Let’s face it, we all could be a little more productive.
Whether we are actively procrastinating or simply getting bogged down in unimportant or unrelated tasks, we waste time. For the average startup founder, time is as precious as money. You are likely as strapped for time as you are for funds, especially because most startups are one-man or very small operations. There are fewer people to take on the jobs that most large companies have entire departments for. Your team (or, if you are a one-man operation, just yourself), are the IT team, the customer service department, the marketing department, product testers, social media experts, etc.
But with so many different roles to play and so much that needs to get done, even the most adventurous startup founder can become bogged down in meaningless or menial tasks. There are, however, ways to start improving your productivity. Once you have improved your productivity, you can start improve the entire company’s productivity. In no time, your business will be running like a well-oiled machine, with projects reaching completion not just faster, but more effectively. What good is fast if the job isn’t also well done? We have the top five productivity tools every startup founder should use.
Number One – Yast
Before you can improve how you use your time, it useful to know where your time is actually going. Have you ever gotten to the end of a day of work and thought, “What did I actually do today?” It’s time to leave the office, but you can’t actually remember anything that you’ve completed, even if you were working hard all day. This is a dangerous cycle to find yourself in—it means that you are neither keeping track of your time nor what you are doing with it. In this pattern, it’s easy to get completely lost in tasks that ultimately will not help you be any more successful or profitable.
That’s where Yast comes in. While there are many different productivity tools that are designed to help you use your time wisely, Yast is one of the only tools that actually helps you keep track of what you are doing and when. You get to load Yast will all of your projects, given them each their own color, and as you move from task to task, simply press a start button. When you move on to another task, you press stop and start that task’s timer.
The important thing to remember about Yast is that you should not just record how much of your day you spend thinking about or amorphously working on a task. Time how long you spend really working and how much time you spend goofing off, checking emails, at lunch, etc. Getting yourself into the habit of watching your own time and understanding where it goes during the day is a great way to make sure you’re on top of what needs to be done. As a bonus, Yast can be integrated with ZenDesk, so you know exactly how much time you are spending answering customer support tickets.
If you need a solution that is more integrated into your system or that can help you stop wasting time on social media, there are programs like Anti-Social, that will track how much time you spend on pre-determined websites and block them (or the entire internet), once you’ve used up your allotment.