How to Get more Done and See the Bigger Picture

How to Get more Done and See the Bigger Picture

Working in an office means lots of crazy days where you’re extremely busy and overwhelmed with super-urgent problems, but by the evening you realize you haven’t completed anything really noteworthy or important. Recent research into the attitude of employees towards deadlines has shown that the concept of urgency overshadows the concept of high impact. That is, most employees treat urgent tasks as more important than tasks with higher business value. This is bad news for companies because employees fail to understand which tasks are truly important, and which are not, and instead waste valuable time on…well, less important things.

We would all agree that it always feels good to complete a task, get an impending deadline out of the way and just forget about it. However, life teaches us that what’s most critical is hardly ever urgent. Education and professional development, writing a book, preparing an anti-crisis business strategy, charity—all these things require not weeks, but months or even years—and more often than not they have no deadlines at all.

Business leaders may spend years postponing the issue of automating key processes in their division simply because all their time is spent on the little urgent things, like making a presentation on quarterly achievements, writing an intro to a newsletter for clients, or sorting email.

Time management gurus have a lot to say on this issue, and their advice really works if you’re not afraid to follow it.

  1. Plan out your day the evening before or in the morning before you start working. Make your schedule down to the hour, and leave a little more time for every task than you expect it to take—this will stop you from rushing around, stressing out and thinking things like “I’m not getting anything done.”
  2. If you’ve been postponing an important task not directly related to your job, dedicate a whole day to it. Then every week, take a full day to handle large tasks until you finish them. For example, say that Tuesdays are for working on office renovation issues only—all 8 working hours. It’s likely you’ll get them done in less than a month.
  3. An advice as old as the hills: eat the elephant one bite at a time. Split your tasks to smaller subtasks until they no longer frighten you with their scale. Once you have started, you will be always ready to continue. By the way, there are a lot of situations when a half-done plan is more than enough.
  4. Try the quick decision-making strategy. When you’re in a rush, it’s better to solve issues quickly than perfectly.
  5. If there are any processes and situations related to the same issues and always requiring the same solution, use automation to save time. For example, the Workflowsoft business process management system can help you categorize, optimize, and delegate a vast number of routine workflows and create templates for repeat situations. Find the time to create a convenient workspace, and you’ll see just how much time you save yourself and your colleagues in the future. For example, invest time to develop agreement approval processes, organize business trips, order business cards, make technical support requests, create a one-stop shop for administrative department tasks, etc.

The more processes you automate, the more time you’ll have for what really matters. Just make sure not to burn out trying to squeeze everything you can out of every last second! You’ll get way more done if you work slowly but surely!

You can find business advice on process automation and many tips here:

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