To do lists and priorities are important, but it is scheduling that creates a real breakthrough in your time management.
If you are struggling with staying on top of things, it’s important to make sure that all your tasks are written down, a To Do list is the simplest way to make sure that nothing gets forgotten. And if there are a large number of tasks on that list, you’d better work out which ones to do first. But actually getting things done requires you to schedule all those tasks in the right order.
Allocate an amount of time to each task and fit it into your diary. This means that you will not just know what you need to do, but will quickly see which ones are not going to get done – not because they aren’t important, but because there simply isn’t time to get to them today (this week? Even this month?). Now you can contact those who will be affected and re-negotiate deadlines, delegate or find some other solution. This takes the pressure off, gives you a clear way forward and keeps everyone on board.
Finally, make sure you regularly go back over your schedule and review how long each task actually took. If you allowed 20 minutes, did it actually take you an hour to write that proposal? The more accurate you can get in allocating time to tasks, the more realistic your schedule will be and the better the conversations you are having with your stakeholders will become.
Most of successful time management is actually effective communication with those around you who are affected by the work you produce.
If you want to find out more about our Time Management and Productivity course, click here!