There are times and days where we just cannot handle everything that is on our plate. Without going into too much detail this week I have to create a sales manual for my sales team, finish up a movie website project, launch a new SEO tool called “Avalanche”, Get started with design for a new client, finish up 2 other client’s websites, help out a friend’s blog site, try to get a 4 year old side project off the ground, work on another website’s for my other company, send out invoices for overdue past projects, Create like 3 company docs for the sales process, and not go insane with the 30+ phone calls on my 2 cell phones and get more involved with 2 of my side companies due to a partner’s health issue; oh and by the way it’s already Friday!!!
I guess it helps to write down everything, so you can put it all into perspective.
I have to delegate which projects are the most time-sensitive and important ones. Which ones are the ones that are going to get my clients and me faster results? Which ones need immediate attention, and which ones can fall by the way side.
The biggest problem with time management is distractions. They ALWAYS happen. Here are some of the things I do to “ATTEMPT” to lessen the distractions. I use it in quotes, because things always never go as planned.
1st. Learn to say NO. I know when people ask for you for favors, or help on something you want to say yes, you want to help out, but be realistic with your time.
2nd. Always leave time for you. If you are constantly going full-speed for weeks and months at a time without taking a break for a day or two, then you will burn out quickly. I learnt this the hard way.
3rd. Pace yourself, don’t take on too much workload, split your time wisely. This again will fall into rule #1 learn to say NO.
4th. Schedule yourself accordingly; don’t let others schedule your time to benefit them. That means being the boss of your time, tell others when you can meet up, if that time is good, and if it is not, too bad, your busy.
5th. Don’t always immediately answer all your phone calls. If you are right in the middle of something, let it ring, or better yet turn it completely off. Then when you are free, listen to the voicemail and return the call, IF it is important. With 30+ phone calls on 2 cellphones, it is impossible for me to return everyone’s phone calls. I have to delegate what calls to make and what not do. If they don’t bother leaving a voicemail, then obviously it wasn’t important.
6th. Always have everyone be aware of the best form of communication; I choose email. If you have something for me, send it to my email, that way I am able to response on my Smartphones and can check to see whether it is important or not. If it is not important enough write it down and email it, it’s not important.
By setting and sticking to these ground rules you let people know that your time is very valuable, and contact you when there are important or emergencies that need to be taken care of.
Getting the actual work done is another process on it’s own. A couple things I should’ve done with a lot of these projects that I have.
1. Set realistic time expectations. That goes without saying.
2. Let your people know in advanced what your schedule is like, and what you are going to be doing. This gives them a constant idea of what to expect as a response from you when attempting to get in contact.
3. Don’t bit more that you can chew. This goes back to learning to say No. The amount of time you free up when you say NO is enormous. Most time allows you to have more free time, and create better quality of work.
4. Also, don’t check your email, every 5 minutes, that’s seriously distracting when you are in the middle of a big project.
That’s all I can think of for today, I gotta get some work done.