four in five work for more than 40 hours each week. However, this does not work for everyone, as this blog explores in detail. Overworking yourself can result in a significant drop in your rate of output and the quality of the work. Remember that doing something wrong can take twice as long to correct, so don’t push yourself too hard.
Cut your costs
Efficiency is also about effective use of resources, so look at how you can keep a lid on your costs.
Consistency with billing is very important for planning monthly cashflow, so finding a telecommunications firm which bills a flat rate regardless of how many calls are made is very useful. Can email be used instead? As much of your communication as possible should be directed through email and social networks if you want to cap expenditure.
In order to push your business forward, it may be tempting to splash out on marketing, but there are ways of doing this without spending. Social networks are now a key part of marketing a small business; they’re free and, if done properly, have the capacity to reach millions of potential customers. If you do want to spend on leaflet advertising, think of maximising your reach by teaming up with another small business and sending out each other’s flyers with your products.