Part One: The Importance of Scheduling
The importance and benefits of effective scheduling cannot be overestimated. The business site Mindtools.com provides excellent tips on time management.
Scheduling is the art of planning your activities so that you can achieve your goals and priorities in the time you have available.1
Many clients have told me they struggle managing their day. I have several recurring challenges with my schedule. Do these apply to you?
1. I underestimate how long a task, or a drive will take me.
2. I enter conflicting appointments in my calendar and don’t realize it until it arrives.
3. I waffle between my electronic and paper calendars and can’t keep them coordinated and up to date.
Today we’ll begin a new series designed to help business owners have a conflict free, easy to maintain and efficient schedule.
Step one is to establish realistic expectations about the amount of time you have available for work tasks. Decide on your daily priorities and then make a commitment to devote clearly marked blocks of time to those specific tasks and stick to it.
As a lawyer, marking my time down in increments of tenths of an hour, is second nature. Even if tracking your time isn’t required for billing your clients, a detailed plan for your business day is a must.
If I don’t set a time limit on a project, I will dillydally and be distracted to the point of accomplishing little over the designated period. Knowing I have a time limit forces me to concentrate. Putting my cellphone in a drawer and having the receptionist hold my calls further limits distractions and keeps me focused.
Take some time today (no pun intended!) to reflect on how you can implement or improve upon your method of scheduling your work day.
Next week I’ll look at the methods for sorting your tasks into three categories: Essential, High-Priority and Discretionary.
Until then, good luck keeping up!