Do you use a time tracker? Do your staff use one? Whether it’s an Excel spreadsheet or an organisation-specific app, time trackers aren’t just for administrative staff or junior employees who work on hourly projects. They’re for everyone who wants to master their time. And, while they might seem a little nerdy, they could just change your life. Here’s how…
- Time is money: There are only so many hours in a day and you need to know how you use them to learn where most of the money in your business comes from. Are you spending hours on small clients that don’t actually pay your bills? How long does a project really take and are you over/under-charging? Tracking the amount of time you spend on each project will quickly give you a sense of whether you’re making money or throwing it away.
- Where does the time go? If you commit to tracking your time, you’ll soon see which of the tasks in your life take up the most time and have the opportunity to decide if they should. Are you doing admin during the day because it’s easy when you should rather be focusing on sales? Do you have a long lunch every day when your business can’t afford to have you take so much time off? Are your staff taking long lunches? A time tracker will show you where the working hours go, without excuses or justifications, just numbers.
- Plan ahead: As a record of events, time tracking allows you to look back as well as ahead. Now that you know where your time and resources are going, you can plan future projects, ensuring more accurate deadlines, better costings, and less panic at delivery time. You can also change how you do things, with clear data on where your budget and resources need to be allocated to ensure the best results.
- Self-mastery: This might sound strange but knowing that you have to fill in a time tracker every day will make you more productive. Noting the time spent on each task in your day means you have to have something to log. This means you might find yourself working harder and smarter to ensure you have something to show for it at the end of the day. And the same goes for your staff. No one wants to show their boss that they spent most of their working day on Facebook, do they?
So, there you have it. A time tracker can change your awareness of what you actually spend your time doing every day. Awareness is the first step towards change – in this case, knowing what you spend your time on will drive you towards a focused approach, greater daily performance, and better results overall. And that will change your life.