Keeping To Schedule & Its Advantages To Your Business is a write-up about how scheduling daily business activities affect out expected performances and output.
If there was anything in this world that fascinated me about scheduling, it will be the proper timing and arrangement before a football match starts. The press conference, players lineup scheduling, coming on to the pitch, theme songs or anthems then kick off at the exact scheduled time. That sort of perfect organisation was a thing of surprise to me. But now i know better.
Little tasks not properly scheduled could turn out to be time-consuming and eventually stressful.
In our businesses, we tend to struggle with self-imposed schedules. Meetings, Traffic, Phone calls and unplanned occurrences can take out 36hours out of the 24hours we have in a day if not properly managed.
But by carefully putting together a schedule, you can balance short-term and long-term goals.
This will help you prioritize what’s important in your life.
After a while of struggling with managing time myself, i have been able to come up with a pattern that works for me.
- Create Email Time: This is very important because we are of the habit of checking emails once they drop. If a particular time isn’t created for emails, this particular activity will take a chunk of your daily business period.
- Have a routine: Whatever your daily business activities are, there are certain things you do every day and they all of a pattern of priority. Figure out what activities you spend your time on and what activities are most important. For instance, if between 8-10am sometimes, you take inventory of your goods, check and reply your email & make important calls. And other times, meetings between the same exact time (8-10am) distracts you from your normal morning rituals. You will need to prioritize your time for each activity.As you begin to pay more attention to routines, you will begin to alter them in order to get more out of your time by putting restrictions around certain activities.
- Productivity & Timing: As you look into your routine and build you daily schedule, consider your most demanding tasks and your most productive period. By putting the most demanding tasks on your most productive periods, you maximize your productivity.
With this, you will be able to know what works best for you during specific periods of the day.
- Avoid Over-Planning: Optimism sometimes about how much business activities we can execute in a day might push us into over-planning. For instance in Lagos, Nigeria, you spend an average of 1 to 2 hours in traffic trying to get to your work-place every day. This doesn’t even include the time you spend in traffic if you’re trying to meet up with some clients. Now imagine having an over-packed schedule. There’s practically no way one will execute all the tasks.There are bound to be interruptions and distractions in your daily business activities. No matter what job or business you’re into. So you need to be very realistic with yourself while planning.
- Create Margins: Margins can vary from minutes, hours, days or even weeks depending on the activities. For instance, if you have to deliver a job for a client by 8am on Friday, you can create a buffer margin of 2days to get all things ready. This provides you with space for amendments and proper preparation.Creating your schedule most times look like this:
1, 9am – 10am: Check & Reply Emails.
2, 10am – 11.30am: Meeting With Marketing Dept.
3, 11.30am – 12noon: Call New Clients.Rather than letting activity time run into each other, create a buffer of about 15mins. This will help you round up properly and prepare yourself mentally for the next task.
- Personal & Family Time: Personal activities and Family are the most important things in our lives. If you don’t make adequate plans for these activities and stick to the plans, they will end up taking a lot of your time because you must always attend to family and personal things whenever they come up.For me every morning, I go jogging within 6am to 7am. And my weekends are spent watching football and with family.
But sticking to the plan is a battle for me as well because as i am writing this very article, i am watching the English Premier League game between Bournemouth and Tottenham Hotspurs. It isn’t easy sticking to the plan but i continue to struggle for perfection.
- Plan A Day Ahead: Make a rough schedule for the next day where you list all of the activities you want to complete and the amount of time you want to spend on each. Allow some flexibility as you get acclimated to having your time budgeted. You can do this while recharging yourself with a relaxed evening.It’s usually best to make plans for your day in advance. If you have never made a schedule before, it might take some time to work out all of the kinks.