This weeks’ blog is all about getting tasks done. Mainly because I’ve got one of those weeks where I have lots and lots of ‘little bits’ to do and a couple of really big pieces of project work to get through by the end of the week.
So this is how I am going to organise my time – hopefully it gives you some ideas to get through your workload this week too!
Make a big fat List
Get a mug of tea / coffee and work out everything you have got to get done this week. I use Trello.com for keeping a track on all the tasks I have to do for my clients and my own work. List everything and then move the tasks into which day of the week you are going to do them. I set up a list for each day and then put the tasks in running order for that day, and then work through them.
The question then is how to decide which to do and when? I break tasks down as follows:
- Only I can do them, they are important to me and/or my clients and they have a specific deadline
- I could delegate them, they are less important or don’t have a specific deadline
- Minor tasks that are ‘nice to get done or will keep for now
I allocate all the ‘1’s across the week, and I try and group them so that I batch client work up together. Ie all of client A’s tasks are on one day, client B on another as I find it easier to work through related tasks together. Then I look at the 2’s and see how these could be done – allocate them to someone else, do them later in the week etc. I also like to add in a couple of 3’s for the end of the day to keep me moving towards the goals they relate to.
Time frame them
I know roughly how long a task should take me to do – as long as I don’t allow interruptions. Allocate each task a time limit and then work to it, set a timer if it helps. Working to a deadline, even if it is imaginary, often makes me more productive. So, a half hour to write this blog, half hour to sort some quote details out, an hour to finalise a presentation – you get the gist.
Get them Done
I usually put my least favourite tasks (usually something involving accounts!) first – get it done and out of the way and it gets easier from there on in, the ‘Eat the Big Frog First’ principle. Turn off email notifications, phone get off social media while you get the task done, reducing distractions makes it all get done a whole lot faster. For more musings about scheduling take a look at a post from January that talks about getting control over your schedule: Scheduling – it’s all Me, Me, Me!
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