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First things first, what are you doing here??
April 26, 2017 / By Terri Boote
First things first, what are you doing here?? If it’s because it’s quarter to closing time and you are still procrastinating on a ‘to-do’ list longer than Santa’s naughty list, then congrats because you have come to the right place! We all fall into time traps (cough, cough Facebook, cough) that distract us and waste monumental amounts of time. After implementing these productivity hacks, we highly recommend that you think of a hobby you’d like to take up because you’re soon going to have enough time for that 4pm taxidermy class… (or tennis lesson? – hey we’re not here to judge).
Tip One: Plan Your Day
Hydrate with your fluid of choice and take a quiet 10 minutes each morning to plan your day. Block out time for any meetings, appointments, or phone calls that you must attend. Look at the time that remains in your workday and allocate it to the tasks that need to be completed. Your list isn’t a Burger King free drinks refill station, so don’t overfill your to-do list for the day. Make sure you can realistically complete the tasks. It’s alright to leave some less urgent things for tomorrow.
Bonus Tip: After you have made your plan, don’t sit down at your desk and open your emails. Answering emails can be a time-consuming process as well as a distraction. It’s better to allocate a time to clear emails later in the day so that you have time to complete the more pressing things first.
Tip Two: Batch Content
Complete all of your content in a batch instead of at random intervals. Schedule a day of the week/month for invoicing, write all of your blog posts or newsletters for the next three months in one day, and only have certain days of the week that you schedule client meetings. Switching between tasks can be unproductive as you need to refocus yourself each time. By completing tasks in a batch, you will save time overall.
Tip Three: Priority One
If you have a task that you know must be completed that day, make it your first priority. Begin work on that task before doing anything else. If you don’t, you will spend your whole day stressing about it, and it will distract you from the rest of your work. You’ll feel much better once you know it is completed and can then focus on the rest of the day.
Tip Four: Outsource It
It is time to trust someone else with those tasks that you don’t enjoy, or aren’t good at. One of the best ways to increase productivity is to have fewer items on your to-do list. Take the plunge and hire that Virtual Assistant you have been thinking about. They relish completing the tasks that you hate and will complete them efficiently and to an extremely professional standard.
Tip Five: Use Time Saving Resources
There are so many programs and apps available that can save you time in your business. From streamlining accounting processes to easy team communication apps, to task management tools. There is an app for almost everything, so do some investigating (or outsource for someone to do for you) and take advantage of these genius programs that have been designed to make your life easier!
Tip Six: Remove Distractions
Increase productivity tenfold by removing distractions. Have a focused time period where you work completely uninterrupted. Put your phone on silent, turn off social media app notifications, close your inbox and focus. You will find you achieve so much in that designated period of time and will look forward to your distraction free time each day.
Tip Seven: Take a Break
Now this may sound counterproductive, but countless studies show that a series of short breaks throughout the day will refresh you. Make sure you move away from your desk at regular intervals. Stretch your legs or grab a drink, you may even want to pluck your eyebrows – whatever works! When you return to your desk, you will be focused and ready to work again.
If these tips don’t help you REALLY increase the productivity in your office, remember that here at Virtual Assistants we have an expert team of specialised VA’s who can get you sorted. Our service packages have affordable set rates and are designed to give you more time to do what you need to get done. Get in touch today to see how we can help you reduce your to-do list.