by Sharon Jones

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They say that time is money. But looking at the internal workings of most businesses, you wouldn’t think it. Firms waste time like there’s no tomorrow, and it gets in the way of the company mission (as well as making money, of course).

What’s sad is that at some firms, employees are so unproductive that they can easily fritter away half the day doing things that don’t help anyone, least of all themselves. It’s got to stop.

Here are the big time wasters that are setting up your business for failure.

Forecasting Yearly Sales And Revenues

You might think that forecasting future sales is an essential activity of your company, not least because you want to adjust your production capacity to suit. But as any experienced forecaster will tell you, forecasts are almost always entirely wrong. Can you really predict what your sales will be in Q4 2019? No, probably not. So don’t waste your time on lengthy reports, and certainly don’t spend hours pouring over the figures with senior management - their time is much better spent making sure you still have clients coming through the door.

HR Overheads

Is there anything more labor-intensive than HR? Possibly sweatshop clothing manufacturing, but that’s about it. HR departments are famed for the volume of paperwork they have to do and for the inefficiency of their operations. But HR time-wasting should be a thing of the past, thanks to new software. Check out JungoHR here. Software allows companies to automate a lot of processes that traditionally had to be done by hand, eliminating the need for a paid human to do all the grunt work.

Excessive Emailing

Everybody knows that emails are big time wasters. Not only do they make the process of communication slower than in, say, a regular conversation, but they also interrupt workflow, thanks to the myriad annoying ways they alert otherwise productive employees.

Excessive emailing, though, is the practice of cc-ing and bcc-ing everybody into an email who might be mildly interested in what you have to say. Copying and blind-copying people into emails is akin to forcing them to listen intently as you have a conversation about something unrelated to them with another employee. Again, it’s a massive time-waster.

Weekly Or Daily Meetings

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What is the point of weekly and daily meetings? Do they make a difference to bottom line productivity? What about staff morale?

Most companies think that daily meetings are good for their organization. Meetings help bring people together and cement the company message, or so the thinking goes. But the truth is that most meetings are superfluous. Why would everyone in the company need to meet together to help the firm achieve its objectives? It just doesn’t make sense. It must come from school assemblies.

Pointless Financial Analysis

Okay, so maybe huge publicly-traded companies should do detailed financial analysis, but most small companies needn't bother. Detailed analysis rarely yields new and profound insights into where the company is making money and where it isn’t. If you’re a manager, make sure to leave this one off your itinerary.