To answer the question in one word- Productivity. We all want to be more productive at work, there are many ways to improve on our productivity levels you are but we firmly believe the number one way to do this is time management, setting deadlines is a key factor of effective time management. But how do we set effective realistic deadlines and stick to them to deliver results on time?
How to set and stick to deadlines
Think When, Not What- Rather than trying to figure out what needs to get done, first look at when it has to be done by. This may sound strange but if you know when you going to finish a project you can successfully plan the tasks which will fit into that timeframe.
Break It Down- Break the life of the project into time units and work toward having the tasks completed within smaller units- days, weeks, or months to help keep on top of your deadline. You should not wait until a month into a project to check your progress. Your first check should be after day one, to ensure you have started effectively. Keep on top of it regularly inspecting progress and adjusting tasks, as necessary.
Never Change Your Deadline– So you have checked your progress after a week and you’re behind? Do not be tempted to change your deadline, not even by a day! If every time you hit a setback you move the deadline, you are not meeting it. Your regular checks should mean you have identified where you are behind before it can become a major problem, instead of pushing the deadline, focus and prioritize important tasks.
Track Your Time- Keeping track of time spent on projects is vital to keep ahead of deadlines. Knowing how much time is going into tasks can let you identify if they have been planned effectively or if you have delegated the workload fairly.
Why are deadlines so important?
We all know companies where deadlines have become guidelines, they promise that it will be done in a month and one becomes two, two to three and six months after the start date the project is finally completed. It does not look good for the company and it’s frustrating for the client and they lose business. Do not let it happen to you your time management reputation is important when people are considering doing business with you.
Deadlines also cause stress, leaving projects too late can lead to you worrying and ultimately affect your productivity and quality of work. Missed deadlines can often result in penalties, keeping on top of them and avoids unnecessary heartache for you and your team.
We have all been there, deadline approaching and something completely unexpected disrupts progress or worse brings a project to a halt. Cutting it close does not leave time to overcome this sort of challenges. Keeping ahead of deadlines also leaves time for improvements to be made, ensuring your work is the best it can be.
Want to give yourself the best opportunity to keep ahead of deadlines, then time management is vital. Time Tracking software can help you better manage your time to meet deadlines, increase productivity and produce better quality work. Want to try 1Time, we offer a 30-day free trial, want to give it a go? Click here.