We all know how hard it can be for a new startup owner who also needs to keep up with social obligations, dating, marriage and kids. And if you add LGBT struggles, judgment and prejudice to the mix, your productivity can really take a dip. To stay focused on your startup, here are a few things you should keep in mind:
Prepare to face the challenges
Prepare to start your business by practicing good communication, planning, compromise and flexibility. Juggling a modern LGBT lifestyle and running a startup at the same time can be very hard, especially if you have to deal with many unexpected life hiccups on the side. However, realize that you won’t be able to be perfect in all things that await you. Also, LGBT community has gotten used to being overlooked and judged all the time, but don’t take up too many things on yourself at once. Multitasking might sound like a good idea, but it doesn’t do much for productivity.
Separate your work and private life
LGBTQ people are known for having a very rich social life, and it doesn’t mean we have to give it up just because we started a business. Your business will require a lot of attention, but your business should never be the most important thing in life. The healthiest thing you can do for your overall happiness and well-being is separate your professional life from your private life, and stick to this divide rigidly. For instance, you can start your work in the morning and stop when your partner gets back from their work or your kids come from school. Make sure your weekends (or at least Sundays) are free for dates, friendly drinks and family time. Big family and friend holidays and events also require your undivided attention. It might seem like this is taking too much time away from your startup, but otherwise, you’d burn up or lose many amazing people around you.
Deal with distractions
When you work from home, you’ll constantly be distracted by the things that surround you. This might include your gorgeous decorations and your demanding plants or pets. Or maybe your partner has just decided to blast some Lady Gaga while vacuuming the place. How about your shabby router at home not working properly? All of these are realistic things that happen to people who work from home every day, so better prepare for them. The latter is very easy to handle with a few tech updates. Firstly, introduce quality equipment to your office and connect it together with premium high-speed HDMI cables that will provide the best audio and video quality. This way, you don’t have to be distracted by wobbly connections again. Also, arm yourself with some quality noise-canceling headphones to keep the neighbors down and allow you to focus on your tasks.
Next, it’s necessary to use the time you have at home alone to the best of your abilities. This is when you’ll have the best focus to handle the most complicated tasks. On the other hand, make a list of easy, fast and mindless tasks you can handle when the house is messy and noisy. In case of emergency, have a good co-working space up your sleeve. Find something in the area where you can escape when things get too distracting at home, so you don’t have to fall behind with your work.
Make a schedule
Create a list of tasks you need to handle every day, as well as those that need your attention only sometimes. Once your startup takes off, you might focus too much on running the business instead of growing it even more, and to an LGBTQ entrepreneur, growth and development are always important. So make sure to pick one day a week to be working ON your business instead of working IN it. Spend this day reviewing your social media marketing strategies, writing blogs, contacting those sales leads, networking with potential clients and partners, etc. This will allow you to stay focused on your startup and productive the rest of the time.
You can say whatever you want about technology, but one thing is for sure—it does make our lives easier, especially in the professional sense. Today, if you have the right software, you can let your computer do many amazing things while you dedicate your time to running your business. Start with standard email responses and answering machines that allow you to give your customers a reply while you work on their questions.
To save even more time and effort, use cloud-based software that stores everything online while also lowering IT costs and saving time on upgrades and data backups. Handling payroll, accounting for taxes and other admit tasks can also be automated with the right accounting software. This allows you to have more free time and energy to focus on building your startup into an empire.