Entrepreneurs often have a lot in common. The majority of them are open to new ideas with minds that have no problem with slowing down and speeding up at the spur of the moment. They are able to assess issues and properly deal with them in order to maximize productivity. Some of the issues that entrepreneurs face actually come from within and are known as bad habits. Whether you already are or are dreaming of someday becoming a full time entrepreneur, you must identify some of the most common habits that may prevent you from always leaving a good impression on the things you do.
1. Not Planning Ahead
If you aren’t planning out your whole week, you’re wasting precious time. Many refuse to understand how much time can be saved in planning ahead. By simply carrying a planner or two, you give yourself the opportunity to constantly readjust your schedule to make sure that your week stays productive. Although you may have amazing memory and think that you don’t need pen and paper, you will find yourself start to naturally procrastinate. When you start receiving invites and urges to do other things that don’t belong in your schedule, not only will this push back what you had planned at that specific time, but you will also push back all of the other plans that you had later during the week. Avoid all of the hassle by properly managing your time throughout the week with a planner.
2. Putting off Decisions
Although, decision making can be tough, the worst thing that you could possibly do is not make one at all. Our minds are constantly battling with various decisions based off of their risks and outcomes. We come across major issues when something becomes “too hard” to decide on. By not making a choice at all, we leave an open door for unnecessary stress and wasted time
3. Untimely Responses(Email/Comment)
Both business owners and bloggers should understand the importance of responding quickly. Think back to all of the times that you have emailed someone. How would you feel if they took 3 days to respond as opposed to 1. Although 48 hours doesn’t seem like a big deal, that feels like a much longer time in today’s fast paced society. Either set aside a certain time everyday dedicated towards responding to emails and comments or create reminders for not allowing emails to go more than 2 days without a response. By responding in a timely manner, you give people a sense of involvement. They will be much more likely to contact you again when they know that you are interested in what they have to say.
4. Hitting Snooze
This habit is inexcusable and possibly the worst of them all. To this day, I struggle with waking up to the first chime of my alarm. Hitting the snooze button for the extra 9 minutes of sleep can easily become a habit when you find yourself doing so every morning. Train you mind to fully wake up the first time by placing your alarm out of reach. This will prevent you from instinctively hitting snooze. Often, when struggling with this habit, people will find themselves reaching for their alarm and pressing snooze without even opening their eyes. This muscle memory, although astonishing, gives rise to the daunting possibility of being late to school, work, or even an important meeting.
5. Not Following the Routine
Provided that you have created a schedule, actually following it and sticking to a familiar routine can sometimes be challenging. Don’t allow outside activities to alter your routine. Your schedule should be able to be broken down into two categories. The flexible portion of your schedule and the other which is set in stone. Obviously, the part of your schedule that is “set in stone” should never be altered or substituted for another activity unless truly necessary. An example of an activity that should not be delayed is picking up your child from school. On the other hand of the flexible areas of your schedule, like when you plan on getting lunch, it have the ability to be moved around some.
6. Working Non-Stop
Some people feel like the more you work, the more you get done. This is far from correct no matter how you look at it. We all have a certain amount of time that we can work constantly without dropping in our overall level of productivity. This is simply the nature of man. We all come to a point in time when we begin to slack off or get mentally derailed. For many of you, this may happen multiple times throughout the day and may require you to take a short break from your activity. Having a break allows your mind to quickly recuperate and gather its thoughts, resulting in you actually coming back more focused than before! This also applies to an entire day of work. Although overtime may technically reward you more pay or jobs completed, depending on your field of work, overtime could become destructive. You will not be working nearly as diligent as you once were and are essentially creating more work for yourself to correct the very next day. Learn when to take a break in order to keep the quality of your work high. Your costumers will be much more happy if you do so.
7. Refusing to Delegate
Delegating tasks is a hard concept for nearly every new business owner. Its the process of assigning your typical jobs to someone else who has more experience and free time to do so. For example, my dad’s first company involved landscaping. Like most entrepreneurs, he started out doing everything himself. That included the yard work, scheduling and accounting. Although it was once possible, it was only smart to start delegating these task as the company grew. Delegation freed up my dad’s schedule and allowed him to focus on other more important improvements within the business.
8. Bad Communication
Whether you own a business or are a self-inspired blogger, communicating effectively is required to make sure things run exactly as planned. Be cautious of your word choice and avoid rushing through emails, blog posts and articles. Trying to rush through tasks may prevent you from delivering the message that you have originally intended. As a boss, quick emails that aren’t carefully constructed, may deliver a message different from what you originally had in mind. For a blogger who falls victim to procrastination, trying to create a quick blog post will likely cause your site to suffer. True quality in blogs is a necessity and whether you want to admit it or not, your readers will notice. Hold yourself accountable and refuse to post anything that does not reflect the theme of your blog.
9. Losing Motivation
Sometimes we all need a little motivation in our pursuit for greatness. Don’t be afraid to take a step back in order to reassess your progress. If you find yourself losing the drive to continue doing what you do, remind yourself of why you started. Use real life examples of people whom you know are quitters and force yourself to do the exact opposite. If that wasn’t enough, use incentives for yourself. You may find yourself more willing to complete a task by knowing that once done, you will be rewarded.
10. Not Saying No
Entrepreneurs and business owners must learn how to say no when it comes down to making costly decisions. This may range from hiring employees to obtaining new clients. Learn what is beneficial to your business versus what adds no value. Weed out the employees that don’t share the same values as the company and don’t be afraid to deny potential clients who aren’t willing to negotiate to your standards.
When pushed to its limit, multitasking can actually hinder your overall ability to be productive. Everyone has a different workload that they can effectively process at once and this must be taken into account when doing so. Learn the times when you are most productive and capitalize on them. If you can focus on several projects at once without sacrificing the integrity or value of one, knock yourself out! If you are like most people and struggle with staying on track, limit yourself to a smaller number of tasks, even if it’s only one.
12. Being Unfashionably Late
Showing up to meetings late is one of the worst displays of character. Especially in the instance of setting a good first impression, like for a job interview, not showing up when you promised or required may make others feel as though you cannot be counted on. Being the 1st to arrive at scheduled events will let others know that you are passionate about what you do.
Finally, some people find themselves truly struggling with accomplishing new goals. Sometimes, setting these new goals proves to be much harder than actually completing them. If you find yourself in this position, you may have a problem with complacency. For those who did not know, being complacent is the act of not taking further action. In other words, you are complacent if you are prone to settling with what you already have achieved. An entrepreneur has to learn how to combat complacency by constantly setting new goals to be achieved. This skill is not reserved for entrepreneurs and should be applied in everyone’s life. Don’t let the joyful feeling of accomplishing your previous goals overwhelm you to the point of complacency.