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Productivity and time seem to be the constant concerns of business people, entrepreneurs, project managers and everyone who have more responsibilities than time allows them. And why shouldn’t they be? We have a limited time to work and tasks that sometimes seem unlimited. We have gathered the most useful tips and tricks that help you manage and keep control of your calendar like a pro.
To be able to keep track of your time, first you need to have a calendar that best suits your needs. Look for the design that seems the most appealing, so you can enjoy working with it. Find and print a calendar, then store the file into your computer as back-up. Then, start your scheduling with our tips and tricks.
1. Start with Recurrent Responsibilities
We all have monthly meetings, assessments, reports and internal tasks to handle in our work. There are also pitches to organize regularly or market studies you analyze monthly. Mark these first in your calendar. You need to make sure that you have time to perform your regular tasks.
Monthly duties could be the reasons why you developed a calendar in the first place. Therefore, if you label them, you’ll know when and what you must do.
2. See How Long Projects Last
If you begin a project and it’s due this month, you should also know how long it takes to work on it. So, before marking the deadline in your calendar, think about how long it lasts and how much time you will spend to solve it.
By scheduling projects in your calendar, you will gain access to your time available for other projects. If you’re involved in one of the money-making businesses of 2017, then a simple project might involve plenty of time.
3. Include Your Days Off
Once you’ve marked your most important activities, it’s time to delete time from your calendar. Cut the national days off and your vacation, if there is any. Think about doctors’ appointments, bills to pay or other responsibilities that take time.
This way, you avoid scheduling work in a day when you won’t get to the office or when you’ll be away. Your calendar needs to reflect reality, so it should include the real available time every month.
4. Get Assistance, But Manage
You should not be the only one who has access to your calendar. Provide your assistance with access to your monthly schedules and train him/her regarding your time. When you will receive a call regarding a meeting, your assistant will know if you’re available.
However, be the only one who manages your calendar. If someone else makes notes on your schedule, you might not understand them. Your assistant can leave notes on your agenda or desks. However, the calendar is your responsibility.
5. Plan Meetings Thoroughly
A meeting requires time to get there and come back to the office. Sometimes, it also involves a pre or post-research. See how long a meeting takes away from your time and mark your calendar accordingly.
Nobody want to get to the office in the morning and see they must attend a meeting in an hour, but the meeting place is two hours away.
6. Prioritize Meetings
Many of us have meetings, team buildings, workshops, trainings or conferences to attend. However, studies claim that some meetings are costly and have less productive results. Moreover, sometimes you might need to work on tasks which have higher priorities than meetings.
If a meeting or conference does not directly suit your needs or provide relevant information for your work, try to find a way to be excused and stick to your schedule.
7. Use Smart Memos
Calendars handle your monthly responsibilities, not your daily tasks. Remember this aspect every time you want to add a task into your calendar. If there’s a task which is essential to your business, make references to your agenda.
Synchronize your calendar with an agenda or a to-do list. Feel free to include notes such as see agenda, see list or see calendar. They all work to provide you with productivity.
Mastering Your Time
The calendar is the one of the most visible and reliable tools to handle your time and productivity. You can rely on it even when there is a power cut. Keep it close to your desk and it will remind you daily of your responsibilities.
You can evaluate the calendar’s benefits and what you need to improve by evaluating how you managed the prior month. When you’ll look at previous calendar after a while, you might discover that you’ve optimized a significant amount of your time!