Time always seems to escape so many of us. What should be easily accomplishable in a morning can easily stretch to the afternoon, for what seems like no reason. The hard truth is, it isn’t time’s fault… it’s our own bad practices. For today’s tip, we’re going over how you can fight these tendencies to optimize your use of the time that is available.
One of the biggest time sinks to be found in any business is the simple act of deciding what to work on next. We’ve all been there at some point: having finished one task, we suddenly reference our to-do list and encounter the same problem as a kid has in a candy store… too many options.
Taking a few moments at the start of every day to organize these tasks can greatly improve how you spend your time throughout the rest of the day, and can ultimately lead to far less waffling later on. With a set process laid out, you no longer have to make the decision over what to work on next - it has already been made.
To create this order, look at everything you have to work on and establish how urgent each task is compared to the others. Deadlines are a handy way to help establish this, or if someone else in your organization needs it before they can continue their work. Identifying these qualities and ordering your tasks accordingly from the start is a small time investment, especially when you consider the impact it can have on your productivity later on. Utilizing a communications and collaboration solution can help you establish the organizational priority of each of your tasks with the help of your team.
There are always those tasks that pop up throughout the day that seem insignificant at the time. Take checking your email, for example… how long does it take to do that? However, checking email and a variety of other tasks can quickly grow from a momentary activity to an extended process.
After all, there’s always the chance that briefly responding to an email could pull you into an extended and time-consuming debate.
Furthermore, some of these tasks carry the expectation that you will immediately drop what you’re doing to take care of whatever’s needed. Emails are notorious for communicating this urgency, whether or not it was intended. Regardless, it puts pressure on the employee to switch their focus, which hurts productivity.
Instead, establish a practice of setting a concrete period out of your day where you will check and respond to your email, or whatever task it is that applies to your situation. Actually schedule this time into your day, using the business management solution that your company has in place to control schedules. Outside of that time, leave that task alone… if an email’s contents are truly that important, you’ll find out about them some other way before long.
We get it, business matters and activities tend to be kept close to the chest. After all, if you can’t trust yourself to do something right, who can you trust? Who else has the incentive you do, to do the best job possible?
Frankly? Someone you’ve hired to do a job.
Delegation can be difficult, of course, but only if you don’t trust those around you. However, there are plenty of resources out there, both inside your business and available through outsourcing, that could do exactly the job that needs ro be done. As a result, you can divert your focus to tasks that need it more, trusting the resource to produce.
You may have to put in a bit of time picking the best resources, especially when outsourcing, but the results will be well worth the time.
XFER can help you put these practices into action, with the added effects of the solutions that can be implemented to make these practices easier. Give us a call at 734-927-6666 / 800-438-9337 to further discuss any of the solutions we’ve described here, and for more handy tips that could help you better leverage your time, subscribe to our blog!.
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