1. Create and use a to-do list to help you keep track of what needs to be done.
2. Prioritise your to-do list according to what you need to accomplish, rather than by the things that are the easiest to do.
3. Prioritise tasks according to how urgent they are.
4. Reduce the planned time for meetings by about a third. So, instead of planning a 30-minute meeting, plan a 20-minute one.
5. Have telephone and video conference meetings instead of face-to-face meetings, particularly if you or other participants need to travel.
6. Don’t attend meetings unless you absolutely must be there and invite as few people to your meetings as possible.
7. Use cloud technology to make it easier for you and your team to access information. Cloud computing also takes up less of your time to manage.
8. Don’t let email interrupt your tasks by only checking your email at certain times of the day.
9. Break large and complex tasks into smaller tasks that are more manageable and easier to achieve.
10. Make sure each meeting has a purpose, i.e. an action or task that must be achieved as a result of the meeting. If the meeting doesn’t produce a required action, question why you are having it. For example, is it simply to report on activities? Could this be achieved faster over email?
11. Delegate to your employees to free up your time for more important tasks that will help push the business forward.
12. Create deadlines for the tasks and objectives you want to achieve. This will help to focus your mind.
13. Be realistic when estimating the time it will take you to complete a task.
14. Automate repetitive manual tasks such as invoicing with accounting software or sales and marketing processes with a CRM.
15. Limit the amount of time you spend on social media or browsing the internet. Also, when doing any of these things, make sure you have a specific purpose and don’t get distracted.
16. Track your time so you know how long it takes to complete tasks.
17. Understand when a detail is unimportant and ignore it. It’s good to have high standards, but striving for perfection will simply waste time you don’t have.
18. Identify the best way to communicate with an individual. For example, one of your customers might prefer instant messaging rather than email, so don’t waste time sending them emails when messaging will be more efficient.
19. Use templates for emails, invoices, contracts etc.
20. Use reminders so you don’t miss important calls, emails, or deadlines.
21. Don’t send long emails if you can avoid doing so. It is often quicker to discuss the issue over the phone, make decisions and/or get agreement, and then follow this up with a shorter summary email.
22. Be strict with your time in the office or workplace. This is most important when a colleague or employee wants to have a chat or ask a quick question. This can easily turn into a long conversation that is often about something other than work so uses your time unnecessarily.
23. Schedule breaks throughout the day and take them. You will be more productive after your break than you will if you just work on through.
24. Keep your desk clean as an uncluttered work area will help you focus.
25. Do one task at a time and only move on when it is complete.
For more help or advice with your business, please contact a member of the Gilroy Gannon team today.