How to make your schedule work for you, and not the other way around!
Productivity. It’s one of those buzzwords which you know you should be doing something about, but you’re too busy running late, overstretching yourself and ending up frazzled. No judgment here…I’m guilty of the same sometimes.
You know that in order to grow your business or just enjoy the one you have right now, you need to be smarter with your time so get the most out of your work/life balance (another one of those fancy buzzwords right there!). If you juggle a busy diary then you’ll be happy to know that there’s a few small actions you can take that will make a huge difference to how you manage your time:
Set your non-negotiable hours. If you’re on school run duty first thing or pick up in the afternoon (or both!), don’t plan or agree to any meetings in that first or last hour of your working day. That way if the traffic is bad, or you need to pop in and talk to a teacher, you know you’ve allowed enough time to accommodate that, and you won’t be fretting that you’re going to be late for your client or your kiddo.
Travel times. Factoring in time for travel is crucial for not arriving at your appointment in a hot sweaty mess, whether you’re travelling from department to department on site, or to another location entirely. Depending on where you’re travelling to, always allow at least 30 minutes extra to negotiate any traffic issues.
Maximising your time out of the office. If you’re heading any more than an hour away to meet someone, is there anyone else you could be meeting that day so you get the most from not being at your desk? Two meetings in one day is a way better use of your time. However this doesn’t mean you can plan a meeting at 9am in Aberdeen and a 2pm in Ashby de La Zouche. Unless you have a private jet to get you there, you’re going to be pretty stretched to make it. Try to plan your meetings in a similar location, and if that’s not possible try suggesting somewhere that’s half way between where you are and where your client is. There are some great alternative places to meet than in a clients office – encourage them to get out of the office too!
Overnight Stays. Sometimes meeting at an inconvenient time is unavoidable. If your biggest client does insist on a 9am meeting on a Monday morning and they’re any more than 2 hours away, would an over-night on Sunday help? It’s extra outlay but if you need to impress, would you prefer to arrive frazzled from a fracas on the M6 or fresh as a daisy after a night in the local Travelodge?
Hopefully these tips will help you tame your timings and make your working day a little less stressful. If you want to know more about how a Virtual Assistant can help you implement all of the above and more, so you get more time to do the work you love as opposed to the admin you hate, then I’d love to talk to you