9 Tips that will Increase Your Bookkeeping Firm’s Productivity
As an accountant, you always have a lot going on, which makes it tough to find enough time in the day to do everything. As your firm grows, so will your workload, which makes it even more challenging. Implementing these productivity tips will free up your time, allowing you to get more work done and focus on growing your bookkeeping firm.
1) Put Away Your Phone
We have all been at work and got a phone call or text that derails us from the task at hand. Then we spend the next 15 minutes on our phone or even worse, Facebook! According to many studies, cell phones are the biggest productivity killers. Try putting your phone on silent or even better throwing it in the drawer to help – you will see a huge difference in the work you get done throughout the day.
2) Get Out of the Office
If you have employees, you know how tough it can be to make it throughout the day without them tapping you on the shoulder and asking questions. Just like your phone, this can be very disruptive. To minimize this disruption, spend one day a week out of the office – work from home or a local Starbucks. This will give you a full day with minimal distractions allowing you to knock out important work. Side note: this is a great time to get your most important work done for the week.
3) Limit How Often You Check Your Email
The average person checks their email about 15 times a day. However, studies have shown that when people limit it to 3 times a day, their productivity increases significantly. This is because every time you check your emails you have to break your focus from your work and then spend another 15 minutes afterward to get your brain back on track. Limit yourself to checking your emails 3 times a day, and you will be amazed at how much more work you get done.
4) Create a Weekly Big 3
As your work piles up it is tough to stay focused on what matters most to your firm. If ignored long enough, it can restrict your firm’s ability to grow. To keep you focused, create a Weekly Big 3 – the 3 most important things you must get done that week. The best way to do this is by setting aside time every Sunday to write them down on a piece of paper. Then, every morning before you start your day, review your Weekly Big 3 to remind yourself. If you do this right, you will always get the work done that helps your firm grow and succeed.
5) Make a To-Do List
How many times have you dropped the ball by forgetting to do something? Or spent several minutes trying to remember what you were supposed to do next? It is easy to do when running a firm with a million things going on. Making a to-do list allows you to stay grounded by keeping you organized and allowing you to prioritize tasks throughout the day better. Write down your work for the day or even make a list on your phone so you always have it on the go.
6) Start Time Blocking
When you lose focus from a task, it takes about 15 minutes to get your mind back on track. Time blocking prevents this from happening by dedicating a specific amount of time on one task. It is easy to do, and if done right, you can increase your productivity by up to 150%. To get started, simply block out a specific amount of time on your calendar and then dedicate it one big task. This is great for knocking out important work you need to get done.
7) Run Effective Meetings
Meetings are famous for interrupting work and causing stress. They can even drain employee morale if not managed properly. It’s important that they are done correctly to keep you and your employees productive. Below are some tips that will help.
- Keep them hyper-focused on the top by cutting them down to 15 minutes.
- Ban email, messaging, and phone calls to prevent distractions
- Keep it small – no more than 10 attendees
- Circulate an agenda so everyone is on the same page
8) Get the Most Out of Your Drives
The average person spends about 10 hours a week in their car. So, why not get the most out of it? Spend it on the phone: talking to clients, discussing important topics with your team, or even listening to podcasts that can help you better your firm. Knocking out activities like this in the car will free up a huge amount of time while you are in the office to focus on other work.
Many people find this difficult because they want to be involved and make sure everything gets done right. However, it’s important to delegate duties because your firm can never grow if you try to do everything yourself. So, delegate busy work or non-important items to employees. If you have no employees, think about outsourcing work through sites like UpWork. It will take time to teach them at first, but once they learn to do it themselves, it will pay off ten-fold in the future.
Now that you are equipped with tips to improve your firm’s productivity, start implementing them into your daily routine. Not all of these tips will be for you, but if you can implement just a few tips, I promise you will be amazed by the results.
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