Changing a career track from an employee to self-employed entails drastic life changes. Everything shifts 180 degrees, including time management.
Here’s the bad news: time management for the entrepreneur is tougher, particularly at the start-up phase! But since time management skills are crucial to the success of your business, you need to prepare and understand how time management is different when you were an employee compared to your new life as an entrepreneur.
How is time management different when you are an entrepreneur as against that of a regular employee working in a larger organization? There are a number of differences:
Time management for an entrepreneur is self-driven
The entrepreneur sets his own time, makes decisions on the day s schedule and determines what needs to be accomplished during the day. On the other hand, the salaried employee manages his time based on corporate demands, or more specifically, what his boss wants him to do for the day.
The price of not managing time properly is higher for the entrepreneur.
A salaried employee can afford to slacken in their jobs (browsing the Internet the whole day, doing non-work related tasks, and playing games on the office computer), yet still receive the same paycheck every month. If an entrepreneur fails to manage their time properly resulting in a failure to accomplish the things he needs to do, he may see a decrease in his income. Worse, he may not have any income for the month at all.
Working in the corporate office vs. working at home
The salaried employee has a specific and dedicated time and place to work, allowing him to concentrate fully on the tasks at hand. By coming to a corporate environment, he is able to make a distinction between home life and corporate life. During the 8-hours (or more) the employee is at work, he can focus his time on accomplishing his work assignments without being encumbered by the demands at home.
The home-based entrepreneur, on the other hand, faces a trickier dilemma in time management. Since he works at home, there is a thinner line between home and work, and demands between the two oftentimes overlap. The home-based entrepreneur is faced on a daily basis with the hard task of balancing family and work life. For example, the entrepreneur may be faced with the conflict of meeting a client s 2 pm deadline and the need to take time off to do some errands such as picking up a child from school.
Time management is easier for an employee of a large organization as his work is more focused.
An employee in the accounting department works on accounting-related tasks the whole day; same with marketing personnel. A small/home business owner is most likely to juggle multiple tasks, even more so if he is running a one-person operation. The entrepreneur needs to wear multiple hats and do everything from product development to marketing to record keeping within a 24-hour day period.
The life of an entrepreneur is fraught with challenges, even in the aspect of time management. But you will know that you are getting it right if at the end of the day you accomplished what you set out to do; you have the satisfaction of knowing that the tasks you did today will lead to the attainment of your goals and objectives; and you are able to do the things that matter to you as a person (your work, family, and your own self).