coming from a startup, I know a thing or two about chaos. we’ve got what we refer to fondly as “fire drills” or things that occur without any warning and keep us on our toes. and I actually sort of like them for the most part, as long as they’re easy to solve. but the part that’s especially hard for me to deal with when there’s a lot going on at work is figuring out how I stay on top of my game while I deal with other pressing needs.
take for example, your weekly schedule and responsibilities. assume in a normal week you’ve got meetings, a few new tasks that crop up, and your weekly to-do’s. how do you stay on top of things? how do you keep cranking away at your core responsibilities while still reacting and solving the things that pop up throughout the week? how do you grow and develop?
the first thing I’d say when it comes to managing your responsibilities on top of new tasks, fire drills, and meetings, is to stay very organized. I can’t stress how important this is to your overall sanity and mindset. the more organized you become in what you need to get done, the better you’ll set yourself up for success. figure out what organizational techniques work for you and then put those to good use. mine is lists – I love to check stuff off. I have a daily list and a weekly list so that I can make sure I’m getting things done every day while still working towards larger goals.
another strategy to keeping yourself on point is to schedule time to be creative and learn. this is especially hard for me when I feel like I have barely enough time to get regular things done. but, every time I focus on learning or brainstorming around new ideas, I come up with awesome ideas and strategies that can help improve my impact at work and increase my overall industry knowledge.
third is something I like to call “triage”. consistently reassess what things take top priority and which things can wait. identify tasks that drain your time, colleagues that ask for too much, and other time sucking issues and then try to handle them. I love to find new ways to optimize my tasks and make room for even bigger responsibilities. it’s also a great way to grow without letting go of your daily tasks… plus, you can impress your boss with your new found productivity!
now that we’ve gone over the basics of how to stay on point in your job, think about all of the ways you can optimize your time and get cracking on what can be done about it. “ain’t no time like the present, ya heard?”