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One man band? 5 Tips to get stuff done

Delegation, passing responsibilities and resource planning are luxuries that many an entrepreneur, sole trader or member of a small team can only fanaticise about. When there are too many things to do and too few hands to do it, one needs every trick of the trade just to get by. Here are 5 tips to help.

Tip 1: Be selective about what tasks you do

There will always be more work than you can do. Dispense the idea that the work can be wrapped up just before an extended lunch break followed by a quick 9 holes of golf. It is necessary to select which work will be chosen from the backlog you have on your table. There are many ways to select which task to do from a long list, but for a small or even single person team, the over-riding one is which will bring the greatest benefit in progressing your business.

Tip 2: Get organised

Get a task management system. You need a single system where you can dump all of the things you need to do into. In clearing out your brain you will then be able to select the task that needs to be done and get it done quickly and effectively. One of the most popular is “Getting Things Done”, by David Allen. Here a simple flow chart enables you get all of the tasks occupying your mind into a single system. It is a good start and definitely worth to read.

Tip 3: Chunk your tasks

What this means is to break the tasks down into small pieces. Often procrastination comes when we are faced with a large task and we have no idea how to deal with it and we put it off. Breaking it down enables to progress the overall task one step at a time. Moreover, this brings additional benefits – see Tip 5.

Tip 4: Have multiple actionable tasks

Inevitable for some tasks you will hit a roadblock. This is something that prevents further progress in executing that task. Examples could be waiting on someone to get back to you on something, waiting on product to arrive etc. In any such cases you need to be able to readily switch to another task and progress that pending activities on the other task.

Tip 5: Take your tasks on the road

I don’t mean this literally so please no office work while driving. If you have executed Tips 2 and 3 and have it placed in the cloud it enables you to progress chunks of your work anytime, anywhere. Many multi-platform online task management tools exist to enable you to access your todo list anywhere. Some examples include Wunderlist, Google Keep, Any.do, HiTask, Trello to name but a few. So, if you find yourself on the bus, whip out your todo list, identify a sub-task for the duration of your trip and execute it. That’s one less task to do the next day!

Note: The same principle applies to the lucky individuals who find themselves lying on a tropical beach sipping a cocktail. With an umbrella in it.

So, there you have it. Even a one man band can be efficient if well organised!

Brendan Toner

Let me welcome you to this alcove of the internet. In this little productivity blog, I detail the trials and tribulations of trying to use my time more effectively utilising the latest productivity tools and techniques. I hope you enjoy the articles, cheers! Brendan Toner, author of Done Before Brekky

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1 Response

  1. September 18, 2015

    […] When there are too many things to do and too few hands to do it, one needs every trick of the trade just to get by. Here are 5 tips to help.  […]

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