Take the Task Test

April 3, 2014

Need to free yourself up to focus on your business and take it to the next level? Take a look at the Task Test; it helps you analyse, prioritise and delegate your tasks, ultimately helping you find the time to work on your business, not in it.

Meet two pretty fantastic ladies.  Janine and Jo from GET IT DONE MUM are working with me to help move my business forward, they say two hands are better than one … well I have four hands in this pot! Being able to talk through my challenges and develop strategies is priceless. So, to the business at hand!

I’m busy (thank God!), wonderful clients refer me to more wonderful clients and so my diary fills up. I have a team of talented contractors but there are a few (quite a few) tasks I mistakenly think I simply have to do myself.  Not so!

Janine shared this task analysis test with me today and it’s too good to keep to myself.

The Task Test

  1. Write down the tasks you’ve worked on over the last week.
  2. Circle in RED tasks I hate to do.
  3. Circle in BLUE tasks I don’t mind doing which aren’t necessarily a good use of my time.
  4. Circle in YELLOW tasks I love doing and simply can’t let go of.
  5. Circle in GREEN tasks I’m doing but not very good at.
  6. Circle in ORANGE tasks which are a great use of my time and will help me reach my goals.

Now list these same tasks you can delegate in order of priority.

Tasks at the top of the list take the longest.

Sort tasks in the following order: green, blue, red, yellow.

It’s now clear which tasks you should and shouldn’t be doing.

Your goal … is to have a list of tasks you are responsible for which are ORANGE and YELLOW.

After the Test

Now what?

Now you look at how you can move the tasks you need to move off your desk.

Possible solutions:

  • Delegate within your existing team
  • Outsource (options include a professional services firm, a VA (!!!), online labour resources such as Guru or Odesk)
  • Apps and cloud based systems
  • Eliminate the tasks completely
  • Systemise or automate the tasks

Another strategy that works well is to block out your calendar.  Do the RED tasks first thing each morning (straight after coffee time!) and concentrate on how you’ll feel once these tasks are done for the day.  Block out free time in your day for those unexpected tasks and for catch-up opportunities but plan each day and stick to that plan.  Managing emails, writing, meetings, client work (which you’ve now colour coded!) …. by blocking these out in your calendar and sticking to the calendar you’ll find you’ll be working more effectively, efficiently and productively.  It takes discipline (believe me, I fall off the wagon all the time) but it does help.

Your Turn: How do you manage your workload? Need more help? Talk to Justine about your task list and how Your VA can help.

 

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