Managing your workload sets you up for a better balance of energy. As a small business owner, your work bleeds into your life. Using organizational tools that work for you ensures you will keep your sanity. Here are some of our favorite suggestions to help you lighten your load and organize it!
There are many tools available to create checklists, including the good ol’ paper and pen! Find one that works for you and keep an ongoing list of what you need to do.
Besides the satisfying feeling of checking things off, having a view of what you need to do can help you to organize by level of importance, priority, and urgency.
You can even review your checklists over time to see what tasks take the most energy but provide the least return. Restructure your work to eliminate those tasks from your list, and maybe even from your business altogether.
There are some modern takes on checklists. You could use an app like Wunderlist that is free and allows you to collaborate with others on tasks. Or you could try this take on a check list. It is reusable and is a system you can implement into your business.
At Freedom Makers, we have just started using Asana. It allows our Core Team to coordinate, collaborate, and communicate across multiple initiatives, projects, and daily tasks. When someone needs to request something, they simply create a task and assign it to the person. The tasked person gets the satisfaction of checking it off and the requester gets a notification that it has been completed.
So far, it is working well for us to keep track of all the plates we are juggling.
Asana is great for teams. There are many other project management tools available for solo business owners and for simpler projects. If you need something more dynamic than Excel, be sure to check out tools like Trello or Planner on Microsoft 365.
In a previous blog, we shared ways to use your calendar for organizing your workday and projects. Within those time blocks, you can create tasks to be completed. Some email systems even let you create tasks from emails and place them directly into your calendar.
Email is NOT the answer
No matter what tool or method you try, know that simply using your email inbox as an organizational tool does not work. And here is why:
- Everything is in one place, meaning you jump from one topic to the other constantly, regardless of level of importance or urgency. The friction from doing that slows you down too much and may cause you to miss important things.
- You can easily get distracted by new incoming mail and before you know it, the whole day has gone by.
- Do try to organize your email in a way that you can add them to your task list so that things do get done at the right time.
When all else fails…
Hire others to help! Outsource! Delegate!
- Remember how we said you can review your checklists over time? Use this to determine what you can have someone else take over.
- Hire a virtual assistant to take on tasks that repeat.
- If email is too much of a distraction or hindrance, have someone else review and create tasks for you.
- Having a team can be more fun, allow you to get more done, give you the freedom to work on the parts of the business you enjoy the most: your zone of genius!
We invite you to have a conversation with us to learn how a Freedom Maker can help your small business. They can help organize your workload and keep things running smoothly while you focus on your mission. Contact us today!