Work hours, discipline & productivity

It’s an interesting life, owning your own store.  Since it’s an online store; other than ensuring that stock goes out everyday I can dictate my own work hours.   Of course, these days, I have someone else doing the shipping so I often spend most of the day at the home-office, giving me an extremely high-level of flexibility.  If I want to, I can wake up at Noon and work till midnight; or vice versa.

Of course, that’s the theoretical possibility.  Reality is; I often work the same work-hours as everyone else; just more. Customers call anywhere between 6am (figuring we’re in the East Coast like they are) till 6pm during the day.  Vendors & other suppliers are only open during work-hours; so I need to ensure my orders and contact with them fall within that timeframe.  And if I’m placing a restock order, that needs to be done early in the morning so that it has time to be packed on their side.

While I have more a flex-time than a physical retail store that has to be open by a certain time-period; the reality of business is that we’re still locked into the 9-5pm work cycle for high productivity.

In many ways, that’s a good thing for me. It ensures a certain amount of discipline on my side – I have to be up and out of bed by 10am at the latest; I have until 5pm to get my calls / e-mails / orders completed.  Canada Post comes by at 3.45pm every weekday, so orders have to be packed by then.  And so on, so forth.  The routine creates a timeline, that you just need to follow; reducing the self-motivation / discipline requirements.

Of course, being a night owl; I find myself working at night a lot too. It’s just easier to get work done sometimes, especially if I’m coding or updating the site.