6 essential life hacks for business leaders

  • Take a break from email
  • Read your productivity body clock
  • Have a remote working strategy
  • Stand up in meetings

Greetings, business captain. Ready to use five shortcuts that can save your company money, improve staff happiness, and give you more time? Thought so. Read on…

What’s a life hack when it’s at home? It’s a new way of doing something old that you’d never thought of, a route to getting things done quicker and better, and we’ve got four of the little beauties that will rock your entrepreneurial, business leading world.

We drew upon our knowledge of the working world to give you these delicious morsels of advice on how to squeeze more productivity juice out of that fruit called the working day.

Take a break from email

Checking email every time a notification pops up may seem like the fastest way to deal with enquiries, but it eats away at every hour of the working day and affects the ability to get other stuff done.

A technique that’s becoming more common in forward-thinking workplaces is not looking at emails for part of the morning. Picking up the phone or, if you’re messaging someone in the office, having one of those old-fashioned face-to-face conversations is encouraged instead. If you’re going to try it out yourself, you might just want to let your employees know email isn’t the best way to get hold of you between 9am and 12 noon.

It might be worth turning the rest of your workforce onto the benefits of not being at the end of an email every minute of the day, not least because it’s significantly quicker to talk and listen than it is to type and read. That means efficiency. And remember: there was once a time when businesses functioned perfectly well without emails – you’ll all survive.

Read your productivity body clock

Research suggests there are certain times of day people are at their most industrious. It seems there’s no particular portion that’s good for everyone, but each person on the planet has a time they’re able to get more done, whether it’s 6am or 11pm.

Finding out when yours is just by reading how you feel and how well you’re able to concentrate as you go through the day. This could mean you can reschedule when you do that mountain of daily chores, like replying to messages on your brand’s social media, or doing laborious paper work. That’s what we call a constructive use of your time.

Have a remote working strategy

You’ve all seen The Day After Tomorrow: the 2004 Hollywood flick in which a massive storm turns the United States into a snowy tundra and stops everyone getting into work, costing businesses in lost custom and lack of productivity. (That’s the abbreviated version.) It highlights an important issue: what do you do when weather, power cuts, and even public transport strikes prevent your employees coming to the office?

Well, maybe the question should be when did you pre-empt this scenario and set up a remote working strategy? That means preparing by giving people the ability to work from home. So either making sure they have computers away from the office they can work from, or if people are working from laptops, ask that they take them home any time a travel catastrophe is on the horizon.

That might involve having relevant files accessible on a server that can be connected to from outside the office, or using a third-party cloud-based solution as offered by Box, Egnyte or Syncplicity.

Stand up in meetings

Meetings are a well-known time waster, so don’t get too comfortable. In fact, don’t have anybody sit down. You’ll be surprised how easily that weekly hour-long status catch-up with managers becomes just 20 minutes. More time means getting more of everything else done.

Beforehand, maybe just circulate a memo telling people this is going to happen and why, or you’ll probably get a reputation for being the company’s cruellest meeting chairperson.

There we have it: six insider tips for basically making your business more profitable. Don’t say we never give you anything nice.