Optimizing your workflow is vital for being more productive. It will allow you to work faster and better, not harder, and it will help you save time you can use for other important activities in your life.
In this article, you’ll discover 10 essential workflow management tips that will help you to be as efficient and productive as possible.
#1 Organize & Make a Schedule
Not knowing WHAT to do and WHEN to do it is killing your productivity.
You must remove all the guesswork by creating a schedule and reserving time for specific tasks. This will help you save more time, get ahead faster and be more productive.
The easiest way to create and adapt to a new schedule is to use productivity and project management apps like Notion, CoSchedule or even Google Calendar. You just block out time for specific tasks and never wonder what to do next.
You can also integrate these tools with other tools like sales proposal software solutions, which can automate invoices and make that whole workflow more efficient.
#2 Use the Pomodoro Technique for Maximum Focus
Working all day behind a computer isn’t optimal.
In fact, it’s highly ineffective and may lead to burnout. Most importantly, after about 25 minutes, you lose concentration and your mind starts to wander.
But what if you could leverage that, work only for 25 minutes and then take a break?
That’s exactly what the Pomodoro technique is about. You work for 25 minutes and have a 5-minute break between the work cycles.
Your concentration and productivity will then look like below.
The Pomodoro technique will supercharge your productivity and optimize your workflow. And using time tracking apps will help you to know when to work and when to take a break.
#3 Never Multitask
Doing multiple things at once may seem like a lucrative way to finish your work faster.
But as it turns out, it’s not. In fact, studies revealed that it will cut your productivity by 40%. Doing two tasks separately, one after another, is much more efficient than multitasking.
So make sure to never multitask while working on your next project to make your workflow as efficient as possible.
#4 Create Rituals & Adopt New Habits
Creating rituals and habits is essential for effective work.
In fact, did you know that 45% of our activities in a given day are habitual, performed automatically without much thought?
Use it to your advantage and automate your work, without putting too much effort into it.
Some of the best habits of highly productive people include planning, eliminating distractions and going to bed at the same time every day. Bear in mind that adopting a new habit takes around 66 days on average. So, be sure to build productive habits and get rid of the negative ones as soon as possible.
#5 Start with the Most Difficult Tasks First
It’s much more comfortable to check off the easiest tasks on your to-do list.
But instead of choosing the easiest task, you should look at the other side of the spectrum and start working on the hardest ones. This creates momentum and relieves stress. Plus, finishing the most difficult task gives you a fantastic boost. The rest of the tasks are nothing compared to it, and going through them is a breeze.
It’s essential to tackle the most difficult task, finish it and enjoy the rest of the day with less challenging tasks. It’ll make you more productive and help you get things done faster. You’ll also feel relieved for the rest of the day and in a better mood.
#6 Outsource Unimportant Tasks
Reading emails, sending invoices and responding to calls is time-consuming.
In fact, we spend 28% of our workweek just answering emails. But doing these tasks is vital. You can’t just ignore them.
That’s why one of the best ways to deal with them is to hire a virtual assistant and an email marketer and outsource them.
Outsourcing isn’t limited to emails and calls, though. You can outsource all tedious, time-consuming tasks. For instance, you could hire a social media manager to take care of your content online and help you find new clients on social media.
It’s definitely worth your money and will help you manage workflow more easily.
#7 Use the Right Tools
Another great way to get things done aside from outsourcing is using tools for automation. If you want to speed up and better manage your workflow, always be on the lookout for new productivity apps.
Another great idea is to look for complementary tools or alternatives to your existing ones.
For instance, you might have been using sales funnel software for years, never realizing there’s a better, newer sales funnel alternative that will accelerate your work. You can also work with tools that address more than one part of your workflow. (For example, Hightail offers file sharing, creative collaboration, and project management in one place.)
So, make sure to stay updated and incorporate tools in your workflow. It will go a long way in making you more productive.
#8 Automate with Macros
You can use macros for automation in your graphic design environment.
A macro is a sequence of steps that you record and can start automatically with just one click. For instance, if you use Photoshop, you can use a macro that can sharpen, resize and watermark your image automatically.
They can be a complete lifesaver and help you get things done more efficiently. But Photoshop is not the only software with macros. Almost all applications use macros nowadays, so use them to your advantage.
#9 Customize Your Preferences & Workspace
if you’re like most people, you leave the settings and windows as they are on default and don’t customize anything. This can be a huge mistake costing you a lot of time (and money).
Consider the following example: If you want to go back in Photoshop, you’ll have to press “Undo” at least 20 times. This is a huge time waster.
But, you can achieve the same effect instantly by going to a History window in the upper menu—demonstrating the value of customizing your workspace to better manage your workflow.
A Quick Tip: Don’t forget about keyboard shortcuts.
#10 Never Stop Learning
Technology is moving at the speed of light.
In order to keep up and stay ahead, you must be constantly learning new things and adapting to changes—even though it’s more challenging due to the pandemic.
Take courses, subscribe to blogs, listen to podcasts and webinars and implement a solid learning management system to keep everyone up to date on new technologies and streamlined processes for keeping your workflow efficient.
Managing your workflows effectively is crucial for your success as an organization and as a team.
It will allow you to stay consistent, be more productive and get things done faster. Start implementing these 10 tips in 2021 to improve your work and your workflows.
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