Can’t keep up? Here’s the first easy step to getting more done.

10 Dec

Can’t keep up? Here’s the first easy step to getting more done.

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Have you ever said this, “There are not enough hours in the day” or something similar, which loosely interpreted means, “I am not making the progress that would make me happy”

 Getting things done, or more to the point getting the things done that take you and your business nearer your goals, is a challenge that will take change to fix.

 So what can we do?

How do we start to address the situation?

My thinking is that until you understand what you are doing at the moment it is very hard to discover what needs to be changed to deliver an effective solution.

 So this is the plan…

Start filling in a time log, (I have put a template on the resources page to save you time) every day record how you have spent your time, I know it is a pain but it needs to be done. I suggest you do this for at least 2 weeks and naturally it needs to be a typical fortnight for the results to be of any value.

Find a way of completing the log so it gets done, set reminders for yourself, alarms or visual prompts, but get into the habit of completing it every day. I found if I left mine for more than a day I struggled to fill it in fully. The chart is broken down into 30 minute blocks so you can group them or use them individually.

Then what?…

At the end of the week total up the hours devoted to each category and transfer onto the summary sheet (link to template) and hey presto, now you know what you spend your time doing in a typical week.

I found it useful to predefine categories that I knew I would use, as the week wore on I added 2 more categories I hadn’t thought of.

My Categories were:-

Coaching Clients, Workshops, Marketing, Content creation, Administration, Personal Development, Sales Meeting, R & R and Miscellaneous, I then added Travelling and Suppliers.

If my time was connected with any of the above, in meetings, on the phone, in discussions, in preparation for, then it was allocated to that category.

If you find one activity takes so much time it probably makes sense to split it down. If you are spending 15 hours a week “designing”, then “product A design” may need separating from “product B design”.

The real question is….

What are the activities that you are spending time on that can be delegated, how else can it be done?  it might be a team member or a system that could handle it.

I am sure it will not be done as well as if you continued to do it,

 But, on the other hand..

train your team well or design the system efficiently and the task can be done well enough. (remember Pareto’s law, the 80/20 principle?)

This exercise is only the start of your campaign for using your time more effectively, through looking at your results it will highlight what you aren’t spending enough time on.

Once you release time from the activities that are least challenging you can then devote this newly available time and energy to the activities that you have decided need more of your attention.

This could be more family time or business activities that require higher levels of skills and know how.

A great first step, take it now! 

Steve helps owners of SME’s with profits, teams and dependence on personal input, to learn more click here

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