Time Management

Photo for Business Insights blog-5 Tips to Maximize your Efficiency

5 Tips to Maximize your Efficiency

Everyone has only twenty four hours a day, whether you are a beggar or the richest man in the world. There is simply no exception. Why, then, is it that some people manage to accomplish so much in a day, while some simply while their time away and end up wondering where all their time went to?

Since there is no way to make a day last more than twenty four hours, the next best thing we can do is to maximize efficiency in using our time. Here are five tips to help you accomplish that end.

1) Make a to-do list

Having a to-do list gives you a sense of direction and lets you know exactly what you are supposed to accomplish for that day. A common mistake for beginners is trying to stuff in too many things at a time, and ending the day disappointed at failing to accomplish all of them. This is normal and as time goes by, you will have a firmer grasp of your own abilities.

2) Block out your time

Blocking out your time enables you to create a to-do list more effectively. It allows you to set how much time you should spend on each individual activity, and the sense of urgency prevents your mind from wandering and improves your focus.

3) Focus on one thing at a time

The power of focusing on one thing at a time is of utmost importance and ties in with the rest of the points. While multi-tasking is a common activity in today’s fast-paced world, we must be realistic and realize that many items cannot be grouped together and done simultaneously. Focusing on one thing at a time not only allows you to maintain full concentration on that one activity and allowing you to complete it fast, it also results in a high quality of work as your attention is not diverted to other issues.

4) Give yourself a break

All work and no play, makes Jack (and the rest of us) a dull boy. Workaholics often have this thinking that giving yourself a break is being too indulgent, and is something to be avoided at all costs. However, the truth is that this is not only detrimental to your health and absolutely boring, it also zaps you of the energy required to function effectively. In short, an occasional break or reward for yourself is essential.

5) Set goals

Setting goals is somewhat similar to writing a to-do list. The difference is that it instead provides you with a big picture view of your objectives. Classify your goals into short-term, middle-term and long-term for a clearer picture of what you hope to achieve.

If you diligently take action and implement the give steps in this article, you will be well on your way to maximizing your efficiency and to having a renewed sense of vigour in carrying out your daily activities!

photo of priorities image for article-Why You Need to Set Priorities

Why You Need to Set Priorities

Setting priorities is extremely important in making any kind of progress in life. Unfortunately, not many people realize just how important it is. When you don’t set priorities, you are essentially running on autopilot, doing the first thing that comes to mind rather than the thing that needs to be done the most. It is well worth the time it takes to clarify, organize, and set priorities.

Get More Done

The main advantage of setting priorities effectively is that it helps you to be more productive. You’ll move more quickly to the goals in every area of your life, whether career, finance, business, family life, relationships, or creativity.

Keeping Balance

Setting priorities helps you to keep the various areas of your life in balance. If you don’t make family a priority, you may end up working all the time and neglecting that area. When you set priorities, you give each area of your life its due time and make sure you’re making progress in each area. When you set priorities, you can also make sure that you allot some time for leisure activities and hobbies, even when you’re busy with work or other obligations.

Limited Time

Setting priorities is essential in time management. We all have limited time in which to work, so choosing which tasks are the most important ensures that you get them all done and waste no time in doing them.

Your To-Do List

We all make to-do lists of things that need to be done today or soon. List making defeats its own purpose if you have a list of ‘should’ crowding out the ‘have-to’s’. If you know how to choose priorities well, you can organize this list so that the most important things get done. Your lists will be more effective.

Relief from Stress

Finally, setting priorities offers serious stress relief. It’s hard to juggle work, family, and all the other areas of your life. When you have many things to do, you feel swamped and out of control. Setting priorities helps you to take control. When you feel like you’re on top of things, your stress levels will be significantly reduced.

The difference between people who set priorities and those who don’t is that the former has more control over their lives. The latter set priorities unconsciously. Learning how to make lists, arrange your time, and see that you get things done helps you take conscious control over situations.

 

Photo for Business Insights blog-How to Set Boundaries with Customers and Clients

How to Set Boundaries with Customers and Clients

It’s important to have a good relationship with your customers and clients. You want to be friendly and personal and make them feel like you truly care about their success. But in order to have a healthy relationship, you need to put certain boundaries in place. Consistent boundaries are essential for building a trusting partnership.

Hours of Operation

Decide when you’ll be available to your customers. Modern technology allows us to be at our customers’ beck and call around the clock. But there’s a reason why companies establish set hours of business. Choose your “hours of operation” and make them known. When choosing these times, keep in mind the needs of your clients and customers. You may want to choose later or earlier hours to accommodate.

Means of Communication

Decide how you will communicate with customers. Email and social media are both appropriate for business communications. You might want to be careful about texting or chatting apps. These can sometimes feel too personal and invasive. Ask yourself whether you want clients contacting you there. If you don’t habitually use these for business, there’s also the risk that messages might get lost.

Make Allowances for Urgent Issues

There may be some cases where you can bend the boundaries you’ve set. For example, you might tell clients they can reach you for urgent issues over the phone. You may check your business emails once on each weekend day. In order for this to work effectively, establish guidelines about what’s urgent and what isn’t.

Define Your Services

Although you’d like to be there for anything your customers and clients need, you should define exactly what services you can and can’t offer. If they want you to do something outside your defined services, decide whether you’ll do it for an additional charge.

Keep Your Distance

Some people don’t understand or respect boundaries, and there’s a good chance some of your customers will fall into this group. Identify these people early on and put strategies in place for dealing with them. Above all, be clear and honest with them about what is possible. Some strategies include:

  • Divert conversations away from too-personal topics
  • Make it clear exactly how long you can spend with them (“I’m sorry, I have to go now. I have a meeting in a few minutes”)
  • Acknowledge that you’ve heard what they said; don’t ignore it (“I can hear it’s very frustrating for you.”)
  • Propose something positive where possible (“I’m afraid there’s nothing I can do to help with this but what I can do is…..”)

Learn How to Say “No”

We instinctively don’t like to say “no.” We all want to be helpful and don’t want to offend someone by rejecting their request. But it’s sometimes necessary to firmly decline, and you should have techniques in place for doing that. You can:

  • Suggest someone else who can help when you’re busy
  • Arrange another time when you can do what the person is requesting
  • Say “no” clearly and explain why

Building Trust

Remember that it’s not an issue of being “nice” or not. Boundaries are the foundations of healthy relationships, so you’re defining the terms of your relationship. This helps to build trust and mutual respect.

Learn More

Want to learn more about how you can manage the people and situations around you? Head over to our course on Eliminating Overwhelm and discover tactics to manage your time wisely.

 

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