Happy New Year to everyone! Did you do some planning over the break? I sure you did with a G n T in hand. No doubt you have big plans for this year and all you would like to achieve. How is that going so far???
Procrastination. No one is immune.
How do you ensure that your days are the most productive they can be? How do you stop yourself from stumbling frequently into social media, or hopping up to make coffee after coffee? How do you make yourself do those tasks that are less than enjoyable? The drudgery of some aspects of business means that there are often small, or sometimes (gasp) big jobs that we push to one side, deliberately ignoring them, simply because we’re too busy, or we don’t want to do it.
Planning is imperative in business, and whether it’s small or large. It is important to set goals for your business, and yourself. This helps immensely in, not only your work structure but also achieving greater productivity, which essentially leads to greater profit.
Just recently, we have been trying a few new methods to somehow control the madness that goes on in Sample Room. I am discovering a better way to plan out my days every day. I’d like to share a few with you now that you might find useful in your business.
We have just introduced Asana to help me with planning and the giant list of tasks that need to be completed for each style we work on. If you haven’t heard of it, or if you are guilty of being easily distracted in your workday life, I encourage you to look at this program.
Asana offers something for everyone. There is a free version, for very small businesses, those with up to fifteen staff. It offers a basic search function and a basic dashboard for you to navigate, as well as unlimited tasks, conversations and project options. Asana also has Premium and Enterprise versions, for which you pay a monthly amount, and thereby have access to wider options within the program.
Once you’re signed up, you can organise your projects and break them down into manageable tasks. You can arrange due dates for each of these tasks, and have bells and whistles to bring in the reminder for those tasks. You are able to send messages to your team members. You can even assign yourself tasks such as shopping for labels, or a phone call to a fabric wholesaler. I find that when I break the tasks down into a timeframe such as ten or fifteen minutes, then I can tick more off my to-do list each day. If a task is too big, or its predicted time too big, then all too often we choose to avoid it.
I use Trello to keep track of the millions of ideas that pop into my head. I love the mobile app as I am able to screenshot from my mobile and save straight into Trello. The latest iPhone upgrade as an automatic upload function, so clever). We also use Trello to keep track of any work practises which are easy to forget because you can remember everything.
I have also personally invested in a planning physical diary called a Full Focus Planner. I have some really big projects to complete this year and to keep on track I have found this method great to not only achieve these goals but also remember that downtime and relaxation is so important to keep the fires burning through the whole year.
At the end of the day, I love a list and love ticking things off. I also hate being asked 100 times a day, ‘what’s next’ or ‘how do I do that’.
With these tools, I manage to get a bit more time to myself each day to do the things I need to do to keep business ticking along.
I find that by planning, I can achieve my end goal. I keep this end goal in mind, and the smaller projects lead me straight to it. I encourage you to do so, too.