Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Stress in Your Small Business

file0002062790027.jpgNew York and New Jersey are among the best places in the country to start a small business–at least, that is what we believe. A wealth of talent in the tech sector means a wealth of tech startups in the Greater New York area. While a business needs support ranging from sound financial advisors to skilled business attorneys, entrepreneurs need support as well. Each and every business begins as a collection of people and ideas, and the people who give form to these ideas must care for themselves as well as their businesses. At a recent gathering of the NJ Tech Meetup, a group of “entrepreneurs, software developers and tech industry enthusiasts of all stripes,” “serial entrepreneur” Ari Meisel described his efforts at improving efficiency and reducing stress in his own life, and how he turned that into a business. New Jersey Tech Weekly‘s Esther Surden reported on Meisel’s advice, which provides useful guidance for New York and New Jersey businesses and business owners alike.

“Optimize, Automate, and Outsource”

Some tasks require the direct involvement of a business owner, director, or officer. Most do not. Identifying the tasks that do not require your constant attention is key to optimizing how your business runs. Meisel cautioned his audience, however, that outsourcing does not, by itself, increase efficiency, if the outsourced task is itself inefficient. His advice is to divide a business task into its fundamental parts, to determine which tasks are necessary, which are wasteful, and which are outsourceable. Meisel recommends the use of virtual assistants for routine tasks, many of which are available online.

Track Business Activities

Meisel cited the 80/20 rule, which states that eighty percent of a company’s income comes from twenty percent of its customers. Keeping track of revenues, where these revenues come from, and which activities (especially marketing) contribute most directly to those revenues can help reduce inefficiency and waste, and can make the “twenty percent” customers happier.

Manage Your Inbox

Email is a momentum killer for many hardworking entrepreneurs, causing distractions at all the wrong times. Creating categories for emails, such as “critical,” “moderate importance,” or “non-essential,” can help you avoid getting sidetracked. Emails from customers, emails regarding essential business services, and emails from your lawyer should always have top priority. Meisel says that other emails, such as those with an “unsubscribe” option, can go into a different folder than your inbox.

Track Your Ideas

Perhaps the most important task for an entrepreneur is keeping track of ideas. Ideas may come at the least opportune times, such as while driving or while in the shower, but making note of them is important not only because it enables you to act on them later, but also because it can reduce stress. Forgetting a great idea you had is stressful, after all. Meisel recommends some services that are available both as desktop software and as a smartphone app, but also suggests that each person find a system that works best for them.

The business attorneys at Samuel C. Berger, P.C., provide skilled and diligent legal representation to New York and New Jersey business owners and entrepreneurs, helping them start, buy, or run their businesses. To schedule a free and confidential consultation to see how we may be of service to you, contact us today online or at (212) 380-8117.

More Blog Posts:

Humor and the New York and New Jersey Small Business, New York & New Jersey Business Lawyer Blog, February 22, 2012
Small Business Owners in New York City Report Optimism Going into 2012, New York & New Jersey Business Lawyer Blog, January 26, 2012
Small Businesses Must Adapt in Order to Make It in a Bad Economy, New York & New Jersey Business Lawyer Blog, January 24, 2012
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