September 9, 2019
“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four-hour days.”
– Zig Ziglar
Have you ever noticed how some people get so much done in a day and other people do not? We all have 24 hours to work with. The difference between highly productive people and those who are not has everything with how they manage their time and prioritize their activities. Here are 10 time management tips that will help you to be more focused and get more things done:
- Prioritize your schedule for the next day the night before. Make a list of everything that you want to accomplish. List “must do” and high pay off activities first. Focus on activities that bring in money and customers.
- Delegate everything that does not have to be done by you. Examine the list of activities you have planned for the next day. Work on the tasks that can only be done by you. Assign everything else to your team or a freelancer.
- Avoid micromanaging employees. Once you assign a task to another person, walk away from it. Surround yourself with people who you trust to get the job done without requiring you to intervene. Your team should have the skills to do the job with little to no supervision. If not, hire a new team.
- Do the most important tasks first. Spend 80% of your time on tasks that are going to generate cash flow or bring in new business and 20% on busy work.
- Schedule time for e-mail, text messages and social media. Peruse your emails and text messages, and social media channels at certain intervals during the day. Look for client or prospect emails and texts first. Leave the rest for later in the day when your energy level is lower. Unsubscribe to lists that do not provide you with valuable information. Avoid getting caught in reading every e-newsletter in your inbox. Scan the topics so you are aware of what is going on and mark interesting articles to read later. Turn off notifications. Write social media posts for the month in one sitting and schedule them to go out ahead of time. Avoid checking your social media channels throughout the day. Focus on one or two channels. Hire a ghostwriter to write and post for you.
- Declutter and organize your workspace. Keep your desk clear. Put away files that you are not currently working on. Organize files so that they are easy to find when you need them. Clear off your desk every day before leaving the office.
- Break down large project. Divide large projects into smaller tasks. Look at the due date and schedule the appropriate amount of work on each task daily so you will have plenty of time to complete the project. Avoid handing off parts of the project to associates at the last minute. Be mindful of the fact that your associates have their own priorities. What is urgent for you may not be urgent for them.
- Take breaks throughout the day to rejuvenate. Focus on finishing tasks and then take a break. Avoid being interrupted if you can. Schedule time on your calendar to work on projects. Close your office door, if necessary. Once the task is completed take a short break. Go outside and breath in some fresh air. Avoid eating at your desk and working through lunch whenever possible.
- Have realistic goals. Although you may want to get everything that you planned for the day done, don’t beat yourself up if you do not. This will help to reduce your level of stress. Things come up that you cannot expect or avoid. The important thing is that you keep your eye on the high payoff activities that generate income.
- Practice self-care. You need to make time in each day to eat well and exercise. Try getting up an hour earlier so you can relax, eat a healthy breakfast, meditate, center yourself, journal, read, or exercise. Have a morning routine that will set you up to have a productive day.
We all have the same amount of time to do what we must do. Successful people invest time daily reading books, watching videos and webinars, or listening to podcasts to enrich their knowledge. They invest in learning activities to stimulate their brain instead of wasting time on non-productive activities. I challenge you to audit what you do for two weeks. You will be surprised at how much time is wasted on unnecessary activities.
Feel free to contact any member of our team with questions at 610-828-1900 (PA) or 732-341-3893 (NJ). You can contact Rich Higgins, CPA, managing principal – New Jersey Office at
or me at
. We are always here to answer your questions.
Martin C. McCarthy, CPA, CCIFP
McCarthy & Company, PC
Disclaimer: This alert is for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. Information contained in this communication is not intended or written to be used as tax advice, and cannot be used by the recipient to avoid penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code. We strongly advise you to seek professional assistance with respect to your specific issue(s).