How to Do More With Less

No company has a bottomless budget. In fact, most independent retailers are often forced to scale down operations or downsize while still offering better and more robust services. Even if you’re not availed with more time, more brain-power, more help or even more cash, it doesn’t mean that you cannot do more or deliver more productivity.

Consider the following 5 ways to be more productive even if you have fewer resources to work with.

1. Be Pickier about What You Do 

If you want to do more with less, you need to achieve a high level of focus. Oftentimes that means knowing exactly what you need to do, and what not to do to realize a given goal or objective. According to Charlene Li, the author of Open Leadership, you need to do fewer things — more specifically, the most crucial things — to achieve more focus and get more done with fewer resources.

In other words, you want to be choosier on what you pick to work on and then focus on the most important tasks first. This way, you’ll give more attention to what matters most and be more consistent in what you do. Simply put, focusing better gives you more consistency in your actions.

2. Spare some Time to Think and Reinvigorate

Doing more with less doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t get some time off. In fact, you should visit your favorite deli or coffee shop, and give yourself some quiet time to rejuvenate your mind and think. It’s what Mark Sanborn, a NY Times best-seller, calls reactive thinking. He further suggests that you ease into it slowly, allocating about 15 times daily. Thinking proactively about your business and life can help you become result-oriented and, therefore, more productive.

4. Hire a Temp to Fill the Gap

Leaving a huge gap left by the star talent unfilled is never a good sign for the remaining employees. That’s why you need to hire a temporary help immediately to take the pressure off of other team members and boost morale.

5. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Keeping quiet is a sure-fire recipe for disaster. Silence shows other high performers that you don’t care about their input. You might want to hold a series of department or town hall meetings to communicate the issue, and reassure the team that everything is okay.

3. Create a Support/Partner Network

No matter how smart or business savvy you’re, or how fantastic your skills are, you cannot succeed without help in the long run. That’s why it’s paramount to build a network of partners, friends, and collaborators to make the whole process a little easier. The bottom line is that you should be actively seeking the right partners and mentors to help you grow, and manage the stress of doing more with less.

4. Take Advantage of What You Already Have

Don’t start everything, whether a beauty product or salon, from the scratch. It doesn’t make economic sense, and certainly will not help you achieve more. That’s why you need to maximize your resources by taking what you’ve already done and making them better. By mastering the art of reuse, you’ll save not only time but also your precious resources. The big idea is that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel; instead, take advantage of past work.

5. Focus on one task at a time

Multitasking might seem like a great idea if you want to do more with less, but it’s a killer of motivation and productivity. Want to improve the product? Focus on one aspect of it at a time. Hone it and you’ll get the product ready for the prime chance. The bottom line is that you don’t focus on any other task while on it. Once the task has been achieved, you can move on to the next one.