How often have you thought about techniques for managing tasks?
We’ve all been there: you’re on your way home from work, thinking about all the tasks you wanted to finish during the day and instead, you’re reminded of all things that are impeding you from managing tasks they way you should be.
For these situations, there are tons of suggestions on how to organize your tasks. But many of us get caught up with all the “productivity” techniques instead. Ultimately, a lot of time is spent organizing – but just not the actual tasks…
We’re going to show you 3 techniques that can really help you to manage your tasks like a pro.
1. Minimize meetings as a technique when managing tasks
What are meetings for? For some people (your boss, for example), meetings are about asserting authority. For some, it’s a social event. Sometimes you can spend hours in a meeting, but only 5 minutes in total might end up being productive. A lot of us have fallen into a bad habit of an “email-meeting-email” cycle, where we actually never do anything but promise to collaborate at some point in the future. Meetings are not a place in which any real work is actually done. It’s best to find a strategy to avoid them. If you have to lead meetings, take care to limit how long they last.
2. Create Different Long and Short-Term Goals
Usually, there is no need to multitask unless you’ve procrastinated all week and are behind on your due dates. You and your supervisor should have your tasks divided into yearly, monthly and weekly milestones.
Make a list of the things you want to accomplish throughout the year. Think of very high-end, long-term goals for this category. Let this be an overview of what to expect in the future, from both you and your team.
Once you’ve set up your yearly milestones, the next step is to break them down further and create your monthly milestones. By setting smaller, more manageable tasks and milestones for each month, it’s easier to see how your smaller tasks will contribute to an overall personal or team goal.
Again, go one step further, and set up weekly tasks and milestones based on your monthly goals. You’ll find it useful to separate the tasks into categories and estimate roughly the time you’ll need for each task. By using this method, you’ll avoid the pressure of strict due dates. You decide which task you feel like doing next based on your energy levels and workload. With this intuitive motivation, most of us work more productively.
A personal note: it’s vital to know your limitations, or you’ll burn out and derail your productivity plan. Practice makes perfect by setting the right number of tasks that should be done within a week.
3. Manage time with the Pomodoro technique and optimize your tasks management as well
Once you’ve finally won back a little time by reducing your time wasted in meetings and setting your milestones and tasks, it’s time to actually get them done!
The Pomodoro technique will help you to work on your tasks with intense focus for short periods of time. By not constantly switching from one task (or distraction) to the next, more work will be done in less time.
- Pick a task
- Start a timer and work for 25 minutes, concentrating fully
- Take a short break (3-5 minutes)
- Work another 25 minutes before taking a new break, and so on
- Every four cycles, take a longer break (15-30 minutes)
- Continue in that cycle till your task is done and then move to the next one
These techniques for managing tasks are simple and easy to follow. Give them a try and start managing your tasks like a pro.