Do you use a to-do list to manage your daily activities?
One of the biggest problems that I found with the to-do lists is the probability that entrepreneurs become note takers instead of doers. As human beings, we tend to put everything on our lists as something that we need to do, without thinking about our native capacity of doing things.
What about the quality of our work?
Let’s say that we can put 20 to-dos on the list. In the normal conditions, we can finish in one working day, only 10 of them. But, if we are committed to the list, we can try to finish everything.
What does this mean?
As the first thing, we can try to increase our working hours. But, as we become more tired, the quality of our work results will be much lower.
Another thing is to increase the speed of doing things. But, as we know, a shorter time for doing things will impact our job quality.
Then, how can you finish everything that you put on your to-do list?
You don’t want to increase your working time, and you don’t want to increase the speed of doing things to sacrifice your job’s quality. You need a systematic approach if you want to be more organized and finish everything you plan to finish each day.
Let’s talk about some of the ideas beside one larger systematic approach.
#1 Keep Your To-Do List Small
You are a human being with limited working hours in each of your days. You cannot always finish everything that you want to finish.
Before several years, I’ve made big mistakes with my to-do list because I’ve used it to put as much as possible on each day. But, tomorrow, I have a much bigger list when I don’t finish everything for today’s list. After several days, I have a list that simply I don’t want to look at tasks on the list. The big part of the tasks becomes simply forgotten and never finished.
Now, I am using a small list with 5-8 tasks on it. That’s my capacity, and it gives me to finish everything on the list.
#2 Keep Your List Clean and Concise
Sometimes we want to use our to-do list as a tool for everything. However, it is not a tool for everything. It is simply the tool that will help you to become more organized in your working days. You need a to-do list to ensure that you will finish everything important that you need to complete for your business.
If you want your list to be clean and concise, you need only the task’s name, the time when you need to finish, and the tasks’ priority.
#3 Don’t Use Automation
There are too many tools for managing to-do lists that have many possibilities to automate something. But, my personal experience is not very good with automation. Why? Because I found myself as a person that didn’t care enough for automated tasks.
As always, you will have different tasks that you have each day, each week, or each month. When it comes to to-do lists, the logical step for you is to automate these tasks, which means that they will be automatically added to your list.
But, you are an entrepreneur. Suppose those tasks are something so obvious or so expected, why you need to work on them. Think about the possibilities of delegating them. If you can predict when you need to work on them, and the work is a simple repetition from the previous cycle, you can delegate them to one of your team members.
#4 You Need to Prioritize Your To-Do List
Each task cannot be with the same weight as another task from your list. Some of them are more important than others. Some of them will add more value to your business than others.
Your job as an entrepreneur is to focus your attention on the most important tasks for you and your business.
#5 Use Technology to Track Your Progress
Today we are connected with different types of technology solutions that can help us to be more productive in our average workday.
You can use an application that can be simple managing your to-do lists, which means that you can simply add tasks, set priorities, track changes, track accomplishments…
#6 Remove All Possible Distractions
When your list becomes small, clean, and concise with the high-priority tasks, you need to focus your attention on those tasks’ accomplishments. Remember, now you have only high-priority tasks on your list. Your business will depend on them.
On the other side, you receive too many emails; you receive different alarms on your PC from different social media. You receive different phone calls. All of these distractions have the potential to depart you from the successful accomplishment of high-priority tasks.
Reorganize your working environment to remove all the possible distractions when you work on your to-do lists.