One of the keys of small business success is effective time management. In the busy, chaotic and often small team wedding industry, time management is critical. Between balancing multiple events per weekend in the busy seasons, to working long and unusual hours to create the perfect experience for your clients, it can be very difficult to balance your time.
If you struggle with time management, check out our helpful tips and feel free to comment with any feedback or recommendations of your own to share with the Wedding Pro community!
Take Time to Reflect
No matter how busy you may be at any given time, it is important to set aside time both daily and weekly to reflect on your goals, workload and priorities. Spending one hour at a designated time a week can help you lay out your strategic plan to move your projects and business forward. Spending 10 minutes daily to review your weekly priorities and projects can help to give focus to your day, and avoid falling behind by simply reacting to items that will undoubtedly arise. Allowing yourself this “quiet time” will help to keep you organized, focused and can help calm workload stress. We recommend setting the time reoccurring on your work calendar every week so it doesn’t get overlooked.
Personalize Your Schedule
Notice when you are most productive and try to plan your schedule accordingly. What is the most effective time of the day for you to do your creative work, meet clients and respond to emails? This is not the same for everyone, so try different approaches to see what works best for you and create a schedule. If you do your best work in the morning, set that time aside for your daily tasks and projects. If you need afternoon breaks, use that time to meet with clients. Do you enjoy looking for inspiration when you finally have some time to relax? Sundays can be the perfect time to catch up on your favorite blogs and boards while enjoying your morning coffee. Also, setting aside specific times daily to reply to email helps to avoid your time getting caught up in the reactive. Work to use these designated times to respond to all non-urgent emails.
Sometimes, there are simply not enough hours in the day to get done all your tasks. As difficult as it can be at times, it is important to delegate projects when you are able. As you are outlining your daily “to do” lists, examine which projects someone else may be able to assist with or take over. This will help to both ensure the items are taken care of, and will allow your team to learn and grow.
Remember that it’s okay to say no sometimes! If you feel overwhelmed, express your concerns to get all your commitments done on time and completed in your high professional standards. Examine if you are able to change the timeline, and don’t over extend yourself beyond your professional commitment. While clients appreciate personal touches and the demonstrated commitment to their wedding, you have to lay out guidelines. To make saying no easier, be very clear about expectations in your initial consultations and outline specifics on your contracts. This will avoid any misconceptions and make expectations clear for all parties.