I’ve been writing a lot about time management and prioritization because it’s a top concern for startup founders at all stages of growth. Let's not waste time.
Prioritization. It’s easier to 'prioritize everything' than focus on a few because ideation is more fun than implementation.
"The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule,
but to schedule your priorities."
- Stephen Covey
I’d much rather accomplish three audacious goals than list ten unfinished ones. Forcing fewer goals results in accomplishing more.
Team Building. Founders should develop a culture fostering proactive engagement and collaborative problem-solving. Start with hiring.
Resist the temptation to over-index on narrow industry experience and skills since your needs will change quickly. Instead, hire people who are smart, flexible, and motivated. These traits will allow them to identify and address various opportunities and crises.
Retention. Customer engagement leads to higher profitability (compared to new customers), upsell opportunities, and potential referrals.
Team retention has benefits in time and resources. Build strong onboarding and review processes and align personal development with business growth.
Make Time for Success
These are considerations to best concentrate and activate your priorities.
Eisenhower Matrix. Categorize every task by urgency and importance to decide how to act: immediately, later, delegate, or eliminate. I utilize my calendar as a to-do list. So, if anything new arises, I must immediately commit to one and postpone the other.
Time Blocking. Allocate specific blocks of time for different tasks, such as deep work, coaching teams, or reviewing metrics to measure progress. Learn to say "No" to non-essential requests.*
Pomodoro Technique. Use timed intervals of work followed by short breaks to increase concentration and prevent burnout. Some people use a timer to avoid being distracted by emails or social media.
Work on the Business. Hold weekly planning sessions with trusted advisors and by yourself to review the most critical tasks for growth. Once a quarter, reconcile how you want to focus your time versus how you actually spend it. Adjust as needed.
Automating Tasks. Apply tools for repetitive tasks like data entry and social media posts to free time for strategic work. However, only automate once you are confident of the process flow and details, otherwise you are replacing one problem with another one. Two previous posts linked below cover a range of tips around automation.**
Recognize what will most impact your growth and reinforce those priorities. Regularly review if your actual efforts align with your priorities.
Illustration by generated by AI
* Post on Learn to Say No
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