To successfully run a business, you need to keep a check of all tasks that need to be done. Various systems have been designed to do this, such as the Todoist and Kanban. However, to-do lists don’t work most of the time. Such lists are extremely ineffective when it comes to completing projects or tasks, and they just allow things to pile up and never get done. This can be either because the tasks are too much to complete or because they just don’t interest people enough. That being said, all the tasks that are essential to a project need to be completed. So to proceed, we need to make some changes. Here are some ways on how to work from your vision, not your to-do list…
Why Are To-Do Lists Ineffective?
To-do lists are problematic for several reasons. Sure, they allow you to keep track of what you need to do, but they don’t encourage you to get done with these tasks. By failing to create a sense of urgency, a to-do list just becomes a dumpster of undone tasks.
It’s like accumulating a lot of laundry that you want to do, but you just end up washing your most-worn clothes. The pile of laundry with your least-worn clothes only gets bigger and bigger. When you finally get to the task, it’s gotten so bloated and big that you’re discouraged to do it. This is because of a couple of reasons.
To-Do Lists Encourage Doing Too Much
To-do lists tend to accumulate tasks. Hence, when you get to them, you think completing everything will be doing too much. This discourages progress and prevents you from checking things off because you believe that completing one task will allow you to complete the other. It almost seems like cheating to go on to another task before completing the first one. All this leads to a slowdown in progress.
To-Do Lists Don’t Rank the Value of Each Task
To-do lists also don’t rank tasks depending on their value. This is extremely frustrating for many employees when they try to organize their day. Organizing tasks according to alphabetical order or in the order that people will remember them is inefficient. Instead, tasks that are supposed to be completed within the shortest time or are critical should be completed first. However, to-do lists make no mention of that.
Prioritizing Tasks Is Better
The first thing you should do to get things done more efficiently is to prioritize them. To-do lists should be done away with and tasks should be prioritized according to the time they will take and their criticality. The latter can depend on the payout the project entails or the value of the client that has assigned it. This prioritization will ultimately help to improve efficiency and mitigate practices that delay important projects.
You should also find out which tasks take what amount of time. This will help you figure out a timeline for the project. Instead of to-do lists, this timeline should help you figure out what order the tasks should be done in. There are four different categories you can put these projects into:
- Important and urgent (do immediately)
- Not urgent but important (figure out a timeline and execute accordingly)
- Not important but urgent (do immediately, but don’t expend too many resources)
- Not important or urgent (can wait until later, but establish a deadline)
Doing this will at least help you clear your timeline consistently and complete projects.
Keep a Goal in Mind
Remember to keep a goal in mind when running a business and completing tasks. This is what you call, in business lingo, a vision. The business vision should lead to something. Every single task that you do as a business should lead to that goal. Whether it’s getting a new computer, updating software, taking on a client, or expanding your living space, it should matter. This way, you can avoid waste and think about whether your contributions and actions are improving the business.
This way of completing tasks also improves on the fatal flaw with to-do lists. They often lend themselves to accept every task as equal and important. More than categorizing and prioritizing tasks, you need to get rid of ones that don’t make sense. The ones that don’t contribute to your goals shouldn’t be accommodated at all. For example, serving a client or taking on a project that doesn’t relate to your goal or doesn’t benefit you. This is not to say that all the actions you take should involve monetary gain.
You can take on projects that involve social welfare or charity even when they don’t benefit you monetarily. They contribute social good to the community. However, projects that harm the community or are unrelated to your business should be left out of your timeline.
Use Online Business Management
Using Online Business Management is the best alternative to the to-do list. Not only does it help you prioritize your tasks, but it also helps you improve efficiency and boost your presence online. Online business management is essential in the 21st century. It helps you reroute resources to things that increase your presence within your market. It helps you expand beyond physical borders and get your products and services to the niche market. It will also help you tap that niche market better than brick and mortar stores or a physical presence will.
Using these tips, you can go beyond the to-do list and work from your vision. This approach can get you not only better returns, but better focus in your business. Stop the tasks piling up and switch to a vision-based approach for a business.
For more information on how to work from your vision and not your do-do list, contact us today.