Every now and again you can have a work week that is daunting to say the least. Where, armed with a to-do list the size of your arm, you set out on a mission impossible – to get it all done within the deadline set.
So how do you ensure you tick off all of the tasks on your to-do list without losing your mind in the process? Here are five tips to help you get through your work quickly and effectively.
1. Take time to think
Often we are in such a rush to start or finish a task that we forget to stop and think about the best way of doing it. But thinking and planning time is critical.
Taking five minutes at the start of project to think and plan your approach can save you hours in the long run and help you produce a far better result.
With so much noise and activity packed within each day it can be easy to confuse tasks that are urgent with tasks that only seem urgent. That is why taking the time to prioritise your tasks is so important; it can be the difference between a busy day and a productive day.
When deciding what tasks should be done first, always place the highest priority on tasks that will have a consequence or cost if it is not completed by the end of the day. Your next priority should be tasks that will generate you short-term income, followed by tasks that will keep your clients happy and business running as normal.
3. Clarify the deadline
For those tasks that do have a deadline or consequence, determine if it is a true deadline that can’t be moved or if it is a self-inflicted deadline that is based around unrealistic expectations or poor time management.
If the deadline can be moved or renegotiated, then assign it under tasks that have true consequences.
4. Delegate any tasks that are not worth your time
Once you have your prioritised to-do list in front of you, look at the tasks you’ve allocated to yourself. Could your time be better spent doing bigger or more specialised, income generating activities while you delegate or outsource the rest?
Are you doing these tasks because you are good at them or need to do them, or are you trying to maintain control? Keep in mind that you won’t grow your business by trying to do everything yourself, you’ll only grow a list.
When you are rushed multi-tasking can seem like a great idea, but it will only make it worse and chances are you’ll make more mistakes.
Instead, take it a task at a time and stay focused until it is complete. Not only will you complete tasks faster, you’ll do a better job and avoid having a load of half completed tasks at the end of the day.
What are your tips for getting through work quickly and effectively?