The amount of time it takes to do our job never seems to be enough. No matter how hard we try to schedule meetings and complete important tasks on time, there never seems to be enough time in the day. What we thought was an organized day can quickly turn into chaos, especially when something terrible happens, such as losing power in the store. It feels like a disaster.
The value of improving time management skills is not measured in revenue or profit. There is no scale or chart that marks how well you did. But, a well-planned day can prepare you for those unexpected emergencies. Here are some tips for you to organize your activities, so that you can manage your time better.
The To Do List
No one wants every minute of their day to be dictated by a schedule. That feels too mechanical and boring. But, the very least you should do is create a To Do List as a visual reference of what needs to be done. Take the time to jot down the most important activities or objectives for your day. It will also show you what you’ve accomplished. This is a proven way to reduce stress and anxiety.
Objectives versus Goals
Your list is full of objectives, not goals. Why? Because goals happen over an extended period and require the accomplishment of individual objectives. You will sabotage your list with goals instead of objectives. Goals belong in your business plan.
The steps it takes to reach a goal should be broken up into objectives. Organize your objectives into their order of importance. Again, this gives you a visual reference of exactly what you need to do that day, or throughout the week.
Having a deadline attached to a task focuses our efforts to get it done. Tasks without deadlines are put off to the next day, and the next. In reality, because there was no sense of urgency assigned with those tasks, they weren’t that important. A deadline gives you that sense of urgency and a point of reference, while organizing the timeline for your day. It is a powerful tool that will allow you to prioritize and delegate other responsibilities. If you’ve been in business for a while, you know how long it takes for you to physically count your inventory, or do payroll. If there is anything on your list that you don’t know how long it will take, then you’ll need to make a realistic estimate.
Do the Things You Don’t Like to Do
Highly successful people are successful for many reasons. One of them is that they do the things they don’t like doing. Why do they bother? Because, they know it’s necessary to run the business and be successful.
One of the ways we avoid doing the things we don’t like to do is focusing on what we like to do. Here’s a good example. Instead of counting inventory at the end of the month, you spend your time in the store rearranging shelves and displays. At the end of the day, you still need to count inventory, but those displays could have been done another day or by your employees. See how this adds to your stress?
Get It Down to Get It Done
There are many apps for your phone that create and maintain your to do list. This is probably the best option, because your phone is with you at all times. These apps also synchronize with your computer or tablet. You can also share it with your partner. Best of all, these keep a record of your activities and can look back to see what you had accomplished. No matter how you write it down, the benefits of organizing your day will be tremendous.
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