4/09/2012

It Takes Time to Make Time

ceramic bowl nesting set from OneClayBead

When I finally hired help, both a studio assistant and a packing assistant, I became hyper aware of whether their time was well spent. It became instantly clear to me that 95% of the time I spent on treasury teams was not worth $10/hr. When I tried to train someone to function in my chaotic mess, I realized that I spent way too much time hunting for misplaced things. It’s funny how I could so easily squander my own time but once I needed to shell out cash for time spent, making priorities and order looked way more compelling.

The fault lay in how I was comparing tasks. Like, it takes 4 minutes to find a sponge in a disorganized studio, but it would take 3 days to clean it up. But once cleaned and organized, my mental energy soared. I hadn’t even factored that in.

It took a day to set up a Facebook business page and to revamp my blog, but now that these are in place, maintaining them takes very little time. With these effective promotional systems in place, I spend hours per day less on promotion than when I depended on treasury team cross promotion.

They say it takes money to make money, and most of us have put that into practice in one way or another, such as investing in supplies. It also takes time to make time.

Have you invested time in developing something, or taken time to learn something, that gave you back more time?

by Lee Wolfe

12 comments:

Genevieve said...

I agree! My husband recently helped me with a big clean up and I am amazed at how much more efficient it makes me. Its also just more enjoyable to work in the space now that it is organized!

TuckooandMooCow said...

Lee, this was so beautifully timed (haha, no pun intended). I've been noticing exactly this squandering of time in my own life. I've been really working personally to restructure and reorganize my work time (and the time I spend having a life!).

Yes, I have invested time developing something: right now I am investing my time in developing a new, more productive system that keeps me from wasting hours and also keeps me from doing so much busy-work.

PurePixie said...

I completely agree with you, Lee. A few weeks ago I was thinking of hiring somebody to help me and then I realized that what I need first to do is to be better organized. I don't spend too much time looking for things because my studio is pretty well organized, but I definitively spend way too much time on my computer. Nice to read that I'm not the only one working on it. :)

IKABAGS said...

Yes :)

Design alone,
Sewing alone,
Daily cleaning alone,
packaging alone,
e mails,
shipping,etc alone
big cleaning with my husband :)
4 endustrial sewing machine at 9 m2 atelier .

I need one day must be 48 hours :)


Nice to read that I'm not the only one working on it. :)

Nicolas Hall said...

Time is always the most valuable resource to me. I do not think I have ever found myself wishing for more money. I can live with less to get where I wish to be. Comfort is relative and we are almost all, as modern beings, somewhat spoiled that way.

But time? It's the one key to success that we all have in common. Not necessarily where we spend it, as that will vary from person to person, but how we make the most of it. Utilize it and become efficient within it. AND how soon that we realize that it is ticking, constantly and irreversibly, in one direction only. . .

Love this post Lee! Thank you!!

nicolas

ira said...

Thank you for posting this Lee. If I can pay someone without costing an arms and a leg I might be more productive and efficient in using my time right now.
I do my best and will try to do it better...

May Brady said...

I did a breakdown of where my sales were coming from by product line (I have 6). Then I worked these out as a percentage. Now I dedicate that % of time to that product line.

I was amazed to see how I was spending around 60% of my time on product lines that combined to 21% of my sales.

I'll continue to monitor this regularly (say quarterly) to ensure I'm wisely investing my time and knowing where I can make changes when I'm short on time.

Jahje Ives said...

This is something I have been evaluating in my own business too. With a newborn, a 3 yr old and a growing business I have needed to really look at where I spend my time and what my priorities are. My family comes first so I just hired on someone to help with aspects of the business that were taking up my time and skills that could be spent better elsewhere. I see it as investing in my business and sanity so I can free up my creative time. Less money in my pocket but more time in my life.

steinschmuckdesign said...

Oh yes I know it so well all about time managment. I had to learn allot about it and still do. Just yesterday I reorganized my Studio :)

Viktoria said...

Great to read!
This is what I´m occupied this summer,
Rearranging my workspace..
Hope this brings me more time when it´s done!

Donata said...

My first year has shown that my work is still in very chaotic stage.
A lot of the time I spent in searching fabrics, new ideas, packaging the parcels, in replying to emails.
I still feel a newcomer :)
I understand that I need to discipline!!!

Elizabeth Maxson said...

Thank you so much for this - and I love that bowl, btw. Oh....how I can relate. I am STILL working on that conundrum! But yes, when I get something organized (which takes so much time) I am so happy.

The one thing I did do years ago, and it did take quite a few projects to "get it down" was organize my painting stations when I used to do a lot of kitchens. It was so well worth the time to set up, prepare, and get everything ready...it would be almost two days before I even started my project, but because I finally had a "system down" I knew my time painting would just fly - and it did.

thanks for the reminder that I need to find more "systems" for other parts of my life :-)

big hug
Elizabeth