There’s much emphasis on the importance of time management for frontline remote workers, customer service agents and technicians providing technical support. They are always told to be more efficient with customer chats and to resolve customer complaints quickly. But, have we given equal thought to critical time management and how it is associated with the CEO running an online business, the successful remote entrepreneur, the solo gig and freelance operator?
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For anyone just starting out in managing, starting or maintaining a small business or remote venture or online business, we think we are stretched pretty thin. We may bemoan that there isn’t enough time to take on more clients, more projects or write and produce more online content. We might be surprised to discover how much time we may have wasted during the day.
How many times has it been said, “If I only had more free time, then I could get more done in my online business?” Well, we all have been given just 24 hours each day. The solution, then may not be in getting more time. The answer is in managing effectively the time we do have and making it work more effectively for us. And, more than likely successful people practice the mental discipline of spending more of their free time directed toward their personal and professional goals.
Typical CEO Time Management Schedule
Take CEOs for instance. According to Michael Porter, Harvard Business Review (HBR) in the article, How CEOs manage time, the time spent at home and work was painstakingly tabulated. In all, Porter surmised that 60,000 CEO hours were collected, coded and analyzed.
Briefly, here are their findings related to the time study of CEOs:
- 9.7 hours represented the average work day,
- 3.9 hours on Saturday and 3.9 hours on Sunday were spent conducting business,
- 2.4 hours each day were allocated to business when taking time for vacation, and
- 62.5 hours worked each week.
Sometimes when it comes to starting a business, many people have the mental picture that it’s all or nothing – that in order to be their own boss, they have to take the plunge, quit their day job, and put all of their efforts into building an online business.
Remote Entrepreneur Time Management Tips
If you have a day job that pays the bills and provides you with health benefits, keep the job while you work on launching and growing your business part-time. Maybe you have other family commitments and obligations that require most of your daylight hours. The solution could be to rise an hour or two earlier in the morning to work on your business.
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In addition to finding the extra hour or two in the morning; you might be able to carve out one hour during your lunch break. You can spend your lunch hour working on your own business (make sure you use your own computer, mobile phone, your own VPN and data plan). Since your remote business will be conducted online, you will be able to service virtual clients and provide services remotely from home and from anywhere. Even in the age of remote work, you may have to commute to work for your day job via train or another method where someone else is in charge of driving, you can work on your own side gig, or side hustle then, too.
You can also choose to give up the hours you had previously spent sitting in front of the television or watching YouTube or scrolling your social media apps. If you really want to be disciplined in the management of your time, you can install an app that alerts you periodically on the number of hours spent on your mobile phone. I was surprised that I spent about three hours weekly on social media. Unless its for my online business, this was definitely a poor use of my time.
Mark Wahlberg Time Management Schedule
You can give up one or two hours of sleep at night to work on the business and work two weekends a month. It seems like a lot of time, but if you work it around your day job and stick with it, you can steadily increase your income with the online business until you can comfortably afford to let go of the job you now have. Think its too tough for you to do? Mark Wahlberg, the famous actor shared his personal time management routine that appeared in the Insider:
- 2:30 a.m. — Wake up
- 2:45 a.m. — Prayer time
- 3:15 a.m. — Breakfast
- 3:40-5:15 a.m. — Workout
- 5:30 a.m. — Post-workout meal
- 6 a.m. — Shower
- 7:30 a.m. — Golf
- 8 a.m. — Snack
- 9:30 a.m. — Cryo chamber recovery
- 10:30 a.m. — Snack
- 11 a.m. — Family time, meetings, and work calls
- 1 p.m. — Lunch
- 2 p.m. — Meetings and work calls
- 3 p.m. — Pick up kids from school
- 3:30 p.m. — Snack
- 4 p.m. — Second workout
- 5 p.m. — Shower
- 5:30 p.m. — Dinner and family time
- 7:30 p.m. — Bedtime
Typical CEO After hours Time Management
Do you think that Wahlberg’s daily schedule is too maniacal for you? Let’s get back to the time management plans of successful CEOs. Porter, in the HBR article indicated that CEOs:
- devoted 6.9 hours to sleep each night,
- exercised about 45 minutes per day,
Finally for the six nonworking hours each day, CEOs spent:
- about 3.0 hours with family
- approximately 2.0 hours on hobbies, reading, watching television
Conclusion for the Remote Entrepreneur
Why are we stressing the importance of time management? Efficiently managing one’s time expands the time spent on activities that may ultimately lead to revenue generation, expanded social influencer status and increased marketability. If you stick with a solid time management routine, you can steadily increase your income with your remote online business with the anticipation that you can comfortably afford to let go of the job you now have.
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Remember, if you start working on your online business and remote freelancing journey just when you feel like it, you could lose valuable initiative. Let the excitement drive you and propel you forward. With the benefit of working your remote online business full time, you’ll be able to devote the steady attention the business needs to continually grow. Rather than squeezing it into the schedule, you’ll have the time you need.
It’s not so much about finding the time as it is taking the time and if you’ve always wanted to start your own online business, there’s no better time than this moment. Today will soon be yesterday and you won’t ever get that opportunity back.