If you’re a startup or a small business owner, it’s likely you don’t have enough time or resources to do everything you need to get done. There are only so many hours in a day, and it can often feel like you’re running on an endless hamster wheel of tasks and deadlines.
When there’s so much to do and so little time to do it in, it can be hard to reach the holy grail of peak productivity. However, it’s important to streamline processes and ensure you’re working smart, not hard if you want to push away from the endless day-to-day grind of running a business.
One survey showed that 72% of small business owners feel overwhelmed by their roles and responsibilities, while 56% believe that communication is key to boosting productivity.
This information is all well and good, but putting it into action is the hard part. For startup owners, the answer lies in optimizing and managing tasks effectively. There are two major aspects involved in effective task management:
Effective communication within your team. Excellent time management.
Optimizing both of these aspects will create a much slicker process overall, leading to an increase in productivity and team morale. There are five steps involved in optimizing task management:
Outlining tasks. Categorizing and prioritizing tasks. Scheduling in key activities. Delegating to the right team members. Tracking and measuring results.
Let’s dig into each of these in more detail.
The first step in any kind of process is to determine what exactly needs to be done. Doing this will give you an idea of where to go next and what steps are involved.
For every task that needs to be completed, create a checklist of everything that’s involved in getting you to the end result. For example, if you’re planning a marketing campaign to launch your latest product, think about the key steps that are involved in that. This might include:
Identifying the best channels. Commissioning graphics and materials. Writing content. Creating a landing page to direct potential users to. Publishing and distributing the content.
This is a barebones outline of what might be involved, but you get the gist. Once you know each step in the process you can start to get a feel for how much time you’ll need and which tasks need to be completed first before the next can be started.
Meister Tip: Use checklists to add more detail to your tasks and track their progress. Find out more how to unleash the power of checklists in the workplace by reading this excellent post.
Categorize and Prioritize Tasks
Once you’ve got an overview of the steps involved in each task, you can start to identify the high-priority ones. These are the ones that require the most time or that need to be completed first.
If we use the marketing campaign example above, the priority tasks are surely the commissioning of necessary materials and the writing of the content itself. Without them, the publishing and distribution stage comes to a grinding halt.
The easiest way to determine which tasks are of highest priority is to write the outline out in chronological order, starting with the tasks that need to be completed first.
Meister Tip: If you’re using a task management tool like MeisterTask, make aContinue reading