As you might have realized at some point in your life, managing your tasks is not a child’s play. It’s actually a lot of work and, if you don’t have the necessary skills, it can end up damaging your team’s and your company’s results.
It’s easy to procrastinate, waste too much time on not so important activities and be less productive than the ideal. Organizing and preparing yourself may seem unnecessary, but don’t fall for it. Proper task management allows you to view your team’s tasks from a different angle and helps you plan ahead.
Ok, don’t freak out just yet. Task management is not a three-headed dragon and mastering it will only take a bit of patience (some times more than a bit) and working with a few tricks of the trade.
Not sure where to start? Check out these 6 simple task management tips that will make it easier for you to start planning for the future and leaving your troubles in the past.
Task management tips to boost your productivity
1. Be prepared for anything, always
This is the first, most important and most obvious rule when managing tasks. When you evaluate a task to plan ahead for it you must take all possible outcome scenarios into consideration. Consider, for example:
- What would happen if someone made a mistake?
- What if the person responsible doesn’t show up at work?
- What are the consequences if the task isn’t completed within its deadline?
Analyze all the possibilities (reasonably) and be prepared to overcome any obstacle on your way.
If errors and delays are recurrent, that’s an indicator that your task management isn’t ideal, and maybe it’s a good idea to double-check your processes efficiency as well. Take a look at this comparison to understand better the problems caused by managing processes with task management tools.
2. Use Kanban to plan ahead
Kanban is a management system that allows you to fully visualize the status of your processes through a board with dynamic columns. With a Kanban tool, you can properly keep track of all your team’s tasks in a visual way that’s easy to understand and analyze. Having all tasks on a board and the quick visualization of bottlenecks will help you to become much more efficient.
3. Break a big task into smaller pieces
Starting off with a big, complex task may be scary and put your team on the wrong mindset. It becomes a lot easier to jump into larger achievements after you’ve got a smaller, easier task off your plate.
To get things rolling, it’s always best to divide big tasks into small ones. That way, you’ll have that amazing achievement feeling we all get when moving a card to “done.”
4. Provide detailed instructions
Provide clear, detailed instructions for your tasks and their steps, so that your team members always know what they need to do. This avoids a waste of time with redoing activities and asking questions that could’ve been already answered.
5. Focus on one task at a time
I’ve seen many great professionals struggle because they thought they could do all at the same time. They can’t. No one can. That’s what makes this one of the most important task management tips.
Multitasking is the quickest way to occupy your time doing more than you can handle and end up having done nothing at all. Avoid multitasking by breaking big, complex tasks into smaller pieces and focusing on getting one thing done at a time.
Engage in one task at a time. Give it your complete, undivided attention so you can be as effective and productive as possible.
6. Do scary tasks first
We’re human. We have a natural tendency of avoiding difficult things. That’s ok; it’s our nature.
What isn’t natural, though, is avoiding difficult and challenging tasks (or even the ones you just don’t like doing) to the point of feeling sick and anxious, going through your days with fear. It doesn’t have to be that way, though.
Consider this: if you gather all your courage and tackle the ugly scary tasks first thing in the morning, you’ll feel accomplished for the rest of your day and way more motivated to keep on going.
Manage your teamwork with Pipefy!
If you use a tool to help you manage your daily work, you’re already one step ahead of the competition. These apps, such as Pipefy, offer you smart, logical techniques to prioritize and boost your productivity.
Give Pipefy a try and see how it can help you in many situations, from your daily work to managing a whole department. Check our best solutions: