2020 was the year that caused a huge impact on everyone’s lives. We’ve had to adapt and pivot to the changes that made living and working a struggle at times. 2021 is all about getting things back on track.
What goals have you made for your business? Whether you are a business owner or manager, you may want some tips on how to get motivated and ensure you maximise your business productivity for the year ahead. That way you will be smashing those 2021 business goals.
Below we’ll highlight five tips on how you can kickstart your year and be the most productive yet in your business.
Not knowing what you want to achieve in 2021 will bring you to a grinding halt before you’ve even started. That’s why it’s important to set goals and have a plan for the year ahead. The best goals are SMART ones.
After you have set your goals, it’s time to start planning! Plan how you will get to the goal and what steps are involved beforehand. There are some great pieces of software that can help in these vital planning stages, such as Microsoft Planner, Microsoft To Do or Microsoft Whiteboard. Create to-do lists and you will feel accomplished each time you tick something off. Have it handy too, so that you can check it each day.
By managing your time better, you will notice when you are procrastinating. You may even find tasks throughout the day that could be delegated elsewhere. Track your time to see exactly how long you are spending on each task, and what is essentially wasting your time.
An easy way to track your time is to look into time management and time tracking apps. Start implementing these into your working day. We highly recommend OneNote as it integrates with Outlook and Teams. Toggl is a great time tracker, you can see exactly how long you spend on each task. This will be the platform where you will uncover the time wasters of your day. Or you may prefer to use Timeular, which is more of a physical item.
The internet is a BIG time waster, so what can you do? The app Freedom helps to block distracting sites when you need it. This has already saved people an insane amount of time a day, which helps you to be more productive at work!
Remote working has risen, so now more than ever, it is important to ensure you have the right systems and tools in place to allow collaboration and communication to happen effectively within your team. Teams is an excellent choice, especially as it integrates so nicely with your other Microsoft 365 software and apps. It keeps all files and documents all in one easily accessible place and it also allows for video conferencing and instant messaging.
Microsoft Projects is also a great app to use when it comes to project planning and management.
It could also be beneficial to set up a company intranet, this is another way to keep people up to date with what’s going on within the business at all times and a place to store documentation. It is worth looking into SharePoint for this.
How would you rate your communication with your customers? Do you have regular contact with current customers? Do you follow up on potential clients?
It’s important to be visible with your customers to heighten their experience and brand loyalty. There are different ways you can connect regularly with your clients and customers. Whether that’s through email marketing campaigns, using a platform like Mailchimp, or utilising social media scheduling platforms, like Hootsuite, to ensure consistency with your social media content.
Contact should be made between once a week to once a month, so share your news, information, offers and helpful tips. By sharing valuable content with your customers, they are more likely to return and use your services or buy your products.
Make increasing your cyber security one of your goals for 2021.
Start off with getting a good password manager to help create strong and random passwords for your software and apps. It is safer and more secure, not forgetting that it will save the frustration of forgetting passwords and struggling to come up with new ones! You should also think about implementing multi-factor authentication for logging into apps and software. Your IT service partner will be able to advise on both of these.
Do you have an IT service partner? Are you happy with them? Do they work proactively? If you have answered no to all of these questions, then it’s time to find a reliable, reputable and expert IT service provider (cough, cough hint, hint. “oh did i hear you say “just like Acu IT Solutions.””) . This will help you in many ways, such as saving you money as you can pay ad hoc for services. An IT service provider will ensure the safety and security of your business data and online systems.
It’s time to get planning…
Follow the above tips in order to be the most productive you’ve ever been. If you would like more information about the tips above, check out the 2021 Productivity Super Guide, which is free to download.
If you are looking for an outsourced IT service partner, then please do get in touch. We would love to have a positive impact on your business security in 2021.