Time Management: Gain 18 Hours Per Week to Work on Your Leather Business
“You just need to prioritize your life”
“Add it to your to-do list!”
“Just find the time to squeeze it in.”
This is the well meaning advice from some people who have never started any kind of business before, while also working a full-time job or while also raising 3 kids. They won’t ever understand the time struggle until they’re in your shoes right?
Well I understand where you are, because I used to have a full-time job too and I worked my side hustle at the same time for years before I was able to finally quit my full-time job.
And instead of telling you to just hustle, hustle and hustle some more, here are 5 concrete strategies for how you can get back 18+ hours per week to work on your leather business.
If I share this with you, will you make me a promise to implement these strategies in your own business? We all have the same amount of hours in the day. The only difference is how we use them, right?
Are you with me?
1 | Get Up Early/Stay Up Late (10hrs gained)
Ground breaking, right? But seriously, I want to start with the lowest hanging fruit and it might seem like a no-brainer but by getting up 2hrs earlier or staying up 2hrs later than you normally would can make a huge difference as far as getting business tasks accomplished.
I started implementing this in my own business recently. After hearing all of my friends with kids talk about how they get up at 5am on a regular basis just to take care of the kids before work, I got to thinking, “wow, I have so much more time then they do! I need to use it better.” Now i’m not getting up at 5am (no thanks) but I am getting up at 6am instead of 8am and since doing this i’ve gained an extra 10hrs a week!
2 | Use Your Limited Time Wisely (2.5hrs gained)
Ever sit down to do some work and spend the first 30 mins trying to figure out what you should be working on? Yea this is not a good use of your limited time and can add up to hours wasted each week. The trick to using your limited time wisely is to know exactly how you’re going to use those 2 extra hours in the AM or PM prior to actually sitting down to do the work. You don’t want to drag yourself out of bed at 6am and waste the first 30 mins looking at your Facebook notifications or trying to figure out how you’re going to use the next 90 mins. What a waste of 30 mins! And over a week, this is a waste of 2.5 hrs.
3 | Get Real With Your Family and Work on the Weekends (2hrs gained)
Now you might say to me, “no way, I can’t work on the weekend, thats family time!”
I get that, but what if you sat your spouse or family down and leveled with them and said, “hey guys, I need 2 hours today (Saturday or Sunday) to work on something that could really be beneficial for our family in the long run. If you’ll give me these 2 uninterrupted hours to work, make this small sacrifice right now, I promise you we’ll be able to do all kinds of cool things in the very near future.” You’re not taking your whole Saturday and locking yourself in the garage to work on your leathergoods, it’s just 2 hours. And if you can get the relevant party to agree to that on a weekly basis, thats a gain of 8hrs per month!
4 | Batch Instagram Posts (2hrs gained)
If you’re like any other normal person these days you’re super busy right, so taking steps to create systems and processes along the way is a great way to make the limited time that you have, really stretch.
For example, instead of spending 30-45 mins a day posting on Instagram (2.5 hrs a week), take 2 hours one afternoon or morning and draft out your Instagram captions that you’re going to post throughout the month. I’ve been doing this for the last few months and it’s soooo much easier whe it comes time to post not to mention i’m saving so much time throughout the month. So instead of spending 10hrs a month on instagram i’m only spending 2hr by doing it all at once.
5 | Create Systems for Marketing Processes (2hrs gained)
Create systems around marketing processes that you repeat on a daily, weekly or monthly basis so that you don’t have to waste time recreating the wheel. For instance, if you blog about your leathergoods you’re going to share your newly published blog post on instagram, pinterest, youtube and god knows where else right? You want to share it everywhere and unless you have a system in place for how to do this each week and it take so much time and be super overwhelming.
I now have a checklist for all of the places that I post my blog posts, the copy that I need to create for each channel, the graphics to create, etc. What once used to take me about 3 hrs per week, now takes me only 1hr each week, saving me 8 hrs over a month.
You also want to automate! Automate tasks wherever you can in your business and you will save a ton of time. Once such automation that is the single biggest time saver me has been the welcome email sale funnel that each new subscriber goes through when they get to my website.
A new subscriber will hear from me about 10 times over the course of 4 weeks. Can you imagine how much time it would take to email individually each new subscriber 10 times over 4 weeks? I’d say 2hrs/subscriber at least is a fair estimate.
BONUS - Simplify Your Leathergoods
If you’re still feeling like, “yea ok a lot of the marketing, promotion and computer stuff I can do early in the am, but what about the actual leatherwork? When can I find the time to complete some of these leather masterpieces that I really want to be working on?”
Well if you’re still struggling to find the time to produce your line of leathergoods after you’ve done all of the above and made sure that you’re using your limited time wisely, I want you to take a look at what you are creating and try and simplify.
Simplify the design so it doesn’t take you as long to produce. Simplify the amount of different designs so you can get an assembly line type rhythm going. I’ve done this in my own business. I’ve streamlined my options to only 3 styles of handbags and about the same amount of baskets.
It might not be ideal but whats worse? Not doing anything because you don’t have enough time, or doing something and starting to make some money in your business that you can reinvest in your business and free up time so you can eventually subsist on your leather business.
So is it hard to get up earlier, prioritize and plan out tasks, create systems and automate processes in your leather business?
Sure. But if I told you I could give you 18 extra hrs per week to create a leather business would you take me up on it? Do you think you could do it?
Here’s your challenge. Over the next 30 days, implement these time management tasks into your leather business and see how much more you can accomplish in your business in the next 30 days then you have in the last 3 months. Come back here and tell me how you did.