What’s more important time or money?
It always amazes me how we as small business owners don’t seem to realise how precious our time is. We are in fact our businesses’ most valuable commodity but while we often keep a close eye on our cash flow and expenditure we rarely think about whether we are spending or investing our time wisely. Granted money is tangible; making it’s much easier to manage, where as we can’t see, feel or touch time making it’s much harder to know if time has been well spent or if it’s been squandered. But an important difference, and hence the reason time should be more valued, is that we can get more money; whether it’s making more, borrowing money, or taking out loans, but we can’t get more time. There are only and, unless you’re a time lord, only ever will be 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week, 52 weeks in a year.
Due to this lack of awareness many of us try to do everything ourselves. We carry out a vast array of tasks in order to retain control and save on costs because we can’t believe that paying someone to do the work that we ourselves can do will save us money. What we’ve failed to realise is that it’s just not economically viable or cost effective to use someone whose hourly rate and worth is far higher than the job requires. For example paying someone £50 an hour to do £20 an hour work just doesn’t make sense but this is what many of us are doing when we insist on doing the mundane, routine, non-profit making tasks ourselves. There are also some unforeseen costs involved as well. When these tasks are performed by someone who is more experienced or skilled than us they are able to work in a more efficiently and effectively way reducing the number of hours required to complete these tasks. But more critically if we, the business owners, are spending a disproportionately high amount of our time on the workings of our business we have very little time to focus on running and growing the business.
Once we’ve realised that to effectively get more from our time we need to let others help us we can begin to identify tasks that can be delegated. We profit not only from a more balanced workload but from the knowledge that these tasks will be done whether we are present or not and, because we are no longer stressed or weighed down worrying about what needs to be done but not having the time to do it, we are able to focus all our energy on developing opportunities and generating income. Suddenly, somehow we are able to achieve more by doing less! And all because we’ve realised that “Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend” Theophrastus
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